I had mentioned the Drobo in a prior article on Storage Hardware, and now you can go out and get it. Luckily, it’s cheaper than the originally mentioned list price of $700. So what is a Drobo and why do you want/need one? The Drobo is a new take on multi-drive storage system with some system of redundancy. Unlike typical RAID systems which usually require the drives to be the same size and/or some kind of advanced degree to set up and maintain, the Drobo is pretty plug-and-play and intuitive to use.
With 4 slots that you can place hard disks into, Drobo automatically takes care of consolidating the storage and breaking up the data so that there is redundancy. You can swap drives in and out, add new drives, pull out drives that are too small and upgrade in size, all on the fly without having to do system shutdowns/reboots.
Here are just some of the specs and features on the Drobo:
- Auto-formatting of added drives and uto-repair of data after drive failure
- Auto-repair of data corruption
- Auto-expansion of storage pool (when drives are added or upsized)
- Auto-sense & display of capacity used
- Regardless of how many hard drives are installed, your Mac or PC sees one large drive
- Redundant protection of all data
- Sensing and avoiding data corruption
- No tools, just insert drives into slots
- Expand capacity forever by adding new, or upsizing installed drives without data migration or configuration:
- Add drives without downtime or configuration
- Drives: One of four 3.5″ SATA 1 or SATA 11 hard disk drives (full or half-height, no carriers required): Any drive manufacturer, any capacity (mixed capacities ok), any spindle speed or cache
- Interface: High Speed USB 2.0
- Dimensions: 6.0″ wide x 6.3″ tall x 10.7″ long
- Includes: Drobo storage robot, external power supply (100v-240v) with U.S 110v power cord, USB2.0 cable, User Guide & Quick Start Card (printed), Drobo Resource CD with Drobo Dashboard application, Help files, How-to Videos and electronic documentation.
- System Reqs: Apple Macintosh OS-X 10.4 or greater; Microsoft Windows 2000, 2003, XP or Vista
(Please note prices are subject to change and the listed price is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of posting)