Sony SuperStation External Tape Backup Problem

Sony Superstation SS-EXT external parallel tape backup. Worked fine on previous system. Currently installed on new Dell Dimension, reports that tape in drive is not formatted, regardless of whether or not it is. Even reports preformatted tapes as not formatted. Sony claims this is an incompatibility with Office 2000, but I think that's a cop-out. Has anyone come across this? Any ideas?
elionAsked:
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TedSennCommented:
Is the printer prot set for bi-directional??
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elionAuthor Commented:
Yes, the printer port is set for bi-directional.
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TedSennCommented:
And is the cable bi directional capable ie did you use the previously working cable??
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Jason_SCommented:
Can you perform a format on the tapes?  If so, then either the drive has been knocked out of alignment, or a combination of drivers has caused it not to read properly.  Try installing it on another system, and see if it will work there.
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elionAuthor Commented:
Cable used is same as previous. Drive will not work on either one of tow new Dell systems.
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Jason_SCommented:
Will it work on the old system? (if available)
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elionAuthor Commented:
Yes, it works on the old system.
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Jason_SCommented:
Verify that you are using the latest drivers for the drive, and that the paralel port settings are configured for bi-directional.  Also check for an updated version of the backup software.
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elionAuthor Commented:
All done. I'm ideally I've tried all that; I'm ideally looking for someone who has come across this kind of thing before.
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Jason_SCommented:
I have worked with Tape Backups allot, but not your specific configuration.

You may want to try to contact both manufacturers to see what their suggestions are.
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elionAuthor Commented:
Each manufacturer says it's the others' problem.
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Jason_SCommented:
Do you have to pay for support from either one of them?  If not, you may want to ask them to escalate the issue, and possibly setup a conference call between them.  A good support site will have no problem with this.

What operating system are you running?

Can you try installing, and running a DOS based tape utility to see if it can communicate with the drive successfully?
This would count out, or identify the problem as the opperating system.
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MATTCEICommented:
elion - a previous question of yours - "SB AWE64 Sound Card Plays Tiny Bit of sound, then stops" - was deleted,with suggestions pending,either by you or by EE due to a lack of response from you.The same thing seems to be happening here.
We do this for free,elion.All we expect in return is at least a reply from you indicating whether our ideas were of any help.
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Jason_SCommented:
I am submiting an Answer to this question in an attempt to get a responce from the asker.  If anyone objects, post a comment, and I will withdraw.

elion:  Any feedback from you?
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elionAuthor Commented:
Jason_S,

     I got the two on the phone with each other, and it turns out that there was a little-known document with command-line switches on how to get around it. While you didn't have that information, no one could reasonable expect you to, and your answer was consistent with the solution. Thanks!



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Jason_SCommented:
Glad to hear!  If you have it, post the command line here for future refrence.
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