Time Machine & NFS or Samba backup


Janel has been very pleased with her Mac so far; mostly she’s been working mostly with iPhoto and iMovie. I have to say: I’m damn impressed with the machine.

I’ve been doing a bit of research on the integrated backup program, Time Machine, that’s included in Mac OS X 10.5. At first, I was disappointed to hear it required the HFS filesystem, but I did a bit more digging, and found these two links:

http://freakymousemats.com/blog/posts/2007/11/01/time-machine-over-smb/

http://forums.bit-tech.net/showthread.php?t=141960

These suggest that folks have had success using both SMB as well as NFS to serve as the persistent storage. I haven’t tested it out, but plan to use it with the 300gb HP Media Vault that serves as our on-site backup. Wish me luck.

Oh, and the critical command appears to be:

defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

UPDATE (14-July-2008): so, this didn’t work out too well.  The machine complained that it wasn’t able to create the image.  I’ve heard that other folks have the same issue, and will be trying to find and document the solution.  Then I’ll start testing restoring files =)

UPDATE (22-July-2008):  Some initial success… Wes’s information got me past the sparsebundle failure, thought I had to dig through the link comments to find the right parameters for Janel’s Intel-based Mac.  Here’s what I used:

hdiutil create -size $SIZEg -fs HFS+J -type SPARSEBUNDLE -volname “Backup of $MACHINENAME” $MACHINENAME_$MACADDRESS.sparsebundle

You then recursively copy that sparse bundle to the network share, and it should become something you can select during Time Machine setup.  Time Machine is going to try backing up her Mac in an hour, I’ll post if it succeeds.

One thing I am concerned about is keeping the network connection available to the Mac… I haven’t found the equivalent of “reconnect,” etc.

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    • Wes
    • July 18th, 2008
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