I recently wrote about my new backup strategy using CrashPlan with Microsoft Data Protection Manager 2010 for tape backups. It's working out pretty great so far, and I'm glad I set it up the way I did.
One of the issues though with my setup is that the previous admins used to backup everything using NTBackup. Not a bad solution. It worked well for them, I just prefer Microsoft DPM. Actually, I had more than just tape backups running with DPM when I first started, but decided to switch over to Crashplan for the free dedup features.
Anyway, now that some of the older tapes are coming back into rotation I have found that Microsoft DPM has a problem erasing tapes that have previously been written on using NTBackup or Backup Exec. Apparently DPM has an issue with the block size that NTBackup and Backup Exec use to write to tape, and the DPM GUI will just error out when trying to inventory it, or erase it.
The error I kept seeing was:
The operation failed because of a protection agent failure. (ID 998 Details: A tape access reached a filemark (0x8007044D))
It turns out that there is a nice little command line utility called MyTape.exe that can fix this. You can download MyTape.exe here: (MyTape Password: bauerpower)
To erase your tape just do the following:
- In DPM Admin Console, under Management > Libraries find the Tape ID, right click on it and select copy row.
- Stop the DPMLA service
- Open a command prompt in the directory where you downloaded MyTape.exe
- Run the following:
After that, start DPMLA, and re-inventory your tape. Everything should be right as rain now! The tape should now be marked as free, and you can now back up to it!
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