Quantum FC LTO5 Drive - $26 Used Untested

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DavidWJohnston

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Sep 30, 2020
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I have some Brocade 10G DACs that have FC compatibility and I think I remember trying it successfully. I believe the SFP i2c needs to report a specification compliance for FC for it to work, but YMMV.

One way to route fiber outside a case is to put a metal PCIe bracket for an Ethernet NIC in an empty slot - The fiber LC couplers can be super-glued right inside the little square hole where the RJ-45 would normally go. Then you can use a 1ft fiber inside the case to the coupler.
 

reasonsandreasons

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May 16, 2022
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I saw that after I purchased mine, unfortunately. It would be a bit cheaper, but assuming the one in the mail works I'm not sad to have missed out on it.

Another quick question: are both the ports on the back of the drive usable simultaneously? I don't really want to buy a FC switch, but am interested in having the option of multiple hosts. (I suppose another option would be some kind of bridging using a multi-port card in a host machine, but not sure if that's possible in FC the way it is in Ethernet).
 
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DavidWJohnston

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So I just did some experiments to answer questions.

Both FC ports on the drive can be used, and plugged-in to different machines.

I just plugged one of the SFP ports into my FC switch and added it to my zone. I can see it on my backup server. Then, I PCI-passthru'd the other SFP from the drive directly into a VM. I can see the same tape drive in both. You can only actively use one at a time.

For the above experiment, I plugged both SFPs in with my Brocade DACs. They work perfectly. Here is how the DACs report in my switch:

Code:
Ethernet123: SFP EEPROM detected
        Application Advertisement: N/A
        Connector: CopperPigtail
        Encoding: Unspecified
        Extended Identifier: GBIC/SFP defined by twowire interface ID
        Extended RateSelect Compliance: Unspecified
        Identifier: SFP/SFP+/SFP28
        LengthOM3(UnitsOf10m): 0
        Nominal Bit Rate(100Mbs): 103
        Specification compliance:
                EthernetComplianceCodes: 1000BASE-CX
                FibreChannelLinkLength: short distance (S)
                FibreChannelSpeed: 100 MBytes/sec
                FibreChannelTechnology: Electrical inter-enclosure (EL)
                FibreChannelTransmissionMedia: Twin Axial Pair (TW)
                InfinibandComplianceCode: 1X Copper Active
                SFP+CableTechnology: Active Cable
        Vendor Date Code(YYYY-MM-DD Lot): 2012-10-31
        Vendor Name: BROCADE
        Vendor OUI: 00-05-1e
        Vendor PN: 58-1000027-01
        Vendor Rev: A
        Vendor SN: CBX112440001842
They show up as 8G:
1695163954096.png

Here are the 2 machines, "backup"; which now has 2 active drives, and "mainframe" has 1, which is the same as one of them from "backup"

1695164018448.png1695164051115.png
 

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baiyibai

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Mar 18, 2023
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One more question: How heavy are these units? I hesitated because this seller did not offer shipping to my location. They wanted ~30 USD/unit to ship domestically, and then I'd have to re-ship internationally. I'd like to know in the future in case I come across a similar unit in the future.
 

DavidWJohnston

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Excellent, glad to hear it's working.

That's interesting about the HPE account, I was able to download the HP tape tools and LTFS from these links without any account:



Did you try out the LTO Drive Assessment Test in the tape tools? It does lots of diagnostics and tells you how well it's working.

1695311700905.png
 
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ZFSZealot

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Aug 16, 2021
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One last tidbit. Tapes aren't cheap - but you can buy cheap used ones on eBay especially if you want to buy a bunch at a time. Granted it's a crapshoot but I always write at least two copies of everything I care about at all. And the LTO tape tools @DavidWJohnston discusses in this thread will tell you how much wear is on any given tape. My experience has been that tapes sold used on eBay have almost always barely been used. YMMV.
 

ZFSZealot

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Aug 16, 2021
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That's interesting about the HPE account, I was able to download the HP tape tools and LTFS from these links without any account:


HP LTT is indeed still downloadable, but it appears the LTFS software is not. Not logged in it gives "Product Not Found or is no longer active" error. Logged in, it just HTTP 400's...

EDIT: Down the rabbit hole I go... https://www.reddit.com/r/DataHoarder/comments/11orb52 ... this is why I generally avoid HP both personally and at work.

EDIT: Yeah found nothing that works any better than the links above.
 
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DavidWJohnston

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Wow you're right, that LTFS download link doesn't work anymore. Strange, since it's open-source. Thanks to the poster above who's sharing it with his G-Drive. Just shows you to always keep your installers, maybe not on LTFS tape. :)

The tapes are expensive. I first bought a pack of 5 which were opened, and had barcode labels. They appeared to have been loaded into a library but never actually used. I suspect a lot of them are surplus after upgrading to newer LTO generations.

Then I found a seller on eBay who's actually just down the road from me selling 20-count cases of brand new sealed tapes, and bought one. He still has them for sale, but the price has increased a lot since I bought them a couple years ago. ($540 CAD now) The "make offer" is live; might be worth a shot.

 

Jemplayer

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Jun 25, 2016
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You got me!!!

I've been looking at LTO drives but couldn't ever find one that was a decent price.
The bonus is my 10g switch is FCoE capable! Might have to switch the nics out in my clusters but that shouldn't be too bad.
 

reasonsandreasons

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May 16, 2022
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Working through my first backup with the drive I purchased, which, with a little finagling, fits well in my Define R5. I have the drive hooked up to a Qlogic 2562 HBA passed through to a Windows 11 VM on my TrueNAS Core system. All told the setup was around $50 for the drive and $80 for ten new LTO tapes, plus a $35 cleaning tape. For $164 all told it's a great substitute for an offsite backup system (a euphamism for a hypothetical box at my in-law's house).

Retrospect is handling the backup, as suggested, and doing a good job at it. The server functionality is a nice addition and lets me back up a few other machines to the main server.
 
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DavidWJohnston

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Sounds good, thanks for sharing. Make sure there's a bit of airflow passing through it. With zero airflow, those drives overheat, don't ask me how I know :)