Cannot Read or Write Tape Cartridge

Product version: 9.1

Last modified: 11 October 2019


When running a backup job, NAKIVO Backup & Replication displays the following input/output device error:

Cannot read/write "X" tape cartridge

I/O device error occurred during the "X" tape cartridge read/write action.


There can be various reasons for this error. The most frequently encountered are the following:

  1. A hardware failure on a physical device. The administrator should examine the tape device for any malfunctions, for example, the cartridge fell out or got stuck in the slot or drive, a stuck media changer, hardware overheating, or other possible physical failures.

  2. Internal malfunctions on a VTL. In most cases, restarting the VTL can fix the error.

  3. Incorrect block size configuration. When adding a new tape device to the NAKIVO Backup & Replication inventory, you are required to select one of the following block sizes for your tape device: 32KB, 64KB, 128KBб 256KB, 512KB, and 1MB. To run tape backup jobs successfully, the block size selected upon tape device discovery should be suitable for your tape device. If the specified block size is not supported by the drive(s) of your tape device, the backup job fails with the above error.

To resolve the issue, take the following steps:

  1. Determine which block size is suitable for your tape device.

  2. Go to the Configuration page of NAKIVO Backup & Replication.

  3. Click on the Tape tab. 

  4. Hover over the tape device that needs to be configured and click Manage.

  5. Click Remove.

  6. Click Add New Device to add the tape device again.

  7. On the Select Options step, specify the block size supported by the drive(s) of your tape device.  

Before you proceed with the actions above, make sure no jobs are assigned to the tape device.