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Lindsay Simpson
Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 20, 2012 at 10:19:21 pm

Hi all,

I was performing basic staged transfers of individual Ikegami MXF media directories to a 2 1/2 day old LTO tape when the error message at the link below came up.

tape_catalog_error.jpg

I have contacted Cache-A support (still waiting on a reply), but thought I would try here as well to see how other users might have approached this error. Our Cache-A is out of warranty, and I have a feeling this issue will require a paid, support-connect. How did you handle this?

I have a feeling it might be cheaper to trash the tape and re-archive the directories on it to a different tape.

I sincerely hope this is not an issue that occurs frequently...

Since I may have a captive audience at this point...has anyone doing staged transfers noticed a difference in whether or not a file is dragged and dropped from the transfer folder on the CacheA share to the VTAPE or copy/pasted from the transfer folder of the VTAPE? When I copy/paste I get transfer errors in the CacheA UI log, but dragging/droppoing is successful every time. Seems to me it shouldn't make a difference which method you use as long as theere is plenty of space on the cache share and LTO tape.

Any thoughts/commetns appreciated. Thanks!!

Lindsay


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 21, 2012 at 4:40:28 am

Certainly not seen this error before but the usual questions like what version of the Cache-A OS are you running? What is the behavior of a freshly initialized tape? Is this eror isolated to a single tape? Are you doing the archive through drag and drop (file system) or through CatDV?

I know we have all been out at NAB this week.


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 3:36:51 pm

Hi Matt,

Thanks for your response. Here are the details you requested:

Our Cache-A OS is version 2.1.14

So far this error has only occurred once on one tape. When this tape was first initialized I did not notice any strange behavior/

The files were archived via dragging/dropping in the file system. I have yet to perform a successful archive from CatDV to CacheA with any of my MXF media types. At this point I am stalled on that particular CatDV issue so I have been focusing on the file system transfer to at least have a back up of my media, organized or not.

I've attached a transfer log representative of the CatDV errors I'm experiencing in case you are curious and might have some feedback on that issue as well.

4025_stagedtransfercatdvcatalogtransfer2011logall4312.htm.zip

Thank you for your time,

Lindsay


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 5:00:05 pm

Are you running CatDV 9.0? There is significant improvements to that workflow vs CatDV 8.1 I will make sure Cache-A is aware of the challenges.


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 5:11:50 pm

Hi Matt,

I should have mentioned before that I am running CatDV 9 Pro with MXF and Archiving Options. Thanks for touching base with CacheA as well.

Thanks
Lindsay


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 5:30:36 pm

Let us know what challenges you have with Cache-A and CatDV. The 9.0 integration is pretty solid!


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 7:19:16 pm

Matt,

In terms of CatDV to CacheA, let me give you a bit of history on the workflow I have established and then provide some details on the archive issues being experienced.

Our small production house shoots mainly on three different tapeless HD cameras including, a Panasonic P2, JVC, and an Ikegami. Each of these cameras records with a slightly different MXF wrappers & codecs. Our main NLE system is the Adobe Production Suite CS5. These native MXF files are easy to import and edit from in Premiere, so up until now I have avoided converting from MXF to another format like some sort of AVI or MOV, which is ideal given our limited time & editing resources.

After each shoot or field excursion, the contents of a P2 card, for example, is copied to an individual folder within our P2 Files Library on a raid array. Each card dump is stored basically as separate events though any given card may contain numerous subjects, events or locations etc. This is where CatDV becomes especially handy in terms of organizing and cataloging footage in the long term.

I began my work with CatDV by importing individual MXF directories as metaclips, adding log note data applicable to each clip, and then sorting these clips into an appropriate master catalog based on a specific category, like 'Elk' or 'Winter Scenics.' My end goal is archive the catalog categories, so that even a few years from now, that one spectacular clip found in a directory that may otherwise be irrelevant to the latter, can be located in an efficient and effective manner through CatDV and then can be easily restored if it is no longer present on the raid array.

At this point, only the P2 and JVC media can be imported to CatDV as metaclips. I have sorted all of our existing media of those types into the established category catalogs. The Ikegami MXF is not yet supported by CatDV based on my correspondence with Rolf.

With the MXF option of CatDV 9, I made the mistake of assuming that since the software can ingest and read the MXF clips properly within a catalog that the entire complicated, MXF file structure would be archived properly when the archive function was engaged in CatDV. This assumption has proved to be wrong based on my tests. When archiving from CatDV, I always select chunks of clips from 20-30 GB per CatDV's recommendation. Generally I always receive errors in the CacheA UI during an archive transfer.

