SUMMARY: AIT2 drives and SCSI errors

From: Mark G. Thomas (
Date: Fri Sep 15 2000 - 09:05:26 CDT

Sun Managers,

  Martin Oksnevad <> (Daniel S. Riley)
  and the Veritas folks.

Daniel S. Riley's suggestion to use cleaning tapes has solved the problem:
  Qualstar has told us that the self-cleaning operation isn't reliable,
  and may even lead to timeout errors during the cleaning operation. In
  the docs that came with our libraries, they recommended cleaning the
  drives every 25 hours, and cleaning a drive 5 times in a row if any
  errors do occur. They claim that there is no harm in over-cleaning,
  but every 25 hours sounded like overkill, so we currently have media
  manager set to insert a cleaning tape every 150 hours of mount time.
  You can tell media manager to do this automatically from the device
  management interface, once you've added a cleaning tape to the

Side note: the URL for the current version of the Sony config guide is:
  This doesn't talk about the cleaning issues, but does have useful
  dipswitch settings and Solaris st.conf information.

My original (condensed version) question was:
  I'm having a problem where long running 12-36 hour backups fail
  with SCSI Media error messages. Any help or comments from others
  using AIT drives with Solaris would be greatly appreciated.

  Sun E-450 server with about 1.5TB of fiber connected disk, and Qualstar AIT
  library with 3 Sony AIT-2 drives. We are running Solaris-2.6 with the
  a recent 2.6_Recommended patch cluster, plus 105847-07 applied. We are
  I've confirmed my drive dip switch settings and st.conf entry is
  as specified in the Sony Unix Configuration Guide V2.08 (2/28/00).

  The tapes are brand new, and the drives have been in use since December.
  We had much less data on line over the winter, so the errors were much
  less frequent, although this appears to have been a problem since the
  setup was put together. The drives are supposed to be self cleaning.
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: WARNING: /pci@4,4000/scsi@4/st@1,0 (st71):
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: Error for Command: write Error Level: Fatal
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: Requested Block: 141733 Error Block: 141733
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: Vendor: SONY Serial Number:
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: Sense Key: Media Error
  Aug 30 00:34:15 oz unix: ASC: 0xc (write error), ASCQ: 0x0, FRU: 0x0


Mark G. Thomas ( --

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