Feeds

PlusNet admits customer emails are lost forever

But don't worry half of it was spam anyway...

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

PlusNet has today admitted that it will not be able to restore 700GB of lost customer emails. Never. Ever.

A PlusNet engineer accidentally deleted the emails on Sunday 9 July and the company has been struggling to restore them ever since.

That struggle is now over.

The PlusNet site explains why it has taken so long to (not) sort things out. The screw-up involved a Sun NAS device which runs on StorageTek's proprietary operating system which meant data recovery experts had to alter the tools they usually use.

Other than the weird operating system it said the biggest problem was caused by the unfortunate engineer's first attempt to fix the original mistake.

The engineer tried to recover the data by creating a volume of the same size, and in the same place, as the first volume - "an old sysadmin trick", PlusNet tells us. But the system uses the first volume to create a master inode - essentially a map of where all the other data is kept. Because this was deleted, finding the rest of the data in the second and third volumes is very difficult.

They did get some information back from these other volumes but without the master inode it is all but impossible to tell which emails belong to who.

Within three hours the Sun NAS was on its way to data recovery specialists.

A statement on the PlusNet website claims that half of the email was spam and that 48 per cent of it had already been read - leaving just one or two per cent of actual deleted unread email.

PlusNet is now getting its Sun kit back so it get on with setting up a new email storage system.

Here is the explanation from PlusNet. There is a more technical description of what went wrong on ADSLguide here. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp
Mountain View distances itself from lame 'network thingy'
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
Drag queens: Oh, don't be so bitchy, Facebook! Let us use our stage names
Handbags at dawn over free content ad network's ID policy
Comcast exec: No, we haven't banned Tor. I use it. You're probably using it
Keep in mind if, say, your Onion browser craps out on Xfinity
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.