The World’s First 64TB NAS With Data-Aware Tiering
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Built on proven BeyondRAIDTM technology, coupled with hybrid storage and innovative Data Aware Tiering, the Drobo B810n delivers a level of automation and technical sophistication usually reserved for more expensive enterprise solutions. And, this product is as easy to use as a personal Drobo.
The Drobo B810n is perfect for small and medium sized businesses, and creative power users. It provides reliable, high-performance,and self-optimising storage for server applications, email, and data protection. It integrates seamlessly into a TCP/IP network infrastructure and utilises the industry-standard SMB and AFP protocols to provide powerful, yet simple, consolidated storage for your IT environment. It comes with port bonding support also known as Adaptive Link Bonding for link failover and link aggregation without Ethernet switch support to increase data throughput and compensate for network connection problems.
The B810n is a fusion of large and fast. It can grow up to 64TB presenting itself as a single large pool of storage. If you add two SSDs, it accelerates access to commonly used “hot” data. Ideal for a network of up to 100 users, the Drobo B810 can store and share files. Use it as your primary storage for important files and documents OR as a place to backup files, projects, or even complete computers on the network.
A Drobo B810n NAS storage array can hold up to 48TB of physical raw storage based on today’s 6TB HDDs. When available, higher capacity drives will lift that limit to 64TBs.
To expand the storage capacity of an array, BeyondRAID enables additional disk drives to be inserted into empty drive bays. These new drives are automatically and transparently configured for use in the array without user intervention. However, if all drive bays are occupied, simply replace the smallest capacity drive with a higher capacity one and BeyondRAID will do the rest.
Unlike traditional RAID arrays, the BeyondRAID technology in Drobo enables different drive capacities to work in the same unit. This enables future expansion as larger SATA drives become available. With Drobo, access to data is always maintained while it protects against simultaneous drive failures.
The Problem B810n Solves
All other NAS systems have this problem: when multiple users are accessing it overall performance goes down. This is because simultaneous user requests induce the hard drives recording mechanism to move around the disk. The drive spends more time looking for data blocks than it does reading or writing data for users.
SSD Accelerated Performance
The B810n was designed to provide all users uniform performance. Add two SSDs and you can accelerate performance for all simultaneous users. New technology uses two techniques to accelerate access to your data:
- Data Tiering: as transactional data (small pieces of data) is read or written it is placed in SSD storage. Subsequent reads or writes to these blocks are almost instantaneous as there is no delay induced by a hard drive’s magnetic head having to move into position. Active, or “hot” data, is stored in an SSD tier of storage. As it cools, i.e. access decreases, the B810n will move the data to the hard drive tier.
- Hot Data Cache: this is a technique to accelerate data reads. As data is read from hard drives, the B810n will prefetch nearby data that it predicts will be also be read. Your benefit is faster access and less waiting.
Dual Ethernet Ports: Bond Together, or Failover
The B810n has dual Gigabit Ethernet ports. This can be bonded together to provide approximately twice the read/write performance you get via a single port. Or they can be used to provide connect to two different subnets. Or they can be used in an “active/passive” mode so that if one port fails the other takes over.
Share Files With OS X, Windows, or Linux Users
Don’t worry about compatibility — Drobo B810n works with computers running OS X, Windows, or Linux operating systems. By default, Drobo B810n uses the SMB file sharing protocol to talk to OS X or Windows. If you set up a share for Time Machine backup, it uses Apple’s AFP protocol. Linux users pick which file sharing method to use on their system.
Drobo DR: Offsite Data Replication Built-in
The B810n has a feature called “Drobo DR” (DR = disaster recovery). You can set up a pair of B810ns to automatically make an offsite copy of your data. This provides an easy to setup offsite backup of your important data. Even better, the remote B810n stores all user account information so that recovery is a breeze.
Optimized for Time Machine
One or more Macs on a network can use Drobo B810n for storing their Time Machine backups. Create a separate shares for use by Time Machine and assign them a maximum size. This lets users control how much space Time Machine uses, and stop it from taking over all storage on its backup target.
