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MacRumors
Oct 12, 2007, 11:17 AM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

AppleInsider explores (http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/07/10/12/road_to_mac_os_x_leopard_time_machine.html) the new Time Machine backup feature in the upcoming Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.
Time Machine is one of the most visually prominent new features demonstrated in Mac OS X Leopard, even if the core idea of backups is as old -- or perhaps older -- than the concept of having any data worthy of being restored. Here's a look at what's new and different about Apple's approach with Time Machine, why backups are a problem to be solved, and how well Leopard's new Time Machine actually works in practice.

The article goes into some depth as the workings of Apple's backup solution. Apple also discusses Time Machine (http://www.apple.com/macosx/leopard/features/timemachine.html) on their site and provides a QuickTime video (http://movies.apple.com/movies/us/apple/mac/macosx/2007/wwdc/apple-leopard-time_machine_iref.mov) demonstrating the new feature.

Mac OS X Leopard is expected to be released later this month. Gold Master was expected to be declared this week, but we've not yet heard an update on this status.

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/10/12/mac-os-x-10-5-leopards-time-machine/)



nismo
Oct 12, 2007, 11:19 AM
we want Gold Master!

plumbingandtech
Oct 12, 2007, 11:20 AM
Encrypt backup data. Turn on encryption to store your backup securely.


My favorite part.

Much Ado
Oct 12, 2007, 11:21 AM
The one app that really makes Leopard attractive, and it's a back-up solution.

Funny how it goes, isn't it?

w00master
Oct 12, 2007, 11:21 AM
Awesome article. For me, Time Machine is my *most* anticipated new feature of Leopard. I can't wait to get my hands on it. However, I do have some questions that hopefully peeps on here can answer:

1. Approximately how much space is this going to take up as time goes on? Is there anyway to "stop" Time machine after a period of time for certain areas and/or time periods?

2. Can you create a backup of the Time Machine Backup?

3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?


w00master

Multimedia
Oct 12, 2007, 11:22 AM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:

pixlnet
Oct 12, 2007, 11:26 AM
Time to buy a new external HDD

twoodcc
Oct 12, 2007, 11:27 AM
i guess they are going to keep going through the features of leopard with each new topic.....hopefully the next one is the release date.

ricosuave
Oct 12, 2007, 11:28 AM
hopefully the next one is the release date.

Thant's my favorite part. :p

~Shard~
Oct 12, 2007, 11:28 AM
Awesome article. For me, Time Machine is my *most* anticipated new feature of Leopard. I can't wait to get my hands on it. However, I do have some questions that hopefully peeps on here can answer:

1. Approximately how much space is this going to take up as time goes on? Is there anyway to "stop" Time machine after a period of time for certain areas and/or time periods?

2. Can you create a backup of the Time Machine Backup?

3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?

You'll find the answers to all your quesitons and more in our dedicated Time Machine FAQ (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=223065). :cool:


Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:

Your contributions are always appreciated Multimedia. :rolleyes: :p

BrianMojo
Oct 12, 2007, 11:29 AM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:

Read the article and you'll see why the technology behind it makes it an advanced concept, or at the very least makes backing up as easy and intuitive as it should be (Gasp! Apple making something that's already standard more easy and intuitive and thereby improving the experience greatly? Who would've guessed?).

MongoTheGeek
Oct 12, 2007, 11:29 AM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:

What's advanced is how easy and idiot proof it is, along with versioning.

I'm running the beta and it's saved my ass once.

I know, yada, yada, not for production, yada.

As for backing up the backup, I don't know. I guess you could point its save disk at another machine that is running it, or do a "normal" backup on that machine.

pmade
Oct 12, 2007, 11:33 AM
I just purchased a 750GB SATA drive for my Mac Pro in anticipation of Time Machine ;)

ricosuave
Oct 12, 2007, 11:34 AM
What's advanced is how easy and idiot proof it is, along with versioning.

I'm running the beta and it's saved my ass once.

I know, yada, yada, not for production, yada.

As for backing up the backup, I don't know. I guess you could point its save disk at another machine that is running it, or do a "normal" backup on that machine.

I think he meant use the backup of the time machine data. Sure you can make a copy of the data. Time Machine creates a folder called Backups.backupdb where ever you decide to back up to. However, I do not see a preferece in the settings to use the backed up copy of such database.

jaydub
Oct 12, 2007, 11:34 AM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:While the concept may not be advanced, the implementation is what's nice.

phillipjfry
Oct 12, 2007, 11:38 AM
...
3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?
...

I, too, am curious about this. Anyone heard anything about this?

~Shard~
Oct 12, 2007, 11:39 AM
I, too, am curious about this. Anyone heard anything about this?

I believe this topic was discussed in the FAQ, did you not find any info there? :confused:

OllyW
Oct 12, 2007, 11:42 AM
3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?
w00master

I, too, am curious about this. Anyone heard anything about this?

I would imagine you would have to boot from the Leopard DVD and run Time Machine from there?

Edit: Confirmed in the Time Machine FAQ (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=223065), point 19.

ivi7
Oct 12, 2007, 11:44 AM
Bought a new external HD in anticipation for Time Machine :cool:

thejadedmonkey
Oct 12, 2007, 11:44 AM
I believe this topic was discussed in the FAQ, did you not find any info there? :confused:

I just looked. All I found was this.22) Can TM restore system applications after and OS re-install?
TM can reinstall everything if you reinstalled the OS. (answer from Fearless Leader)

pgwalsh
Oct 12, 2007, 11:47 AM
I am definitely looking forward to time machine and think it will be one of the most useful features in Leopard.

One question is: Will it makes it unnecessary to have a mirror raid? Not talking striped raid, just mirrored.

