Many months ago I won a contest on Twitter (thanks to @Photojojo) and received a free Drobo. I was super suspicious at first because I don't win things. But, I finally realized it was legit when the Drobo arrived at my house. I had grand plans of backups and data security for my new found friend. Of course, I wasn't quite ready to implement those plans so he (do Drobos have gender?) sat there in the box for many... many months.
I felt guilty. Mr. Drobo surely deserved a better life than what I was giving him. Many friends suggested that their home was more Drobo friendly and would gladly take him off my hands for the same price I had paid. Some even offered to purchase him for a reasonable price. But, I knew I was just waiting for the right time to bring him into his rightful place in the family.
The right time finally came when I bought a Mac Mini to be used as our media center computer. Now, with a machine that was always on (we're a 2-laptop family), the Drobo would have a suitable place to live. And so it was that I ventured down to Micro Center and picked up a few 7200RPM 1.0TB drives to fill his empty stomach. Mr. Drobo was happy. Very happy.
Now, I've migrated our entire DVD collection onto the Drobo. Took some time with MacTheRipper, but totally worth it to be able to access our entire library from within Plex. He also hosts a backup of my primary iTunes and iPhoto libraries as well as a couple of user-specific folder shares for making stuff readily available on the network.
The connection is FW800 and I've never had any problem with the streaming. Everything just works... flawlessly. Most importantly, I've got piece of mind that in the event of a drive failure, there's data redundancy and I can simply replace a drive and carry on. That is a HUGE win in our small network setup. I still use a combination of Amazon S3 and Jungle Disk to make offsite backups of critical/irreplaceable things (photos mostly). But Mr. Drobo happily sits below the television protecting all our data and serving all our media.
Domo arigato, Mr. Drobo. Domo.