ESXi 5, HP P212 and LTO 5 tape drive goes offline

Hi there,

We have purchased a support ticket from VMware but we are still currently going some steps but so far with no succes.

We have an HP DL180 G6 with an HP P212 SAS card and a HP Ultrium 5 Tape Drive attached via SAS cable.

Our backup software is ArcServe Backup R16 running on Windows server 2008 R2 VM, fully patched. All of our equipement is also fully patch, including firmware and bioses.

Our issue is as follows, if we attach the LTO 5 via SCSI Device option and have the device node match the SAS card we can run a backup  fine but the Tape drive will go offline after a backup getting an Unexpted SCSI Sense Code error. I've read over google that others have received this error and haven't found any solutions yet.

Second try, we setup PCI passthourgh directly to our P212 SAS card and the backup will run and will not go offline. Although if you reboot the VM once it will get eternally stuck at the windows boot and will not enter Windows. Safe mode also does not work. If I remove the pci passthrough card then all is well.

We've also tried installing esxi 4.1 on the same server and it's made no difference. We've made a test server (physical), removed the SAS card from the DL180. Ran a backup in the test server and there were no issues at all. So it's obvious that their an issue with esx somewhere.

I really hope that we can find an answer or if someone already has the answer it would be greatlly appreciated. If Vmware solves this issue for me I will post the solution here.

Thank you for your time

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20 Replies

Too bad that no one had any ideas but I got it working here. Vmware still hasn't called me in 2 days. An over 7 days support call...

Verify if the tape drive is using VMW_SATP_AULA (which is bad)

SSH into esxi 5 console

~# esxcli storage nmp device list


   Device Display Name: HP Serial Attached SCSI Tape (naa.500110a0014b774a)

   Storage Array Type: VMW_SATP_ALUA

   Storage Array Type Device Config: {implicit_support=on;explicit_support=off; explicit_allow=on;alua_followover=on;{TPG_id=0,TPG_state=AO}}

   Path Selection Policy: VMW_PSP_MRU

   Path Selection Policy Device Config: Current Path=vmhba2:C0:T0:L0

   Path Selection Policy Device Custom Config:

   Working Paths: vmhba2:C0:T0:L0

Note: View the Storage Array Type

To change this to VMW_SATP_LOCAL

~# esxcli storage nmp satp rule add –satp=VMW_SATP_LOCAL  --vendor=”HP” –model=”Ultrium 5-SCSI”

Next you need to remove any claims to that device

~# esxcli storage core claiming unclaim –t location –A vmbha2 –C 0 –T 0 –L 0 (your vmbha must match)

~# esxcfg-rescan vmhba(#)

~# esxcli storage nmp device list

Reboot esxi host

Then add your Tape via SCSI device in the VM settings

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Have you found any solution to this issue?

I notice in this KB article it states that tape drive are no longer supported in ESXi 5.0.  I hope I am reading this wrong.

"Note: VMware does not support tape drives that are connected to ESXi 5.0 hosts"

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Hi stratomer,

01. We have  couple of implementations outside with an ESX4.X and CA ARcserve Backup inside a VM running on that ESX.
In these cases is does not matter whether ARCserve r15, r15,1,r16.

Working pretty well.

02. I have to disappoint you: you were too fast.

ESXi5 is on ARCserve compatiblity list since Monday this week.

Necessity to test with ARCserve r16 Servicepack 1.

There was a copy of ARCserve compatibility list about Nov 18th  saying that ARC r16 already supports both, VDDK 5 and ESXi5.

I had a conversation about that with CA last week: the compat matrix was changed in advance of appearance of r16 SP1.

Therefore, no support with SP 0.

You find the most recent CA ARCserve Compatibility list here:{465F5ECA-FBC6-40A6-8BB5-53D0894...}

You find the Servicepack 1 download instructions here:

I did not yet review the release Notes of ARCserve r16 SP1 in terms of solving the problem with ESXi5.


Your description did work for me in so far, that I could modify the ALUA settings.

I did not get the tape drive run stable inside the VM.

We are using a QUANTUM LTO-III drive here.

Still troubleshooting this.

Is yours still online and stable ?



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Just to let you know:

A day later i reviewed the output of "esxcli storage nmp satp rule" and saw different spellings for the Quantum drive.
I cleaned up and voila after a new assginment to the VM also using a different scsi mapping it worked fine.

Note: No reboot required, neither for esxi5 nor for VM.

Note2: You cannot cleanup all (redundant) rules; this is commentet in some vSphere blogs I now do not have at hand.



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I have the same issue with the same SAS Card HP P212 in connection with a new HP Ultrium 5-SCSI Backup Tape Drive.

The backup software is Symantec BackupExec 2010 R3, all available patches and fixes are installed.

At the first look everythink worked fine. A test backup finished successfully without problems, but after i changed the tape the tape drive will be go offline.

I didn't find a solution or a workaround to get the tape drive online again. Sometimes it works again after a reboot or a restart of all BE Services.

As described in this thread i verified the tape is using VMW_SATP_AULA.

So unfortunately i can't test too many things on a productive system, i really appreciate if someone can approve this solution.

Many thanks

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"Verify if the tape drive is using VMW_SATP_AULA (which is bad)"

Change it (as per post above) to LOCAL


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in two cases with arcserve r15, r16 we had the same/ similar occurance.
there still was an obsolete line in the rules config output.

