Quantum SDLT320 Front Panel Lights all blinking backup failed

Posted on 2013-12-16
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-16
Hi all,

We have a backup that uses a quantum SDLT 320 drive. No library just the tape drive attached to one physical server doing a backup with symantec backup exec 2012.

This morningthe backup failed with a hardware error. All the lights on the drive were blinking. After I ejected the tape and checked hardware devices the backup drive is being seen. I even ran a cleaning tape which completed without problems.

Looking at this documentation from HP for sdlt 320 there is nothing that indicates the meaning when all three lights are blinking. My assumption is that the drive is being seen but I'm not sure if this indicates a faulty drive or not. Also I saw that this can mean the drive is in OBDR but that is only for an SDLt 600 drive.
Question by:binovpd
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LVL 29

Expert Comment

by:Bill Bach
ID: 39722691
Have you run Quantum xTalk against the tape drive?  It should give you better firmware error codes.

Sadly, my Quantum manual also doesn't indicate any meaning behind "all lights blinking" error code, either.  However, if I recall, I have seen this before.  It may occur when the tape drive reports excessive failures, or when the tape leader doesn't grab the tape properly.  In one case, I had to disassemble my drive and re-thread the leader, but after that, it worked just fine.  

With the low cost of USB3 hard disks, I have since eliminated my horribly-expensive tape solution and replaced it with external USB3 drives.  You can now get 4TB USB3 drives for under $150, and 1TB drives for under $65 -- probably cheaper than buying tapes or messing with the SDLT drive failures.  This solution stores more data, is MUCH faster than SDLT, and it provides almost instantaneous random access data restores, too.

Author Comment

ID: 39722771
Hi Billbach thanks for the reply. I didn't even know about the xtalk utility. I found it here:

Do I just install on the machine connected? Thanks again for your help.
LVL 29

Accepted Solution

Bill Bach earned 2000 total points
ID: 39722777
Yes.  Install it, and it can give you a nice report on what is going on under the covers.

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