Newbie Help...HD Bad and Format question

I just bought the Drobo 2nd gen and Droboshare package. I installed two new WD Caviar Green 2TB HDDs. I upgraded the Dashboard software and the firmware. I have them connected via USB 2.0. I also connected the Drobo to my Mac Mini via a Firewire 800 to 400 (old Mac Mini). Everything is working thus far.

I then shut everything down and connected my three Seagate 1.5 TB Freeagent HDDs via FireWire 800 to Drobo (chained).

So far so good. I have 365 GB on one of my Seagates I’m trying to move to drobo (family movies). I dragged them to the drobo and it worked for 15 minutes moving files. Then suddenly it stopped and said that one of my new WD harddrives was bad, and prompted me to replace it.

I’m doubting that it is bad. Is there a way I can test it? Did I try to copy too much? Is there a problem daisy chaining the Seagates to Drobo?


I had a brand new WD get marked bad when I first installed it in my brand new Drobo. I RMA’d the drive, and the replacement drive has worked fine ever since. There has been some discussion on the forums that Drobo is more sensitive to flaws/defects/small failures on individual HDs that are installed in it than are other devices, so it may mark a drive bad that would pass muster in something else. But in my experience, Drobo works really well, and although I was surprised that it marked a brand new drive bad, it has worked without complaint since I replaced that drive. (That was about 10 months ago.)

you can test it by putting it into a pc / mac and running the manufacturers disk testing tools on it = but they will probably “Pass” it.

you did not try to copy too much.

there should be no problem daisy chaining drives, thats what the port is there for

drobo is VERY cautious (which is probably a good thing) and at the first sign of trouble it will start “failing” a drive.

take a diagnostics file from the drobo and send it to DRI and they will tell you why drobo thinks the drive failed - you can then use that to get it replaced.

and you would be surprised how many drives are bad right from the outset - i just6 had a 2tb hitachi that woudlnt even spin up properly - directly out of the sealed anti-static bag!

Is your Drobo on a DroboShare?

Or you have your drobo connected via FW to your Mac Mini then have the other drives daisy chained from the 2nd FW port?

My new Drobo flagged 2 of my 1.5TB Samsung drives as bad within a few weeks of using them. Luckily it was a few days apart so I was able to rebuild before the other drive was flagged. It is cool that Drobo is so cautious… but annoying to keep RMA’ing drives.

Does anyone know what happens if a Drobo flags 2 drives as bad before a rebuild? Can it limp along with a bad drive until you get a chance to replace 1, rebuild, replace the other, etc?

I have talked to some storage experts… they say to build RAID storage out of dissimilar drives from various brands, various lot numbers, etc. IE… do not buy 4 drives all at once from one mfg or reseller… that is a recipe for a mult-drive failure / RAID killer.

The Drobo cannot protect your data against a dual disk failure.

The Pro, Elite and Drobo S can if you have selected Dual Disk Redundancy.

Do you have the Drobo connected to both the Mac and the DroboShare?

Only Firewire or USB should be connected to a Drobo, you shouldn’t have both connected simultaneously.