Please Help! Catastrophic failure (VirtualBox VM not booting).. How to restore Snapshot?

I’m in a real mess. After spending countless hours of getting my Home Assistant VM configured and running perfectly… even creating multiple Supervisor snapshots (in case I ever have to restore from a disaster), my Home Assistant VM wont boot up.

Virtual box will start the VM until it reaches:

Welcome to Home Assistant:
HASSIO login:  [36.334556%] overlayfs:  overlapping upperdir path
[  44.564444] overlayfs:  overlapping upperdir path
[  53.644544] overlayfs:  overlapping upperdir path
[  61.466674] overlayfs:  overlapping upperdir path
[  69.321334] overlayfs:  overlapping upperdir path

If I press Enter, it just presents me with the below login prompt:


How can I restore my VM back exactly the way it was when I created my last snapshot?

If I could at least get to the Configuration folder via samba or via SSH, I could recover my configuration files.

Now, its even worse. After I reboot the VM, it doesn’t get passed the Boot Chooser menu. It keeps trying to autoboot… then clears the screen very quickly, then it does the same thing. I cant read what it says, because the screen clears very quickly. If I press the number 3 or 2, it starts to boot all the way up until the login prompt again displaying the same overlapping upperdir path again.

PS: If I login as root in the above login prompt, I get the following:

Last login: Friday: June …… on tty1
[ERROR] Somethings going wrong! Jump into emergency console…

First, download any linux live cd image, boot the VM with it and try to copy your snapshots to another place.
Then i would do a new install.

Thank you very much for the quick reply. I will do that

@VDRainer How do I boot the Linux Live cd image with the VM if I can’t even boot the VM properly? Please see how far I get with the VM in my original post.

Add the iso in storage.

and edit boot order on system.

Thanks VDRainer. I did as you mentioned. However, Virtualbox won’t boot to the liveCD. This is what I get:

Try it with disabled EFI.

Thanks for the tip. I really appreciate you help. I actually took a different approach to recovering from this disaster. I extracted the VDI image itself… then, extracted the IMG files within it using the below tool (since my HOST OS is Windows 10):

…eventually gaining access to my snapshots in the backup folder.

I then downloaded and setup a brand new VDI… placing my snapshots back… then doing a wipe/restore from my latest snapshot.

In the future, I plan to make backup copies of the VDI in addition to creating snapshots to be better prepared if this happens again.


Thanks for writing up how you were able to get retrieve the data from the VDI - I’l have to extract the same way you did.
Do you happen to know how this failure occurred? I only ask because the same thing happened to me… I have a VERY basic setup with some Z wave switches, an IR blaster and one automation based on the sun so I’m surprised I don’t see this issue listed elsewhere. I am using a Windows LTSC “server” with a UPS that is on running a number of over services that is very stable other than HA.

@Sticklizer To this day, I still don’t know what I did to cause the issue. At the time, I was rebooting the VM relatively frequently; since I was adding/configuring several items in the configuration.yaml file; also, I updated the Home Assistant OS. I’m guessing I might have rebooted the VM inadvertently while it was still upgrading the OS.

One thing I didn’t mention in the solution for this thread. Since my HOST OS is Windows. I had to use the below tool to read the IMG files I extract from my VM VDI. I wasn’t able to read those IMG file natively within Windows.