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jingjingdu

Retrospect Mac Server 6.1 Error 206

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Hi all, can I consult you guys a question?

we kept getting error 206 (dirty heads, bad media.etc/) in our recent back-up runs..We're using Sony AIT2 tape drives.

It always occurred in the 2nd tape of that back-up set. I'm pretty sure it's not the problem of the tapes. And I've cleaned the tape drive several times with cleaning cartridge.

Also, our retrospect Mac has been updated to most latest 6.1 version. This error appeared before and after we updated 6.0 to 6.1.

And our drive was just back from repairing in a company, in which the deck assy. was replaced. I really don't want to send it again for repairing..

Can anybody tell me what is going on? or give me some clues that where the problem might be?

Thanks a billion..

 

 

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It's always been a problem with bad tapes or bad drive in our experience over 15 years.

 

I'd suggest trying another drive. It also could be a problem fixed by a drive firmware update (Exabyte has had numerous updates to address exactly this issue at BOT) or by a HBA card firmware or driver update. You don't provide any information about your setup or whether you have tried to run diagnostics on the tape subsystem. Most vendors have diagnostics that will stress the tape subsystem.

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Hi Srhwalker, thank you for your quick reply..

 

We only have one drive, so we could not try another one.

For the tapes: We tried two tapes to diagnose the problem, let's say Tape A, Tape B..

When we started with Tape A as the first tape of a back-up set, it worked fine, and the error occurred when Tape B doing back-up as the 2nd tape.

When we started with Tape B as the first tape, it worked fine too, and the error occurred when Tape A doing the back-up as the 2nd tape.

So the error always came to the 2nd tape, no matter which tape we're using..

 

What do you mean by setup information? you mean settings for the back-up run? Basically the setup was set to back up the local Mac and a set of other PCs and Macs with retrospect client on them. It will back up all files but cache files. But so far the error 206 occurred when the retrospect was still backing up the local Mac.

 

I'm interested in the drive firmware update you mentioned. Could you please tell me more details about how can I figure out which kind of update is needed for our drive? cuz you mentioned Exabyte, BOT, HBA..and I don't really know what are they and which one is suitable for our tape drive..

 

If you need more information, please let me know..

 

Thanks a billion again...

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Candidly, if you have to ask those questions, you are over your head. I suggest you bring in someone who understands tape subsystems. This forum really isn't a class in basics of how to hook up a computer.

 

If you don't understand well-known tape and computer acronyms, you might start with google or wikipedia.

 

Russ

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Hi, Russ

First of all, I don't know any person who knows a lot on the tape subsystems, that's why I'm here asking for help but feel helpless. When my lab purchased the retrospect and tape drive, we did not expect there would be errors so often.

 

Here is what I tried to trouble-shooting:

I tried several back-up runs: the first tape always worked fine, later the error 206 always showed up when the 2nd tape is backing-up, even at the same data point (I mean around 8.0 G left to the ending)

 

According to what you said last time, the problem might be in drive, tape or firmware.

For drive: I used cleaning cartridge to clean it several times, but it did not help.

For the tape: I've said how I diagnose in my last note above.

For the firmware: Because our tape drive is SONY AIT-2, so the Exabyte update is not suitable for our drive. Instead, I went to SONY website and updated the firmware to the latest version.

 

I really run out of ideas.

I'm just a newbie who is trying hard to solve this issue for my lab. You asked me to google for the basics, yes, I did. I don't ask you guys teach me the basics, can I ask you help me on trouble-shooting?

Thanks a lot

 

 

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For the firmware: Because our tape drive is SONY AIT-2, so the Exabyte update is not suitable for our drive. Instead, I went to SONY website and updated the firmware to the latest version.

Great. That's exactly what I was asking you to do, by analogy. Sorry that my communication was poor.

 

I'm not trying to put you down, really. I'm just trying to nudge you in the right direction so that you can get your problem solved while learning a bit at the same time.

 

As for the acronyms:

 

BOT - "Beginning of Tape": a tape gets more worn at BOT than it does at other places because, on each insertion, the driver reads the header at BOT to tell the drive what the density of the tape is, the format, and the tape label. Then, each time the tape is rewound, it rewinds back to the BOT strip (usually a piece of metal or clear place on the tape) then spaces forward until the written BOT mark is found. Because of this, if you look at the firmware revision history for drives, you will see that many revisions are to deal with errors at BOT.

 

HBA - Host Bus Adapter

 

Did you try running a Sony diagnostic on the drive? Because you still haven't provided any specifics as to the model of drive you have (AIT2 is a tape spec, not a tape drive model; there are hundreds of different AIT2 tape drives, and Sony makes quite a few), I can't point you in the right direction there, either.

 

It really sounds like your drive is bad.

 

However, you may have discovered some sort of a bug in the Sony AIT driver in Retrospect that is activated when you move to the second tape in a backup set. Or, there may be some sort of pending command that is not getting properly cleared or accepted by the HBA, which might indicate that updated HBA firmware or driver would help. Again, you haven't provided any information on how your hardware is hooked up, so there's no way I can make suggestions.

 

Information that you might consider providing if you expect to get help:

 

(1) The version of Retrospect. You only indicate that you now have some unknown version of Retrospect 6.1. What is the full version? (6.1.x). It may be that this is something that has been fixed in a Retrospect update. The version number is inserted into the Retrospect log each time the program launches.

 

(2) The version of Retrospect Driver Update ("RDU"). It may be that this is something that has been fixed in an RDU update. The RDU version is inserted into the Retrospect log each time the program launches.

