Drobo 5N won't boot up, I hear a faint beeping sound

One of my Drobo 5N units will no longer boot up. I get no lights, no booting sequence, nothing whatsoever from it when it’s plugged in other than a faint beeping sound. The on/off button does nothing anymore.

I tried the power supply from my other 5N, which works fine, and I get the same response from this one: nothing except a faint beeping sound, which stops as soon as I unplug it. So I know it’s not the external power supply.

Is it the internal power supply? Has something else gone bad with it? Anyone know what steps I should take to try and troubleshoot it? It’s out of warranty, I’m out of the country, so let’s just say my options are limited. I can definitely open it up, as a matter of fact I already did, and I cleaned it up (it was dusty), but it’s still a no go.

Is it bricked for good? Any pertinent suggestions are welcome.

hi raoul - sorry that your recent post was about a problem.
i think you were the first guy i started asking questions to on your main website years ago, plus also doc chris and others here, when i was first thinking about getting a drobo. now i have a gen1, a gen2, a drobo-s(gen2) and a 5d and droboshare :slight_smile:

would you be able to try the following?

  • to power all down (and to unplug all computer and power cables from drobo)
  • to remove all drives (remembering the order)
  • to plug in just the power and to try turning in on.
    (what does the drobo do or show in terms of colours, and also what does the power supply itself show?)

as far as i know, if the drobo is ok, it should light up and then go into standby mode
(and then if so, it should then wake up when connected to a computer which is already running, and then appear in dashboard shortly after).

if you can please try this to see what happens, but please remember NOT to put your drives back in unless the drobo is fully OFF and unplugged from power.[hr]
also - if dashboard can at least see it, then you may be able to obtain some diagnostics logs from it, and recently there is a pay-pay-view ticket system for some support even for customers who are no longer in support which might help too.[hr]
if it is a power support problem, then this page may help you too:

Hi Paul,

I’m glad to hear I was of help to you in the past! Isn’t it funny how the internet is so big and yet so small at the same time? Who’d have thought we’d run into each other again?

I did what you suggested and it’s a no go once more. It’s something internal. The Drobo does nothing. There’s that faint beeping sound again, no lights anywhere on it, and the green light on the power brick itself turns off when I plug it into the Drobo.

I checked that KB article too, it’s not a power supply issue. As I said, I have two Drobo 5N units, one of which is working just fine, I switched the power supplies between them and still had the same issue with this one.

I may have to try the paid support option. I’m not thrilled about giving Data Robotics money, because I lost a huge amount of data when two of my Drobos went bad a couple of years ago (anywhere between 20000-30000 photographs, many home videos, precious files and documents… all stuff that I’ll never get back).

Thanks for your help though!

thanks for more info raoul, and yes big & small place indeed :slight_smile:

for your drobo though, there may be something good to come out of this… in the sense that if your problematic 5n is the main hardware unit itself (assuming that both power supplies still power on the working 5n), then this might mean that your disk pack of drives from the problematic 5n is still ok.

there is a way to test this, though i would like to recommend that you make a backup of the data on your working 5n first, to play safe before trying this next test please, (especially if you do not already have a backup of its data)…
there is also a recommended process in terms of disk pack migration (including taking backups & updating firmware) which can be found here:

once you have backups though, and if we say one is working and one is broken, then the process would essentially be this:

  • to use dashboard to safely shutdown all drobos on your computer

  • to power off all 5n drobos, (the working one and broken one)

  • to unplug all cables from the 5n drobos (power/computer connections)
    (to also unplug any other drobos you may have too)

  • to restart the computer (without any drobos attached)

  • to remove all drives from the working 5n drobo (remembering the ordering of the disk pack drives)

  • to remove all drives from the broken 5n drobo (remembering the ordering of the disk pack drives)

  • to insert the disk pack drives of the broken 5n drobo, into the working 5n drobo while power is still OFF

  • to then power up the working drobo (where it will hopefully go through the bootup sequence with flashing blue leds, and then ultimately go into standby mode)

  • to then connect it to the computer (where it will hopefully wake up shortly after, and then shortly become recognised by dashboard - along with your volumes and data?)

if this works for you, then while it would mean that you would still probably have a broken 5n chassis, at least your existing disk pack and data would still be ok, and you could maybe get another 5n chassis for use with your disk pack.

important info:
all diskpacks should only be removed as a group while power is all OFF and only be inserted as a group while power is all OFF, though if you do end up getting a replacement unit and would like to double check some steps before swapping anything please always feel free to post back and we can try and assist.

hopefully this can help you a bit but please let us know how things go raoul.

Hello Raoulpop,
Would you email us directly at followup@drobo.com so we may assist.

Thank You.


What was the result of this? I am now facing the exact same situation with my Drobo FS.


I too am in the same situation. Did you find a resolution? Did you switch disc packs? My biggest concern is knowing what the firmware version was on my dead unit before trying to migrate the pack to the new unit as the migration instructions state to be sure the firmware on both units is the same.

just flash the new unit to the newest firmware?

I’m also pretty sure that if you use a new diskpack with an old firwmare, it will simply produce and error and wont harm your data - that is what happens on the DAS versions,it just tells you that the disk pack is incompatible