Question about Benchmark DLT1 DLT Tape Drive

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Benchmark VS80 Tape drive giving Bad Media messages

We are using the Benchmark with Veritas 9.1 software. We had the drive disconnected for several months but decided to start using it again on a different server. Now all the tapes originally used in this drive are giving a message.

We are trying to figure out if this is a problem with the drive or the Veritas installation. We have tried many different previously used tapes but don't have any brand new ones.

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Have you tried cleaning the unit tape heads and path?

Posted on May 12, 2008

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Sounds a bit strange - I've seen this happen when tapes are re-used in a different drive but not when re-used in the same drive. You could try degaussing (magnetically wiping) the tapes. This should effectively make them appear as new ones.

Posted on Apr 12, 2008

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Hello, if it has an eject button, press it quickly several times (can't remember the exact number; try 3 first, then 5, then 7)the reason being that on earlier DLT's the firmware would cause a drive reset which would, if there wasn't a detached leader or other physical problem, result in a tape unload.
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We have had the same problems with HP drives and Veritas. In our case it was not the drive per se. While I am assuming that based on the date of your post that you have moved to another solution, however, I will provide for you what we did.

First shut all down, disconnect the tape drive from the scsi cable, then restart. Go into computer management and turn all your backup exec services from auto to manual. Now go to devices and do a rescan. Once this is done and you see no tape drive whatsoever in the devices shut down the server. Reconnect the scsi cable to the drive and restart.

Go back into computer management, back to devices and rescan for hardware changes. Do you see it? If so, good! Sometimes a re-seating of connectors will do that. On the other hand, it could also be a tape driver from Veritas that just doesn't work (my case), take the original driver cd that came with the unit and start that loading up. Can you see it now? Can you use windows backup to access the tape drive? Now go into services and start the services individually. Go into backup exec and see if you can read your tape. Go back to services and reset all services back to auto. If you ever have to reinstall/upgrade backup exec, think twice about using their drivers.

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2 Answers

I have a Quantum SDLT 320 drive in a Dell 2800 server that has the yellow attention light stuck on. It is performing backups successfully in Veritas and giving no errors from Veritas or anywhere else. Can...


Sounds like it may be the cleaning light (far right)

You need to use a cleaning tape in the drive (they do expire after either 20 or 40 uses so use a brand new one to be sure)

That should clear the light. If it comes back on after another backup then try using the cleaning tape again and then a brand new tape for the backup.
If the light comes on again then the drive will need to go for repair as the head is knackered.

Try www.tape-drive-repair.com for this as they are pretty good price wise and also offer a 1 years warranty on their drives and repairs

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1 Answer

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Try a brand new tape fresh out the wrapper.

If that doesnt work make sure you are using the right drive in your backup software!

It sounds like a message often seen in windows backup where you have selected the wrong tape drive from the list and it just tells you "No compatible media found" when actually the drive listed isnt even connected to your system still

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Perhaps your cartridge is improperly formatted or is of the incorrect type?

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drivers are a simple solution..here's a link for printer drivers, which you can jump through to find tape drivers, with the dell model number.

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