Backup Exec is ejecting a tape when it shouldn't...
Backup Exec 2012 (patched to date).
Windows 2003 SBS SP2
Single HP Ultrium 3 internal SAS tape drive.
Last Friday I inserted a brand new tape into the backup rotation. For this I simply put the new tape in the drive and ran a label job on it. This puts the tape, as you probably already know, into the scratch media pool. Saturday morning I discovered I had received repeated emails, from BENT, asking me to remove the media. I connected to the server and noticed that the Friday night backup job was still running, with 0KB written to the tape, and a remove media alert was visible in BENT. When I checked the properties of the brand new tape in the drive I noticed it had been allocated to one of my backup media pools that are set to overwrite protect the backup data for a set period of time. However, it appears BENT had done this to the tape before it had run the backup; thereby preventing itself from overwriting the blank tape (this mishandling of the media pool allocation is a separate issue I am still dealing with on a Symantec support case)!? So, to get the backup job running again I thought, all I have to do is cancel the backup job, reallocate the tape back to the scratch pool and rerun the job. So, I ignored the media remove request and cancelled the job. Only to find that BENT had ejected the tape anyway!?
Surely, this is a fault in the logic of BENT. The tape should not be ejected until after the operator acknowledges the media removal alert. The backup job hasn't been set up to eject the tape on completion and I didn't acknowledge the media removal request, so BENT has a bug (faulty logic) whereby the tape is still ejected, in this scenario. In this instance, I had to ask my client to go into their office, on a weekend, so they can push the tape back into the drive. Whereby I moved the tape back into the scratch pool and kicked the job off again, which completed without further errors.
What should happen, when a tape that is overwrite protected and a backup job is trying to overwrite the tape is as follows:
1. A media removal alert is generated.
2. The operator is given the opportunity to check the backup job's settings and the state of the media in the drive and take actions to remediate the problem. In my case, this was to cancel the backup job, reallocate the blank tape to the scratch pool and then kick the backup job off again. However, I was precluded from doing this because BENT had already shosen to eject the tape.
3. If my chosen course of action was to swap the media then, and only then, Backup Exec should eject the tape if I acknowledge the media removal alert.
As far as I can see this is a fundamental flaw in the logic of the product that precludes it from being suitable for use at sites that have a single tape backup unit where backups need to be managed unattended.
Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.