Dealing with bad tapes automatically when using BRMS

20 pts.
IBM iSeries
Tape backup
Tape errors
My organization uses BRMS to perform our backup activities. Each week, on Saturday night, a full system save is completed, and then each weeknight, an incremental save is done. The incremental save is done prior to our batch. Our iSeries is housed at a data center, that manages the tapes, and also monitors our iSeries. In the event of a problem with a batch job, the datacenter personel, contact an oncall programmer from my company, who in turn deals with the issue. Lately, we have been experiencing issues with the tapes that are used for our backups. At least once a week, our oncall staff are called, indicating that there is a problem with the backups, and every time, the problem is due to a bad tape. The solution is then to have the bad tape removed from the silo, and the backups are then restarted, resulting in a 90 minute delay (typically) to the overnight batch. Is there a setting in BRMS, that can be changed, that would force the backup process to get a new tape, in the event that a bad one is encountered? I know of other backup products that offer this; does BRMS have this capability?

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I am sure everyone that uses BRMS wish this type of feature were available. You run into a problem with a tape error message but is it at the beginning of the tape or has part of the save gone to the tape and then finds a bad sector in the tape? That is probably the reason the function has not been made available. Not that it should matter when the error occurs, just being able to have the same function as end of tape and/or go to next tape.


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  • mcl
    One or two things you can look at.. Go BRMMED, use option #1 (work with media classes) and use option #2 to change the settings for the media you use. You can set Threshold limits for Media Life (in days), Usage Threshold (times used) and read and write errors (in Kb). I think that media that exceeds the thresholds will be excluded. On the WRKMEDBRM screen you can view the uses and errors for each volser by pressing F11 a couple of times. The only other recommendation I have is to use good quality media. (It does make a differance!) We have the threshold set for 260 uses on Ultrium2 media. Considering we now have a 90 day retention, any one tape gets used maybe 4 times a year. Most of the tapes for our production system have been used anywhere from about 24 to 60 times with no errors. Regards Mike
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