recovery of erased files

Asked by Commodore Hairy

When I upgraded to Ubuntu 11.04 because the bottom bar showing the four windows (screens) was missing I entered the following commands to restore that bar which I had done several time in Ubuntu 9.10 for the same reason.
gconftool -- recursive-unset /apps/panel
rm -rf~/ .gconf/apps/panel (should be rm rf ~/.gconf/apps/panel - no space between / and .gconf)
pkill gnome-panel
Instead of restoring the window bar this command erased all my Document files, my picture files, my Crossover files - - all of my files but left the applications and the directory structure of the dual boot hard drive intact.
I have tried to recover these files running Foremost from another drive using Ubuntu 9.10 and the recovery utilities using a live Knoppix cd. Foremost runs for several hours making sounds and showing lots of screen activity but in the end nothing is written to the destination drive or restored within the erased drive. The destination drive is a new drive formatted in ext4. I can write to it from Ubuntu. In Foremost the destination for recovered files was entered as /dev/sdb1/recovery and then I tried the drive name instead /Loloma/recovery.
Foremost seems to only recover files that are intact but inaccessible because of damaged partitions or directories. Can you recommend a recovery utility which rebuilds erased files? thanks
Commodore Hairy

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mycae (mycae) said :

I usually recommend foremost... you can try photorec instead..

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actionparsnip (andrew-woodhead666) said :

Use your backups

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