Need to know DDS drive used to write backup tapes

From: Nico de Jong <>
Date: Thu Sep 30 13:10:42 2004

----- Original Message -----
From: "Doc Shipley" <>
To: <>; " :On-Topic and
Off-Topic Posts" <>
Sent: Thursday, September 30, 2004 7:15 PM
Subject: Re: Need to know DDS drive used to write backup tapes

> Zane H. Healy wrote:
> >>I am trying to figure out what tape drive was used to write some DDS
> >>that I'd like to read. The only clues I have are that they were written
> >>on a VAX of some sort under VAX OpenVMS 5.5-2.
> >>
> >>Any ideas?
> >
> >
> > On a related note, I have a LOT of 4mm tapes sitting around that were
> > written on a Unix system in the 1992 timeframe. I have no idea what
> > drive the tapes were written on. Anyone have any idea how to go about
> > figuring this one out?
> If the cartridges (note correct USian spelling) have a tape length
> printed on them that will tell you whether they're 1GB, 2GB, etc. Most
> DDS drives will read, if not write, older formats. IOW a DDS3 drive
> should rad a DDS1 tape.
> The bigger problem is whether hardware compression was used, and what
> Unix tools were used to create the tape - tar, cpio, dump - and those
> are just the common ones.... All the Unix standards allow TOC listing
> of an archive, which should tell you if you're using the right tool.
> DDS tapes have a write-protect as well, so if the tapes are in good
> shape, you ought to be able to do that non-destructively.
> > My recommendation has been to send them to the data recovery service
that we
> > use (same with the stash of 8mm's).
> I'd be inclined to do some futzing around with them first. A DDS1-3
> drive will just spit the tape if it can't ID the media, and depending on
> the Unix in question, it's an odds-on bet that the archives were made
> with either tar or cpio.
> > I'd much rather have to retrieve data from a TK50 than a 4mm or a 8mm!
> True, but the time-frame for these narrows the field considerably.
> Doc

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