[dm-crypt] What does it mean “not a valid LUKS device”? Can I start over and not destroy the drive?

.. ink .. mhogomchungu at gmail.com
Fri Jun 15 20:11:01 CEST 2012

> When I attempt to fix the problems from the boot cd and run cryptsetup
> luksOpen /dev/sda3 cryptLVM, I get “not a valid LUKS device”.
> Can I simply reformat Luks? What are my concerns right now if I don't need
> to save data?
> It means what it says.A luks device has what is called a "luks header".The
header contains information necessary to open the volume.The header in that
device is corrupt and hence the volume is no longer a luks volume.

Latest versions of cryptsetup has an ability to correct some corruptions
but not all.You can try to see if it can repair your corrupted volume.

Did you create a luks header backup? If not then your data is toasted and
lost forever. You can simply reformat and move on but your old data will be

Make a back up of the header after you reformat.Restoring a header from a
backup is the only way to recover from the error you got.
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