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Thread started 01 Jun 2013 (Saturday) 03:43
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Anyone here have a Drobo Mini?

 
lsquare
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Jun 01, 2013 03:43 |  #1

I just read about this product today and it really fascinates me. When I'm out on the run, I want to have as much storage as possible with redundancy, but in a portable package. AFAIK, there is no other product like the Drobo Mini. Unfortunately this thing is expensive and even more so if filled with 2.5" 1TB hard drives. Anyone here have any experience with the Drobo Mini? I think a MacBook Air and the Drobo Mini makes for a compelling travel package. Any suggestions for a hard case for the Drobo Mini?




  
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P51Mstg
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Jun 01, 2013 06:50 |  #2

Put in a Pelican case.... Thats where I keep the external drives when I'm traveling....

Drobo Mini? Never saw one. $650 with no disks? Wow, I'd get a pair of very small USB hard drives and take them instead. Copy onto one, back up onto the other and then put one in a plastic bag and put it in your pocket.

BTW, that drive is about as big as a MAC Book Air.....

Mark H


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lsquare
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Jun 01, 2013 07:00 |  #3

P51Mstg wrote in post #15988490 (external link)
Put in a Pelican case.... Thats where I keep the external drives when I'm traveling....

Drobo Mini? Never saw one. $650 with no disks? Wow, I'd get a pair of very small USB hard drives and take them instead. Copy onto one, back up onto the other and then put one in a plastic bag and put it in your pocket.

BTW, that drive is about as big as a MAC Book Air.....

Mark H

Really? It doesn't look that big! It's expensive, but you do get data redundancy on the go...




  
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TheAnt
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Jun 01, 2013 07:22 |  #4

I own a Drobo Mini.

1. Yes, it is $650 with no disks; but that's how all Drobo devices are, there are some that are up to $16,000 without disks. Drobo is not just about redundancy, their Beyond RAID technology is fantastic. The amount of customization you can do with Read/Write is astonishing. Also, the Drobo Dashboard app is great, it allows you complete control of the array with an easy to use UI that almost anyone can figure out, even if they have no experience with a computer.

2. Compared to having two drives, the BIGGEST perk of ANY Drobo is hot-swappable drives. If one goes down, you won't lose your data and you can pop the drive out and throw another one right in and it automatically writes the data to it, assuming you have the array set up as Write-Duplicate. It is a lot more convenient than carrying two drives around, I've currently got 3 LaCie D2's sitting around and now this Drobo.

3. It's a fast little thing. Faster than my three LaCie D2's, and that's only using USB2.0 as well. I've got 750GB 7500RPM drives in mine. If I could afford to replace my 5 year old computer with something with Thunderbolt, this thing would smoke.

5. It is NOT as big as a MacBook Air. This thing is TINY. It's 1.5 inches high, 7.5 inches wide, and 7 inches deep. Half the size of a MacBook Air. It is made small for ease of transportation. When I bring my video rig on shoots with me, I'm able to fit my entire camera rig, including shoulder mount, 13" MacBook, Drobo Mini, iPad, and almost ALL of my camera accessories in one backpack.

6. This was the smartest tech purchase I have EVER made.


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P51Mstg
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Jun 01, 2013 07:48 as a reply to  @ TheAnt's post |  #5

Real world here.... (not picking on the OP either)

How often do you lose a hard drive? I bought my first 20 MEG drive in 1983. I've lost one since then... I probably have at least 100 in the house now (Lots of NAS Drives). Since 1983 I've had 2 fail. One was in the 1980s. The other was early 2000s.... Probably owned at least 200 hard drives. So thats 1% (and the first was on a very old drive)...

Data redundancy.... Good idea... One photog told us at a seminar that as soon as he copied his card onto his computer he burned a CD, because if something happened to his computer, his photos were gone.... DUDE, they are still on the CF cards.. Thats a copy there. There is time to back them up... BTW, when you get a new CD or DVD or BLURAY drive make sure it will read the old disks you made before you toss the old drive out.

