Common causes of tape failure and data loss

We have developed an unrivalled range of hardware and software tools to deal with almost every situation. If your data is there, we will recover it.


  • Operational error
  • Expired tapes
  • Mishandling of the tape
  • Accidental overwrites caused by inserting or partially formatting the wrong tape


Physical damage

  • Broken tapes
  • Dirty drives
  • Damage caused by chemicals, fire, flood or other natural disaster

Software upgrades

  • Inability for data on tape to be read by new application or servers
  • Software problems or backup failures

We support all tape media

Kroll Ontrack has a large inventory of tape drives to read your media. If you use an obsolete archive format, don't worry, our data recovery engineers have the experience and the resources required to search, extract, and recover your data .

We recover from all tape media

Tape Drive Tape Media Tape Capacity
Vendor: IBM®
3500 series
3500 MP series 5 - 700 GB
Vendor: Sony®
AIT series | SAIT series
8mm (AIT) 35 - 500 GB
Vendor: Oracle® (formerly StorageTek)
9800 series | 10000 series
9800 series | 10000 series 40 - 1,000 GB
Vendor: Quantum®
DLT series | SDLT series
DLT series | SDLT series 80 - 800 GB
Vendor: Tandberg™ Data
DAT series | LTO series | SLR series
VXA series
4mm, 8mm (MP) | Ultrium (Generation 1 - 6)
38 - 6,000 GB
Vendors: Quantum, HP, Sony
DDS series | DAT series
DDS 4mm 20 - 40 GB
Vendors: IBM, HP, Quantum, Sony 
LTO series
Ultrium (Generation 1 - 6) 200 - 6,000 GB

If you do not see your brand of tape drive or tape media listed, contact us to discuss your specific recovery options. In addition, custom development is available for unique or proprietary backup archive systems. Alternatively, view our tape recovery capabilities in our information sheet .

Comprehensive tape services

Whatever your tape needs, we have customised solutions to help you manage your tape legacy data efficiently.

Find out more

Tape recovery process

Our specialist R&D team has been building up tape recovery knowledge and resources for 30 years to develop a process with proven success:

  • Recoveries are performed in dust-free Cleanroom environments
  • Tapes and tape drives are carefully dismounted, examined and processed
  • Proprietary tools are used to read and recover around any physically damaged areas
  • We are able to quickly image failing tapes to ensure the most complete data recovery possible

Warning: Attempting to recover tape data on your own, or through an inexperienced data recovery provider, may lead to further damage. Select a data recovery provider with the resources, expertise and experience you can trust.

Forensic recovery

Urgent restore request for a legal process? We recover legally-sound data  to satisfy litigation requests.

Tapes contain a snapshot of data which was present on a system at a point in time. This could include information which is no longer available in 'active' storage, especially if efforts have been made by a suspect to manipulate or remove potentially incriminating evidence from the live system. This evidence can still be found via a forensic investigation of the tapes.

They don’t call us the world leaders for nothing…

Don’t just take our word for it; hear what our customers have to say:

Independent reviews

We use independent customer reviewing service eKomi  to survey our clients after a data recovery service.

View our reviews 

Get your data back

Kroll Ontrack can help recover your data. From the largest government or enterprise organisations to home users who may have lost their data, you can trust us.

Call us: +44 (0)1372 741 999 Get a free consultation

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