Drobo embraces Thunderbolt, releases Drobo Mini

Bot Mini, Drobo 5D support data tiering with SSDs

By , Computerworld |  Storage, Thunderbolt

"I back up because if I look at the Olympics and what I do, I'm capturing history," he said. "I have every digital image I've ever shot on my current Drobo. Sometimes I shoot 9,000 images a day."

While none of Cable's three MacBook Pros are Thunderbolt-equipped, he is looking to the future when he'll also be using the interconnect that has up to 10 times the bandwidth of today's USB 2.0 protocol.

His current Drobo has three 2TB drives and one SSD, which he uses as a cache for his OS and applications.

"I'm hoping will buy new MacBook pro and tower," Cable said. "I use the SSD now to get as much throughput as can, so using USB 2.0 to backup is just painful. If you're shooting 90GB a day, it's brutal trying to back it up."

Rob Enderle, principal analyst for The Enderle Group, said that he's never seen a storage array as portable and scalable as the Drobo Mini.

"The SMB and prosumer market is clamoring for a plug-and-play storage product because it lacks the technical expertise and resources to manage complex storage systems. With the new Drobo products, there is no question that this enigma is solved," he said.

Drobo 5D

The new Drobo 5D is also being aimed at the prosumer market, including photographers, videographers, and graphic designers.

The Drobo 5D

Like the Drobo Mini, the Drobo 5D is aimed at professional consumers who are power users of Adobe and Apple applications including After Effects, Aperture, Final Cut Pro, Lightroom, Photoshop and Premier Pro are a great fit for the new product, which is ideal for editing, storing catalogs and backing up files of all types, said Mario Blandini, Drobo's vice president of Technology Solutions.

With up to five 2TB hard drives, and an additional SSD bay, the Drobo 5D can support up to 16TB of capacity -- all accessible through Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 interfaces. With 3TB drives coming to Drobo in the future, the Drobo 5D will eventually be able to store up to 20TB.

The Drobo 5D will retail starting at $799 without drives.

Both the Drobo 5D and Drobo Mini will be available in limited quantities in early July and generally available later than same month.

Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed. His e-mail address is lmearian@computerworld.com.

See more by Lucas Mearian on Computerworld.com.


Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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