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Welcome to the Linux Tape Device Certification Program!

This program is designed to test and approve backup devices for compatibility on Linux with results posted here.

AboutTo learn about the Program
DrivesTo view the certified drives, and the participating vendors
Tech helpTo benefit from the experience of others

The TOLIS Group is proud to be the sponsor and administrator of this Linux community service.


Latest Drives Tested

    HP SureStore DAT72, OnStream ADR2-120 USB, Sony AIT1/2/3. For more info, please click on the "Drives" link.

ADIC FastStor 7 problems

    Several people have reported problems with the FastStor 7 tape libraries under Linux. The problems have involved SCSI errors when manipulating the library with mtx, but sometimes also occured when manipulating the library from the control panel on the library.

    Contact ADIC or Dell for support on these issues.

Adaptec 789x SCSI Issues

    Over the past weeks we have been running into more and more issues involving tape drives not working properly on Adaptec 789x chipset based SCSI adapters. We are looking into recommended solutions, but for the time being our recommendation is to use a 40MHz Ultra Wide SCSI adapter like the Adaptec 2940 family (788x based) or another brand such as SiiG, Advansys, Initio, ACCard, or other.

    The indicators are drives that are not recognized by the Linux kernel, drives that ID themselves, but error when you attempt to access them, and (in some cases) system boot failures caused by a SCSI bus hang.

    As of 2/6/2003, we have discovered that the HP LTO-2, Quantum SDLT, Seagate LTO-2, Sony AIT-3, and Exabyte Mammoth 2 drives will properly function with the Ultra 160 Adaptec controllers. All other drives still demonstrate the problems listed above. On a side note, these errors are seen to affect FreeBSD, Windows, and Mac OS X on a G4, so they are not specific to Linux.

Linux 2.4.x Kernel Notes

    UPDATE March 27, 2003: Although the following information is correct, we recommend that everyone use Linux kernel the 2.4.9-34 (TOLIS mirror) kernel package from Red Hat for all Linux distributions. After 2.4.10 some SCSI issues were introduced to the kernel that cause errors when using tape drives. Specificially EOT (end of tape) is not properly reported, causing problems with multi-volume archives.

    Kai, the maintainer of the st kernel module, found and squashed the ENOSPACE bug! Thanks Kai!! A patch (TOLIS mirror) for the 2.4.20 kernel is available and the fix will be in 2.4.21. We still recommend 2.4.9-34 until 2.4.21 has come out and been tested.

    Linux users running backup applications with SCSI tape drives under a 2.4.x kernel need to be aware of SCSI subsystem issues in the various 2.4.x kernels. We have run tests and researched all 2.4.x kernels through 2.4.19 and have discovered the following: (GREEN = good, RED = bad).

    • GOOD: 2.4.2-2 Shipped with Red Hat 7.1 - Stable
    • BAD: 2.4.2 Stock - Issues with SCSI Generic under Adaptec and Symbios chipsets
    • GOOD: 2.4.3 Stock - Stable
    • BAD: 2.4.4/5/6 Stock - __alloc errors on SCSI I/O
    • GOOD: 2.4.6-2 Shipped in Red Hat 7.2 BETA - Stable
    • 2.4.7 Stock - Stable
    • BAD: 2.4.7-10 Shipped in Red Hat 7.2 release - Issues with busfree and __alloc errors
    • BAD: 2.4.8/9/10/11 Stock - Issues with busfree and __alloc errors
    • GOOD: 2.4.9-34 Red Hat - Stable (Most stable kernel for Red Hat 7.2) (***USE THIS KERNEL***)
    • BAD: 2.4.12/13/14 Stock - Stable, but ENOSPACE bug
    • BAD: 2.4.18-3 Red Hat - Stock kernel for 7.3 - UPGRADE THIS! Lots of SG errors
    • BAD: 2.4.18-10 to -18 Red Hat - (Latest Kernels for 7.3/8.0) ENOSPACE bug, problems with 3c59x driver, invalid init sequence
    • BAD: 2.4.19 Stock - ENOSPACE bug problems with 3c59x driver
    • GOOD: * 2.4.20 plus st patch - Stable, ENOSPACE bug fixed

    SCSI tape operation requires a stable SCSI environment for proper operation. To assure proper operation, only those kernels listed above as "Good" should be used. Please contact your Linux distribution manufacturer or local Linux Users Group for details on supported kernels and info on how to update (or downgrade) the kernel on your system if you don't already know how.

ftape, Ditto Max, and OnStream DI-30 OnStream Drives (DI-30, SC-30, ADR50, ADR2)
    Firmware Tools Available: OnStream has Linux firmware updating tools available. For more info and to Download visit http://www.linux1onstream.nl/Firmware/

    Update: DI-30 and SC-30 device support is now included in the 2.2.20 and 2.4.17 kernels!

    The current tapes for the OnStream ADR-30 are working successfully...
    <Read More>.

Attention Linux Tape Library Users:
    Eric Green has updated his MTX loader/library tool to version 1.2.15. Download the latest from mtx.sourceforge.net.

    Eric worked with all of the major loader manufacturers in preparing the certification process to include jukebox and loader mechanisms. The result is a greatly improved mtx loader control program.

    Download the source from http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=4626

The use of the Linux Compatible for Backup logo is awarded to manufacturers whose drives pass the compatibility tests. The logo was created and provided by Electric Bill Communications keepers of the Penguin and providers of electrifying Linux marketing by design. The logo is trademarked by Linus Torvalds.

Comments? Feedback?
Please write us at ltc@LinuxTapeCert.org

Suggestions, feedback, tips?
Please write us at ltc_tips@LinuxTapeCert.org
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Program sponsored and administered by: The Backup & Recovery Experts
(C) 2002, The TOLIS Group, Inc. All trademarks, registered trademarks, or service marks used within these pages are the property of their respective owners.

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