Problems after disconnecting LUKS device

Yesterday I got my 2TB backup disk. I formatted it and then used LUKS to encrypt it and LVM for the Volume Management. After I copied some files to the new disk, I unmounted the disk, unplugged it and ...

... Oh, shit.

I forgot to cryptsetup luksClose it.

That's not a good thing to do. Always remember to luksClose! It's so much easier

So after reconnecting the device, you can't really decrypt and mount it, because it did not get unmapped (/dev/mapper/name still exists and so do /dev/name/*)

No problem, we fix that!

(in the following my mapping name is extern, change accordingly)

First see current status, especially Open count

dmsetup info

Now remove each mapped device (-backup and -media for me, I have 2 partiions on the disk):

dmsetup remove extern-backup

dmsetup remove extern-media

Once again check Open count, it should be 0 now. If so, go on and remove the mapping:

dmsetup remove extern

Now you got rid of all old mappings. Let's try to mount the disk again. Plug it in, then do:

cryptsetup luksOpen /dev/sdb2 extern

Type your password. If the Volume Groups are missing, use:


vgchange -ay extern

Now you can mount your partitions:

mount /dev/extern/backup /mnt/backup

Once you're done, deactivate the volume groups and close the crypt device:

vgchange -an extern

cryptsetup luksClose extern

Now remember to always use these two commands after unmounting the device and use the following to open it:

vgchange -ay extern

cryptsetup luksOpen /dev/sdb2 extern

I wrote a little helper script which does exactly these steps as needed. I'll include it in my next post, when I talk about how I use the setup for backups.