[rescue] VS80 DLT tape drive question

Curtis H. Wilbar Jr. rescue at hawkmountain.net
Thu Dec 13 23:19:45 CST 2007

Curtis H. Wilbar Jr. wrote:
> I think that my door has worn out or broken where the slot you mention is.
> I can see what possibly looked like a place where the spring would have
> engaged... but it isn't possible any longer.  My VHS hub lock mechanism
> spring works nicely though.
> However, now I can't get by a problem where I can't write to tapes (I can
> read).  It thinks every tape is write protected.
> Going to check out that area of the drive now...
> Anyone ever see that problem in a VS80 before ?  Wondering if that is
> how the drive got 'retired'.... and ended up getting to me (since I'm
> two people down the chain from where the equipment originated, I
> don't know the history... but the Optiplex GX260 and two Optiplex GX400
> systems both worked fine, so I had high hopes for the tape drive (although
> I suppose in my tear down/reassembly I could have messed up something
> (maybe the small ribbon isn't seated right ?)

Answering my own question now....

The issue was VS80s (and probably DLT8000s) if they detect DLT4000
formatted media go into 'write protect mode'.  Tapes need to be bulk erased.
I have a bulk eraser (Radio Shack), but haven't tried it yet.  Trying a 
new DLT IV tape (I had only one), and I'm writing a backup to it now.

It is not streaming well.... so not sure what I'd need to tweak (just using
tar now under Linux).  I also only have it connected up to an Adaptec
2940U ... I would have though this drive does ultra... but dmesg seems to
indicate it running at 10.0 MB/s.  Although I'd think that should be fine
as it only backs up 3-6MB/sec (3 non compressed, 6 compressed at 2:1).

It is the only device on the controller... so I think it should be fine...

Anyone have any success in tweaking parameters via mt/tar/etc to get them
to stream well ?

I'll probably end up using Bacula, but for now, I'm using tar.

-- Curt

> -- Curt
> -- Curt
>>     -Dan Sikorski
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