This is a set of commands for the magnetic tape command.

mt - the magnetic tape command
mt -f /dev/nst1 &rarr call the magnetic tape command mt with the option of specifying the tape directory (/dev/nst1)

the above two commands will return errors since you need to specify a command to the tape drive, see below

mt -f /dev/nst1 status &rarr calls for the status of the tape in the drive
this will return the current number of files on the tape, block number and partition (do not worry about the last two).
The block size, density and capacity of the tape (not useful unless ordering new tapes)
the number of error counts on the tape (if more than zero swap tapes)
general status bits (again do not worry about these values)
the status of the drive itself (online/offline)

mt - f /dev.nst1 rewind &rarr rewind the tape (some systems use this to eject as well)
mt - f /dev.nst1 eject &rarr rewind the tape and eject
mt - f /dev.nst1 eod &rarr fast forward tape to End Of Data
mt - f /dev.nst1 bsf n &rarr rewind tape by n files
mt - f /dev.nst1 fsf n &rarr fast forward tape by n files
There are other commands for rewinding and fast forwarding but they are not as useful for our system
mt -f /dev/nst1 load &rarr in case of powerfailure sometimes the tapes go offline on reboot, this tells the hardware to load them if they did not eject the disk

this should be enough to do the backups, I may add more later if I see the need

Communication to tape drive firmware
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -d &rarr diagnostic info, dumps to screen
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -d (filename) &rarr diagnostic info, dumps to file named filename
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -e &rarr erase and format tape (not necessary except in specific situations)
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -i &rarr identify device (needed to upgrade firmware and diagnose hardware problems)
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -t [W/R/F] &rarr test write/read functionality (needed to diagnose hardware problems)
        W & rarr test write-only capabilities
        R & rarr test read-only capabilities
        F & rarr test both/full capabilities
This erases all data on the tape
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -u &rarr unload the tape, it is better to use mt command
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -F (filename) &rarr flash firmware from file (be very careful, never interupt this, it makes the device useless if you interupt the firmware)
vxaTool /dev/nst1 -S &rarr scan the system for tape drives

Maintained by Supported by Matt Choptuik