Protecting Your Critical Data from Power Loss
Drobo protects your data from loss in the event of a sudden power outage. This protects directory structures ensuring Drobo will remount on you computer. Drobo has a battery inside that powers RAM memory. When their is a power outage, data is stored on internal flash-based nonvolatile storage. Your data is safe until power returns. The battery recharges itself and lasts for the life of the product.
The myDrobo platform provides end-to-end secure access to services on your Drobo from the public internet, through a user chosen mydrobo.com address. It enables services such as DroboAccess, Koken and WordPress to be accessed remotely in a secure fashion.
Other Drobo Apps are embedded applications that extend the capabilities of the Drobo 5N. Partnering with strategic application vendors and solution providers (e.g. Elephant Drive & Plex), Drobo now offers enhanced features that augment user data interaction. Drobo Apps are designed to be simple to install and configure – just like a Drobo! Installation is performed from within Drobo Dashboard, and all applications are fully supported by Drobo and our technology partners.
Our world-class DroboCare support offers powerful protection for all Drobo products. Whether you depend on Drobo for your photo collection or critical business data, our trained professionals are available around the clock to help. In addition to extending technical phone support, DroboCare offers a wide array of benefits over our standard warranty including migration assistance, expedited hardware and rescue kits to ensure you get everything you need, when you need it.
What's BeyondRAID? Storage without limitations.
BeyondRAID technology, built into every Drobo, delivers all of the benefits of traditional RAID, while providing much more and leaving many of the limitations behind. This next-generation of redundant storage technology brings together enhanced protection, reliability, expandability, and ease-of-use.
Drobos, based on BeyondRAID, interact with computing systems in the same manner as storage arrays using traditional RAID, so installing a Drobo allows you to maintain your current operating system and file system. This eliminates the challenges and costs when moving to a new storage technology.
Problems with Traditional RAID
Developed in the 1980s, RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks) was designed to pool disk drives together for increased capacity and reliability for data storage. It has been preventing single disk drive failures causing data loss, and has been used in almost every enterprise data center for decades.
While reliable, the complexity of RAID is a huge challenge for small businesses and consumers. RAID has a high learning curve with many options, levels, and unfamiliar terminology like striping, mirroring, and parity.
There are several primary challenges with traditional RAID:
- Lock-in of RAID Levels
To change RAID levels, most storage arrays require the data to be moved off, reconfigured, and then moved back on. If you want to move to RAID 6 from RAID 5 for protection against two drive failures, you need to reinitialise and start over. This process could take days to complete.
- Lack of Expandability
Once drives are configured into a RAID pool, expandability is impossible unless you have a lot of time, or experience. If you want to add more storage capacity, the solution is to create a new RAID pool, leaving you with another chunk of storage to manage – or you can just reinitialise and start over.
- Drive Failures Create Big Risks
When a drive fails, most RAID implementations enter a state where data loss will occur if another drive falters before the user replaces the failed drive. Also, performance is hampered when in this debilitated state.
Moving Beyond RAID
Drobo's BeyondRAID technology solves the fundamental issues that traditional RAID can't. Built on the foundation of traditional RAID, BeyondRAID adds a layer of virtualisation that chooses the correct protection algorithm based on data availability needs at any given moment. Since the technology works at the block level, it can write blocks of data that alternate between RAID protection levels.
If you need to add storage capacity to a Drobo, simply insert additional disk drives or replace the smallest disks with larger ones – no need to change RAID levels, purchase a new storage array, or go through the complex administration of pooling RAID groups.
