I’m a Mac programmer, and frustrated by the Drobo FS performance, today I wrote a simple but accurate test app on Mac which mimics some of the most common operations: writing, reading, listing, deleting. It also detects stalls. The Drobo FS was connected directly to a MacPro, and I have been using an AFP share over a 1000baseT full duplex connection.
When the time for an operation takes more than 3 times the average time (detected in the same test), we count that as “stalling”, and we measure how much time the device stopped responding. Writes and reads are all uncached (i.e. they are real requests to the Drobo, and the only cache used is the one inside the Drobo FS).
The tests were performed using a MacPro 8x2.66 with 16GB RAM in a folder in the Drobo FS Public share. The Drobo FS was 92% empty (300GB used on ~3.7TB available), and I had 4 drives installed: 2TB + 2TB + 1.0TB + 1.5TB.
For comparison, I also tested a remote AFP mount on an iMac, a SATA SSD drive, and an USB2 2TB drive.
Here’s the PDF chart:
I will be gentle and won’t comment results except the following two things:
- check stalls and the time needed to list and remove files.
-by analyzing the data you can see how the “absurd” transfer speeds you see for reading in the Drobo FS are due to the horrible performance of its inode/folder/whatever-they-call-it access system, not to transfer speed itself.