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Backup on Tape: Error: Not appendable

Created: 08 Jul 2013 | 6 comments

Hello Everyone!

We're backing up with BE 2012 on LTO5 Tape Drives. Since a few weeks, lots of Tapes are marked as "not appendable (End Marker unreadable)" (i hope thats the original Error message, we use the german version).

The error appears at different Tape brands (HP and Sony), the Firmware of the Tape library (Dell TL4000) is up to date. Do you have an idea what causes this problem?

best regards,


Operating Systems:

Comments 6 CommentsJump to latest comment

Jaydeep S's picture

1. Check if the Tape media have any Hard read or write errors on them.

2. Perform a long erase on the tape media and see if that helps.

3. Is any of the Backup Exec service stopping during the job. Confirm this from the windows event viewer.

CraigV's picture Dell's tape utility and stop the BE services. Run the diagnostics against the drive to rule out hardware errors which might be marking tapes as unreadable.


Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

Colin Weaver's picture

If the end marker is unreadable that can be a symptom of process crashes or power cuts during active backup jobs as no end marker is written if something abruptly cuts off an active job

When no end marker is written the tapes get the overwrite protection of the media set but the appendable status becomes non-appendable as we do not know where the data ends on the tape.

This then means that to use the tapes you either have to wait for the overwrite protection to expire or move the tapes back to scratch.

As such please check for unexpected server reboots, process crashes power cuts etc and eliminate the causes for these.

lmosla's picture

Also, check Windows System Events for possible Errors such as Event ID's 5,7,9,11,15 These errors point to possible hardware errors.  Are you using Symantec drivers for your tape drive?  If not use tapeinst.exe to install them, see this link Installing Symantec tape device drivers by running tapeinst.exe

pkh's picture

There was an "end marker unreadable" problem before SP1a.  If you are not on SP1a, then you should update to this by running LiveUpdate and you should also update BE to the latest by running LiveUpdate a couple more time.

RJCITSYM's picture

I also have a similar problem and i already updated it to the latest version. Running BE 2012 on Windows Server 2008 R2 on the Dell PowerEdge 2970. I even requested for the replacement for the tape drive, and still getting the error. Please help!