The BeyondRAID feature can even switch from single to dual disk redundancy with just the click of your mouse through Drobo Dashboard. This ensures enterprise-level dual parity data protection, when needed. If a drive happens to fail, Drobo will automatically re-layout the data to the remaining drives, returning it to a protected state with no user interaction.
|Available Features||RAID 1||RAID 5||RAID 6||Everyone Else with RAID||BeyondRAID|
|Supports Two Drives|
|Supports Three Drives|
|Support Four Drives or More|
|Single Disk Redundancy|
|Dual Disk Redundancy||1|
|Mixed Drive Utilisation|
|Mixed Drive Utilisation|
|Automatic Protection Levels|
|Virtual Hot Spare|
* Some vendors (e.g. Synology) offer some options, though they require manual choices / configuration.
1 Available with 5-bay or Larger Drobos
2 Available with iSCSI-capable Drobos
Thin Provisioning is a fundamental capability of BeyondRAID, allowing for infinite capacity expansion by just replacing a drive with a larger one.
Instant Expansion occurs when a new, or larger, drive is inserted without any disruption in service.
Drobo's volumes are Smart Volumes, pulling needed storage from a common pool and then returning deleted blocks back to the common pool, preventing free space from being tied up by any particular server.
Mixed Drive Utilisation allows you to insert any drive, of any size, or any type, and Drobo will optimally use it - check out our interactive Capacity Calculator.
Automatic Protection Levels ensures the best algorithm is used to protect from drive failure depending on the number of drives that are inserted, without any user configuration. There is no need to learn about RAID levels or what mirroring or striping is.
Dual Disk Redundancy enhances BeyondRAID protection by guarding from multiple drive failures in a short period of time. Even if two drives fail, BeyondRAID will attempt to use the remaining drives to return to a protected state.
Virtual Hot Spare utilises all drives at all time with no drives sitting idle waiting for one to fail. With some traditional RAID systems, a drive can be marked as a "hot spare", waiting on standby for a drive failure so it can take over. That's just a unutilised drive that you have to pay for taking up a valuable drive bay.
Drobos are Data Aware, intelligently handling data for added resiliency, performance, and management. Being Data Aware allows the Drobo to have a capacity gauge on the front, quickly recover in the event of a drive failure, enable intelligent tiering of data, and much more.
Drive Re-ordering allows Drobo disk packs to be moved to another Drobo, and even re-ordered, while still functioning - try that with RAID.
How BeyondRAID Works
Now that we've looked at how BeyondRAID compares with traditional RAID and the value that it brings, let's see how BeyondRAID works.
The sections of the RAID stack are drastically reinvented in a Drobo—and it all has to
do with how drives are pooled (disk pack) and the way data is stored (BeyondRAID virtualisation).
Thin Provisioning with Smart Volumes
Our volumes are just smarter. Thin provisioning through Drobo's Smart Volumes provides on-demand allocation of storage providing maximised capacity utilisation. Smart Volumes are a virtual volume architecture that pull needed storage, on-demand, from a common pool (thin provisioning) and then return any deleted blocks back to the common pool (thin reclamation), allocating these newly available blocks to free space immediately available for new data.
Space allocation is automatically managed, maximising storage resources. For example, if a large file on a volume is deleted, the free space of the Drobo gets larger. The freed up space is then available to other volumes. Our Volumes are Smart, even enterprise-class arrays with thin provisioning do not return consumed storage back to a common pool at this granular level.
How do small and medium business (SMB) IT administrators effectively use solid state drives (SSDs) to accelerate their applications? They can't. Either the array is too expensive or the drives must be in their own pool and separate from the rest of the data. Data must be sent manually to the fast volume (SSD) or to the normal volume.
How can the IT administrator figure out what data is transactional in nature, that is, what data should be sent to the fast volume? To make things even more confusing and complicated, data can have mixed characteristics. But to get the most out of expensive SSDs, the solution must be intelligent and fully automatic—the data just needs to go to the right place automatically.
A Drobo is a single pool of drives by design. The user does not need to think about pooling drives or creating RAID groups. Also, drives of different sizes and types can be used in a Drobo. These advanced technologies make Drobos ideal for allowing SSDs and hard disk drives (HDDs) to work together optimally in the same chassis – automatically!
