Drobo 5 D keeps on flashing yellow/green

Hello,

My Drobo 5D keeps on flashing the yellow/green lights-now for 12 days. The blue light is only 1 on.
I disconnected it from the Mac and it flashes on its own.
What happen: I had to replace the No 5 drive. I removed it and all lights showed solid green and only the bottom (empty bay) solid red. So I inserted a new drive and then all lights started to flash yellow/green. But they don’t stop! For 12 days 24 h. And they do not show up on the dashboard at all when I connect them again to the Mac.
What would be the best way to get that back to work?

Thank you for any advice!

Dorian

Hello there!

Blinking green/yellow usually means that “data protection” (reorganizing the data on your drives to use a newly inserted drive) is in progress.

How big was the new drive you inserted into slot 5? I don’t know if a 5D is slower than a 5N2, but my 5N2 took well over 10 days to perform data protection when I replaced a drive with an 18TB drive. I understand that with direct attached Drobo units, the connection to the Drobo could be a little choppy when data protection is in progress.

I would maybe wait a few more days to see if it finishes.

Otherwise, you could try to turn it off and back on. I was always scared to interrupt a data protection cycle, but I recently needed to do it and it resumed after starting up again. You could also try to put the device in RO mode to make sure your data is still on your 4 drives (it will be unprotected until the new drive in slot 5 can be initialized into the array).

Regards,

Dom

Hi Dom,

thank you for your quick reply. All Drives are 4 Tb. Since you mention it, I remember by mistake the Drobo is in RO mode. That might be helpful now or could that be the problem that it keeps on flashing? Now I could not change it because the Drobo does not show up on the Dashboard.

Best,

Dorian

RO is Read Only.
Unless that is changed, your Drobo won’t do anything else.

Does that mean it will not distribute the date if it is in Read Only Mode?
If that is the case, how will I be able to change it back to Read and Write Mode if the Drobo does not show up on the Dashboard?

Dorian

As @TwinTiger said, if your Drobo is in RO mode, it cannot rebuild its array and complete the data protection cycle. You will need to remove it from RO mode and allow it to complete the data protection.

Here is a post I made some time ago detailing how to get into and out of RO mode:

Good luck!

Regards,

Dom

Hi Dom,

thank you for your suggestion, unfortunately that is only possible when the Drobo shows up in the Dashboard.

slowly I can pinpoint the problems:

the drive lights were flashing yellow/green for more than 10 days.
I was able to find the reason: the Drobo was set to READ ONLY. I switched off the Drobo and then on again. What I got was all Drive lights Solid Red again.
But the Drobo showed up on the Dashboard.
So I set it back to READ AND WRITE MODE.
What I got was the same I had been sending you for weeks now: Rebooting, Yellow Lights flashing or Solid and so on.
This way I was back to Square one.
Then I removed all drives and inserted the new (empty) one only.
What I got was Drive one green Light and next Bay red (of course, because it was empty)
But…Drobo showed up on the Dashboard. So I changed it again to READ ONLY Mode again.
Switched off and inserted all the drives except the last empty one.
All 4 Drives showed solid Green Light and the bottom Red because the drive was removed.
(see Photo)
The Drobo even showed up as icon on my desktop.
But…… when I click on it, it opens up but empty and it says loading and the disk is spinning. But that is all.
The Problem is, if I insert the empty Drive now where it shows Solid Red, it will start flashing yellow/green until I switch it off because it is still in READ ONLY Mode.
(BTW ALL Blue Lights are on)

I have to find a solution otherwise I will only go in circles.
Now the key question is: How can I change the READ ONLY Mode to READ and WRITE without the Drobo showing on the Dashboard and without switching off the Drobo?
In the Information Drobo shows as Read and Write.

Thank you.

Best

Dorian

Just checking: is your new or are any of existing 4TB drives SMR drives?
Drobo only correctly recognises CMR drives, hence the question.

I would not know where to find which Drive they are. The Drives 1-4 are in for quite some time, only the Drive 5 is new, All are HGST 4 TB.

If you pull out the drives, you can check the model number and google it to see if it is SMR or CMR.

You can also check the “Product ID” from Dashboard (if/when it is accessible) to see the model of your drive:

Regards,

Dom

I must be missing something…
not even the Data Sheets of the Hitachi Drive show if they are CMR or SMR.
I found one note; it says all HGST before 2019 were CMR drives.
Not sure about the last one.

But I could install a drive I have bought before 2019

Best

Dorian

If your HDDs are branded as HGST, then there is every likelihood that they are CMR. HGST (originally IBMs HDDs) was taken over by Western Digital in 2015 and they were allowed to rename this HDD line as UltraStar - their Enterprise offering - after 2017. This is all well before the emergence of SMR drives.

So at least one thing can be ruled out.

I am going in circles…
if in RO Mode, I get all solid Green except Drive Bay 5 which is Red because I removed it, when I will insert it, it will flash Yellow Green for ever. And it does not show up on the Dashboard, so I can not change it anymore to Read an Write. Sometimes it showed up on the Desktop and when I clicked I got an empty screen and saying: Loading with the spinning for ever.
When I switch of and on again, I get all lights solid Red, the drive shows in the dashboard and when I change to Read and Write it keeps on rebooting for ever.
Now I removed all drives and only inserted the new empty drive in the first Bay. All lights show Red solid, not even the first shows Green, it says Drives have been removed, insert them again. So it keeps it in Memory. I wonder if it would help that I reset to Factory condition?
Also there is an update-would that do any changes? I m not so keep on updae, because I will not be able to use this Drobo on my old Mac Pro anymore.

Best

Dorian

I’m going to assume that during a period of calm you have created an external copy of your data from your Drobo. If that is the case, then I would opt for a full factory reset of your Drobo by turning off your Drobo, removing your disks and then putting with a spare pair of HDDs in the array (small capacity best) and resetting the unit. Assuming that results in your Drobo rebooting and being accessible on your desktop, shut down the Drobo, remove the disks and substitute back in your original array. The best outcome is that it immediately reads your array, that you can read/write and you are therefore back in business. The less desirable option is that your array is visible and accessible but is not reporting any data - so using your external back-up, repopulate your Drobo with your data.

I wish this would be the case! No, I have no Backup of my 12+ TB files.