As scerazy/ stratomer write: VMW_SATP_LOCAL is the correct setting.
Might be, that while changing settings the VM did no free the path.

shutdown BE
unmap the scsi id in the vms settings
then go through stratomers description
you dont need to reboot esx or vm
map vm scsi again [but not to SCSSI:X:0]
( take for example X:5)
rescan adapters in esx
Find your device in vsSphere Client
rescan hardware in windows devicemanager within VM and find the respective device now.
restart BE and be fine.

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thank you all for your replies.

After some days of troubleshooting and testing the tape now works fine.

Unfortunately the HP Tape also had a defective.

So that was the reason why some tapes couldn't loaded.

After i changed the HP Tape with a spare part, it seems that all works fine!

thx a lot again


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I have the same situation, but one big different. My tape library is connected via FC (IBM TS3200)

I can see my medium changer in Device Manager (in my backup vm. Backup Exec 2010 R3),but not the tape drive. Has anyone experience with his configuration?


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I have the same issue,

1.esxcli storage nmp device list:

  storage array type is showing vmw_SATP_LOCAL . When i try to add SCSI device in VM only HP Tape is showing. HP Media is not detecting.

i have attached screenshot also.

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same problem till today no solution

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I got SAS Tape Drive can we connect this to VCenter server and  access using Symantec Backupexec  2012?

is it a good idea?


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you write: >>When i try to add SCSI device in VM only HP Tape is showing. HP Media is not detecting.<<

I do not properly understand this.

esxcli storage nmp device list will not show any media, oonly the tape drive. this is ok.

In Windows device manager of the respective vm: do you see the tape drive ?

You will not see a media there.

If you then look into arcserves device manager: do you see the tape drive ?
Is it onlline ?

If you then insert the media, is it then see inside arcserves devicemanager ?

can you format or erase the taape ?

When you then eect the tape: does tape go offline again or does it keep shwoing online ?

In neitther vSpehre Clients storage adapter view nor in the vm settiings dialog you will see a HP MEDIA.

Either you have a backup application

or might be, that windows removable storage servie shows the tape media as well (if installed, which i would not recommend; depending on the backup app)

Our different environements with Quantum LTO's and HP LTO's still show stable since my first posting here.
Did you try rebooting esx to get it work what was not necessary in my cases) ?



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i am not BE expert.

Is TS3200 direct attached to FC HBA in the ESXi ?

Is the HBA certified and supported by ESX ?

Did you install the respective HBA drivers inside the VM ?

Did you try to update the storport drivers inside3 the VM ?

Did you notice this old thread ?

And this one ?

Although as i understnd, no fabric used in your case, you could try this.

Another thing could be to change adressing in tapelibrary.

In some libraries years ago you could switch the way how multiple devices of a library are presented to a host.
scsi id vs. lun id.

Do not know whether this is possible with TS3200.
(Even not knowing if it is possible with i40,i500)

I myself did not yet map fc tape into vm.



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try with this Microsoft KB, is HP P212 driver issue:

Números de artículo de KB: 943545

Idioma: English

Plataforma: i386

Ubicación: (


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Try this solution from Symantec:
"How To configure a tape device with a virtual machine in ESX 4.0 and ESX 4.1" (

and this:

"How to properly configure a VMWare ESX virtual machine to use tape devices which are connected to the host server via SCSI Passthrough" (

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I removed the P212 card and installed a HP SC44Ge HBA (P/N 416096-B21).

Now I've this configuration:
HP DL380 G7
VMWare 5.0.0 (build 469512)
HP SC44Ge (passthourgh on a Win 2008 R2 vServer)
HP SAS external cable (P/N AE466A)
connected on HP Storageworks 1/8 G2 Tape Autoloader (P/N AH558A)
driven by Symantec Backup Exec 2012

HP and wmvare both told me that this solution is not certified (they want me to install backup on a physical machine), but it works!

time lost: 3 weeks...

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Hi all

This is only for People who searches about esxi 5.x hp p212 Controller passtrough and symantec backup exec.

we had an Installation with esxi 5.1 and a p212 Controller not in passtrough and symantec backup exec 2014 SP1. it was working without any Problems until we upgraded the esx to Version 5.5U2

After the upgrade i was not able to ad the device over add scsi device, i Need to add the p212 Controller in passtrough to see the Controller under device Manager in Windows sbs2011.

after a reboot of the host we had a purple Screen, so i downloaded the latest spp from hp to install latest Firmware for all devices DL380G7 and i also  installed the latest patches from vmware in update mode

because of hp oem esxi Image Installation.

After a host reboot i saw the tape drive in device Manager so i installed the tape Driver from symantec but this was a bad idea, the Server told me to reboot because of a Hardware Change, after the reboot the tape drive

was no longer visible in device Manager.

i uninstalled the tape Driver shutdown the guest, removed p212 from passtrough, reboot host, added again p212 in passtrough, reboot host and don't installed symantec Driver and voila since them it is working without

any Problems and we have a working backup in unsupported mode .

So believe me, never never use the tape Driver from symantec in esxi

we've differend unsupported installations of vmware esxi, hp tape drives and symantec backup exec. if you've any Problems, ask me I can help for sure.

Greetings and good luck


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i'm suporting this company astedeco , they want install vmware,they have 50 workstation and 13 server,what kind or vmware we can install?

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