Have you ever wanted to access a file on your Drobo when you are away from home, or share photos of your kids with your relatives? Or host your own blog?
Accessing files and services on your Drobo remotely used to be tricky. Almost all networks are protected by a firewall, which allows you to make connections out of the network to the Internet (for example, browsing to a website), but heavily restricts incoming traffic. This prevents your network being attacked, but also means that a service, such as a blog hosted on your Drobo also can’t be accessed remotely.
You would need to manually open a hole in your firewall to allow access to the service you want to export, which is a reasonably tricky process. Like me, you might have multiple firewalls to get through! Once you’ve opened up your firewall, you can access your Drobo using an IP address. If you wanted to have a nice friendly web address to use, you need to buy a web domain, and associate it with the Drobo. Finally, if you want fully encrypted end-to-end access using the HTTPS protocol, you need to buy and deploy an SSL Certificate, which helps validate your traffic is going to the website you think its going to. Its quite the process!
Drobo has recently launched the myDrobo and DroboAccess services for the Drobo 5N and Drobo B810n which provide a simple and easy to configure solution for accessing files (using DroboAccess) and other services (such as the Koken photo gallery DroboApp and the WordPress blogging DroboApp) remotely and securely with a customer chosen mydrobo.com address.
The myDrobo DroboApp provides a secured access pipe to your Drobo. It lets you choose your own web address (<yourchoiceofname>.mydrobo.com) for each of the services you wish to host on your Drobo, and procures, installs and manages SSL certificates to enable end-to-end encryption (via the HTTPS protocol) to your Drobo. It uses a relay service to allow access to your Drobo safely, eliminating the complexities associated with firewall hole punching.
Using myDrobo is as simple as installing the DroboApp, and chosing the domain name you wish to use for each of the services you want to make available. myDrobo takes care of all the rest.
DroboAccess is a companion to myDrobo, and it provides remote access to your files, either via a web browser, or via the DroboAccess iOS and Android mobile apps. It lets you access your files remotely. You can easily provide links to files and folders to share with your friends, and those links can be password protected or have an expiration date if you require. You can also share the file or folder with another DroboAccess user. You can upload files to your Drobo too.
From the mobile apps, you can view PDF files, Word and Excel docs, and view photos.
DroboAccess integrates with the existing user accounts and shares on your Drobo – so you can login with your regular username and password, and access the same files you can at home.
In addition to DroboAccess, the Koken photo gallery DroboApp, and the WordPress blogging DroboApp can be shared remotely using myDrobo.
By: Jason O’Broin
Jason is the Director of Software Engineering at Drobo and is responsible for all software development. Jason was one of the original engineers at Drobo and has over 25 years of experience in storage, networking and operating systems development gained at Wind River and Madge Networks. He is originally from the UK and gained his Master in Computing Science from the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne.