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What Happened to my DDS3 autochanger?

Duane Dieterich
Occasional Visitor

What Happened to my DDS3 autochanger?

I have a A3716A 6 tape DD3 autochanger that suddenly doesn't work anymore after doing fine for over a year. Near the end of a recent OBII backup, I got the following error:

[90:51] /dev/rmt/5m
Can not write to device ([5] I/O error)

Later on, I get:

Tape Alert [ 3]: The library has a hardware fault:

I aborted the OBII backup.
Ever since this error occurred, I have been unable to use the tape changer. The front panel on the tape drive seems to be locked and I can't eject the magazine like I could before. I have to force an eject to get the mag to eject. I couldn't manually load any tapes, either.

ioscan can still see the device:

tape 5 10/4/8.1.0 tape2 CLAIMED DEVICE HP C1537A

spt 4 10/4/8.1.1 spt CLAIMED DEVICE HP C1557A

I get errors using UMA:

# uma -ioctl /dev/rmt/autotape
/dev/rmt/autotape> stat
Device not ready!

MTX coredumps:

# mtx -d /dev/rmt/autotape -q
Vendor ID: HP
Drive Product ID: C1557A
Product Revision: UL01
Firmware Revision: 2.93
Memory fault(coredump)

MC doesn't work:

# mc -p /dev/rmt/autotape -q
ERROR: 0x4 Hardware Error : 0x4004 Unknown Additional Sense Code

As a last resort (or so I thought), I completely shutdown and powered off the system (a K460) and the drive. After powering on just the drive but leaving the system off, I put in a tape magazine and was still unable to get it back without doing a forced eject. The tape drive reports no errors after its self test, by the way.

After a restart of both the tape drive and the system, the bad behavior still exists. The system is not reporting any errors in syslog, either. STM seems to indicate that the SCSI controller that the tape drive uses is fine.

Ok gurus... Any ideas? Does it sound like the drive is hosed? We're working on getting our support contract renewed, otherwise I would have had HP fix it yesterday.

paul courry
Honored Contributor

Re: What Happened to my DDS3 autochanger?

HP will usually allow you at least 30 days grace if they know you are renewing your contract. They should be willing to come out and fix your equipment while the paperwork clears. The HP contract group is famous for being slow and late in getting contract renewals out.

Other than that, have you tried ODE MAPPER to see if the device can be seen? This is a CE's basic tool to diagnose problems. You boot it in place of HPUX and it pings each SCSI address on each bus (10 secs per address) it reports what the device says it is.

If MAPPER does not see the tape drive then a call to HP is very much in order. (Really, call HP and twist their arm, they should be willing to come out on the promise of a renewal.)
Duane Dieterich
Occasional Visitor

Re: What Happened to my DDS3 autochanger?

I ended up twisting the arm of the hardware support folks to get them to come out since, like I said, we are working on getting the support renewed.

The CE came out with a new autochanger, did a switcharoo and I've been happy ever since.

Moral of the story: If a DDS drive seems to be broke, it probably is. :-)