Ubuntu – Can’t access the home directory “Encrypted private directory is not setup properly”


Hi I'm trying to access my home directory on my laptop hard drive through a live usb. I cannot boot into the OS on the hard drive and the home and root directory is encrypted. I have the encryption key but when I try to run the tool to gain access it pops up for a second then disappears and when I run the command in Terminal it says "Encrypted private directory is not setup properly". What are my options on getting into the directory? I really need to get the data off my laptop.

Best Answer

I had a similar issue. I was able to solve it using the instructions here:


The key for me was to first navigate to:


before I ran the command:

sudo ecryptfs-recover-private .Private/

Before I just navigated to /media and ran

sudo ecryptfs-recover-private (mypartition)

I entered my passphrase and I received a SUCCESS notification. Unfortunately, I was still unable to access /tmp/ecryptfs.(randomcharacters)

It took me two days to finally find a solution that worked.