dbexport is helpful to recover the data, but this is not the right way to backup an Informix instance.
At this point, you must recreate all your dbspaces as they were before, because youhave lost them. hoping all this has been documented.
you must use either ontape or onbar, which are the supported way to backup Informix instances.
The first point is that they backup up the Informix INSTANCE instead of only one database.
The second point is that they are much faster than dbexport because they copy physical page instead of rows
The third point is that you can perform your backup during users activity, whereas dbexport will lock the database in exclusive mode.
With version 11.70, there is a security that will prevent you from initializing your instance by accident.