On issuing this command:

RMAN> backup device type sbt tablespace <tablespace_name>;

we are getting the following error:

ORA-19554: error allocating device, device type: SBT_TAPE, device name: 
ORA-27211: Failed to load Media Management Library

How to overcome this error?

  • 2
    Have you configured the tape accordingly? Edit your post with the output of show device type;.
    – Philᵀᴹ
    Nov 11, 2012 at 16:17
  • RMAN> show device type; RMAN configuration parameters for database with db_unique_name ORCL are: CONFIGURE DEVICE TYPE DISK PARALLELISM 1 BACKUP TYPE TO BACKUPSET; # default CONFIGURE DEVICE TYPE SBT_TAPE PARALLELISM 1 BACKUP TYPE TO BACKUPSET; # default Nov 11, 2012 at 17:40
  • 1
    Ok, so it hasn't been configured. What make/model of tape device is it, how is it presented to the host, and do you have the external library/software rman needs for it (if one is indeed available/needed)?
    – Philᵀᴹ
    Nov 11, 2012 at 17:52
  • How to check make/model of tape device? Nov 11, 2012 at 18:49
  • 1
    Ask your sysadmin...
    – Philᵀᴹ
    Nov 11, 2012 at 22:15

2 Answers 2


The "device" in RMAN is a misnomer, it should be really called "storage".

The "sbt" (synonym of "sbt_tape") is a misnomer again, as it has NOTHING to do with any tapes, it should be simply called "non-rman". This is just an empty placeholder, to be filled with any "plugin"; the plugin is called by Oracle either the "Media Manager library" or SBT_LIBRARY. This plugin allows rman to store and retrieve files through it, so rman only tells that it needs a file handle "xyz" (file is identified by a string handle) and doesn't need to know how the file is delivered, from tape or anything. The plugin is normally a part of an independent backup software, such as IBM TSM or Symantec NetBackup or many others. Oracle provides a simple emulator SBT_LIBRARY=oracle.disksbt for testing.

Since you didn't fill that placeholder with any "Media Manager library", you receive an error message as expected.


If you are not using a Tape Device for your backup tasks, then you might be using disks? Either way, try assigning a device/path to the SBT device before you perform your backup:

Start RMAN from your prompt

rman ENTER

Connect to your target

RMAN> connect target /

Allocate a path you your SBT device (this is for a path device):

RMAN> allocate channel for maintenance device type sbt parms 'SBT_LIBRARY=oracle.disksbt, ENV=(BACKUP_DIR=<your backup directory>)';

Issue your backup command without the SBT device:

RMAN> backup tablespace <tablespace_name>;

I once read:

You should configure default devices and channels in advance of running RMAN Backup.
RMAN Backup | SS64.com

Good luck!

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.