Veritas backup tape drive offline

We have a Powervault 122 tape drive, and are using Veritas backup. We currently insert a tape every day and the backup job takes place at night.

Right now the Powervault is displaying "SEQ" on its display. We have a procedure for taking care of that, by inventorying the tape. However, when we go to inventory, that option is grayed out. So then we noticed that the powervault device is "Offline" in Vertia's device list. Right-clicking shows that it is enabled, and there's no options to make it "online".

It only recently started doing this, after a server restart, so we are not sure how to fix it.

Here's some screenshots of what we see in veritas:

 Right-click on Powervault "dell 1" device

Veritas-right-click-on-slot-1.png
doughorningAsked:
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Rodney BarnhardtServer AdministratorCommented:
This usually indicates a communication error between the server and the drive\library. If you attach via a SCSI interface, that could be the problem. The best thing to do is run a diagnostic on the drive. If the diagnostic have trouble interfacing with the device, you have a hardware communication problem (HBA, cable, etc).
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mrroonieCommented:
i'm with the above post as well - run a diagnostic. it sounds to me like your tape drive is giving up. until you know for sure whats going on and replace / repair as necessary, as a workaround:

this offline thing also happens if you backup to external drives and swap them over - they appear offline until the services are restarted (or the server is rebooted). to get round this i created a batch file to restart all services and scheduled it to run just before the backup starts. the script is for Backup Exec but it should work the same for you as Backup exec is just a newer version of Veritas. you will need to change the name of the services, have a look in administrative tools>services for the exact names of the services and amend the script accordingly. heres my script:

net stop BackupExecJobEngine
net stop BackupExecAgentBrowser
net stop BackupExecRPCService
net stop BackupExecAgentAccelerator
net stop BackupExecDeviceMediaService

net start BackupExecJobEngine
net start BackupExecAgentBrowser
net start BackupExecRPCService
net start BackupExecAgentAccelerator
net start BackupExecDeviceMediaService

copy and paste that into notepad (obviously changing the service names to the veritas ones) then save as, change the file type to all files and call it something.bat. then schedule it to run just after you sort out the SEQ problem on the drive.

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doughorningAuthor Commented:
By running diagnostics, do you mean in Backup Exec -> Tools -> Backup Exec Diagnostics... -> Run Diagnostics?
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mrroonieCommented:
yes, and for the tape drive as well - http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/software/svradmin/2.2/en/CompGD/11diags.htm

and before - i meant that script was SYMANTEC backup exec rather than veritas backup exec. should still work though
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doughorningAuthor Commented:
Ok, I ran the Dell OpenManage diagnostic for SCSI controller, and it says "This test requires at least one SCSI device be connected to the controller". That seems to indicate that the tape drive is physically disconnected, or the cable is dead. Is that right?

Note: I'm not at the location of the of the servers, so I will need to task the people who are to check this for me.
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mrroonieCommented:
Yes, sounds like that to me. Can you run the same diagnostic after restarting the services/server?
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doughorningAuthor Commented:
Sure, I will need to do that after business hours though, so it will be awhile before I post back. Thanks.
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doughorningAuthor Commented:
Oh BTW, I looked at the BIOS in OpenManage, and it said the Primary SCSI was off. So I turned it on, and did a "scan for hardware changes" in Device Manager, then I restarted all the backup exec services. Now the device is no longer appearing as offline and a bunch of scheduled jobs just fired off. So I think that fixed it!
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