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MSL5026SL reading regular DLT media in Backup Exec 8.6

Will Saxon
Occasional Contributor

MSL5026SL reading regular DLT media in Backup Exec 8.6

We purchased a (then Compaq) MSL5026SL SDLT library last year to upgrade our backup capacity while maintaining compatability with pre-existing DLT IV (35GB/70GB) media. Basically, the only reason we went with SDLT was to be able to read the old tapes.

I have never, ever been able to read any of our old tapes in this library. Every time I insert a DLT tape and attempt to get an inventory of the library, the inventory job hangs reading the first DLT tape it gets to.

The library itself seems to recognize the DLT media. Win2k reports a lot of SCSI timeout errors, etc. The tapes are not bad, they read fine in our old Surestore 718 (or did until a firmware update rendered the drive invisible to the autoloader).

Am I doing something wrong? Is it Backup Exec? Did we completely misinterpret the backward read compatibility?
3 REPLIES
Justin Hutchings
Occasional Advisor

Re: MSL5026SL reading regular DLT media in Backup Exec 8.6

We have also purchased an MSL5026SL and are also having problems reading DLT IV tapes.

Like yourself, we need to import DLT IV tapes and purchased the unit under the impression that the unit was backwards compatable.

The last time we read a DLT IV tape in one of the SDLT drives, the drive would no longer work. Compaq sent out an engineer and we had to replace the drive.

Naturally, they do not admit this to be a problem, however in our organisation we are the second, maybe third site with an MSL500 series that has had the problem.

How do you diagnose/test the SDLT drives in your MSL5026 ? Do you use the Tape Storage Management Console (TSMC) ? If so, how do you find it ?

Will Saxon
Occasional Contributor

Re: MSL5026SL reading regular DLT media in Backup Exec 8.6

I have not been able to get the TSMC to work reliably on the machine. It has other problems besides the DLT IV problem. I don't remember if TSMC actually detected the drive the 1 time I got the thing to load up. It usually just hangs.

I can get drive status off the front of the unit, by navigating through the panel menus to get to drive status. There is one status page that mentions the type of media detected in the drive. It does know the difference between DLT and SDLT.

I have also tried Backup Exec's and HP/Compaq's drivers for the device. No difference.
Larry Johlke
Occasional Visitor

Re: MSL5026SL reading regular DLT media in Backup Exec 8.6

Regarding Justin's questions, "How do you diagnose/test the SDLT drives in your MSL5026 ? Do you use the Tape Storage Management Console (TSMC) ? If so, how do you find it ?", I would recommend that Justin switch to the Hewlett-Packard LTT (Library and Tape Tools) test tool for diagnosis of tape and/or automation devices. The tool can be found at www.hp.com/support/tapetools.

Note, however, that the web site is in the process of transitioning to a newer version of LTT (version 3.0). This version, which should be available within the next 48 hours, will support all shipping versions of Compaq tape drives, including the SDLT.