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Need Tape Erase command for DLT8000 Tapes in HP Unix

Posted on 2008-10-02
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Dear All,
how can I erase the contents of a tape in order to take a new backup on this tape?
I have hp unix 11.0 and DLT8000 Tape drive ..Please le me know soon

Thanks
Jay
swatujct@hotmail.com
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Question by:swatujct
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4 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:TapeDude
ID: 22623511
You don't need to erase them - if you just start writing to them from BOT (beginning of tape) the old data will be overwritten. At the end of the write operation, two tape marks will be automatically written to the drive and any (standard) DLT drive will refuse to read beyond them - thus ensuring that any previously written data that extends beyond that point will not be accessible.

There are modified drives in a few data recovery bureaus that will read beyond that point but they're very rare indeed.

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Expert Comment

by:TapeDude
ID: 22623579
Sorry,

...."two tape marks will be automatically written to the drive and any (standard) DLT drive will refuse to read beyond them"....

Should read:

...."two tape marks will be automatically written to the tape, which will be taken as EOD (end of data) by any (standard) DLT drive, which will refuse to read beyond that point"....
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Author Comment

by:swatujct
ID: 22623824
Thanks for your reply. Still if you can give me a format command that would be great.Regards-Jay
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Accepted Solution

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TapeDude earned 2000 total points
ID: 22624961
When you do a 'format' of a DLT tape, you are sending the drive a SCSI 'erase' command, which requests the drive to overwrite a short section at the beginning of the tape with blank data. Unlike the old QIC tape, DLT's aren't formatted per se. The amount of blank data written to the tape would be less than you'd typically write if you were just to write another backup to the tape - in which case, you'd be over-writing the 'formatted' section anyway.

However, if you insist on 'formatting' the tapes first, there should be a command similar to linux's mt. I'm not familiar with HP Unix, but in linux you'd use:

       mt -f <device file> erase
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