Best Practices for Adding Space

I have a Gen3 with 4 drives @ 3TB each. I’m going to need to upgrade in the next few months. Looking at the calculator, I can’t gain space by plugging in a 6TB drive. I’m going to have to add two 6TB drives.

  1. What is the best practice for doing this without losing data? Oh yes, and I want to keep the drive in production during the upgrade.

  2. How do I know the rebuild is done on the first drive?

  3. Do I need to shut down after the first drive finishes before I take the second one out?

  4. Should I remove the drive while the unit is on and running, or shut it down and then change the drive?


hi randy, if the calculator shows that, it is probably because the size of one of your largest drives, is essentually used for SDR protection. If you are using DDR mode though, then i believe you would actually gain the most space by using 3. (you could still use just a couple of 6TBs and say a 4tb for ddr, but some of it would be reserved for expansion)

for 1)
honestly the best practice for any device (drobo or not) is to backup your data before any upgrades, or updates etc.

1b) usually good to update the firmware and dashboard and to reboot the drobo and computer at least once after these, to ensure all is still working fine and that the drobo and dashboard show all is ok, and with no blinking lights).

aside from that, and if you still would like to keep your drobo hooked up to a running computer during the upgrade that should be ok (i have upgraded or replaced drives in this way several times)

if any of your existing drives had a warning, then you could remove one of those
and then once the drobo and dashboard have recognised that the drive is removed
to then insert your new drive and to see 2) below.

  1. the dashboard and drobo should recogonise the new drives (usually only after a few moments but please give it time).
    and then it should ideally start a rebuild process with flashing yellow and green lights.
    The rebuild process usually takes about 1 day per 1TB of data that you have on the drobo, but it might need a bit more, especially if the comptuer is still accessing it from time to time etc.

2a) if the drobo shows a blinking red light for the new drive, and remaines in this state, then it may not like that 6tb drive for some reason.
2b) in some rarer cases, the computer or dashboard, (may) lose connection with the drobo for a short while, during the rebuild. (i think this has usually been when some drives were actually having errors for example)

  1. no, but i would let the drobo settle down for at least an hour after the 1st successful rebuild.
    3b) if all is still ok, then you can do something similar for the 2nd drive upgrade. :slight_smile:

  2. the usual process i use is to remove a drive while the unit is on, and to put in the new blank drive while the unit is on.
    (there can be some specific cases to do otherwise, but i wouldnt usually do that myself)

hope this helps randy and sorry for longish post :slight_smile: