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Backup Exec 12, new LTO3 media errors

Created: 02 Dec 2010 • Updated: 03 Dec 2010 | 11 comments
This issue has been solved. See solution.

Hi,

We run Backup Exec 12 on a Windows 2003 32bit SP2 Server connected to a Dell PowerVault 124T.

We have a ton of tapes in circulation so Ive been re-using media by just quick erasing and the media gets put back into scratch media and backup exec then takes from this pool for the Daily, Weekly and Monthly backup schedules. Apart from tape read write errors on certain older tapes this has been working flawelessly for quick a while. Some of the tapes are getting a bit old and get passed over or designated as Retired Media and I am now in the process of refreshing our tape pool with new media.

I bought two boxes of HP LTO3 Ultrium RW tapes which is the exact same media thats currently in circulation. I label all the new media with new barcode stickers, feed them into the PowerVault and they are all then seen as scratch media (blank media). Backup Exec will take one of the new tapes for say the Weekly job, tape will sit in the drive but never gets written to. After a while an alert says insert overwriteable/appendable media. At first I thought it was somehow the tapes and sent them back to the supplier who replaced the two boxes (10 tapes) for me but the new ones are doing the exact same thing. If you view the properties of the new never been written to before tapes it shows over 200 Hard write errors!

What am I missing? Even associating the tapes with the Weekly or Daily media sets makes no difference. Its like the tapes need to be prepared for first time use (formatted?) but there is no such option?

Regards

Nick

Comments 11 CommentsJump to latest comment

pkh's picture

Do a quick erase on the new tapes.  This is equivalent to a format.

When you get your operation going again, you don't have to erase your tapes before they can be re-used.  You can just move them to the scratch media set.  They will become overwriteable.

Nickza's picture

Hi,

Thanks for the very quick response, I am running a quick erase on one of the tapes now but Im sure I tried that before and it ran for quite a while before I eventually cancelled it. Usually quick erase on my old media takes barely 3 minutes.

Will let it run and report back.

Nick

CraigV's picture

...if you're getting hard errors on a new tape, I tend to suspect that the drive is faulty. Upgrade the firmware on the library, and BE to the latest DDI package. If you're still unable to do backups/erases to it, see if Dell has a utility available that can check your hardware for errors...

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

pkh's picture

Don't cancel the quick erase which is taking a long time.  If there is nothing on the tape, then it has became a long erase.  A quick erase will only override the header.

Nickza's picture

Took 25 minutes and generated that. I will run a clean and re-run the erase once again..

pkh's picture

All the pictures that you post cannot be seen.

Nickza's picture

Strange.. images are working for me.

The error it reported said:

Erase Library 00085-- Media Label: 000150L3 -- A tape read/write error has occured. This is usually caused by dirty read/write heads in the tape drive. Clean the tape drive and then try the job again. If the problem persists try a different tape. You may also need to check for problems with termination , cables or other hardware issues.

pkh's picture

This forum is a secure site.  If you need to post pictures, attach them or use the image button on the toolbar.  If you link to a picture on another site, when the user does not display unsecure items in his browser he will not be able to see it.

Back to your problem, it is likely that your tape drive is having problems.  New tapes cannot have so much write errors.  Stop all the BE services and use the manufacturer's utility to test the tape drive.  Make sure that you select the write test.

If the drive is still under warranty, replace it.

Nickza's picture

Dell came onsite and replaced my PowerVault 124T with an entire new unit, busy running tests now to see if this has resolved the issue.

Nickza's picture

Issue is resolved, its strange that it didnt mind re-used tapes but wouldnt read/write new tapes.

Thanks for the help

Nick

SOLUTION
CraigV's picture

...was the solution to replace the unit...?

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...