On the occasion I do have a catalog archive through CatDV without any errors resulting in the CacheA UI, when I attempt to restore those files from tape, CatDV indicates those files are missing. It appears CatDV is not archiving the entire MXF structure, including its empty folders and the LASTCLIP.txt document (P2 media), which are required for a successful restore allowing the media to be edited from again. Rolf has confirmed that CatDV will not bring over those text files associated with the directory, and only focuses on the media directly related to that individual clip, the audio & video MXF files. Perhaps I have misunderstood him?...fingers crossed.

Here is a screen shot of the attempted restore failure:
catalog_restore_attempt_directlyfromvtape_catalog_archive_missingmetadata.j...

I feel as though at this point I am stuck between a rock and a hard place on this one. I understand products like the 'Worker Node' can be utilized to convert MXF or any media type to another, based on a schedule, and can be run in the background. Unfortunately, like many, we have no budget with which to buy any new equipment/software.

Does anyone know if it is possible to utilize Adobe Media Encoder etc. to function in a way similar to Worker Node? Any other suggestions? Or questions? Please let me know if you require more details or this is unclear. I have plenty of examples.

Again here is one test log from the CacheA UI. During this test I attempted a drag/drop file system archive of an individual directory and then also tried to archive the same directory through CatDV.

4025_stagedtransfercatdvcatalogtransfer2011logall4312.htm.zip

Thanks again Matt for your interest and time. I'm eager to utilize this system and CatDV to its fullest.

Lindsay


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 7:41:27 pm

Here is a link to Codecs that may help with the Ikegami Cameras at least worth a trial if you have these files.
http://www.telestream.net/mxf-final-cut-pro/mxf-component-editcam.htm

As for the lastclip.txt I would double check with Rolf but I understand that is not required to restore. This text file only has a couple of lines so should not be a problem. To replace it if necessary. I would follow Tom's suggestion and restore and re archive the offending tape I suspect this might be an isolated issue.


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 8:03:19 pm

My bad again...should have mentioned we are all PC based, so unfortunately Telestream is not a option. Given the text file is not required to restore....why then, does CatDV say the files are missing?
Check out this screen shot...I had attached the wrong one in my last post.

catalog_restore_attempt_ae.jpg

Which reminds me, about a question I had as I think I am missing a step when it comes to restoring through CatDV. With the correct archive tape loaded in the CacheA, is it required to manually pull all of it's contents to the VTAPE, prior to using the restore function in CatDV? I have feeling that will fix the error I experienced above.

I will go ahead and erase/re-archive the troublesome tape. No big loss there. Thanks for confirming.

Lindsay


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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 8:48:34 pm

You are spot on when you say the 'LASTCLIP.txt' file is unnecessary. I performed a test I had yet to think of. While Premiere no longer recognizes the media as specifically P2 media provided thumbnail images in the Media Browser, the footage can still be imported by selecting the clips within the 'Video' folder of the media directory.

Just a reference for future thread readers mostly.


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Tom Goldberg
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 5:35:55 pm

Hi Lindsay,

The error dialog you got from your Cache-A device "TOC position invalid" tells us that there is no Table of Contents (TOC) file where we recorded it last being written. The TOC location is stored in the cartridge memory chip and is updated upon each session completion.

The only time this error happens is when an archive session is not completed - this may have been due to a power interruption or a system crash during an archive.

While it may be possible for our support engineers to repair such a tape, the easiest way to fix this is to recover all and re-archive it.

I hope this helps!

Tom Goldberg
Cache-A Corporation
602 Park Point Drive
Golden, CO 80401
mailto:tom.goldberg@cache-a.com
http://cache-a.com




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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 6:50:00 pm

Hi Tom,

Thanks for reply. I can't say I have any account of power crash etc. that would have triggered this, but no mind. When you say to re-archive, can that same tape be erased & reinitialized to be used again?

Lindsay


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Tom Goldberg
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 7:46:35 pm

Yes, tapes can be freely erased and reused.

It may be instructive to view the "Tape Information" dialog - if you see a lot of "Space Lost," this may be indicative of many bad blocks and suggests that you may not be able to get a full amount of data on the tape the next time you use it. On the other hand, there can also be space lost due to issues with data delivery as appears may be the case in your logs.

Also, we suggest not reusing tapes that have a large number of Loads (i.e. over 200) as there is a possibility they might be getting worn in some areas.

Tom Goldberg
Cache-A Corporation
602 Park Point Drive
Golden, CO 80401
mailto:tom.goldberg@cache-a.com
http://cache-a.com




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Lindsay Simpson
Re: Cache-A Tape Catalog Error Message
on Apr 23, 2012 at 8:06:06 pm

Thanks for the info Tom. I just wanted to confirm that the tape which produced the error was not permanently corrupted.

When you use the term loads, you are referring to the number of times a tape was inserted and read by the CacheA correct? Just want to verify. I will keep that information in mind. Luckily we have not come close to that load limit with any particular tape, but I have noticed some 'Space Lost' on various archive tapes. I will be sure to keep an on eye on that in the future.

Thanks,
Lindsay


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