I’m Concerned About Drobo

It wasn’t until this week. I have two Drobos – one at home and one at work, and I keep them synced, and I haven’t had any issues at all. In fact, I was bragging last week about how the one at home alerted me that one of my drives was getting full and that I’d need to replace it soon. That was before I received this email (below):

Dear Mr. Kelby: I’m writing to ask for your advice regarding Drobo. – My Drobo died in November of 2019 just before the pandemic hit. For nearly 2 years now I’ve been unable to make contact with anyone from Drobo in either email or by phone. The website says “sold out” on all models.  My question is: what would you do in this situation? I’m dead in the water as far as access to my files and not getting any younger.  Any assistance would be appreciated.”  

That doesn’t sound good.

I wrote back to him to let him know I hadn’t heard anything in the news about Drobo (though they were bought by another company a few years back), but I’d start doing some research on it, and I’d contact them myself and see if I could get him some help.

Their website’s on, but nobody’s home

He’s right – every single product on their website shows “sold out” and it appears it’s been that way since at least August of 2020, and I don’t know why they’ve been “sold out,” for 18 or so months (chip shortage, supply chain issues, etc.), and there’s nothing on their site to explain why everything’s out of stock. No banner up top, or notice on the pages, etc., but I do know this – companies that make their living selling products but don’t have any for 18-months and don’t give a reason why don’t generally have a particularly bright future.

So, I called them. I pressed the appropriate number to be connected to Sales to ask when new units would be available and how to get service. It sent me to voicemail where it said, “No one is here to take your call. Leave a message.”

I thought I’d try again another day, and I got the same “No one is here to take your call. Leave a message.” So I left a message this time as the editor of Photoshop User magazine, calling to ask the company’s status for an article I would be writing in the magazine about Drobo. It’s been four days. No callback. No response whatsoever.

Nobody is there to take our calls. Yikes.

I checked their social media accounts. There’s only one Tweet on their account in the past six months, saying that they haven’t found any compatibility issues with Mac OS Monterey, and prior to that, the last tweets were from August. Pretty much the same across all their social. All not great signs. And of course, the gentlemen who sent me the original email hasn’t gotten any help from them, or from my efforts, and that’s not awesome.

In short, I’m worried enough that I’m now looking for a different photo storage solution

I’m a bit freaked out that if my Drobo goes down, I’m in the same situation that guy is in. Yes, I have a backup (and a cloud backup) and a Synology NAS at work, too, but I won’t sleep well if my stuff isn’t 100% solid on my desktop. The search is on, and I’ll let you guys know how it goes (and I’m open to your ideas if you’ve got a solid, fast, expandable desktop solution).

Of course, there is always the chance that everything is OK at Drobo, and they’ll have a bunch of units in stock soon, and start contacting their customers who have serious issues and get them resolved in a timely fashion. That could absolutely be the case. But, if I were a betting man…

Well, not the best news to send you into the weekend, so don’t focus on that, but instead focus on the fact that after our company KelbyOne holiday luncheon today, I’m on vacation until next week, so whoo hoo!!! Well, that’s what I’ll be focusing on this weekend. That and playing Call of Duty Warzone, ranking up some of my weapons in Vanguard, spending time recording music, hanging out with my wonderful family, and eating yummy holiday food because, as we know, holiday food does not contain calories, carbs, fat, or anything bad. It’s the magic of Christmas. True story.

Happy Holidays, everybody!


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