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Quantum DLT tape drive hangs every time a new tape is inserted


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On a Dual 1Ghz G4 system, with an ATTO SCSI UL-3S-66 card installed, and cabled to a Quantum DLT7000 tape drive (the only device on the bus, and terminated), every time Retrospect 6 needs a new tape, the application hangs. The only way to get things restarted are to force quit, make sure there is NOT a tape in the drive, restart Retrospect, then insert the tape when needed. The problem with this is Retrospect has to RESTART the backup every time, which is totally unacceptable behavior.

 

All drivers are the latest available and what ATTO recommends for OS 10.3. The ATTO driver is version 3.0.3, the flash load is 1.6.6f0. The application to configure the card is ATTO's Express PCI configuration tool version 2.5.

 

Anyone else experiencing this? It's so far taken several days to try to complete one backup. At this rate, I'll have to move all the data to a Linux system, and give up on Retrospect. (Everything was fine back in OS 10.1 and Retrospect 5 with this same configuration....)

 

 

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  • 4 months later...

July 2, 2004:

 

This problem has returned after moving to Mac OS 10.3.4. When Retrospect requests a new tape and one is loaded, the drive loads the tape, and after about a minute Retrospect just goes to a spinning beachball. Force quit is then the only option. So since 10.3.4, I can't run backups again.

 

Here is the configuration -- everything is the most current releases of software, driver, and firmware:

 

Mac OS Version 10.3.4

 

SCSI card: Atto ExpressPCI UL3S-66

Driver Name: com.ATTO.driver.ATTOExpressPCIplus

Version: 3.1.0

Flash version 1.66f0

 

Tape: Quantum DLT7000

Revision: 1E48

At SCSI address: 3

 

Retrospect 6.0.193

Driver update version: 5.5.103

Driver access version: 1.0.105

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Hi

 

Can you use the ATTO configuration utility to manually set the speed of the SCSI adapter? Have you tried a new cable or terminator? They can be flaky and cause strange problems like this.

 

If you start a backup with no tape in the drive and then insert it when Retrospect throws up a media request window will the backup run?

 

Thanks

Nate

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I tried setting the speed using the config utility - didn't help. It's the same IBM cable I've been using for two years, and the terminator has been swapped out with no change in behavior. This failed after the upgrade to 10.3.4 - it has nothing to do with the hardware.

 

To answer your question:

 

"If you start a backup with no tape in the drive and then insert it when Retrospect throws up a media request window will the backup run?"

 

No -- the same spinning beachball happens independent of whether you start Retrospect with a tape in the drive or not.

 

Note that the Tolis group (who makes a competing backup product) indicated potential problems with Panther:

 

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http://www.tolisgroup.com/scsi_compat.html

 

Apple's new SCSI manager layer has introduced compatibility issues with many currently working SCSI HBAs and non-disk SCSI devices. Exhibited problems range from devices not being properly identified to system hangs during boot or heavy SCSI I/O.

 

These problems have been reported to both Apple and the SCSI vendors and all are working furiously to resolved these compatibility problems.

 

SCSI HBAs that are known to work include the Adaptec 29160 and 39160 PowerDomain controllers and the ATTO UL4 controllers.

 

HBAs known to be exhibiting problems include Adaptec's 2906, 2930, and 2940 family as well as ATTO's UL3. Additionally, some users have indicated issues with HBAs from Initio and Acard.

 

In most cases, reverting to 10.2.8 and earlier under OS X client and 10.2.5 and earlier will allow these HBAs to continue working.

---

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Hi

 

Yes, we have all suffered through the SCSI compatibility problems in OSX. ATTO's newest drivers resolved many of them but I suspect there are more lying about.

 

I am not aware of any specific problems with 10.3.4 and SCSI communication. The forum would be full of reports if there were any.

 

Can you boot from a firewire disk or another partition to see if you have the same trouble? That would at least eliminate the OS as part of the problem. I would still give the cable a wiggle and maybe flex it around a bit. Sometimes just hanging there in the same position for a while is enough to damage a wire or pin. Unlikely but I have seen it happen before...

 

Nate

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I found the solution:

 

BRU from Tolis (http://www.tolisgroup.com/BRU_LE-main.html) works fine. The tape drive does what it's supposed to do, backups are fast (way faster than Retrospect), and I have confidence in the backups being created.

 

I wish Dantz could have figured this stuff out, but changing formats, constant bugs, and all the other minor annoyances pushed me over the edge.

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