Tape Drive Cleaning Logs – Ask the Engineer [VIDEO]

Ask the Engineer

Jack Kauter - Head shot
Jack Kauter October 25, 2022

Jack Kauter and Park Place Technologies Senior Advanced Engineer, Jeff Korte, discuss the question – “What is a log request for a tape drive?” in this month’s Ask the Engineer.


Jack: Hi, guys. Jack here from Park Place and welcome back to Ask the Engineer. Joining me today is senior advanced engineer, Jeff Korte. Jeff, how are you today?

Jeff: I’m doing great. Thank you.

What Is a Tape Drive Log Request?

Jack: That’s wonderful to hear. Jeff, someone wrote in asking about a log request for a tape drive. What does this mean?

Jeff: Yes, drive cleaning. Drive cleaning is basically two things: You’ve got a routine cleaning, and a required cleaning.

Routine is based on usage or you know or the number of hours that a drive’s been used.

Require cleaning; that’s when a drive detects that it needs to be cleaned and it notifies the software that I need to be clean now and I’m not going to be available to you for use until I am cleaned.

3 Types of Drive Cleaning

There’s there’s three types of of cleaning out there: There’s a manual cleaning, a library-managed cleaning, and an application managed cleaning.

Manual Drive Cleaning

Manual cleaning is just that, operator intervention. Someone’s going to have to physically load a tape to a drive to have it cleaned.

Library-Managed Drive Cleaning

Library-managed cleaning; the library is going to do all the cleaning. It’s automatically going to clean the drive when a drive requests to be cleaned.

Application Drive Cleaning

And the application; same thing as library in a sense, but the application is going to handle the cleaning and it will clean the drive when requested.

How Long Is a Cleaning Tape Good for?

Jack: OK, cool. Interesting stuff. How long is a cleaning tape good for and how is the cleaning tape identified?

Jeff: Yes, with the modern day tape technology (LTO, 3592, 9840s) cleaning tape is good for 50 cycles.

How to Identify a Cleaning Tape

Jack: And how is it identified?

Jeff: Well, it’s identified by on the cleaning tape itself, it’ll be marked as cleaning cartridge.

There’s also a barcode label that can be added to it. And the barcode label will start with a CLN, identify it as a cleaning cartridge.

Jack: Great. Thank you for your response Jeff. Some great insights there.

If any of our viewers would like to suggest a question to one of our engineers, please feel free to reach out to us by commenting below this post.

We’ll see you next time on Ask the Engineer.

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About the Author

Jack Kauter,
As an Online Marketing and Analytics Manager, Jack is responsible for Digital Marketing initiatives with a primary focus on EMEA and APAC. His responsibilities extend to supporting the Sales team, orchestrating campaigns, generating leads and more.