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problem with c1557a autoloader

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delaney_1
Occasional Visitor

problem with c1557a autoloader

Hi,

I have a poweredge6100/200 with a 24x6 C1557A autoloader. I'm using tapeware for backup.

Whenever a backup starts it starts fine, but at some point (i think when it tries to access the other side of the carousel) it stops.

Tapeware displays an alert claiming that 'the autoloader was changed', and the c1557a itself displays an 'Error 37' message on the LCD.

When I click 'continue' in Tapeware, the process starts again and backup seems fine, until once again it stops with the same symtoms as above.

I've tried cleaning the drive, changing tapes etc, does anyone have a clue as to what might be happening? I suspect its a hardware problem.

Any comments/help are gratefully received!

thanks
10 REPLIES
madoc
Trusted Contributor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader


Error 37 is a robotics jam (R-motor is jammed, failing to rotate the carousel) specifically in turning to the home position.

It doesn't sound too good.

have got another magazine ? does yours look okay ??

I could send you one just to see.




Eagles may soar in the clouds but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines
Eugeny Brychkov
Honored Contributor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

This doc will help you http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/Document.jsp?objectID=lpg50043&locale=en_US
Eject magazine and check all the tapes in it to be not corrupt and not to have any stickers applied in non-designated spots
Eugeny
delaney_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Eugeny: Many thanks for the doc, very useful. I will try a new set of tapes just to make sure, although I have changed the tapes and checked that any stickers are correctly adhered to the tape. In fact i'll try now with new tapes with no stickers on.

madoc: As you say it doesn't sound too good. I suspect it is the motor thats the problem in this case. I dont have another magazine but there's nothing noticably odd about the appearance the one I'm using, (saying that I have nothing to compare it with)! Its a very kind offer to send me a magazine, I may take you up on it, but first I'll try a completely new set of tapes.

If it is the R-motor itself then does anyone know whether the unit is repairable or whether the repair cost is sufficient to warrant buying a new unit? (The warranty has almost certainly expired).

All the best
Matthew

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Matthew,

Firstly, out of curiosity, has the drive ever been operating correctly in this server? or any other server?

Secondly, the Error 37 is definately a hardware fault, and may be either due to the mechanism itself, or the fit of the mechanism in the server (hence the reason I asked about the past history of this drive in this server).

Have a look at the bottom of the magazine, and check that there is no sign of any adhesive type material on it (e.g. sticky residue from an old label).

There is one thing that does surprise me though, and that is.... if the unit fails with an Error 37 during usage, then how does it manage to complete the rotation to allow you to eject the magazine (you mentioned that you have tried changing tapes)?? There is no difference in the method the drive uses to rotate the magazine for both ejecting, and accessing tapes in slots 4,5 & 6. Have you had any problems ejecting the magazine??

w.r.t. repair of the unit, Eugeny may be able to give you a better answer on the official support options, but depending on the outcome of the questions that have been posted for you to look at, there may be something (cheaper) that we can do.

Best regards,
Barrie

delaney_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Hi guys,

Barrie: You have must have a crystal ball hidden away! I was attempting to change the tapes following Eugeny's suggestion, but the loader wouldn't eject the mag. I cant even get it out with a 'force eject', in fact all that seems to do is cycle the error message between 'error33' and 'error34'! So I couldn't ascertain whether a faulty motor or a sticky magazine is the problem.

The loader has worked in this server, but recently there has been the odd occasion where the magazine has failed to unload OR when loading the magazine has been ejected by the loader. However this literally has happened once or twice, and on each occasion when repeating the operation the loader has worked fine. Until now.

I've only been responsible for the server for a year and I have no details of its history before then unfortunately.

So my new problem is how to get the magazine out of the server and is it going to involve attacking the machine with a screwdriver!

I'm inclined to think its a problem with the R-motor so if anyone can advise on the cost of repair VS a new autoloader I'd be grateful for any comments.

Thanks again for your time,

Matthew

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Matthew,

Unfortunately, if you cannot get the magazine out with either an eject or a force eject, then you are going to have to use a screwdriver (you did say that this unit was out of warranty??).

The nature of the problem that you are seeing, suggests that the R-motor is still working fine, and that there is something mechanical causing an obstruction to the magazine.

The most likely causes for the problem that you are getting, are:

1) There is something pressing down on the carousel on the top of the Autoloader, which is stopping it rotating;
2) The magazine has got some sort of adhesive coating on the bottom, which is causing it to stick to the drive lid beneath;
3) There cartridges are not seated correctly in the magazine (i.e. sticking out slightly), and are hitting the internals of the mechanism when it is trying to rotate;
4) The environmental conditions have caused the grease around the rim of the carousel disc to have dried up, which increases the friction between the metal disc and the plastic frame;
5) Dust and/or other particles have contaminted the grease on the carousel disc, which increases friction between the metal disc and the plastic frame.

Given that you have not 'done' anything to this drive / server, then it is unlikley to be idea (1). Given the history of the unit, and the previous 'odd' problem, I would think it is unlikely to be idea (2). Idea (3) may be true, if occasionally the cartridges are not loaded correctly -- but given that the magazine is now in the reverse (away) position, it is unlikely that the cartridges were loaded incorrectly (as the drive would have be unable to rotate to the reverse position).

I would suspect that it is most likely to be either idea (4) or (5).

As the unit is out of warranty, I can give probably give you some guidance on ways to get it working again, if you would like?? But this would involve opening the unit up (which requires careful handling).

If you want to give it a go, leave me a contact email address in your next reply, and I will send you some details offline.

cheers,
Barrie

malvin drakley
Esteemed Contributor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Delaney, if by any chance you are anywhere near Cirencester, then I could take the magazine out for you. I have done it successfully on many occasions to recover jammed tapes and cartridges
cheers
malvin
Not me Chief, I'm Radar
delaney_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Hi again,

I'm not averse to take a screwdriver to the box - malvin: I'd take you up on your kind offer but i'm in Portsmouth! Many thanks though.

Barrie, your analysis of the problem sounds spot on given the previous intermitency of the ejection fault. I would indeed like some guidance on repairing the unit.

However, I am away next week (the server will have to wait unfortunately, although I realise its best to tackle it asap) and I will have limited email access so if a reply is not forthcoming during this time then you'll know why. You can contact me at: 'matthew_lane@hotmail.com' as I'll be able to check this email account.

By the way, sorry I haven't given out points yet, its the first time i've used such a forum, but rest assured I'll do this when I return.

Cheers

Matthew
Solution

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Matthew,

The email address that you supplied does not seem to work?? I got a 'delivery failed' message from the hotmaail postmaster. Is there another email address that I can contact you on??

cheers,
Barrie
delaney_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: problem with c1557a autoloader

Hi Barrie,

I'm now back in the office, my apologies, the email address given above should work fine now. While I was away I was unable to check the account for a number of days, my inbox filled with spam and was therefore automatically disabled by the hotmail postmaster.

I look forward to your advice,
sorry for the delay!

Matthew