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Replacing Ultrium 3 With Ultrium 5

Posted on 2012-03-28
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Last Modified: 2012-03-28
I am looking into replacing my Ultrium external backup tape device with an Ultrium 5.  Has anyone done this before.  Do you know the steps?  Is it just as simple as detaching the 3 and attaching the 5?  What about all the tapes from the 3, can they be used in the 5?
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Question by:rsilver24
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by:StuWhitby
ID: 37777701
Tapes from 3 will be usable in 5, but at their original capacities.  I wish people would post their OS when asking these questions..... detatching and reattaching... will probably work.  May require a device rescan. Windows or Mac will probably pick it up without any problem.  

Drivers are best identified via either google for getting the optimum settings for Unix or the manufacturer's own website.  Windows drivers are okay, but tend to be left behind.  The OEM drivers are probably more likely to make Windows bluescreen (you'll see the driver causing it on the bluescreen/event log if it does) but will probably provide better performance than the MS ones.
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Turkey1974 earned 500 total points
ID: 37777943
I have done exactly that and found that you can only read LTO3's in an LTO5.  The logic is that you can R/W - 1 generation behind and READ - 2 generations behind.  You will no longer be able to utilize your LTO3's for writing, only reading.  See footnote below.

As far as you just replacing the tape unit, you could do a swap as long as you maintain the type of connection your LTO3 is currently utilizing. e.g., if your current drive is SAS(Serial attached SCSI), ensure you purchase an LTO5 SAS device; other connection types could be SCSI or Fiber Channel.  Further caution could be exercised to ensure your current HBA (Host Bus Adapter) is compatible with the device your are planning to purchase.  The OEM should have a compatibility list.

Regardless, you will have to update the drivers to utilize the new device.


{ FOOTNOTE:  http://www.ultrium.com/About/faq.html

What are the backward compatibility characteristics of the Ultrium format?
The LTO Ultrium compatibility is defined with two concepts demonstrating investment protection: 1) An Ultrium drive can read data from a cartridge in its own generation and two prior generations. 2) An Ultrium drive can write data to a cartridge in its own generation and to a cartridge from the immediate prior generation in the prior generation format.

For example:
- An Ultrium format Generation 5 drive will read and write data on an Ultrium format Generation 4 cartridge as specified by the Generation 4 format and read data on an Ultrium format Generation 3 drive.

- An Ultrium format Generation 4 drive will read and write data on an Ultrium format Generation 3 cartridge as specified by the Generation 3 format and read data on an Ultrium format Generation 2 drive }
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Author Closing Comment

by:rsilver24
ID: 37778023
Thank you
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