Admittedly, I have been a long time Windows Home Server User but as my hardware comes close to its life cycle and a recent catastrophic data corruption issue that left me without my backup archives, luckily my data remained safe, it is time to start looking for a replacement. Simplicity, ease, expandability, and redundancy are all important when considering any backup solution — Don’t get me wrong, Windows Home Server is great, and despite the criticism from the current user group over the loss of Drive Extender with Windows Home Server 2011 (Vail), I still believe it is an excellent Backup and Data Solution. However, for some time, the “Beyond Raid” technology that powers the Drobo series file share and data storage devices by Data Robotics, Inc has caught my attention and become a key contender as the new home and home office backup and data storage device.
With that said, I still need to get my hands on a Drobo but thought it deserved a few words of encouragement and Kudos for what is a great product. Once I have my Drobo FS up and running I will be sure to write a more detailed blog.
But what is Drobo?
Drobo is best described as an expandable network storage solution that is as simple as plug and play for both your Windows and Mac systems. Sitting here typing on my Windows 7 Ultimate box and the MacBook Pro chugging away beside me, the duel compatibility is a definite plus. Drobo is labelled as a “hard drive that is NEVER FULL AND NEVER FAILS”. We all know that Hard Drives get full, the get old and eventually they fail. Powered by up to 16TB in from four to eight drive bays using any combination of 3.5″ SATA drives the Drobo’s array of connection options from FireWire, USB, eSATA, Ethernet, and iSCSI allow for connectivity options for any users.
One of the best features of Drobo is its Expandability
With Drobo, buy just the storage you need now and change it as your data grows. Mix and match drive brands, capacities, and speeds. Replace your smallest drive with a larger one and immediately use the new capacity in a matter of seconds, not hours! It’s a simple as inserting the new drive into the slot. Expand up to 16 TB on a single volume as larger drive sizes become available. Drobo creates one large storage pool. Dive in and eliminate the need for multiple external storage drives and devices.
Plug-In Peace of Mind, Plug-In Simplicity
Just plug in Drobo and your data protection is all set up — that’s it! Add disks at any time for additional protected capacity. In addition, keep informed about your data. Lights on the front tell you what’s happening—if you can read a traffic light, you’re already a Drobo expert.
Take a look at how the lights on the front work on a four-bay Drobo and they work the same way on all Drobo models.
Small Foot Print, We do not need a server room
So just how big is a Drobo? As a replacement to my Windows Home Server, I have had my eye on the Drobo FS (File Sharing) for about a year. Remote Access to your files, DLNA Compliant, Seamless Integration with Apple Time Machine. The list is endless — and with a footprint that is hard to beat. Weighing in at 8 lbs, the Drobo’s 7 X 10-inch figure will fit on anyone’s crowded desk or neatly in a corner.