Introduced by the development team with Connected Data, Drobo, which is known as a direct attached storage (DAS) device, has been a popular form of external drive storage for quite some time. Now in its third generation, the newest line of Drobo devices has a brand new look, enhanced usability and increased functionality. Combine this with its streamlined profile of only five inches wide, just over six inches in height and less than 11 inches in depth, along with a total weight coming in at less than seven pounds without hard drives or the power supply, Drobo makes a nice addition to any multi-drive setup within the home or enterprise.
What is Drobo?
As mentioned, Drobo is a direct attached storage device that accommodates up to four separate 3.5" SATA II or III hard drives. With one USB port for connectivity, the Drobo offers up the storage space of numerous hard drives with only one connection to your PC.
While previous generations of Drobo left a lot to be desired in the areas of compatibility, user friendliness and performance, the professionals with Connected Data were able to implement numerous improvements in the third generation of their device. For starters, Drobo is now compatible with hard drives from any manufacturer and of any capacity. This alone provides a vast increase in the customizability of the device. Moreover, absolutely no tools are required for installation, which was a huge complaint amongst consumers regarding previous versions of Drobo. Finally, the third generation Drobo even features its own battery backup systems, which provides a safeguard against data corruption via sudden power interruption or failure.
Drobo has always featured RAID technology, and the new version of the device is no exception. With the user-friendly BeyondRAID protocol, consumers will be able to enjoy the benefits of redundant storage without having to bear a monotonous or cryptic interface. Moreover, the BeyondRAID technology even provides support for first and second generation Drobos, thereby allowing a user to simply transfer their disk pack from the older device. This provides an intuitive and seamless approach to upgrading to the newest version.
Smart Volume Technology
Another key feature of Drobo is its Smart Volume technology, which works to free up hard drive space whenever and wherever possible. Upon the deletion of data from the drive, Smart Volume immediately kicks in to return the free space back to a shared pool of common storage space. This, in effect, increases the available storage capacity of your drives.
In an effort to expand their customer base, the developers with Connected Data added increased support for operating systems and file systems within the third generation Drobo. Now fully compatible with Windows 7 as well as Windows 8, including both 32- and 64-bit versions, users will be able to choose which operating system works best for them with a Windows-based NTFS file structure. Mac users will find delight in support for Mac OS X 10.7 and above, which includes full support for the HFS+ file architecture.
The Drobo Gen 3 Direct Attached Storage Device
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