Drobo B1200i at Copenhagen Event – new iSCSI SAN models which supports SSDs and auto-tiering. The new model from drobo is a 12-bay iSCSI model that supports solid-state drives (SSDs) and built-in automated tiering. The model's name is B1200i and it's rackable. It takes 3U. This system is the largest of Drobo’s series of products for SMBs, branch offices.
You can mix SSD and SATA/SAS drives in the device, and the auto-tiering feature works the way that auto-tiering system should. It means that it automatically scans all the data which enters the SAN and the datas which are accessed most of the time, are placed on the SSD's in order to assure the fast Read/write operations. The process runs at the background and scans the data continuously to place them on the SSD's at first. Drobo B1200i is new model from Drobo.
A quick quote from the Drobo's website about the Drobo B1200i:
With the introduction of SSD support in the Drobo B1200i, SSDs provide a faster tier of storage for data that is transactional in nature, the type of data that benefits from the faster write and access speeds SSDs provide.
As data enters the Drobo, if it is transactional, then the data is written to the faster tier of SSDs. Unlike enterprise arrays with auto-tiering, transactional data goes directly to SSDs, which ensures that BOTH writes AND reads are optimized.
Drobo has got large game of product for individuals and small business. One of the most interesting in drobo is the Beyond Raid. With Beyond RAID technology, not only you can hot-add additional drives (if you did not fill the device already at start), but those drives can differ in capacity. It means you can put drives different capacity in Drobo Elite and still keep your drive’s redundancy.
In addition one can swap from 1 hot spare to 2 hot spare disks with one click without reboot and without downtime.
Drobo's product are robust and the Drobo dashboard looks really cool and simple. One does not has to be a storage engineer to install Drobo. You could see the detailed setup of Drobo as an iSCSI SAN for VMware vSphere 5 environment in my little serie, where I've been testing the Drobo Elite, which is now replaced by the B800i model. Both models do have the same firmware.
You can learn more about BeyondRAID, Automated Data-Aware Tiering, Thin Provisioning and Reclamation on Drobo's website. At the picture below, the drobo's dashboard showing the model Drobo B1200i and the speed of the fans and the health.
And here is a small video I shooted at the Drobo's booth at the show:
- Drobo Elite – iSCSI SAN which supports multi host environments
- Setup of Drobo Elite as a shared storage for VMware vSphere 5
- How to configure ESXi 5 for iSCSI connection to Drobo
- Drobo B1200i at VMworld Copenhagen 2011- SSDs and auto-tiering iSCSI SAN – this post