With a traditional RAID system, you’re stuck with one capacity of drive and it’s a pretty good idea to make sure they’re the same make and model as well. You also need to buy all the drives you want to use for the RAID up front, whether you’re using the capacity immediately or not. With Drobo, however, those steps are not necessary. Using the Drobo Capacity Calculator, you can test all the configurations your Drobo can accommodate.
With Drobo, you can use any drive; it doesn’t matter what brand or capacity of the drives. You can have a Drobo 5D filled nice and neat with five matched 4TB drives, or a B1200i mismatched with all kinds of drives. You can even add new drives at any time. Drobo’s BeyondRAID™ technology creates a single virtualized shared storage pool for disk space. To test a virtual Drobo with the drive capacities, use the Capacity Calculator—which is easily accessible from any product page on the Drobo website.
While any pairing is possible, not all pairings are created equal. Let’s say you have a B1200i with 4 old 250GB drives and add a new 1TB drive; the 250GB drives will pair with the 1TB for redundancy, but the remaining space in the 1TB will be held for future expansion until another 1TB drive is added. To help you test this out and get the most out of your Drobo, we have the Capacity Calculator.
Unlike a traditional RAID that requires matched drives, Drobo lets you mix and match drives of any capacity. The Capacity Calculator helps you determine how particular pairings will affect your shared pool of storage. For more information on Drobo products, go to Drobo.com. You can also watch our YouTube video about the Capacity Calculator.