Drobo, makers of award-winning data storage products for businesses and professionals, today announced a refresh of its flagship Drobo B1200i. The new B1200i SSD boosts performance by up to 300 percent over previous versions of the product, fueled by Drobo's patent-pending automated data-tiering software and the unique hybrid use of solid state technology alongside traditional hard disk drives (SAS or SATA). The B1200i SSD is ideal as primary storage for up to 250 users or as Tier 2 storage and backup for departments in larger organizations. Existing B1200i customers can upgrade to the new performance and functionality via a free software downloaded here. The unique ability of the B1200i SSD to automatically utilize a small number of SSDs alongside hard disk drives (HDDs) allows customers to enjoy the best of both -- the capacity of hard drives and the performance of SSD technology -- in a single economical storage system. Traditional storage systems configured with only one of the two can leave customers no option but to purchase multiple systems in order to meet their performance and capacity needs. Customers who use Drobos in their business environments cite monetary savings of more than $12,000 and time savings of more than 200 hours per year, compared to industry alternatives such as Dell and HP, the two vendors customers most often compare to Drobo. An easy-to-use calculator comparing the estimated savings the Drobo B1200i SSD delivers at various performance and capacity needs versus industry alternatives is available here. "The Drobo B1200i SSD is simple, cost effective, and it works," said Dan Long, MIS director at Branch Manufacturing in Minnesota. "Drobo storage has all of the things I look for, and for a small business, it was easy to assemble and tune plus was a cost-effective solution for my environment." Certified and Validated with VMware and Other Industry-Leading Solution Partners The Drobo B1200i SSD has attained VMware Ready status with vSphere 5.0 certification. The Drobo B1200i SSD fills the urgent need for higher performance to support VM density without sacrificing capacity and allows for users to instantly add performance acceleration with the introduction of SSDs alongside hard disk drives. Detailed examples of B1200i SSD and VMware solution configurations can be found on the VMware Solution Exchange (VSX) here. In addition to offering a wide range of primary storage solutions and use cases in Microsoft, VMware and Citrix environments, the B1200i SSD is also used in data protection solutions supporting Veeam, Acronis and Symantec backup and replication. Cloud backup with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and others is also supported. Full details and how-to guides for all solutions are available here. Independent Validation Cites Exceptional Performance and ROI The ESG (Enterprise Strategy Group) Lab performed hands-on evaluation and testing of the Drobo B1200i's ability to support real-world SMB applications. The lab report noted that the new B1200i SSD "easily scales to over 1,200 Microsoft Exchange mailboxes, achieved exceptional response time results for mixed, real-world workloads, including email plus file serving plus online transaction processing (OLTP), and proved strong streaming performance of nearly 300 MB/sec for data protection, video on demand, and other capacity-oriented applications." Complete validation reports and reviews of the B1200i SSD can be found here. Enabled by Patent-Pending Technology The underlying technologies that allow the enhanced Drobo B1200i SSD to reach these new levels of performance while retaining Drobo's ease-of-use and affordability are BeyondRAID with Automated Data-Aware Tiering. These patented and patent-pending technologies are explained in a comprehensive white paper and video here.