Spent the morning installing fixpack 21 for VIOS. It went without a hitch. I started the blade and then once it was up and running, allocated to tape drive to it and started the partition. The media tray is IN so just about everything that could force this thing to drop is hooked up at the moment but it IS running.
My only concern at the moment is a bang! light on the SAS Connectivity Module (external port) that might indicate an issue with the tape drive or cable (since the SAS Conn Module has been replaced). I am going to look for a firmware update for the drive itself, which would be the only possible “fixable” issue.