Mounting Drobo under Linux (Ubuntu)

Ubuntu & Drobo TuxWhen I write scripts in Python, I prefer to write them under Linux. I personally use Ubuntu in a Virtual Machine, powered by Sun’s free VirtualBox. There are of course several ways to share data between Linux and Windows but I decided to incorporate my last acquisitions, a Network Attached Storage Device called Drobo / Droboshare. In this post you will read how to connect Linux (Ubuntu 9.10) to your Drobo.

If you are operating Linux in a virtual machine as I do, you should check the settings of your network adapter. If you are using Network Address Translation (NAT) you might have a hard time to connect to your Drobo. I’m using the bridged network adapter where my host system (WindowsXP) and my guest system (Ubuntu) share the same IP address within the local network (LAN). This depends of course on your personal needs and security requirements.

My Drobo is formated with the NTFS filesystem and connected through a DroboShare to my local network.

Using the Ubuntu File Browser

The easiest way to mount your Drobo is through the Ubuntu menu Places > Network. Click yourself through Windows Network > workgroup > DroboShare > Drobo . Once you click yourself through, the Drobo will be mounted and shown in your Places.

Drobo Samba mount Ubuntu

You might also introduce directly smb://workgroup/droboshare/drobo in the File Browser.

I personally found this way as pretty slow. Since I prefer to work in the console, I’ll show you also a way how to mount Drobo by using the console.

Using the Console

Open a console window and check if your Ubuntu can see your Drobo. Use this command:

smbclient -L //droboshare/drobo

If you find your Drobo in the list, then everything is ok. Mine looks like this:


Enter user's password:
Domain=[WORKGROUP] OS=[Unix] Server=[Samba 3.0.14a]
	Sharename       Type      Comment
	---------       ----      -------
	Drobo           Disk      Drobo
	IPC$            IPC       IPC Service (DroboShare)
	ADMIN$          IPC       IPC Service (DroboShare)
Domain=[WORKGROUP] OS=[Unix] Server=[Samba 3.0.14a]
	Server               Comment
	---------            -------
	DROBOSHARE           DroboShare
	WINXP-WS1
	Workgroup            Master
	---------            -------
	WORKGROUP            WINXP-WS1
user@ubuntu:~$

Now we have to create a directory into which Drobo will be mounted

sudo mkdir /mnt/drobo

And now we will mount the Drobo

sudo mount -t cifs -o username=YourName,password=YourPwd //YourDroboShare/YourDrobo MntDir

Where:

  • YourName is your user name; leave blank if you haven’t set any
  • YourPwd is your password; leave blank if you haven’t set any
  • YourDroboShare is the name of your DroboShare or it’s IP Address
  • YourDrobo is the Name of your Drobo
  • MntDir is the directory to which your Drobo will be mounted

Example:

sudo mount -t cifs -o username=,password= //192.168.1.200/drobo /mnt/drobo

Mouting automatically on system startup

If like to mount your Drobo on Ubuntu startup then include the following line in /etc/fstab

//YourDroboShare/YourDrobo MntDir cifs username=YourName, password=YourPwd 0 0

Example:

//192.168.1.200/drobo /mnt/drobo    cifs   username=, password=   0     0

This is how my /etc/fstab looks like:

# /etc/fstab: static file system information.
#
# Use 'blkid -o value -s UUID' to print the universally unique identifier
# for a device; this may be used with UUID= as a more robust way to name
# devices that works even if disks are added and removed. See fstab(5).
#
# <file system> <mount point>   <type>  <options>       <dump>     <pass>
proc                /proc           proc    defaults        0       0<br /><br />
UUID=6ae7cedc-0de5-4666-81b7-8673ae7d9135 /  ext4    errors=remount-ro 0  1
UUID=86e08645-ba82-4b3a-a896-1829bb743c6d none   swap    sw    0      0
/dev/scd0       /media/cdrom0   udf,iso9660 user,noauto,exec,utf8 0      0
/dev/fd0         /media/floppy0  auto    rw,user,noauto,exec,utf8 0       0
//192.168.1.99/drobo    /mnt/drobo      cifs    username=,password=     0       0

Now your Drobo will be mounted on every system startup.

