Sony Storage Support

Storage Support USA

Why do I get Bad Block and Media Errors? What can I do?

  • Try retensioning the tape. This is an important procedure whenever encountering any type of problem with your tapes.
    • Tape Retensioning the tape cartridge is always recommended for optimal performance, particularly if using a new tape, after exposure to temperature changes or shock. Retensioning restores the proper tape tension to the media and removes unwanted tight spots that develop naturally on tape.
    • If a tape cartridge has not been used for over a month, you should retension the cartridge before using it.
    • If you ever have a problem reading a tape, retensioning may solve the problem. See your software manual, or refer to your software's online help for instructions on tape retensioning.
    • If the tape is dropped, retension before using it.
    • Note: In some cases, it may be necessary to retension a tape several times.
  • Regular cleaning of the DDS drum and tape path will allow optimal performance & proper transfer of data. 8mm AIT tape drives rarely need cleaning. Please refer to the "Cleaning the Tape Drive" section in your installation manual or the Maintenance section for your specific tape drive on this site for detailed information.
  • Try another tape after exiting, then re-starting the software.

For Backup Issues Only

  • Try initializing the tape to see if that solves the problem. If not, do a Long Erase (if your backup software permits) of the tape before the next backup is attempted. This will take over 1 hour and will completely wipe the tape. It will leave the format intact.
  • CAUTION! A Long Erase or Initializing the media is not an option if you are attempting to restore from the tape in question. Either procedure will remove the tape header and the data will no longer be retrievable from that tape.
  • CAUTION! Do not attempt to bulk erase an AIT tape as this will render the tape unusable.
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