To enable use of drives of different sizes, the Drobo virtualisation layer (see BeyondRAID section) sits on top of the physical drives. Because Drobos are data aware, data is placed intelligently in the best place on the drives. With the introduction of SSD support in the Drobo B1200i, SSDs provide a faster tier of storage for data that is transactional in nature, the type of data that benefits from the faster write and access speeds SSDs provide.
With the introduction of SSD support in the Drobo B1200i, SSDs provide a faster tier of storage for data that is transactional in nature, the type of data that benefits from the faster write and access speeds SSDs provide. As data enters the Drobo, if it is transactional, then the data is written to the "transactional" tier comprised of SSDs. If the data is a sequential stream, it is written to the “bulk tier” comprised of hard disk drives (HDDs). Unlike enterprise arrays with auto-tiering, transactional data goes directly to SSDs, which ensures that BOTH writes AND reads are optimised.
Being Data Aware
As data enters the Drobo, if it is transactional, then the data is written to the faster tier of SSDs. Unlike enterprise arrays with auto-tiering, transactional data goes directly to SSDs, which ensures that BOTH writes AND reads are optimised.
As data is being written to the Drobo, transactional data (shown in red) is written
to the faster tier and other data is written to the bulk tier.
Drobo's tiering functionality allows you to store any type of data on the Drobo and the data that can be optimised by SSDs is automatically optimised in flight. This means that all data—mixed data types from 10 or more VMs in a vSphere cluster, Exchange databases/datastores, backup data, or files on a file server—automatically goes to the right place.
One Pool, Multiple Tiers
As detailed in the BeyondRAID section, a Drobo is a single pool of drives. Whether you put three drives or 12 drives in a Drobo, they are all part of the same disk pack.
Two tiers of storage automatically configured in the same Drobo disk pack.
Whether you have 8 HDDs and 2 SSDs or 9 HDDs and 3 SSDs, they will be utilised appropriately without any upfront setup. All the administrator has to do is put the drives in the Drobo.
Fully Automated Tuning
After data is written to storage, data patterns often change. Sometimes a large amount of data is written to storage and not read for weeks or even months. On the other hand, it is not uncommon for a small amount of data to be written and accessed very frequently.
With Drobo's automated tiering, optimisation of data doesn't stop when the data reaches a transactional or bulk storage tier. As the stored data is being read off the Drobo, the data is patterned and optimised in the background. Data that becomes hot will be moved to the transactional tier and visa versa. If data on the bulk tier is frequently read and begins to look more like transactional data, it will be migrated to the transactional tier. If data on the transactional tier becomes "cold" with very few or no read requests, it will be migrated to the bulk tier. These migrations occur in the background when the storage is not under high load and do not require any administrative interaction.
When data becomes "cold" it is migrated to the bulk tier.
When data becomes "hot" it is migrated to the transactional tier.
Tiering Without SSDs
Even when a Drobo doesn't contain SSDs, Drobo still puts its automatic tiering feature to work. Without SSDs, the advantage of tiering is to eliminate the write penalty when parity data is created.
As discussed in the BeyondRAID section, a Drobo can automatically have zones of different types. Even when all HDDs in the Drobo are the same, Drobo lays out zones differently on the transactional tier than it does on the bulk tier.
Drobo creates different zone types on transactional and bulk tiers
to tune the storage appropriately for hot and cold data.
For example, mirror zones are more optimised for writes and stripes are more optimised for capacity. Leveraging BeyondRAID technology, zones are automatically created and altered on the fly to optimise the Drobo for the type of data you store on it.
Just Add SSDs … Really!
If your Drobo contains only HDDs, but if your applications need even more performance, all you have to do is introduce SSDs to the Drobo. The SSDs then become the transactional tier and all of the HDDs are delegated to the bulk tier. The only administrative task is to insert new drives into the Drobo.
All Drobos have carrier-less drive insertion. This means there are no special parts or screws that have to be added to the drives before they are inserted. It's like inserting a cassette tape into a video recorder.
