Error codes

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The MDFS server prints fatal errors to the printer that has been configured to receive system messages. Reports are printed if the error is fatal, even if you disabled reports. These reports are accompanied by the SYSTEM ERROR indicator, so you know it is important.


"ABEND" erorrs

Errors looking like "ABEND xxxx" where xxxx is a hexadecimal number, such as '0B07', indicate that something is wrong with the SCSI hardware; typically when somebody switches off the harddisc before switching off the MDFS (whether accidental or intentionally).


Flashing light errors

If the SYSTEM ERROR indicator flashes, it shows that something is wrong with the hardware and the MDFS cannot get as far as to print a report.
I currently only know of one of the status flashes:
  6 short, 1 long
  Occurs at switch-on if the harddisc is not ready.


Errors that are usually non-fatal

The usual non-fatal (depending on your outlook!) errors are:
  • Block 0 corrupt on Drive <letter>
    Found corrupted boot block when trying to initialise disc. Will probably need reformatting.
  • Block allocated twice, Drive <letter>, block <number>
    or: Bad block number, Drive <letter>, block <number>
    Disc is corrupted. This may be recoverable at a low level.
  • Bad backpointer on drive <letter> in ....
    or: Wrong no. of files in Dir. in .... Directory information is corrupted, the drive is set to Read Only. This should be recoverable.
Because of the system printout facility, the MDFS is much friendlier with its error messages. I won't list them all here - it is obvious what some, such as "2nd disc called <name> in drive <letter>", mean.
Instead, I shall list the disc and tape error numbers so you can better understand the messages that you may receive.
  Harddisc errors (not Adaptec controller)

  Code    Key    Meaning

  03      4      Write fault. Is power supply voltage
  04      4      Not ready (fatal)
  06      4      Track 0 not found

  10      3      ID ECC error
  11      3      Uncorrectable data error
  12      3      Not ID address mark
  13      3      No data address mark
  14      3      Sector not found
  15      3      Seek error

  17      1      Recovered read error by retries
  18      1      Receovered read error by ECC

  1A      5      Parameter overrun
  1C      3      Error while accessing defect list

  20      5      Invalid command
  21      5      Illegal disc address
  22      5      Illegal function
  24      5      Illegal bit or byte in CDB
                   (caused by bad SCSI ribbon cable)
  25      5      Invalid LUN
  26      5      Illegal bit or byte in parameter
                   list (reason as for #24)

  31      3      Format operation failed
  32      3      No spare location available

  40      4      RAM diagnostic failure
  44      4      ROM diagnostic failure

  80      4      DC motor failed to start
  81      4      DC motor speed error +/- 1%
  82      4      DC motor speed error +/- 5%
  83      4      Index calibration failed

  Ex      x      Sense key = x, error code = 0

  FD      -      Unknown status byte
  FE      -      Device busy (ie, executing command)
  FF      -      RSS error, or Bus jammed, or No BSY

  Tape errors

  08      4      Drive Communication Error
                   (can be caused by removing tape during

  10      3      ID CRC error
                   (usually bad or warn tape,
                    or high levels of RFI)

  11      3      Unrecoverable read error
                   (causes as for #10)

  15      3      Seek error (causes as for #10)

  19      3      Defect list error

  21      5      Illegal Logical Block Address

  24      5      Illegal bit or byte in command block
                   (check the ribbon cable is okay)

  27      7      Tape is write protected

  28      6      New cartridge ready for use

  29      6      SCSI RESET has occurred

  42      4      Power-on diagnostics failure

  A0      4      Bsckground noise error

  A7      4      Autoload error
                   (try reinserting tape)

  A8      2      Cartridge autoloading
                   (wait for it to stop)

  B0      2      No cartridge in drive

  Ex      x      Sense key = x, error code = 0

  FD      -      Unknown status byte

  FE      -      Device busy (ie, executing command)

  FF      -      RSS error, or Bus jammed, or No BSY

  And for those of you using floppy drives...

  08  Data CRC error      Can't read data, try
                          another drive

  10  Sector not found    Disc may need to be

  18  ID CRC error        Disc may need to be

  28  Generic CRC error   Similar to errors 8 and 18

  40  Write protected     You have write protected
                          the disc, or changed discs
                          without telling the MDFS

  80  Not ready           MDFS hardware error

  81  Disc timeout        Usually caused by removal
                          of the disc accidentally
                          or intentionally

  82  Track 0 not found   Disc / drive / cable fault

  83  Track 0 stuck true  Drive / cable fault

Copyright © 2008 Rick Murray