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Issues with P800 and Brand new HP MSL2024 Ultrium 6520 LTO-6 X 1 SAS Tape Library

 
Neal Howard
Advisor

Re: Issues with P800 and Brand new HP MSL2024 Ultrium 6520 LTO-6 X 1 SAS Tape Library

I'm right now waiting on a callback from an SA for pre-sales tech questions on this topic. While speaking to my govt account rep about this, he said he remembered a similar case that was solved by going with a separate Smart Array controller dedicated to the tape library.

 

In my old DL380-G5 LTO2 system as reported in my previous post, I upgraded the library to a dual LTO5 SAS version of the MSL2024 back in December, and employed a Smart Array P411 controller card dedicated to the library only. Even though the G5 machines are not listed on the hardware compatability list as officially supported by the P411 card (only supported on G6 and later), I found a web document where HP had installed one in a DL380-G5 and attached an external disk array chassis to measure the SAS 6g speeds in a thruput test in a MS Exchange server environment, so I bought the P411 card anyway to connect the new library. So far it's been running perfectly fine every day since about the 2nd week of December 2012.

 

Even though your P800 card should theoretically support both your disk array and tape library simultaneously, maybe it has some hidden internal design issues when connecting SAS systems with vastly different traffic flow and command queing behaviours such as disk vs tape. It might be worth a test to see if a dedicated controller card would solve the problem. You might ask your HP support engineer assigned to your case if they could send you a test P411 card to see if it fixes the problem... that is, if you've got a PCIe slot open for another controller card.

StephenWagner7
Frequent Advisor

Re: Issues with P800 and Brand new HP MSL2024 Ultrium 6520 LTO-6 X 1 SAS Tape Library

 

Got the new tape drive yesterday... Tried it out, and still having issues.

 

The backup does 1.19TB of a 1.2TB backup job then fails.

 

 

Checking backup exec logs, it reports:

[0396] 02/13/13 22:26:41 Adamm Mover Error: DeviceIo: 03:07:00:00 - Device error 1117 on "\\.\Tape0", SCSI cmd 0a, 1 total errors

 

So, I'm now ready to try putting it on it's own controller card... The problem is, HP told me that no compatible controller cards are available yet to connect the MSL2024 LTO-6 tape library... Is this true?

 

I was hoping to avoid this since we have no free spots left in our DL360 G6. I'll have to remove a SCSI card that we have installed that we need for something else :(

StephenWagner7
Frequent Advisor

Re: Issues with P800 and Brand new HP MSL2024 Ultrium 6520 LTO-6 X 1 SAS Tape Library

Drumroll please......

 

Well the issue is finally fixed...

 

During the first initial phone call weeks ago. I was running firmware version 5.80. Even though 5.90 was available, we tried flashing it, but it was coming up with a certificate error and the library was not accepting it.

 

The HP tech told me not to worry as this is a minor update containing nothing critical, and that 5.80 can be treated as current...

 

I called back last night, since they closed the case just wondering what the heck was going on. I was just about to purchase a controller that I had no idea if it was going to work. Didn't know what would work since the second HP tech on the second call mentioned that currently no HBA or Smart Array controllers are compatible with the new LTO-6 tapes, and that I'd have to wait for HP to release one...

 

I mentioned that to the individual I spoke with last night, and he said he'd escalate it to higher engineers. E-Mailed me later that night saying:

 

Firmware needs to be at 5.90 in order to support LTO-6 tapes. And said some other stuff including listing a RAID controller that was compatible.

 

 

I jaw dropped. I couldn't beleive it. First, that the pre-configured MSL2024 with a half height LTO-6 drive would ship with a firmware that doesn't support it, and secondly that I've wasted over 50 hours of time trying to trouble shoot this issue.

 

Since we couldn't flash it in the first place with LTT. I logged in to the MSL web interface, and updated the firmware there.

 

It rebooted, I restarted Backup Exec services, confirmed the Symantec drive was loaded for the newly recognized Tape Drive/Library.

 

I ran a mini backup (130GB versus a full backup which is around 5TB), and BAM it completed. I was shocked, usually the backups failed right at the end.

 

I waited till later that night to initiate a full backup. Server 1, backed up, server 2 backed up. The whole backup job completely 100%.

 

So just to confirm:

 

1. A P800 controller that's connected to a MSA60, plus a MSL2024 LTO-6 SAS library works 100%

2. You need to be running firmware 5.90 or higher for it to support LTO-6 drives/libraries

3. I think backup exec needs to be 2012 SP1a or higher with the latest device drivers to support LTO-6.

 

 

Even when backing up the MSA60 unit with 12 drives RAID6, to the MSL2024 LTO-6 which is on the same controller, it still worked 100% and the MSA60 read was maxed out. No issues whatsoever!

 

Thought I'd post this in case any others are having this problem. This is how you fix it, and thanks to the others who chimed in and tried to help!

 

Cheers!

Davy Priem
Regular Advisor

Re: Issues with P800 and Brand new HP MSL2024 Ultrium 6520 LTO-6 X 1 SAS Tape Library

Hi. I also got an MSL2024 (LTO6) in combination with a HP 822 controller, connected to Linux server and got same issue.. Releasenotes for MSL 5.80 said there was support for LTO6 drives, but HP did pull back the firmware and marked it as not supported anymore. It's obvious why...