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Accessing Tape Drive on Linux / Restoring Unix Tar Backup

Posted on 2002-06-20
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Last Modified: 2010-04-20
Hello,

I have never used Unix or Linux before. I have been a Dos and Windows cronie for the last 14 years. So, bear with me while I go through pains learning Linux.

I was given a DLT 40/80 backup tape that contains a lot of MS Office documents. The tapes were backed up with Unix Tar. I would like to know how to restore the tapes using Linux. Is there an easy answer to this and how do I do it?

I have never used tar before but I have been told it is like PKZIP from the command line. Would I restore the TAR image from the backup tape and then unzip it or would restoring it from tape (using default utilities) unzip or untar it for me?

I am running Linux version 7.3 and I just ran the update to automatically update my system.

Thanks in advance,

John
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Question by:jhieb
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Expert Comment

by:ahoffmann
ID: 7098139
tar is an archiver, only GNU's tar (gtar, the default on Linux) also can compress with gzip.

To check what's on your tape, you need to know the device of your tape drive, which is /dev/mt0 or /dev/st0, then do following to list the tape:

   tar tvf /dev/st0

The tape might be written with more than one label, means that sevaral tar commands wrote on the tape, one behind each other. Then you need to check like this:

   tar tvf /dev/nst0
   tar tvf /dev/nst0
   tar tvf /dev/nst0
   ...

To get all files back use:

   tar xf /dev/st0

to get a specific file back, use:

   tar xf /dev/st0 path/to/file/you/want
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by:jhieb
ID: 7334828
This stuff did not work for me. How do I get my points back?
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by:jhieb
ID: 7334834
I am making a request to have this question deleted in the community forum.
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Expert Comment

by:Mindphaser
ID: 7334897
My personal feeling here is that you were given a very valid answer (I am a UNIX person myself). You never gave ahoffmann any feedback what didn't work so he would be able to help you any more.

** Mindphaser - Community Support Moderator **
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Expert Comment

by:ahoffmann
ID: 7334953
still listening ..
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Author Comment

by:jhieb
ID: 7334983
This did not work for me and I sent the tape to a vendor instead. As I noted, I am not a Unix person. These items may have made sense to someone who is used to Unix and a Unix person could probably have adjusted the response to make it work. But for me, it did not work and I paid someone else to do the work for me. Thanks anyway.
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Accepted Solution

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Mindphaser earned 0 total points
ID: 7335050
OK, that's feedback ... I'd like to keep ahofmann's comment around. Therefor I will refund the the points and move the question to PAQ.

** Mindphaser - Community Support Moderator **
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by:ahoffmann
ID: 7335115
agreed (even if the paid person used my comment to make it work)
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by:Mindphaser
ID: 7337111
I hope they paid somebody who'd know without EE's help :-)
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by:jhieb
ID: 7338210
Ha! Nice try. I paid someone who does this for a living. Thanks for your help, anyway.
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by:ahoffmann
ID: 7341079
aha, a slave, please hand over ;-)
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by:Mindphaser
ID: 7341620
I hope the guy's name who does it isn't "A. Hoffmann" ...
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