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I don't know how it happened, but somehow the libc6 library file on my computer got zapped. Now, when I try to boot Linux I get an error message telling me that the OS cannot find that particular file, and the boot process stops.

I've tried booting with my rescue disk but that hasn't worked. Is there any way I can save my system? Or at least get my to my files and back them up? Or do I have to re-install Linux?

What happened when you used the rescue mode?

Do you have any small spare hard drives laying around?
Thanks for the reply ...

When I try to use the rescue disk, I get 1) an option to boot from floppy or the hard drive, and 2) (shortly thereafter) the same error message telling me the library file is missing.

Unfortunately, I don't have an extra HDD.
How big is the current drive? How important is the data on it?

What I'm thinking you can do is partition your hard drive, do a small installation of Linux on the new partition (use a boot disk to get into it after the install, do not install LILO/GRUB) and then mount your current install and then fix the filesystem etc.
That's a god idea. I'll have to try it.

As for the files, they're fairly pretty important. In fact, I was about to back them up when this happened.

Thanks again for your help.
No problem if you need any more details etc dont be afraid to ask smile.gif
There are also distributions that fit on a floppy disk. You might want to check out those before you go ahead with the other method listed above.
I've been checking out a few floppy/bootable CD based Linux distros and rescue kits. I may try one of those first, just to get my files. Then, so a full re-install.
If you have access to a burner, you can download Knoppix, burn it to CD, boot up, and do most linux things with KDE ....

You could even download the missing files!
Just a quick thank you to those who replied to my original question. Thanks to a Linux rescue floppy, some command line work, and a bit of luck I managed to recover my system.

If anyone is interested in the process I went through, please let me know and I'll do a quick write-up about it.
Please do, it would be helpful to others and I would really appreciate it.

Will do.

However, while I was cobbling together the write-up, I encountered another small(?) problem. When I try to start certain applications (for example, Xemacs, Nedit, etc.), at the command prompt I get a message like this:

<app name>: error in loading shared libraries: /usr/X11R6/lib/ undefined symbol: <name of symbol, e.g. _Xsetlocale>

Again, this only happens with certain applications. Could this be caused by me having hard linked the library file (the one which disappeared), instead of symbolically linking it?
I don't think a hard link (compared to a soft link) would make a difference ... it sounds to me like the library may be not the same version as it was before ... and because of that, some symbols are missing.

Are you sure the file you put back is the same version as the one that was removed?

You didn't really say what distro and version of glibc you had ... and how you repaired/replaced the file...
I'm using Caldera OpenLinux 2.4. I replaced the file by linking it to I'm sure that the libXt file is the same version as the old one -- I got it off my distro's CD.
I looked at my redhat 8, redhat 9 and Debain SID installs ... I don't have a ... I do have a and it is a ln -s of /lib/ (redhat 8 and 9) and a ln -s of /lib/ (debian)...

So I assume that the link is correct .... and if the version of is correct then I don't know what is wrong.

All my links are in /lib and they are symbolic links vice hard links ... so maybe it makes a difference ... but I don't see how.

Maybe if you run the command:

ldd binaryfile

it will show you that it is pointing to a different version of the shared library that is hiding somewhere else on your filesystem....
OK, problem solved. I re-installed the wrong version of the library file -- a development one instead of a stable one. Duh!

Anyway, I know I mentioned that I'd do a write up on how I solved my problems, but I'm really bad with this sort of thing. And with correspondence. And eating. And personal hygine.
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