Drobo Announces Automated Data-Aware Tiering with “No IT Required”

Industry-first technology allows small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to easily and affordably utilize solid state drives (SSD)

SAN JOSE, CA – April 26, 2012 – Drobo, makers of award-winning data storage products for businesses and professionals, today announced general availability of its new Automated Data-Aware Tiering technology. The industry-first advance combines Drobo’s ease-of-use and automation with the power of solid state drives (SSDs) and data tiering to allow SMB customers to immediately and dynamically optimize their application performance—without the need for extensive technical expertise or budgets that are required for traditional high-end data tiering with SSD solutions. This new functionality is now available on the flagship Drobo B1200i storage system.

“Drobo has raised the bar once again,” remarked Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst at the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG). “They didn’t invent RAID, they just automated it and made it easy and affordable for everyone. They didn’t invent thin provisioning and reclamation, but every Drobo has it built-in. And they didn’t invent data tiering, but they have certainly taken it to a whole new level and market with this announcement today. Small business owners should all put Drobo on their wish list, because Drobo is delivering super-sophisticated storage in a very easy and affordable way.”

The new advancement allows SSDs to co-exist with hard drives (HDDs) in a single system, allowing customers to enjoy a single pool of automated storage that has both capacity (from HDDs) and performance (from SSDs).

Drobo’s Automated Data-Aware Tiering also provides automatic performance acceleration and optimization across all of a business’s applications – from VMware to Microsoft Exchange, SQL, SharePoint, Hyper-V and other business-critical applications – without the need to configure SSDs, tune applications or manage dedicated storage for multiple applications. It significantly advances and exceeds other traditional, enterprise data tiering approaches in the following ways:

  • Fully Automated. Like all Drobo advances, Automated Data-Aware Tiering requires literally zero configuration to deliver results. Customers simply insert two or three SSDs into their B1200i to realize the performance acceleration from the SSDs while maintaining the capacity of HDDs. Other approaches require manual configuration and provisioning of the SSDs, provisioning of multiple storage RAID groups or pools, and complex configuration of applications with respect to specific storage volumes.
  • Immediate. Once the SSDs are inserted into a Drobo B1200i, performance acceleration happens automatically within minutes. Other approaches require data to be placed initially on slower bulk tiers, and then possibly migrated to a faster tier only after days or weeks of empirical evidence.
  • Dynamic and Adaptable. Because Drobo’s data tiering is data-aware and application-independent, it dynamically adapts to changes in application sets and workloads. As applications or patterns change, Drobo’s data tiering adjusts accordingly to optimize performance, without manual intervention. Traditional approaches often require specific application re-configuration, or the costly and complex addition of new SSD pools dedicated to new applications.
  • Affordability. Drobo offers Automated Data-Aware Tiering on the B1200i system that includes 18TB of hard drives and 600GB of industry-leading SSD storage for a $17,999 MSRP. Traditional storage solutions with similar capabilities range in price from $50,000 upward.

Smart storage that grows with you and protects what matters.