Multiple-drive enclosures

shinji

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Mar 18, 2007
1,309
1,501
I'd like an external hd enclosure that supports 2-4 drives, but lets each drive show up as a separate drive. I don't need a RAID.

Can you a configure a Drobo to be like this, or a Drobo will always appear as if it were one large drive?

Will JBOD allow the drives to appear separate? Or JBOD makes them appear as one large drive?

For the sake of desk space, power outlets, and firewire ports I'd rather have one unit instead of lots of small ones.
 

itickings

macrumors 6502a
Apr 14, 2007
924
5
You can make a Drobo appear like several drives, but you can't have them appear individually. Drobo will always mess with tem.

JBOD will make them appear as one large drive.

Mapower have multiple-bay towers for storage. I have a coupe of older ones, with four individual drives each connected by a single firewire cable to the computer. There are probably more suitable options nowadays, but they've worked for me.
 

itickings

macrumors 6502a
Apr 14, 2007
924
5
Right, had forgotten about that type, thanks for reminding me.

SSI is another manufacturer that may be of interest, http://ssi.com.tw/products06.html but I've only tried their single-bay docks so far. No specific reseller to recommend either...
 

shinji

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Mar 18, 2007
1,309
1,501
Is it safe for the drives though to leave them exposed like that in the drive docks?

Or is that actually better because they won't cook up inside an enclosure?
 

itickings

macrumors 6502a
Apr 14, 2007
924
5
You're not a smoker, are you? Cigarette smoke prob not a great thing for a bare hard drive or?
Cigarette smoke prob not a great thing for people either :p

Unless an enclosure is really tight, smoke will get in as well. Second hand smoking is hazardous to computers as well, and they're in cases (the smoke makes for a much messier dust buildup than otherwise).

Could actually even be an advantage not sticking the drive into an enclosure in these cases. In theory.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,719
2
eSATA card + Port Multiplier enclosure (example 4 bay kit). The drives aren't exposed, but if they're to remain permanent, who cares. And there's usually a fan involved as well to cool them.

The card is a SIL3132 based card, and does work with OS X.