Drobo

Real help

I am a Drobo FS owner (dissatisfied at that) that has searched and read for answers to my problems. Things like Non functioning Drobo share, very very slow to load a folder in Finder, constantly losing Dashboard. I don’t think I have yet to see any real answer to the problems we have.
I have sent numerous request for help to the support people and waited for days and days for someone to answer my calls for help.
Is the Drobo FS a white elephant??? Why can’t Drobo come up with useful answers?

I can give you just one advice: stop using the Drobo Dashboard. The current version (1.8.x) is a terrible, finicky, unreliable piece of software.

To access the shares on the DroboFS I just use the normal share-mounting capabilities of my machine operating system (e.g., CMD+K on Mac, Network Neighborhood on Windows, etc). It is just so much more reliable.

I’d have to agree - avoid the Drobo Dashboard once the FS is set up (create your shares, enable DroboApps, and then be done with it). Best thing you can do is avoid that thing.

If you’re having problems mounting the Drobo shares in the Finder, then that’s more serious. Performance… well, that depends on many factors - your local network, equipment, IP settings, and protocol. For instance, my network and Drobo normally hum along at an okay 20MB/sec write and 30MB/sec read - until I try to copy a custom icon over an AFP connection. Then performance dies because behind the scenes, netatalkd is managing databases of metadata that seem to be a chokepoint. What I’m getting at is performance is very difficult to properly measure. The Drobo could certainly stand to perform better over large, sustained transfers - the competition certainly shows that - but there are a lot of edge cases where performance is just poor. How often you hit these is likely to significantly influence your opinion of the Drobo.

That said, DRI’s support of the product is pretty bad - although phone support is excellent, you only get that for ninety days. After that, this forum is pretty much all you get, with as far as I can tell only one person from DRI monitoring it and responding. Most responses are classic level 1 support of “file a ticket”, “upgrade firmware”, etc. Not a knock, but it is what it is. Firmware updates are infrequent, and not well-documented. For instance, the January DroboFS firmware update evidently fixed my “Drobo hangs during boot” issue - but there’s nothing to indicate that in the release notes. And DroboApps are a mess that I’m just not going to get into (again).

Their support is just crap as far as I am concerned. Submit a request then wait 3 days for a 1 line email asking a few questions. Then nothing again for days. Just bullsh*t.

If you’re in the introductory period where you get phone support, use it. They’re actually quite excellent, in stark contrast to the rest of their support.