Drobo model B810n is designed to be rack mounted, but it is also compact and quiet, making it ideal for workgroup environments that need storage located in an office or on a desk.
Even the faceplate is magnetic, with the manual is on the back. Primary management is by using status lights and visual capacity gauge.
And, all Drobos look good too!
Most modern storage arrays aggregate disks and prevent against single drive failures using a 20-year-old technology called RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks). While RAID has served many businesses well, it requires up-front knowledge of its functionality and has many shortcomings. BeyondRAID technology built into every Drobo addresses these shortcomings and makes virtualising disk drives usable by everyone. BeyondRAID provides these enhancements over traditional RAID:
- Thin Provisioning as a fundamental capability allows for infinite capacity expansion by just replacing a drive with a larger one
- Instant Expansion occurs when a new, or larger, drive is inserted without any disruption in service
- Mixed Drive Utilisation allows you to insert any drive, of any size, or any type, and Drobo will optimally use it - check out our interactive Capacity Calculator
- Automatic Protection Levels ensures the best algorithm is used to protect from drive failure depending on the number of drives that are inserted without any user configuration
- Dual Disk Redundancy enhances BeyondRAID protection by guarding from multiple drive failures
- Virtual Hot Spare utilises all drives at all time - no drives sitting idle waiting for one to fail
- Drobos are Data Aware, intelligently handling data for added resiliency, performance, and management
- Drive Re-ordering allows Drobo disk packs to be moved to another Drobo, and even re-ordered, while still functioning - try that with RAID
All File Sharing Drobos support the installation of Drobo Apps - applications that enhance the functionality of your Drobo on your network. Drobo Apps are community created and run on the Linux-based operating system embedded in Drobo.
Drobo Apps range from media servers to web server to network utilities. What you can do with Drobo Apps is endless.
Drobo Dashboard Management
Drobo Dashboard is an easy-to-use administration tool to centrally manage all your Drobos. It displays the status of all of your Drobos as if they were right in front of you. In fact, it provides the same status lights and storage capacity usage gauge that are on the front panel of each of your Drobos. So wherever you are, you can check the health of all your disk drives and know that Drobo has your back, keeping all your data safe. Plus the dashboard handles all administration tasks simply and easily without you needing to become a storage expert. Quite simply, this is the easiest way to configure and manage business-class storage
Learn more about Drobo Dashboard.
Hybrid Storage & Tiering
The Drobo B810n moves beyond manually tuning an array for applications that have different storage requirements. Its ability to automatically tier frequently used transactional data from stored data that’s seldom used enables businesses to consolidate storage resources, and share that storage across all connected clients and their applications.
When using the hybrid storage option, Drobo’s Data Aware Tiering leverages high-capacity hard disk drives (HDDs) for bulk storage, and highperformance solid state drives (SSDs) for both read and write acceleration. The result is fast redundant storage with a fast read cache for an application-optimised solution that requires no manual tuning.
Drobo B810n storage pool has increased as disk drive suppliers have grown the capacity of their Enterprise quality SATA drives. This Drobo supports a storage pool of 64TBs.
Optimised for Business
Similar to business applications, Drobo is ideal for building a highly scalable networked storage system or fast backup target. Drobo technology is often used with many well-known backup products including Acronis, Apple Time Machine, and Symantec Backup Exec 15.
Designed for Hosting and Delivering Large Video Files
This 2nd generation 8-Bay Drobo is perfect for security surveillance applications as well as hosting large amounts of video contained in a library. In fact, users that want to manipulate and render large video files will have no problem. The reason is that this Drobo is based on a quad-core Marvell processor with 2GB of RAM and it uses a highly tuned Linux operating system giving it a five times performance boost over its already fast predecessor, the Drobo B800fs
Mixed Drive Capacity Utilisation
Grow storage in line with data capacity needs with minimal effort. To add capacity, customers can simply insert a new hard disk or replace the smallest disk with a larger one, even when all eight disk bays are full.
