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Change tapes and then reuse the old ones.

Created: 03 May 2010 • Updated: 08 Jun 2010 | 8 comments
This issue has been solved. See solution.

Hi,
Im using Backup Exec 12.5 for windows and an ultrium tape backup with 7 tapes.

I have 7 tapes in the ultrium and 14 new tapes

Lets assume that every 7 tapes compose a group, so Group A are in the ultrium, Group B are a pack of 7 new tapes and group C are a pack of other 7 new tapes.

I need to do this:

At the end of this month, I need to take out the 7 tapes (Group A) and put 7 of the new ones (Group B).

At the end of the next month, I need to change from Group B to Group C

At the third month, I wiil change the group C with the A Group

and so on.....

Do I need to use the vault feature ?, How ?
If Im using the C Group and I need to recover info from the A group, how can I acomplish this ?
I have doubts if this is the best procedure to do the backups.

Thanks in Advance

Comments 8 CommentsJump to latest comment

pkh's picture

If you are going to physically remove 2 groups of your tapes from your tape library then you do not need to use vault.

You would not have enough mailslots to export 7 tapes, so you need to remove the magazine(s) and exchange the groups of tape.  After replacing the magazines, you need to scan or inventory the entire library.  You do a scan if you are using barcode labels.  Otherwise do an inventory.  After this, when you go the Media tab, you would see that the tapes that were not in the library are marked with a red X, indicating that they are not in the library.

Set your overwrite protection period to 2 months so that when the tapes rotate back to the library they are overwriteable.

If your tape library has enough slots for all the tapes and there is no need to bring them off-site, you can just leave all of them in the library.  As long as you set the OPP correctly, the tapes will not be overwritten before their time.

If Im using the C Group and I need to recover info from the A group, how can I acomplish this ?

If you have mailslot(s) enabled in your library, just run the restore job and BE will prompt you to place the correct tape in the mailslot.  Once you have done so, it will continue with the restore.  If you don't have mailslot(s) enabled, you would need to put the tape into the library first and then scan/inventory the library before running the restore job.

jjimenez's picture

Thanks phk for your answer,

I change the tapes and as you said the tapes that are not in the library are marked with an X.
To take out the tapes, I didnt use any option of the backup Exec soft, I only press some buttons in the tape library, unlock the magazines and take out the tapes. (Is this correct ?)

My Tape library does not have enough slots for all the tapes.

In the label field of the new tapes appears a question mark (?) So I labeled with new names. For example Group B tape 2.

If I restore the tapes from the A Group and do an Inventory, backup Excec will recognize the labels from that group ?

Could you please explain about the mailslot feature

Thanks again.

pkh's picture

I change the tapes and as you said the tapes that are not in the library are marked with an X.

After you change out the tapes, did you do either a scan or an inventory?  Are you using barcode labels?

In the label field of the new tapes appears a question mark (?) So I labeled with new names. For example Group B tape 2.

You cannot label tapes this way.  If you are using barcode labels, then after you do a scan, they will automatically be recognised.  If you are not using barcode labels, then you need to go to the Media tab, right-click on the slot and select Label Media to label the tape.

Mailslot or i/o slot or portal is a tape library feature.  This is a special slot which you can open to put/remove tape without opening the magazines.  You use the import/export commands to move tapes between this slot and the regular slot. 

SOLUTION
jjimenez's picture

Hi,
Im not using barcode labels, so I had to label the tapes using your procedure. "At the the Media tab, right-click on the slot and select Label Media to label the tape".

Thanks for the explanation about the mailslot, My tape backup doesnt have one.

About my question: if i change the tapes from one group to another, and do an inventory, the labels will be recognized ?, and the backups will be done normally ?. or i need to do something else.

pkh's picture

My tape backup doesnt have one.

This is quite a common feature in tape libraries.  What is the model of your tape library?  You have to enable this feature at the library itself.

About my question: if i change the tapes from one group to another, and do an inventory, the labels will be recognized ?, and the backups will be done normally ?. or i need to do something else.

Yes.  After your inventory job, you can go to the Devices tab and click on Slots.  You should be able to see all your new set of tapes in the appropriate slots.

jjimenez's picture

The model of the tape:
HP 1/8 G2 Ultrium 448 - LTO 2

pkh's picture

Your autoloader does have a mailslot.  You got to enable it.  It also has a barcode reader so you should barcode labels.  They are much more efficient, but that is a different topic.

If you are happy with the answers, do close out this discussion by marking one of my answers as the solution.