Data Robotics unveil new Drobo S and DroboElite backup systems

Data Robotics have doubled their range of so-called intelligent backup systems with the launch of two new models, the Drobo S and the DroboElite.  The Drobo S takes the original four-bay Drobo and adds in not only an extra drive bay but an eSATA port and enhanced FireWire 800 performance, meaning that the backup system now boasts hardware redundancy against up to two simultaneous hard-drive failures.  Meanwhile the DroboElite has a full eight drive bays and dual iSCSI ports and is, unsurprisingly, targeted at small and medium businesses who want 16TB or more of backup space.

The Drobo S also has a faster ARM processor than its Drobo predecessor (that will remain on sale alongside it) and overall Data Robotics are saying it's offering 150-percent the performance of that earlier model.  Storage is up to 10TB (depending on redundancy) and as before the system is self-healing and automatically sets itself up when you throw in a new drive (or replace an existing one).  However it's not compatible with the DroboShare network adapter.  The Drobo S is available now, priced at $799 sans-drives or up to $1,799 with five 2TB drives in place.

The DroboElite, meanwhile, drops the FireWire and USB 2.0 connectivity of the DroboPro in the pursuit of absolute speed.  Up to 255 Smart Volumes can be addressed, together with up to 16 simultaneous hosts, and a choice between single- or dual-drive redundancy (i.e. a choice between space or data safety).  The DroboElite will kick off at $3,499 sans-drives.

Press Release:


Drobo S Delivers High Performance Desktop Data Storage

SANTA CLARA, CA – November 23, 2009 – Data Robotics, Inc., the company that delivers the best data storage experience ever, today introduced Drobo S, a professional-class storage solution designed for Windows, Mac, and Linux users who require high-speed data transfers and reliable data storage. With the introduction of eSATA and a fifth drive bay, as well as enhancements to FireWire 800 throughput, the Drobo S offers 150 percent of the performance of the current four-bay Drobo, making it an ideal storage solution for creative professionals, small offices, and home office users.

Built on the company's award-winning BeyondRAID virtualized storage platform, which eliminates the lock-in of traditional RAID configurations, Drobo S features a one-click toggle between single- and dual-drive redundancy and provides protection against up to two concurrent drive failures. Drobo S supports on-the-fly capacity expansion along with the flexibility to replace failed drives, add drives, and swap out drives from disparate vendors and of varying sizes without ever losing access to data.

"Data Robotics' Drobo S is an important addition to the company's product line because it offers professional users a larger, faster, more reliable data storage solution with all of the automation and simplicity that Drobo fans are accustomed to," said Brian Babineau, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group. "Small offices and creative professionals generate large quantities of data that need to be kept secure for both short and long term storage. With its automatic capacity expansion and self-healing technology, Drobo S is an ideal way for customers to manage explosive data growth without becoming or hiring storage experts."

Drobo S Features and Benefits:

5-Drive Capacity and Instant Expansion to 10TB – Customers with growing storage requirements can easily add data capacity with minimal effort. To add capacity, customers simply insert a new hard drive or replace the smallest drive with a larger one, even when all five drive bays are full. With Drobo S, expansion is automatic and instantaneous, and access to data is always maintained.

Single- and Dual-Drive Redundancy – The Drobo S dual drive redundancy option protects against the simultaneous failure of up to two hard drives. Customers can engage this option with a single click without ever losing access to their data.

Self-Healing Technology – With BeyondRAID, the Drobo S continually examines data blocks and sectors on each drive to flag potential issues. The preemptive "scrubbing" helps ensure data is being written only to healthy drive areas and automatically keeps data in the safest state possible – even when a drive fails.

Interface Options – Users can take advantage of eSATA, FireWire 800, and USB 2.0 connections for ultimate flexibility.

"Drobo S represents our continued commitment to our customer base of professionals and small and home office users," said Dr. Geoff Barrall, CEO and founder of Data Robotics. "Significant performance enhancements, the addition of eSATA, increased capacity, and the flexibility of single- or dual-drive redundancy make the Drobo S an ideal solution for this increasingly sophisticated set of users."

