Data rescue from a Rocket.Chat installation with broken snap

I am fighting with snapd since yesterday… Long story short: snap is broken, I am not able to start the caddy, the rocketchat-server or the mongo database and I have not a single manual backup. (I was so naive that I thought those are created automatically). If someone is interested, here is my desperate call for help regarding the snap installation:

Now I have only the files on the machine (and a full system backup of 4 weeks, but none of them with a working snap, it seems that the issue was there for a long time and only revealed when I did a system update).

My question: how can I rescue the data of Rocket.Chat and feed it into a fresh installation? As far as I understood everything is stored under /var/snap, but where is the actual mongo database file, or how can I make a valid backup archive, which is recognised by Rocket.Chat?

Alright, I got it back to live and everything seems to work. I still cannot believe it.

The procedure was the following:

  • install a fresh new Xen container (on fresh virtual disks) with debian jessie
  • update all the packages to the latest versions
  • do a full dist upgrade to debian stretch
  • install snap with apt (and other related packages like apache2, letsencrypt…)
  • copy over /var/snap/rocketchat-server/common from the system backup to the new server (same location)
  • copy over individual configuration files (apache reverse proxy configuration, letsencrypt, etc.)
  • snap install rocketchat.server
  • everything works. reboot to make sure it comes back and enjoy

All in all the solution is quite straight forward and I almost regret that I spent so much time and effort to make this work under the same system (Debian Jessie). I guess the biggest show blocker was the fact that at some point they removed snapd from the jessie-backports (which I learned the hard way when I tried to reinstall it), so I simply wasn’t able to restore a working snap installation. But whatever…

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