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HP SureStore Ultrium LTO 9-Tape AutoLoader

David Reed_7
Occasional Visitor

HP SureStore Ultrium LTO 9-Tape AutoLoader

Good morning...I have an Ultrium LTO 9-Tape autoloader which seems to be unable to connect with the server (Veritas and Windows knows it's there, but can't communicate). After talking with some tech support at HP, they told me that the tape drive had probably died because the communication between the on-board SCSI and the tape drive was to slow, that the tape drive had to start and stop to frequently (while waiting for information), and that that caused it to die prematurely.

Mind you, HP is shipping us a replacement drive, but this is a new experience...I've never heard of this in my 10+ years in the business.

Has anyone else ever heard of this kind of thing happening?


David Reed
Joshua Scott
Honored Contributor

Re: HP SureStore Ultrium LTO 9-Tape AutoLoader

What model server are you running? Also, what kind of SCSI connection do you have to the Autoloader?

If you have an older SCSI Adapter, then it's quite possible that the drive is expecting I/O at a greater rate than the Bus can deliver it. This results in the drive having to stop and wait on the input, thus it has to rewind/reread, etc. All this produces far too much wear on the heads of the drive. I would recommend upgrading your SCSI card if possible.


What are the chances...
Mark Grant
Honored Contributor

Re: HP SureStore Ultrium LTO 9-Tape AutoLoader

LTO and SDLT tape drives need to stream. If the don't receive data fast enough, the drive stops and the head has to re-position, on a slow system this happens constantly and the heads really do wear out, and quickly. I think it's called the shoe-shine effect.

Now, tape drives have always been happier when streaming but LTO and SDLT drives are FAST! Sometimes, for us, it is quicker to restore from tape than to just copy data from disk to disk. They therefore need to be fed data fast.
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