Drobo

All Lights Red... is it worth paying for one time support

I have a GEN2 drobo connected via firewire.
I had my drobo mount go offline during a rebuild, the disks were still flashing green-amber but no machine I plugged it into could mount the Drobo, so I powercycled it and now all drives are red.

I’ve followed the instructions in other threads about all red lights and the drobo appears to be functioning.

I’ve tried powercycling the drobo a number of times, pulling disks out and re-inserting them, drobo dashboard shows all 4 drives inserted but says that too many disks have been removed.

Is it worth spending the $99USD on a one time support. How likely that they would be able to get the device back in a state where I could at least read the data? or would it be a waste of money that I should be spending on a new array.

Should I even stay with drobo, because when problems like this occur all my data is locked up under proprietry Beyond Raid, and I can’t even investigate the state of the individual disks myself.

At a block level I can read each disk individually, does anyone know how files are split across the disks? Would something like Photorec (http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/PhotoRec) work on the individual disks?

any suggestion appreciated.

hi silicon, i saw your other post here too:
http://www.drobospace.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=145951

sometimes during a rebuild, a computer or dashboard can lose contact with the drobo on some occasions, though can i check if the lights were still flashing green/amber when you actually powercycled it?

also when you mentioned the drobo appears to be functioning (and just as a question here), did this include booting up empty?

here are a few possible ways foward to try:

  • you might be able to try disk warrior (which seems to fix a lot more problems on mac if you are on mac)

  • you could try using dashboard (if possible) to shutdown the drobo, and then to shut it down, and unplug the connection and power cables, and to wait 5 minutes, and then to power up the unconnected drobo on its own. (does it boot up and show the blue led sequence ultimately lighting up 1 through to 10 and then does the drobo go into standby mode?) if not, can you keep it powered for a coupe of hours to see if there is any change.

  • it maybe
    one other thing you could do would be to try putting the drobo into read only mode (if possible) as mentioned on this page: http://www.drobospace.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=143618 to see if it gets into a more stable state in case it lets you access the data again in read only.

apart from that, it may actually be worth trying a ticket, as a recent user had a success with a non-working drobo fs recently such as here http://www.drobospace.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=146311

The lights were still flashing amber-green when I power cycled the unit. I power cycled it because the mount had gone away. Actually the machine thought it was still there but every process trying to read and write to the disk hung and even sending the processes a -9 signal just caused that process to zombie. so I rebooted the machine and the drive did not show up.

I then plugged the drobo into a different machine and again it did not show. At this point I power cycled the Drobo. The machine is a headless server so unless absolutely required I don’t tend to look at drobo dashboard. Despite my repeated attempts at getting command line tools or details about how to write my own tools.

I can’t remember the exact light sequence, but it stopped at something like the 4th blue led, with a red ready led. I was able to get the drobo to complete it’s start up sequence by removing disks.

Currently the drobo presents a 2.2TB empty disk to the computer, this disk is completely unformatted (completely full of zeros) this is the default state of an unconfigured drobo. I remember having to tell it initially what filesystem I was using and I was then able to use 16TB. So no tool on the computer will be able to recover anything. I need to re-configure the drobo to make do with the disks it has.

I have not heard about read only mode, if this will allow the drobo to do the best with the disks it has then this might solve my problem, I could at least recover the data and then re-format the disks in the drobo. Or this recent experience with drobo support has left me wanting a more “open” solution I’m probably going to purchase a Synology and migrate all readable data to that.

I have opened a ticket with them but they refuse to perform any diagnosis without me purchasing a one time support.

It would make sense if one of the other disks has encountered an I/O error during the rebuild and the Drobo will not progress any further in it’s current state. However I’m not entirely sure which disk it might be without pulling each one out and performing a surface scan. My smallest disk is 3TB so I’m guessing it isn’t going to be quick finding which one.

It would be nice if it could provide some more diagnostics beyond “4 red leds”

Thanks for your time

Putting the Drobo in Read Only mode and rebooting results in the same problem, 4 red leds and dashboard saying too many drives removed.

Booting with no drives results in the Drobo coming up with a single red led in the first slot.

Don’t know if there are any more options.

thanks for more details and for trying that read only mode.

while its always possible that more than 1 drive could have encountered a hard drive problem during the rebuild, (in which case a cloning process might be able to allow it to continue rebuilding), as mentioned on a large case with yerry here: http://www.drobospace.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=144867
though i do also honestly think that powercycling while it was rebuilding (multiple times), and then swapping disks around definitely would not help.

i think at the end of the day, if you have data on it that you feel is important, or at least worth the same or more than the support ticket (in terms of hours to get it there or recreate some of it etc) then it probably actually is worth trying the paid ticket in case it helps you. (alternatively, i think buying another drobo also lets you make a ticket, for migration assistance, though am not sure if it covers recovery aspects - though there might be more inclination to assist further if you did get another unit as well for mutual acts of good will, and nothing is lost by asking or mentioning that)