Thanks for all the responses. The problem was a couple of Quantum drives
which would work after a power failure. One acted sort of like I couldn't
write to it, the other seemed unable to read its label.
The solution everyone suggested was to knock the drive around a bit, to
loosen things up. Some people said that the problem was that the platters
weren't spinning up because the lubricant inside gets sticky. Others
suggested that the arms got stuck. (Or perhaps it's that the heads stick to
the platters?) Either way, the solution was the same, and is apparently a
well-known method of dealing with recalcitrant Quantum drives.
I beat up one drive (the "case 1" drive, which seemed to pass a format read
test, but not a write/read/compare test), and it is working happily now.
I haven't had a chance to attack the second drive, yet.
Thanks again to those who responded (as of Mon Apr 1 18:46:28 EST 1991):
firstname.lastname@example.org (Richard Elling)
JLSemail@example.com (Joel L. Seber ... CH210)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Steve Hanson)
email@example.com (William Ang)
sundev!ronin!kevin@Sun.COM (Kevin Sheehan)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Mark Nichols)
Kenton C. Phillips
Computer Systems Manager
MIT Center for Space Research
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