Drobo

Swapping out drives while not tethered to PC

I have a drive inserted in my 3rd gen DROBO that is SMR technology. because of this, neither my PC nor the dashnoard recognizes my DROBO (note it does recognize it when I don’t have any drives installed).
My question is, can I power up my DROBO and not have it connected to my PC and once the unit is powered on with all green solid lights swap out the drive in question or does it need to be tethered to my PC when doing so?

Should be safe, the only real involvement the PC & dashboard have in the process is reporting progress, though Drobos tend to go into sleep mode when not connected, so don’t be surprised if the lights pretty much go out once the rebuild completes.

Personally I’d probably have the thing plugged in, hopefully communication is restored once you have all conventional drives in it.

Ya, I’d like it to be plugged in too, but it makes my PC non responsive and it doesn’t even show the DROBO. Might just have to wait it out and plug it in over the coarse of a couple days (though I’m not sure how I’m gonna work lol…).

After 10 minutes of letting it sit with the drives in and just waiting, dashboard recognized my DROBO. I removed one of the drives in question and that light is NOT turning red (it’s been 7 minutes so far). Other 3 lights are flashing yellow/green (do not remove).

current status 3:16 pm PST. I inserted the new CMR drive and it took 10 minutes to discover it and start the rebuild. while this rebuild was in progress, the connection was lost. Dashboard no longer sees this DROBO and neither does my PC. The green connection light is currently off. All 4 lights are currently flashing green/yellow. I will have to let it rebuild for about 20 hours and make sure/hope my laptop does not restart or shut down ‘randomly’.
I am not sure if I remove the USB if it will shut off or not, so I will keep it plugged in (for now).

UPDATE*** 9:15pm PST I went to check on the rebuild and all the Drobo lights are off. Plugged the USB in and BAM! It shows up and the rebuild finished with all solid green lights. All my information is there and it seems to be running just fine. when I started my PC it did NOT snag one bit a quick ‘normal’ startup!
NOW… My dilemma is, do I replace the other SMR seagate Barracuda since it is working ok or not? Maybe the problem in the first place was that there were 2 SMR drives and that’s why it wasn’t working correctly? @cyber_beardy

Personally I’d for sure replace it, use it as an internal or external drive elsewhere.
Problem is enough sustained write to it it’s cache fills & it’ll effectively hang while it flushes it, that’s something you don’t want especially in a raid or pseudo-raid array, you risk not only the performance issues that might cause, but also your Drobo marking it failed (when there may be nothing actually wrong with it).

Frankly you’re lucky you made it through the rebuild without your Drobo kicking it out & marking it failed.

You might get away with keeping it in there, under light workloads & only small disk writes, but there’s a real risk once things fill up & if a different drive gets replaced (maybe because it fails) that that one gets marked as failed partway through a rebuild… At which point the entire rebuild fails & you lose everything stored on there.

Used as storage internal to a PC in most general use or gaming workloads, you’ll never know the difference between SMR & CMR, problems only show when writing huge files (think videos or similar) or using them in RAID.

TY @cyber_beardy! I replaced it that night after your post and so far, no problems.