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Media Error 206 (Bad media)

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I have received this error everytime I stick a tape in, I have ran the cleaning tape at least 6 times and I am not able to get the drive to recognise the tape. I am unable to delete the tape or backup to it. I have tried with multiple tapes. Is there anything else I can do?


I am using an Exabyte 172 tape drive on a Win 2003 SBS.


Thank you,



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I don't have your same configuration, but I might have an insight.


We have an Exabyte VXA-2 1x10 1u PacketLoader (SCSI) attached to our Xserve G5 through an ATTO UL4D. That drive is the prior version of the one you have. Last June, Exabyte issued a firmware update, and I started seeing the same thing you are seeing. I suspected at the time that it might either have been a batch of bad tapes or something changed in the error recovery routines in the new firmware, or both. I got a batch of new X23 tapes, and the problem disappeared, but I had one backup tape that became unreadable with the firmware update last June. FYI, we don't re-use tapes, but archive them away when they fill, so it's not an issue of worn-out tapes.


This past January, Exabyte issued a new firmware update, and that one unreadable tape became readable again.


I am now convinced that it was two problems - a set of marginal X23 tapes and a firmware release from Exabyte that had some issues in the error recovery routines when the tape is being loaded at BOT.


You don't say what firmware version you have on your tape drive. Current version is V13206 of January 2007. I suggest you update the firmware if it's not already up to date.


Exabyte firmware updates are here:

Exabyte firmware updates


Let us know if that helps.



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