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Restoring the mysql system user table

 

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In our work place someone had by accident deleted the entries in mysql's user table (including 'root').
This 'user' table is a table in the system database, which you can select with the command 'use mysql'.

Without a login I could not add other entries nor do anything with standard mysql tools (except reinstall).

Good thing is we had a backup of the files that hold these tables. Note: Not a db backup with insert statements, but a file level backup of mysql's files.

In our (Linux) installation, all mysql databases are held under

/var/lib/mysql/

The system db is under

/var/lib/mysql/mysql/

The user table is stored as 3 files

/var/lib/mysql/mysql/user.*

I restored these 3 files and had to set the owner and the group to mysql, then it worked fine. Of course I had to shut down and restart the mysql daemon to make the restore take effect.


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