Drobo.... You are out on the road and the DROBO MINI BOX breaks.... What are you going to do? The hard drives inside are not readable by anything but a DROBO MINI. You need to get another one to get at the data. To me, if you get one Drobo Mini, you need 2 just in case. Every external drive I have, has another identical one to clone it onto or use to install the drives should the first one break...

Simple solutions are best. Copy onto a single external hard drive and clone the files (allwaysync is a good one to use) to another drive.

But then if you want Drobo and can't live with anything else, buy one. See what Scott Kelby has to say about them (one broke and left him high and dry)...

Tell us how it works... Seems like THE ANT is happy. Maybe I'm wrong....

Mark H


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lsquare
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Jun 01, 2013 08:21 |  #6

TheAnt wrote in post #15988527 (external link)
I own a Drobo Mini.

1. Yes, it is $650 with no disks; but that's how all Drobo devices are, there are some that are up to $16,000 without disks. Drobo is not just about redundancy, their Beyond RAID technology is fantastic. The amount of customization you can do with Read/Write is astonishing. Also, the Drobo Dashboard app is great, it allows you complete control of the array with an easy to use UI that almost anyone can figure out, even if they have no experience with a computer.

2. Compared to having two drives, the BIGGEST perk of ANY Drobo is hot-swappable drives. If one goes down, you won't lose your data and you can pop the drive out and throw another one right in and it automatically writes the data to it, assuming you have the array set up as Write-Duplicate. It is a lot more convenient than carrying two drives around, I've currently got 3 LaCie D2's sitting around and now this Drobo.

3. It's a fast little thing. Faster than my three LaCie D2's, and that's only using USB2.0 as well. I've got 750GB 7500RPM drives in mine. If I could afford to replace my 5 year old computer with something with Thunderbolt, this thing would smoke.

5. It is NOT as big as a MacBook Air. This thing is TINY. It's 1.5 inches high, 7.5 inches wide, and 7 inches deep. Half the size of a MacBook Air. It is made small for ease of transportation. When I bring my video rig on shoots with me, I'm able to fit my entire camera rig, including shoulder mount, 13" MacBook, Drobo Mini, iPad, and almost ALL of my camera accessories in one backpack.

6. This was the smartest tech purchase I have EVER made.

How secure is the Drobo Mini? I read that it's designed for mobility, but what kind of safety mechanisms does Drobo employ to ensure the drives that are connected are well protected? Do you store it in some sort of hard case to further protect your unit?




  
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lsquare
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Jun 01, 2013 08:25 |  #7

P51Mstg wrote in post #15988559 (external link)
Real world here.... (not picking on the OP either)

How often do you lose a hard drive? I bought my first 20 MEG drive in 1983. I've lost one since then... I probably have at least 100 in the house now (Lots of NAS Drives). Since 1983 I've had 2 fail. One was in the 1980s. The other was early 2000s.... Probably owned at least 200 hard drives. So thats 1% (and the first was on a very old drive)...

Data redundancy.... Good idea... One photog told us at a seminar that as soon as he copied his card onto his computer he burned a CD, because if something happened to his computer, his photos were gone.... DUDE, they are still on the CF cards.. Thats a copy there. There is time to back them up... BTW, when you get a new CD or DVD or BLURAY drive make sure it will read the old disks you made before you toss the old drive out.

Drobo.... You are out on the road and the DROBO MINI BOX breaks.... What are you going to do? The hard drives inside are not readable by anything but a DROBO MINI. You need to get another one to get at the data. To me, if you get one Drobo Mini, you need 2 just in case. Every external drive I have, has another identical one to clone it onto or use to install the drives should the first one break...

Simple solutions are best. Copy onto a single external hard drive and clone the files (allwaysync is a good one to use) to another drive.

But then if you want Drobo and can't live with anything else, buy one. See what Scott Kelby has to say about them (one broke and left him high and dry)...

Tell us how it works... Seems like THE ANT is happy. Maybe I'm wrong....

Mark H

I haven't used a laptop with an optical drive since my second year in university (more than half a decade ago).

