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unmountable ext3 root recovery

After a (hardware) crash yesterday, I was unable to boot up due to
unrecoverable ide errors (according to the printk()s) when accessing
the root filesystem's journal for recovery.

Unable to recover, I tried deleting the has_journal option, but that was
disallowed given that the needs_recovery flag was set.  I saw no way
to unset that flag.

Unable to access the backups (they were on a fw drive), I was able to
dump the unrecovered filesystem, mke2fs and restore.

(And then had to dl a new rescue floppy so that I could boot with the
recovered fs as root in order to get lilo(8) or grub(8) to run.  But
that is a different issue.)

So I'm back to a un-journaled root for the moment (at least it is small).

Was dump/mkfs/restore the only option in such a case, or is there a
way to mount the fs w/o recovering the journal?  Simply ignoring the
journal, as the dump/mkfs/restore did, is better than an unbootable box.

Or was the solution I ended up with the only way out?


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