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DAT24 Clean Light

Patrick Sewell
Occasional Contributor

DAT24 Clean Light

After every backup, the clean light flashes on our DAT24 drive. I clean it with a cleaning tape and the light goes out. This process repeats everyday. We have other DAT24 drives that this does not happen on. Is there something I am missing here?
4 REPLIES
paul courry
Honored Contributor

Re: DAT24 Clean Light

If this were happening to me and I had a support contract I'd call HP and tell them to replace it.

If I did NOT have a support contract I'd look at the error statistics my backup program was generating (BTW you do try to occasionally restore files from your backup tapes just to make sure they are readable, don't you?) and based on that decide whether to spend the money to replace or not.
Tim Malnati
Honored Contributor

Re: DAT24 Clean Light

This is normally the first indication that the tape heads are starting to fail on the drive. It's only a matter of time before you will not be able to read or write to it. I suggest that you replace this drive soon (via support or otherwise).
Emma Sanford
Occasional Visitor

Re: DAT24 Clean Light

The cleaning light flashing normally indicates that the drive requires cleaning....in this instance where the light flashes when trying to backup it could be a problem with the drive. First thing to try is to clean the drive around 5 times in a row to remove any build up on the heads. Sometimes not cleaning the drive enough or cleaning to often can cause this type of problem.
If you are still getting this problem run a hp diagnostics program on the drive such as Library and Tape Tools which you can download from this website, it will depend on your operating system though, this program is for windows based systems...if on novell use Tape assure. This will help to narrow down the error. Also try upgrading your firmware on the drive to make sure this is not causing any problems. If still failing to backup you may want to try another SCSI controller.....if all else fails contact support.
Joseph T. Wyckoff
Honored Contributor

Re: DAT24 Clean Light

I had a reasonably small environment where I backed up all of my servers, en toto about 20GB nightly onto a DDS-2 library, 6 slot.

About every three months I wore out the tape drive, with symptoms very much like you describe.

Simply put, the six slot libraries are really designed for one tape per night, not 5 tapes per night, and so I was wearing them out 5 times faster than 'I should have.'

3 months actual life is one fifth of predicted life....

Therefore the predicted life for my drive should have been about 15 months ... just a little longer than my one year warranty.

I went through two drives (under warranty) before I figured the problem out.

Now tape technology has come along a little bit, and I am no longer doing that, and your situation doubtless differs.

But there is a really good chance that your symptom is head wear, and the DDS drive needs replacing.

If your drive is more than two years old running a tape a day - order the replacement.

If you run two tapes a day... and more than a year old...

If four tapes a day and more than 6 months old...

That is my OPINION based on my past experiences. I am a software guy.

Good Luck.
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