Price and Availability Drobo S is currently available starting at a price of $799 MSRP, with multiple configurations to $1,799 for a 10TB (5x 2TB) solution. Drobo S is available now from authorized partners worldwide and on For a list of partners or to learn more about Drobo S, please visit

Press Release:


Fastest Drobo Ever, DroboElite, Brings BeyondRAID with Multi-host Support to SMBs

SANTA CLARA, CA – November 23, 2009 – Data Robotics, Inc., the company that delivers the best data storage experience ever, today announced DroboElite, the first iSCSI SAN storage that manages itself. DroboElite is a powerful and flexible business class data storage solution that brings Data Robotics' award-winning BeyondRAID technology to a broader range of small and medium businesses (SMBs). The fastest Drobo to date, DroboElite features a new hardware architecture that includes an enhanced processing engine and dual high-speed iSCSI interfaces for 150 percent of the performance of previous Drobo models. True multi-host support with LUN affinity allows small and medium businesses with limited IT resources to simplify management and reduce costs by consolidating storage across multiple servers.

"We've been using Data Robotics storage for several years because it is so simple to use and keeps our data safe. The new DroboElite solution takes Data Robotics' technology to the next level. It enables us to pool storage capacity across several servers and the Smart Volume technology makes it easy to efficiently provision, reclaim, and re-provision storage across our business environment," said Tarun Chachra, CTO at KSL Media.

DroboElite delivers automated capacity expansion and one-click single- or dual-drive redundancy for optimal data protection for Windows, Mac and Linux machines. The new system extends the number of Smart Volumes – Data Robotics' unique thin provisioning that pulls storage from a common pool of drives – so that users can now create up to 255 virtual storage volumes, making DroboElite an ideal solution for companies that require storage solutions that can scale with their infrastructure.

"As SMBs mature they typically deploy multiple servers in both virtualized and non-virtualized configurations, creating a need for storage that is easy to manage but has the flexibility to continually grow as the server mix becomes increasingly complex," said Benjamin S. Woo, vice president, enterprise storage systems, at industry analyst firm, IDC. "A unique thin provisioning approach like the Data Robotics' Smart Volume technology gives companies optimal use of their existing storage and allows IT managers to more effectively manage their entire IT network without wasting time and money on storage management."

DroboElite Features and Benefits

Multi-host Support – Companies with multiple servers can easily add or consolidate storage by connecting the DroboElite into their existing TCP/IP network and utilizing the industry-standard iSCSI protocol.

Fastest Throughput of any Drobo Solution – Enhancements such as multiple stream optimization and dual Gigabit Ethernet interfaces for high-speed iSCSI deliver best-in-class performance.

Tested VMware-ready Features – With dual iSCSI ports and the ability to create up to 255 Smart Volumes, DroboElite can support growing VMware environments and advanced functionality including VMotion, Storage VMotion, snapshots, and high availability.

8-Drive Capacity with Instant Capacity Expansion to 16TB and Beyond – DroboElite ensures continuous data access by automatically expanding data capacity and enabling IT managers to efficiently mix and match drive brands, capacities, and speeds.

Advanced Thin Provisioning – Smart Volumes allow companies to create new volumes in seconds and manage them over time by pulling storage from a common pool rather than a specific physical drive allocation. Smart Volumes are also file system aware which allows deleted data blocks to be immediately returned to the pool for future use.

Simplified Dual-Drive Redundancy – Companies are protected against the simultaneous failure of up to two hard drives without losing access to their data. With a single click, companies can switch back to single disk redundancy if capacity runs out without losing access to their data.

"Data Robotics' continued success is a testament to our providing the best data storage experience ever. Our products are exceedingly simple and straightforward to use while providing all of the features that SMBs need to keep their data safe and accessible," said Dr. Geoff Barrall, CEO and founder of Data Robotics. "We can deliver cost savings up to 90 percent compared to other iSCSI solutions by combining cost-effective hardware with robust iSCSI features. The new DroboElite takes our solutions to a significantly higher level of performance and supports our mission of bringing the benefits of BeyondRAID technology to a much greater range of businesses."

Price and Availability

DroboElite is currently available starting at a price of $3,499 MSRP, with multiple configurations to $5,899 for a 16TB (8x 2TB) solution. DroboElite is available now from select partners worldwide and on For a list of partners or to learn more about DroboElite, please visit