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A method to avoid data loss caused by debris on a magnetic tape media

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000014419D
Original Publication Date: 2001-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-19
Document File: 1 page(s) / 36K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Disclosed is a method to avoid data loss caused by debris on a magnetic tape media. A tape is often left in a tape drive for a long time without any operations. Debris may stick to a part of the tape where is exposed to the atmosphere. Data loss may be caused by the debris. This method solves the above data loss problem by the following way. When a tape is not being operated for a certain amount of time, a tape drive winds the tape so that an area which is not used for data recording (and which does not affect data processing to/from the tape) ("safety area") to be exposed to the atmosphere. Since "safety area" is not used/required for data processing, even if debris stick to the area, there will be no data loss. Time to start winding a tape to "safety area" can be controlled by predefined timeout value in the drive, preset timeout values from a host which is attached to the drive or by a command from the host. The tape will rewind to the original position when a new operation is requested after winding to "safety area," restore status to be required for the following operations, if any, and then, a tape drive will process the requested operation. "Safety area" can be defined multiple if the tape format allows. By having multiple "safety areas," time to wind/rewind to/from a "safety area" can be reduced.

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A method to avoid data loss caused by debris on a magnetic tape media

Disclosed is a method to avoid data loss caused by debris on a magnetic tape media. A tape is often left in a tape drive for a long time without any operations. Debris may stick to a part of the tape where is exposed to the atmosphere. Data loss may be caused by the debris. This method solves the above data loss problem by the following way. When a tape is not being operated for a certain amount of time, a tape drive winds the tape so that an area which is not used for data recording (and which does not affect data processing to/from the tape) ("safety area") to be exposed to the atmosphere. Since "safety area" is not used/required for data processing, even if debris stick to the area, there will be no data loss. Time to start winding a tape to "safety area" can be controlled by predefined timeout value in the drive, preset timeout values from a host which is attached to the drive or by a command from the host. The tape will rewind to the original position when a new operation is requested after winding to "safety area," restore status to be required for the following operations, if any, and then, a tape drive will process the requested operation. "Safety area" can be defined multiple if the tape format allows. By having multiple "safety areas," time to wind/rewind to/from a "safety area" can be reduced.

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