Drobo 5D Fail questions

Hi Everyone,
I seem to be having a problem with my 5D. A couple of months ago it started making a kind of rattling noise and I had drobocare so after sending videos and diagnostic files they sent me a replacement one. That one lasted about a week or so and it started ejecting a drive by itself and rebooting, much like other users have complained here. That Drobo went back and is hopefully being fixed or replaced.
Running macOS Monterey and latest firmware/dashboard
My questions are:

  1. When it comes to migrating to an 8D… Does it say that you cannot migrate back from 8D to 5D because of bay numbers? or if I connect my 5 drives to an 8D and then I run into issues can I again put those 5 into a 5D?
  2. If 1 drive was reported critical after all those drobo restarts, is it better to pop in the 4 healthy ones and a new drive or pop in the original 5 and let it rebuild?
  3. since Monterey is giving warnings about drobo dashboard not working in future updates, is it better to try this on macOS Big Sur?
  4. Can I connect this drobo to a PC and still read my data or does it format to a macOS only format?


  1. Officially, the migration page shows that you can move from a 5D to an 8D, but not the other way around:
  1. I would pop in the original 5 drives, let Drobo Dashboard tell you a drive is bad, then, with the Drobo powered on, remove the bad drive and replace it with a new drive. Let it rebuild.

  2. I don’t use Mac, so I’ll let someone else answer/ :slight_smile:

  3. Same as above.

I hope that helps!



I’ll add some Mac answers then:

  1. The Drobo Dashboard works on Monterey so it will be suitable for a user transition from Drobo 5D to a Drobo 8D. The warning is really targeted at Drobo as a company ahead of the next OS release to get their act together early.

  2. It depends how you formatted your Drobo array originally - if it is HFS or HFS+ they are not compatible natively with a PC. There are some 3rd party Windows/PC translator programs than can read Apple-formatted disks but they are not really useful for higher end data transfers and may only offer read only options.

Dom: Thanks!
I still think the 8D to 5D is because of the number of drives, so if 5 drives are all there it is should work. As for popping in drives I think you are right, I’ll let it figure out what it needs under a watchful eye before I insert new drives… maybe there’s nothing wrong with the drive that was reported as having an issue.

TwinTiger: thank you as well. I think something broke with an update… There’s too many user complaining about the same issue at once. And I don’t think it is every drobo. There must be something in common with the ones that have an issue. I didn’t have any problems with my original one when it comes to disks being ejected randomly and I didn’t do any updates in between switching Drobos. as for answer 4, I think you are right… I was just hoping there was a way out without connecting it to a Mac.

Hope to see more users answering same questions to see what they think

thanks again

So I ended up buying a used 5D on Ebay and it works, but I did take a bunch or precautions to make sure the eject issue doesn’t happen again. It finished the data protection and now that I replaced the drive, I got all green lights and currently copying data to another drive. Went with a Thunderflex 8 RAID10