Drobo

Windows 7, Dashboard 1.6.0 and Drobo standby problems summary

Hi

dmbfan36_23 has reported strange Drobo behaviour under Windows 7 in the http://www.drobospace.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=456 thread (“deep” standby with orange LED while the OS is running). First I thought it doesn’t apply to me but after some checks on my system (Windows 7 x64 with most recent patches, Drobo connected via FW400), I’ve found the following:
Update: It looks that dmbfan36_23’s problem was completely unrelated to my findings, but here they are anyway, still valid:

  • When not running Dashboard, the Drobo is affected by the “Turn hard disks off after…” setting in Windows 7 Power Management options. It causes the Drobo to enter “orange” standby mode and, what’s worse, if the Drobo manages to spin the drives down before that happens (the default setting in W7 is 20 mins), it will actually spin the drives up just to turn them back off a moment later, after entering standby. We can force this behaviour off by setting “never” in appropriate Windows option.

  • Drobo Dashboard versions prior to 1.6.0 seemed to prevent this from happening (either intentionally or not) by constantly polling some volume info, while still letting the drives to spin down (LED still green, blue bar lit, and so on) after some 16 minutes or so of no real data transfer.

  • Drobo Dashboard version 1.6.0 does prevent “orange mode” too, but in a such way that also prevents the drives from spining down at all. DroboDashboard.exe and DDservice.exe processes are doing some queries every 1.5 second or so which is even visible by blinking Access LED.

Some technical info about the Dashboard queries, if someone still has previous Dashboard version and is curious enough to check with Process Monitor (www.sysinternals.com) which of them old Dashboard is not issuing:

DroboDashboard.exe:
QueryFullSizeInformationVolume

DDservice.exe:
QuerySizeInformationVolume (this one doesn’t seem to be an issue as the skype.exe is throwing that too every 310 seconds; reasons unknown)
QueryNameInformationFile
QueryInformationVolume
QueryAttributeInformationVolume

Regards
Zbig

Yeah - my problems started a couple weeks ago before 1.6.0 was even out.