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Unable to open DVD-R tray during backup to tape

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I've recently started using Retrospect 6.1.126 on Tiger 10.4.6. Previously I'd been using 4.3 on OS 9.


I've noticed a number of oddities. One frustration is that while I'm running an Immediate Backup to tape (Firewire VXA) I am unable to open the tray on my DVD-RW. Even when the backup is complete I can't open the tray. In fact, if Toast is running it reports that it cannot find a writer.


After I quit Retropsect (which just took 40 seconds . . . why do we have to wait for the tape to rewind?!) I regain control of the DVD-R tray.


Is this a known issue? Anyone else seeing this?




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why do we have to wait for the tape to rewind?!


'configure->[option-click]preferences->tape', and uncheck 'rewind tapes'.


Um, Peter, I'd think carefully before unchecking "rewind tapes". You don't indicate exactly which "VXA" drive you've got. I've got an Exabyte VXA-2 1x10 1u PacketLoader (SCSI interface). Different people may have different opinions as to where the fault lies (Retrospect or Exabyte), but there is a "feature" of the Exabyte-Retrospect interaction such that, if the tape is not at BOT when Retrospect starts and then goes out to look at it, Retrospect will think that the tape is erased. Haven't tried it recently (and both Retrospect and VXA have updated versions since then), but it was the case last fall. Rewind on quit is a workaround that prevents this unless if you power fail during rewinding. Here's a simple example that shows the error, caused by starting a verify, then stopping before finished (leaving tape away from BOT), then having Retrospect start back up on the tape that's not at BOT:


Retrospect version 6.0.212

launched at 8/31/2005 7:09 PM

+ Retrospect Driver Update, version 6.5.102


+ Executing Verify at 8/31/2005 7:14 PM

To backup set VXA Set B [001]…

8/31/2005 7:14:26 PM: Execution stopped by operator.

Remaining: 1846319 files, 107.1 GB

Completed: 1348 files, 83.5 MB

Performance: 278.1 MB/minute

Duration: 00:00:22 (00:00:04 idle/loading/preparing)


+ Executing Recatalog at 8/31/2005 7:14 PM

To backup set VXA Set B [001]…

Device trouble: “1-VXA Set B [001]”, error 212 (media erased).

8/31/2005 7:17:42 PM: 1 execution errors.

Duration: 00:02:57

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hi russ,


i was unaware of that problem. one thing i should have probably included in my post is that the tape will need to be rewound at some point. at the end of the backup seems best to me, but my point was (not knowing about the problem) that you have a choice. it's probably best to leave it as is though.

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I submitted this issue to Dantz Technical Support under our Technical support contract as a bug report (with workaround) back on September 1, 2005:


From: "Russell H. Walker" --email deleted--


Date: September 1, 2005 6:43:44 PM CDT


To: EMC Dantz Retrospect --email deleted--


Subject: Mac Retrospect 6.0 Workgroup bug report




Re: Mac Retrospect 6.0 Workgroup bug report


EMC Dantz Customer # --deleted--


EMC Dantz ASM Contract # --deleted--




This is simply a bug report for you to address in a future release. It is not a request for support, and provides a workaround.




Bug: Mac Retrospect 6.0.212 falsely reports that backup tape of Exabyte VXA-2 drive is erased when not erased if Retrospect is started when tape is not previously rewound, causing other secondary issues.




(detailed description and workaround omitted in this forum post for brevity)


I also made a feature/enhancement request that a future version include a preference to "rewind on start" because this workaround does not fully solve the problem if a power fail occurs during rewind. I also discussed this issue and another (handling of erased barcoded tapes in autoloaders) extensively via private email with the head of Dantz Technical Support last September, and I will say that Dantz Technical Support has been great under our support contract. I am hopeful that a future version of Retrospect will address this issue, the autoloader barcoded erased tape handling, and others that would be nice (D2D2T, remote admin, etc.). I might suggest that a Knowledge Base article be written to address this issue with VXA drives and workaround. Regards, Russ

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi folks


Thanks for the helpful replies. I now have my DVD-R set to Ignore ID since I typically am using Retrospect with the VXA-1 (BTW) and Toast with the superdrive. Perhaps this will help to smooth things out.


I'll leave the rewind as per the default. I was thinking that Retro should be able to issue a rewind command and then quit while the hardware went about its business. I don't remember this being an issue in the OS 9 version but perhaps I'm just pushing the machine a little harder now and noticing it for the first time.



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