 

(3) The version of Mac OS X you are running. The complete version.

 

(4) The type of hardware you are using (Mac type, HBA type, type of connection between your drive and the HBA, etc.). Whether there are any other devices on the same HBA channel to the tape drive.

 

(5) The HBA firmware version and driver version.

 

The list goes on and on. Oh, and "latest" is not responsive as a version number. The help we provide each other in these forums is not for you personally - it's to help others who come to look for solutions to their problems, too. Unless you provide versions and complete details, others have no way of knowing whether your solution is applicable to their problem.

 

Russ

 

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Hi Russ,

 

Thank you so much for your understanding, patience and help.

Sorry I did not know to provide the details you've asked above. I will remember it next time.

 

Here is the information:

(1) The version of Retrospect: 6.1.230

 

(2) The version of Retrospect Driver Update ("RDU"):6.1.15.101

 

(3) The version of Mac OS X we are running:10.3.9

 

(4) The type of hardware we are using (Mac type, HBA type, type of connection between your drive and the HBA, etc.).

 

Mac type: Power Mac G5, CPU PowerPC 970 (2.2), 2GHz CPU speed and 1GB memory

HBA type: THe Mac has both USB and Fireware400 ports, and we're using the Fireware400 port on the Mac connected to Fireware400 on the tape drive.

 

(5) The HBA firmware version and driver version.

The related info is:

Firmware revision: 0100, Unit Spec id: 24734, Unit Software version:10483

 

(6)Our drive is SONY AIT-2: SDX-D520C

 

(7) Yes, I did run a SONY tape diagnose yesterday.

using the Sony Tape Tool for MAC OS X downloaded from following link

http://sony.storagesupport.com/node/280

 

and also updated the firmware to version 0100 (sdx520c_0100.x52) from following link

http://sony.storagesupport.com/node/390

 

I run several tests like "Write and Read Function Check", " Extended Write & Read Function Check", "Dump Diagnostic Trace" and finally "Upgrade Firmware".

The tests of the first two were smooth and no errors. But there was "bus error" for "dump diagnostic trace"

 

The detailed output are as follows:

 

********** Write & Read Function Check **********

 

Sonytape ver. 2.3 for Mac OS X, Sony Electronics, Inc. 2008

Vendor Id = SONY

Product Id = SDX-520C

Revision Level = 0100

Checking tape drive write and read function.

Warning!! This process will write over data and takes several minutes.

Test Unit Ready

Erase

Short erase process is complete

Mode Select

Test Unit Ready

Rewind

Data compression enabled.

1,638 MBytes of incremented data was written in 121 seconds.

Write transfer rate = 13.54 MBytes/sec

Rewind

1,638 MBytes of incremented data was read in 99 seconds.

Read transfer rate = 16.55 MBytes/sec

Log Sense

Rewind

Done.

 

 

 

********** Extended Write & Read Function Check **********

 

Sonytape ver. 2.3 for Mac OS X, Sony Electronics, Inc. 2008

Vendor Id = SONY

Product Id = SDX-520C

Revision Level = 0100

Checking tape drive write and read function.

Warning!! This process will write over data and takes several minutes.

Test Unit Ready

Test Unit Ready

Erase

Short erase process is complete

Mode Select

Test Unit Ready

Rewind

Data compression enabled.

6,553 MBytes of incremented data was written in 501 seconds.

Write transfer rate = 13.08 MBytes/sec

6,553 MBytes of incremented data was read in 619 seconds.

Read transfer rate = 10.59 MBytes/sec

Rewind

Done.

 

 

 

********** Dump Diagnostic Trace **********

 

Sonytape ver. 2.3 for Mac OS X, Sony Electronics, Inc. 2008

Vendor Id = SONY

Product Id = SDX-520C

Revision Level = 0100

Getting nori drive trace.

This process can take a few minutes.

Test Unit Ready

Rewind

Read Buffer

Nori drive trace length = 0x1b6ab

Bus error

 

 

********* Upgrade Firmware **********

 

Sonytape ver. 2.3 for Mac OS X, Sony Electronics, Inc. 2008

Vendor Id = SONY

Product Id = SDX-520C

Revision Level = 0100

Firmware file size = 697856 bytes

Upgrading tape drive firmware.

Warning!! Do Not Power Off Or Disconnect Device!!

This process can take a few minutes.

Test Unit Ready

Rewind

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x8000

Write Buffer = 0x3d74

Write Buffer

Warning!! Do Not Power Off Or Disconnect Device!!

Sleeping 180 seconds

Firmware upgrade complete. Please reboot computer!

Done.

 

 

Finally, thank you again for putting up with and help this newbie..^_^ Please let me know if you need more information..

 

-Jingjing

 

 

 

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Ok. You are up to date with software. 6 MB is much too little data (diagnostic write test) to test the problem you reported of errors.

 

Either your drive is bad, you have bad tapes, or you have discovered a bug in Retrospect related to switching between tapes on your particular drive.

 

Neither of those are something that can be solved in this forum.

 

You might try contacting Retrospect support, but my first suggestion would be, as before, to try a different drive.

 

russ

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Since you're using Firewire as your interface, it might be worth it to move the AIT2 drive to another machine (with equal amount of data on it) and perform a backup. I have several clients (10+) who are still using AIT2 drives / autoloaders w/6.1.

 

This at least lets you prove out you're not running into some very strange issue with the current G5. When you hook up the AIT2 to the new machine, make sure you use a different FW cable, clean the drive and two new tapes.

 

Good Luck! :)

 

Jeff

 

 

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