Unlike traditional RAID systems, the BeyondRAID technology enables IT managers to efficiently mix n' match disk brands, capacities and speeds. This allows for continuous expansion as disk capacities grow. Now, expansion is automatic, instantaneous and access to data is always maintained.
To find out exactly how much free capacity you'll have with your choice of disk capacities, try out our interactive Capacity Calculator.
Drobo can ensure your data is safe even if a hard disk fails. You'll feel safer knowing that if disks do fail, Drobo automatically enters a state of self-healing wherein it relays out your data across the remaining healthy disks and sectors.
Proportional Rebuild Times
The time it takes Drobo to rebuild data after a drive failure or removal is proportional to the amount of data stored in the pool — meaning the less capacity that is used, even on a 2TB disk, the shorter your rebuild times will be. This is superior to traditional RAID, which lacks proportional rebuild times, and is forced relay out every drive block even if it does not contain user data.
Since Drobo is "Data Aware", it tracks where data is on each disk, so it can differentiate between used and unused portions of disk. This expedites rebuild times and reduces your risk of losing data to an additional disk failure. In short, your data is safer on a Drobo.
When Drobo detects a "bad" hard disk, it proactively advises you with a series of warnings ranging from a blinking red LED on its front panel, to pop-up alerts in Drobo Dashboard, to email alerts. What Drobo does next is exceptional. It enters a self-healing mode where it repairs around the bad sector or disk, and will work until it returns to the safest state possible. If Drobo has sufficient time and free capacity (indicated by all lights returning to a solid green state), it can even withstand additional hard disk failures — that's the power of self-healing.
BeyondRAID was designed from the ground up to allow the storage capacity of the array to expand and contract. BeyondRAID makes this a simple process by utilising a technology called "virtualisation." Virtualisation provides a layer of abstraction between the data requested by the file system and the physical location of that data on the disk drives. A given piece of data can be located on any drive, and on any physical location on that drive. This is what makes adding a drive to a Drobo so simple. The new drive just provides additional places to store data.
Virtualisation is what enables BeyondRAID to effortlessly change the data arrangement on the drives, for example, changing data stored as a mirror into data stored as parity stripe, say, without interrupting the user access to data. Virtualisation completely decouples the physical space available in the array from the space reported to the operating system. This is how BeyondRAID is able to remove the need to manually expand/contract the file system as more space becomes available or is removed.
Drobo is highly automated storage. There are no complex configuration screens, DIP switches, confounding choices, web consoles or other complications that prevent so many other storage devices from working out of the box.
One long-standing requirement inherent in traditional RAID-based systems was that if for some reason you needed to remove the drives, you'd have to replace the drives in the exact same order. When you remove your disks from Drobo, you can put them back in any order you like.
Battery Backup Protects Your Critical Data from Power Loss
Drobo protects your data from loss in the event of a sudden power outage. This protects directory structures ensuring Drobo will remount on you computer. Drobo has a battery inside that powers RAM memory. When there is a power outage, data is stored on internal flash-based nonvolatile storage. Your data is safe until power returns.
Drobo products are engineered to the highest standards, but occasionally something goes wrong and that’s when we kick into high gear. DroboCare is simple, powerful protection for your Drobo storage. The DroboCare support program extends your peace of mind beyond the standard warranty term and the phone support included with your Drobo purchase. DroboCare gives you more, even during your standard warranty period.
|Drives and Expansion||
|Operating System Support||
|Additional Software Features||
|Power and Cooling||
Sample Light Indicators Diagram
Use these interactive tools to estimate the amount of data storage available to fit your needs.
Drag drives and place them into the slots. To remove one from a slot just click on it.
This tool is for approximating the space utilisation with various mixed disk configurations. Actual disk sizes can vary between vendors, and values calculated may differ slightly from actual results. Please refer to Drobo Dashboard for precise data calculations for storage installed in your Drobo.
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- Pricing and product availability subject to change without notice.