Do you have any comments / suggestions / improvements? I’m happy to hear you opinion!
Thanks to

About Tobias (DH1TW)

Self-confessed Starbucks addict. Loves to travel around the globe. Enjoys the technical preparations of Amateur-Radio contests as much as the contests themselves. Engineer by nature. Entrepreneur. For more, follow him @DH1TW

Comments

  1. MarkK says:

    Very Cool. On my laptop at work I run LinuxMint in a VB. This may help me out some as I seem to have a time getting usb to work. (some versions of VB it’s fine, some it’s broke) I love my linux apps but need to be able to move data between the machines. This should work for any share (although I do have a drobo). I’m less than thrilled with the droboshare appliance though. In my network it’s had connectivity issues as well as being slow in general. I moved the drobo straight to the server usb port.

    Thanks for the info – I hope to get to try it out later today.

    • Hey Mark,
      yes – this solution works also for any other NTFS share. I experienced the same lack of performance with my DroboShare. It provides on my Gigabit Ethernet connections just about 10MB/sec which is by far below of what is possible today. But on the other hand the power consumption of DroboShare is very low which I appreciate as well. I use it with a couple of cron jobs as standalone “poor mans server”.

  2. Waldemar says:

    Very Cool. On my laptop at work I run LinuxMint in a VB. This may help me out some as I seem to have a time getting usb to work. (some versions of VB its fine, some its broken). I love my linux apps but need to be able to move data between the machines. This should work for any share (although I do have a drobo). I’m less than thrilled with the droboshare appliance though. In my network it’s had connectivity issues as well as being slow in general. I moved the drobo straight to the server usb port.

  3. Lorne Shantz says:

    I am still having trouble. I see the shares as suggested above. However, when I went to ping the share name, I got no answer. So I did a traceroute and it went outside of my intranet in search! So it seems there is a routing issue as well. In order to keep the smb stuff off the internet. Still looking.

  4. Tobias, this is very helpful! I also have a 4TB Drobo in my home office running on my LAN via Droboshare. My environment is heterogeneous, involving Mac, Windows (XP, 7 Pro), and Linux (Debian). My linux box is my main desktop machine and gettting the Drobo to automount is just something I haven’t gotten to doing…but you’ve put the recipe here so thanks much!

    Frank
    K4FMH

  5. It is not a good idea to write your username and password in the fstab file; other users can read it.
    Much better is to use a separate hidden file in your home directory as explained here:
    https://wiki.ubuntu.com/MountWindowsSharesPermanently

    • Your are absolutely right! Thanks for the link. I’m sure it’s useful to other readers!

  6. the4tress says:

    Ok, I am going crazy here. I am able to mount the Drobo, but I have to be root to make any changes to the share, even though it isn’t restricted. On my Windows machines I don’t have to enter a username or password to make any changes to the shared folder, but in Ubuntu I do.

    I tried adding a user to the folder and mounting with that user/pass. I tried to SSH to the Drobo and chmod 777 the folder and that didn’t work (on the Drobo it says the folder is 777, but on the Ubuntu machine it shows 755 (drwxr-xr-x 1 root root 0 Aug 4 08:44 test).

    How can I mount it as 777 instead of 755?

    • the4tress says:

      Never mind, I figured it out. I had to add file_mode=0777,dir_mode=0777 to the options tag. Also, I couldn’t leave the username blank so I had to remove that tag. Here is what it ended up looking like in case anybody needs it in the future:

      sudo mount -t smbfs -o password=,file_mode=0777,dir_mode=0777,iocharset=utf8 //192.168.1.30/Media /mnt/Media

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