I had some fun last year implementing a new VXA320 tapedrive using X23 tapes and would like to pass on the lessons learnt if anyone is planning to do the same.
1) on SuSE10.0, make sure you have /dev/st0 available. You can tune udev to ensure the device is there by editing /etc/udev/rules.d/50-udev.rules. The line:
KERNEL=="st0", SYMLINK="tape"
should do the trick
2) make sure the tapes are correctly formatted. You can do this by running:
vxaTool /dev/st0 -e 3
3) by default, the tape drive enables hardware compression following a power cycle. You should probably disable this to work best with amanda. On SuSE10.0, this can be achieved by adding to /etc/init.d/boot.local:
/root/bin/vxaTool /dev/st0 -C 0
4) I found inconsistent block size states following power cycle that caused the amlabel to be variably recognised. You can force a recognised block size for the tape on reboot by adding to /etc/init.d/boot.local:
/usr/bin/mt -f /dev/st0 setblk 32768
5) using this information, here is the tape type definition:
define tapetype VXA3-X23 {
comment "Exabyte VXA3 drive with X23 tape (hardware compression off)"
length 154007 mbytes
filemark 0 kbytes
speed 9231 kps
blocksize 32
Hope this is useful to someone.