5D Fails to stay powered on

My 5D gave up the ghost and I needed to recover data from it so I’ve purchased an exact replacement and put the drives in it.

As a part of the failure of the old one one of the drives has also failed. The drive array was


One of the 6TG drives failed and I suspect there is too much data for the remaining drives to rebuild without a drive in bay 0. When I power on without a drive in Bay 0 the device completes the boot, is detected by the dashboard lights are all green, capacity shows 100% and I can see the data and am able to drag files off to my pc a few at a time with transfer speeds in the 100s Mb/s

After a few seconds the lights all flash amber and green and a minute or so later it just switches off and then reboots and repeats.

When I put a replacement 6TB drive in 0-Bay the device powers on and is detected in the Dashboard all lights red and Volumes shows


Restart using Tools displays the same.

If I put a different 6TB drive in Bay 0 I get all lights amber and the device is not detected by the dashboard.

Very intermittant performance, first boot detected no drive in bays 2-4. Powered off, ejected all drives and pushed firmly back in place and restarted.

So now back with 6,6,3,3,3 all detected but flashing amber/green and switch off suddenly after 30-60 seconds. Very frustrating as I can see the data but not long enough to be able to get it off.

ANY suggestions welcome.

Beginning to wonder about the Drive 0 in your ‘new’ Drobo 5D.
Assuming your dashboard and firmware is up to date, can you turnoff the Drobo, extract all HDDs, and then add 2x spare 2TB (or smaller drives) into Drive 0 & 1 and restart?
If the Drobo completes the formatting and you can view the new volume then that would check off that concern on Drive 0. Can you report back?

Latest restart (before seeing your reply) is showing all five bays solid amber, the only thing different is the usb cable isn’t plugged into my laptop so I can’t see any progress if anything is happening.

Should I wait or follow your suggestion?

If a key outcome is the ability to access your data and copy it to an external source, then look to connecting to your Drobo in its current state. The solid amber lights are telling you that you need to upsize soon but should still be able to read the data. Avoid writing to the array.
See whether you get access in this current state via your USB. Not sure if your PC accepts a thunderbolt 2 cable as that would be useful alternate data path.

I don’t have a Thunderbolt 2 connection on my laptop(s).

I’ve now plugged ths Drobo in it’s current state into two laptops but it’s not detected at all. Which leads me to believe the current state is “doing nothing”

I’ve tried several HDD in 0-bay result is pretty much the same, sometime other bays become empty suddenly.

It doesn’t sound as if it’s doing anything at all should I restart it and do as you suggested earlier?

If you don’t hear (or feel) any HDD ‘chatter’ then they are not doing anything.
I would want to check Drive 0 next.
Keep track of where each HDD was placed before you extract them.
The exercise is to validate your Drobo drive - if that can be established then a focus moves onto the HDDs.

Hi I’ve finally had a chance to do as you suggested.

I’ve removed all drives and put two different disks in bays 0 and 1

Currently showing green and if I format them I guess they’ll become available for use.

Incidentaly I had several spare drives which I put in the old Drobo case and once I’d run the Erase & Factory Reset the old device became useable.

This would suggest to me that the old device was never an issue just the drives as the replacement Drobo is doing the same as the old one.

To give you some additional background. The original device had 5x3TB in June of last year. One of the drives failed Bay-1 and at the same time we were aware the whole array was almost at 100%. I replaced the failed drive with a new 6TB drive, waited for data to rebuild and then replaced the drive in Bay-0 with a 6TB drive. All data was verified and the device ran in situ for several months with several TB free.

Unfortunately the new 6TB drive in bay 1 failed completely. I tried to replace with a replacement 6TB but the device wouldn’t remain powered on. I tried several other 6TB drives with the same issue and suspected the Drobo device itself and sourced a replacement but as you can tell this was not the issue.

Not sure where to go from here, so any advice welcome.

So both Drobos appear not to be the issue.

Usually if 1 HDD has failed, an array can still be read, and data retrieved, but there would be no data protection. If you have not done already, reinsert your full array back into you preferred Drobo and restart. You may regain access to the data with 1 red and 4 green/yellow lights but the data would be accessible from the Drobo dashboard.

If that does not work, your only other recommendation is to have your bad drive commercially replicated before the replacement drive can be ‘read’ as part of the overall array.

Am trying that.

Currently Bay-1 with the failed drive is Red and the other flashing Green and Amber but data is visible and I am able to drag off before it shuts down after 2-3 minutes so it’s going to be a long job.

Thanks for your assistance.

It has now stopped restarting itself but is not detected by my laptop or Dashboard.
Bay lights all solid as follows
0 Green
1 Red
2 Green
3 Green
4 Amber

Can you give me some guidance as what to try next please.

Replace drives switch off at mains and restart?

I did manage to get 81gb off though

Here is the guide to the lights:

Perhaps look to connect your Drobo to another computer or laptop to check whether the data can be accessed? Other than that, as wild as it sounds I would again switch off and reformat your 2 spare HDDs, turn off, then reinsert the array again and restart. Its internal system may be a bit fried from the constant restarts.

Thanks, tried that and it’s the same.

I’ve found that it stays on for about 5 minutes which is long enough to begin recovering the data before it restarts. After about 10 restarts it just hangs so I switch off remove all drives and restart, shutdown, put drives back in and it’s back to the cycle etc.

On a further point, one of the other drives I’ve tested o=in another drobo now show “Warning, detected drive from another disk pack”. What can I do to “free” the drive for reuse in this array or just for storage without a Drobo?

Admin CMD prompt
List Disk
Select disk N (make sure you get the correct number)
(long wait)

Or grab DBAN

Others, basically any secure erase program.
Single pass is enough.

If I knew where on the disk the metadata got stored, I could suggest a faster method… basically you need to overwrite it with 0s or gibberish…