Tape Drive Software (erase tapes)

PBComputer
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Hello

I have a client who is backup onto tape drive (dlt) when I try ansa eraase a tape via hp storageworks it fails, can anyone suggest any freeware which could be used to format the tapes, or even a better program to use the storageworks and windows backup software.
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First, is the tape write protected? Erase will fail if it is.
Second, if it's not write protected, get HP Library & Tape Tools - http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/storageworks/ltt/index.html. It's free. It is an HP Diagnostic utility to test the drive, reads, writes, erases, etc. I'd think there is a problem with the drive given your description, as there isn't a reason why Storageworks SW wouldn't erase a tape.

Author

Commented:
Thanks, I will check its not write protected, I'm sure I have hp library and tape tools installed, but will double check.

You can also try erasing it within the NT Backup Applet.
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Linger is right -- Library and Tape Tools is free, and will let you do an incredible number of useful things to your tapes and HP tape drives, including forcing erase, performance testing, firmware upgrades, and running full diagnostics.

Author

Commented:
thanks, going onsite on Wednesday or Thursday so will check.
Iamthecreator OMIT/EE Solution Guide

Commented:
When you say it fails ,whats the exact error ? Because if the tape is Overwrite Protected it will generate a warning tell you the same.
Are you trying to ERASE or FORMAT?
You cannot FORMAT the tapes as it will render them useless.
What tapes are you trying to erase? as you cannot erase LTO 2 tapes in a LTO 4 drive (an example).LTO 4 drives cannot write to LTO 2 Tapes but can read them.
Please provide more information.

Author

Commented:
@iamthecreator  i mean erase, the tapes.

i have since temp set i to backup t a external hard drive.

Paul
Not sure about Creator's "You cannot FORMAT the tapes as it will render them useless." -- many backup applications format tapes to prepare them for first use, or to re-use them... and the tapes work just fine.

It is true that you should not degauss LTO tapes, as degaussing them erases the servo track data, and there is no consumer-available equipment that can re-write the servo tracks... so the tapes are for all intent and purposes totally destroyed.
I think there might be a bit of confusion regarding 'erase', 'format', and even 'degauss' here, because the terms tend to get used as if they were synonymous.

They (mostly) have the same effect - to whit, you can't read the previous contents of the tape (at least, not easily) but are different operations.

'ERASE' - tape drives support short and/or long erase commands. These tell the drive itself to overwrite the contents of the tape (usually) from BOT (Beginning of Tape). Short erase overwrites a short section; long erase, a longer section, or even the entire remainder of the tape, depending on the drive type. Any data beyond the last erase point is preserved, but is very difficult to get at as standard drives refuse to read beyond the beginning of an erase.

'FORMAT' - usually done from within a backup utility. The utility rewinds the tape, and then sends the drive a block or more of header data. At the end of the header an EOD (End Of Data) mark is written, or a short erase is commanded, and any data beyond that point is preserved. As with a short erase, this isn't usually a problem, as standard drives do not allow reads beyond that point.

'DEGAUSS' - exposing the tape to very strong magnetic fields. This 'scrambles' all data on the tape with random magnetic noise. As SelfGovern has pointed out, this renders LTOs useless because it destroys the servo tracks.

From a security standpoint, only degaussing or full, tape-long erase destroys all the data on a tape

Author

Commented:
@TapeDude

Thanks, its Erase i need to d0, i found a progam called Z-DATdump which seems to do it.


Paul

Author

Commented:
I have found a program called Z-DATdump which works.

Thanks

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