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HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Jason Tontz
Occasional Advisor

HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

I have setup a VMWare Server 2 with the host o.s. being Windows Server 2003 R2 x64 Ent Ed. I have also added the HP recommended SCSI (Ultra320) card and connected my HP Autoloader 1/8 G2 ultrium 920 tape library to it. I then created a guest VM that is a Windows 2008 R2 x64 Std Ed. I added a SCSI passthrough fro the tape0: device and the guest o.s. sees the drive in device manager correctly, however the Autoloader is not present. How can I make the guest VM see this device. I need to run CA ArcServe r15 on this. CA sees the drive, but not the autoloader therefore it cannot inventory or move tapes into the drive.
Thank You In Advance.
JT
7 REPLIES
Torsten.
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Check if the autoloader mode is set to random, not sequential.

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

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Jason Tontz
Occasional Advisor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Thanks Torsten for your reply. How would I check that?
Torsten.
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

From the front panel or the web interface of the autoloader.

In sequential mode it works like a "endless" tape, no loader visible.

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

__________________________________________________
There are only 10 types of people in the world -
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Curtis Ballard
Honored Contributor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

VMWare does not support SCSI passthrough with devices using LUN mode and this configuration is known to not work even if you find the workarounds that will let your guest OS discover the autoloader. It seems to work but has random errors with things not getting through the virtualization layers correctly.

We have been trying to find some way to get our tape libraries and autoloaders working under VMWare but there just isn't anything that VMWare allows that works reliably. VMWare has a backup model where the tape library is attached to an OS on bare metal and that system reads the data from the VMs.
Torsten.
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Thanks Curtis for sharing this.


A few days ago we replaced a 1/8 G1 autoloader. According to the manual the default is random mode, but it came in sequential mode. After reset to defaults it remains in this mode. For this reason the loader was not visible, but the drive only.

That's why my assumption ...

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

__________________________________________________
There are only 10 types of people in the world -
those who understand binary, and those who don't.

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Jason Tontz
Occasional Advisor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Thank You both for your input. I am hoping someone can provide a fix for the VMWare Server 2 version becuase I do see a workaround for ESX & ESXi here: http://communities.vmware.com/message/1608484

I am hoping someone who knows VMWare well enough can translate the workaround from ESXi to the free version. Eventually I will be going to ESXi 4.2 on this same box so I will try to implement this workaround, however, in the meantime I need to get my backups and the current config is the free version.
Again, thank you very much for taking the time. I will do my best to update this thread with whatever I find.
Curtis Ballard
Honored Contributor

Re: HP Autoloader 1/8 G2, VMWare Server 2 & ARCServe

Let me repeat - using the autoloader connected to a VMware guest OS is -- KNOWN TO NOT WORK RELIABLY --. The workaround you found will get you to the point where you can configure things and they will seem to work but you probably will have random backup failures because something doesn't get through the virtualization layers correctly. I suspect that VMWare doesn't support that configuration because they know it doesn't work and HP definitely will not support that configuration as we know it doesn't work. It isn't anything to do with the HBA or library so there is nothing we can do to get it working. We have tried.

The only way we have found to hook a tape library or autoloader to VMWare is using a Fibre Channel library. The 1/8 G2 is available with a fibre channel LTO-5 drive.