Any Best Practices on connecting to File Servers (ie., DROBO)?

I’m running the latest version of Mac OS Big Sur. I have been a Drobo User for years. Recently I have been doing a lot of Video Production and moving large files from my Mac to my Drobo. Alot of the times, the file transfers work but then for some reason they abruptly hang and stop. This occurred both with Path Finder and Finder.

I’m also using my Mac with Plex to serve up these files and they seem to work fine when I’m streaming to my Smart TVs.

However, does anyone have any best practices when using my Mac to copy files to file servers? Maybe there is a tweak or something that I’m missing that is causing these files to hang! Has anyone experienced issues like this in the past. The Drobo is connected via Ethernet at 1G.

Any thoughts?

Maybe, somebody else will chime in with a more detailed answer. Just to begin:

  • do not use AFP because it is deprecated

  • use SMB - if possible, SMB3

  • make sure that your network device (Drobo) is up to date regarding its firmware and that it is configured properly to use recent protocols

  • make sure that your ethernet connections are not being set to go to sleep to save energy

  • hope for the best :wink:

I do not own a Drobo, but as a Synology user, I had to change my mounting routine back to SMB with Big Sur. I had been using AFP before and that was totally unreliable. I also made sure that my Synology was using a recent SMB protocol. After that, I did not encounter issues. But as Google can tell (and there may even be some topics in this community) a reliable and fast network connection on your LAN is not a given. If you are experiencing issues, the debugging can be quite a pain in the rear.

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What file system? FAT32 has a 4GB limit.

Interesting. I am using AFP. Let me try that next.

The Drobo is definitely up to the latest firmware and I’m definitely not letting my Ethernet go to sleep. Let me try to change to SMB.

Did you change the SMB settings on the Synology? What kind of file read/write from they Synology are you getting? Wifi or ethernet? I’m going to start doing some more file transfers and want to check what kind of speeds that I’m getting. Thanks.

I had similar problems copying moderately large numbers of files (like 300) from my Mac to a HDD on a network-connected RPi. I eventually resorted to using the command line, which worked flawlessly.

I am not 100% sure about that. If I recall correctly, I had to enable SMB3 as max. SMB protocol (see the screenshot, but beware: it is in German). What I probably could/should consider is changing the minimum SMB protocol version to SMB2.

I am using both Ethernet and WiFi. My Mac Mini is connected via Ethernet. It is able to achieve between 90 to 115 MB per second, so basically the 1 GBit limit. Both read and write speed that is.

My other devices are being connected using WiFi. The speed varies between 25 to 60 MB per second, under ideal conditions up to 80 MB per second.

I played around with the SMB settings but a printer that I have only works under SMB1 so that was a dead-end. Good to know you’re achieving reasonable speeds. I need to rewire some ethernet to get Time Machine working on the synology.