I've never lost a hard drive before. They're usually stored inside the suitcase in my hotel room or my relatives' place when I travel. I'm more worried about hard drive failures than my hard drives going missing. The problem is that you're looking at this from the angle of a short multi-week trip where storage space may not be an issue. How about backpacking trips or multi-month trips where storage space will be an issue if you're out shooting all day? About 5 years ago, I went on an 8 month trip around Asia and Australia. IIRC, I had about 3TB worth of data by the time I came home. At the time, the Drobo Mini didn't exist, and I had more than 5 2.5" hard drives with me and my ultraportable laptop.




  
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TheAnt
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Jun 02, 2013 16:15 |  #8

lsquare wrote in post #15988616 (external link)
How secure is the Drobo Mini? I read that it's designed for mobility, but what kind of safety mechanisms does Drobo employ to ensure the drives that are connected are well protected? Do you store it in some sort of hard case to further protect your unit?

It's pretty secure. The enclosure is beefy.

As for protection and safety mechanisms, I'm not learned enough on Drobo to answer. And as for travel, not really, my bags are usually stationary, never leave my possession, so I have complete control of it.


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minhi
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Jun 02, 2013 22:09 |  #9

Wow, I'm surprised at how lucky some folks are, I have not had a lot of drives go bad, maybe 4-5 in 20 years, but it does happen. I just had a 500gb drive go bad on me, it was only 5 years old, though a few of those were in an htpc.

the drobp mini does seem expensive, but that's ignoring the automation, sure you can simulate the same thing by bringing two drives and copying to both, but the drrobo is doing this automatically, which if you're in the middle of a job, it's one less thing to track, if you're on a job I can see how this would be worth it.


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Petersman
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Jun 03, 2013 14:07 |  #10

P51Mstg wrote in post #15988559 (external link)
Drobo.... You are out on the road and the DROBO MINI BOX breaks.... What are you going to do? The hard drives inside are not readable by anything but a DROBO MINI.

That pretty much sums it up .

Drobo is proprietary Raid-like technology, while the proprietary part completely deafeats the purpose of using (comparable) Raid arrays in the first place .
Each his own , and kudos to Drobo's marketing department .

As for protecting harddrives from mechanical damage , there are two ways :

- don't drop it .
- if you have to drop it, turn it off first .

The casing makes not much of a difference, if any .




  
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Jun 03, 2013 14:49 |  #11

Drobo is over priced by far IMHO.

Use RAID 1. for redundancy. Any one of the RAID 1 drives can be plugged into a PC and the data recovered. No special hard ware needed.

I do recommend drive mirroring (RAID 1) as hard drives do go bad, and often, you woudl like to keep working.


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lsquare
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Jun 04, 2013 03:14 |  #12

CyberDyneSystems wrote in post #15995693 (external link)
Drobo is over priced by far IMHO.

Use RAID 1. for redundancy. Any one of the RAID 1 drives can be plugged into a PC and the data recovered. No special hard ware needed.

I do recommend drive mirroring (RAID 1) as hard drives do go bad, and often, you woudl like to keep working.

Are you aware of any other portable RAID 1 configuration?




  
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P51Mstg
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Jun 04, 2013 06:16 as a reply to  @ lsquare's post |  #13

Sure.. BUy 2 identical drives and manually mirror one onto the other. Use ALLWAYSYNCH software or one of the others that do that...

There... RAID 1 and you can read them without anything special

Mark H


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NManuel01
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Jun 04, 2013 09:35 as a reply to  @ P51Mstg's post |  #14

Not cheaper by any means, but you did mention the MacBook Air. If I had to I'd go this route.

http://eshop.macsales.​com …SSD/OWC/Aura_Pr​o_Air_2011 (external link)


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Petersman
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Jun 04, 2013 11:39 |  #15

lsquare wrote in post #15997661 (external link)
Are you aware of any other portable RAID 1 configuration?

There are quite a few , here is one (external link) .

'Portable' harddrive usually means bus powered, I wouldn't count on that with dual drive enclosures .

If you mean small, any enclosure for two 2.5" drives should work fine with software Raid .

Or get single drives, as said above, same thing, only you need more cables .




  
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