Detected "new unformatted volume"

After adding larger drives to an original 4 bay Drobo a warning message popped up my WinXP PC on start-up stating:

[i]"Drobo has detected a new unformatted volume. Would you like to format the new volume?

“[Note: Any existing volumes will remain unchanged during this process.]”[/i]

Whilst its worrying that formatting usually overwrites existing information, in this case formatting retains all the existing information and formats only the additional drive space added, making it available for use. Under normal circumstances this sort of warning wouldn’t show - only - because WinXP can only work with 2TB Volumes means that the additional drives need to be formatted as an additional volume.

After formatting and choosing a designated drive letter for the new volume, the additional space becomes available for use on the Drobo volume without any drive letter switching neccessary to access it.

I should have been less worried and paid more attention to:
“[Note: Any existing volumes will remain unchanged during this process.]”

Yes. There is an initial bit of confusion about that. The difference in Volume size availabilities depending on the OS version of the user, and the manner in which Drobo allocates additional HD space outside of the initial volume size.
Good luck.


Just a note - it would be better if you were clearer about your terminology. At no point were you formatting the additional drives - in fact you dont have any form of access to the underlying drive at all. And you werent formatting “the additional space” either - again: you have no access to how the drobo lay’s the blocks out on disk.

You added larger DRIVES to your drobo. to take advantage of this additional space, drobo had to make another VOLUME

It was this new volume which you formatted, and obviously this does not affect existing volumes (in the same way that when you format a USB stick plugged into your computer - it wont be wiping your system drive either - you only ever format the volume in question)

Just want to say, I’m having the same issue. It thinks it sees an unformatted volume that is 16TB and wants to format it. If I select to format it, it says it wants to create an additional volume with a different drive letter. Maybe the Drobo dashboard needs better language to describe what is happening, instead of indicating that after the format operation, I will have 2 16TB volumes each with it’s own drive letter.

Now, I did not format, because I know what it thinks is impossible. There are 2 x 6TB drives, and 3 x 4TB drives, total space 24TB. How does one get 2 16TB volumes with redundancy out of that?

Please explain.

Also, yes I’m “necroing” this thread because it’s the top hit on bing, which I hope in your zeal to enforce forum rules, you can appreciate (yes, you, that guy that always comes in and just has to point out that I replied to a 3 year old thread). Again, top hit on bing for me, with the search term: drobo detects unformatted volume

first, stop searching with bing

second… what you “know” …is wrong, and your drobo is right

I’m afraid you have totally missed the point of thin provisioning

you could create a hundred 16 TB volumes on a single 1TB disk - you could still only store 1TB across all of those 1,600TB of formatted volumes

the “volume” is like the index to a book… it could say that the book is 1000 pages long… but it doenst mean that all 1000 pages are there right now…

if you only have 10 pages… having a huge volume / index just means you can add more pages easily later … (just like you can easily add more disks to drobo without changing your volume)

when you format a volume… you only create the index to store that much data, you don’t actually need to have that much space available right now

so you can EASILY format two 16TB volumes on 24TB of physical disks