OllyW
Oct 12, 2007, 11:48 AM
I just looked. All I found was this.

Did you miss this?

19) Does TM makes bootable backups?

I'm going to guess that due to the way TM keeps track of how your HD looked through history I believe that the TM backup is some large database of files/folders. This would mean it's probably not bootable but the Leopard install CD has an option to restore a disk from TM BUD (confirmed by c-Row).

twoodcc
Oct 12, 2007, 11:50 AM
after reading the whole article, i'm impressed. it was kinda long, but goes into great detail.

very nice job on the article :)

~Shard~
Oct 12, 2007, 11:53 AM
Thanks for the help with the specifics OllyW. :)

edoates
Oct 12, 2007, 11:55 AM
Awesome article.
...
2. Can you create a backup of the Time Machine Backup?

3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?


w00master

2. Maybe you could use SuperDuper! or some other cloning backup utility.
3. No one seems to know. And that is the big question for me, as well.

I use SuperDuper! now because the incremental backup feature (Smart Backup) is easy to implement and schedule to run in the middle of the night. For the 700,000 files on my system disk, it takes abut 13 minutes to run after a day of normal activity (essentially, the time to scan the directories for changes).

The beauty of SD is that it makes a bootable copy of your system drive, so recovery is simply "boot off of the clone, and do another SD copy back to your now fixed system drive." It is also possible to use Disk Utility "Restore" and boot from the OS X installation DVD. Each of those takes about the same time to restore (a few hours for a couple of hundred gigabytes and hundreds of thousands of files).

Time Machine gives us a pretty neat way to restore old versions of files or to get deleted files back. To me, that's the main attraction: a new "versioning" system which operates better than the old VAX/VMS versions. They worked OK, but a delete was a delete. With time machine, one has not only old versions, but deleted copies, too.

So, who knows how "restore" works from a catastrophic failure?

Eddie O

Peace
Oct 12, 2007, 11:56 AM
If one includes all system files in backups it's possible to do a restore from Time Machine using the install disk.

DavidLeblond
Oct 12, 2007, 11:58 AM
Multiple Leopard users can backup to the same drive, as Time Machine stores each systems' backups separately by name.

So does this mean that my iMac, my iBook, and my wife's Macbook Pro can all hook up to a firewire disk connected to my iMac to backup without me having to create 3 partitions?

Detlev
Oct 12, 2007, 11:59 AM
Ho-hum, this type of feature is available in many web based programs (i.e. wikipedia, google docs, etc) already. Yeah, sure it's now built into the OS but at what cost? Space? Speed? Internal HDs are not limitless and heaven knows not officially upgradeable. Sure looks like this OS has nice eye candy but I'm just not seeing HUGE improvements in productivity (kinda like the iPhone).

Don't get me wrong. I'll be in line on day 1 (hope it's not November, December or January 1). I just wish for some company would produce an efficient, stable, good looking OS for business.

SiliconAddict
Oct 12, 2007, 11:59 AM
The thing about Leopard and Vista? Seagate, Toshiba, Western Digital, Maxtor et al must just love these OS's to death with these new space gobbling features. My _guess_ is that an external 500GB hard drive MAY last 2-3 years before it gets full depending on how much work you do on your system.
I'm not saying this is a bad thing. Distaster recovery being provided to the masses is a "Good Thing". Just that its going to be expensive.

Lepton
Oct 12, 2007, 12:02 PM
Time machine makes regular copies of the files it backs up - it doesn't compress them. And if you have a large file and make one tiny change, the whole file is re-backed up. The advantage is, you can look through the archives yourself if you want to and just drag a backup onto your regular disk to get it back. The disadvantage is the space it takes.

When the backup disk gets full, it will warn you when the disk doesn't have much room left. You can just tell it to start backing up to another disk. It won't lose track. Otherwise, you can just let it start deleting the oldest backups automatically, in this way it keeps a rolling backup of however much it can fit on the backup disk. Remember, it keeps hourly backups of the last 24 hours, daily backups of the last week, and as many weekly backups as it can fit on the disk. If you don't give it a new empty disk when the old one is full, it will just keep however many weeks it can, issuing optional warnings as it deletes the oldest stuff, so you know what's happening.

In the future, I believe Apple will address this issue of it making a backup of full, uncompressed files, even when the files have only changed a teensy bit. Remember the fuss over this new ZFS file system? Once fully implemented, it can do proper, partial backups of files with no extra overhead. Once that ability is in Leopard, obviously we will see it going straight into Time Machine. If a huge file like a database gets a teenly little change, only that teeny part will need to be backed up, rather than making a new full backup copy of the file. ZFS also lets you add new hard disks to the backup pool on the fly. ZFS and Time Machine go hand in glove. I'm sure we will see Time Machine making huge gains once ZFS gets into OSX. My guess is it will happen way before OSX 10.6.

samh004
Oct 12, 2007, 12:04 PM
When Leopard was released I looked at this and though, Meh! Now I'm actually thinking it would make a great solution for backing up all the macs in the house, my mothers included, and would be very convenient.

My issues would be how well it'd work on NAS with the HDD connected to the Airport Extreme, it's not amazingly fast I know, but it's the best solution ?

The best way to backup multiple systems, should I go for 1 partition and several large disk images, or 2/3 partitions and use Airport Disk Utility to manage who sees which volume ?

Also, when you "Secure Empty Trash", is the Time Machine copy deleted too, seeing as you clearly wanted to get rid of that record/file or you wouldn't of chosen that option ?

gmanrique
Oct 12, 2007, 12:09 PM
anyone knows what parts were specifically removed from the original Apple Insider's articles regarding Preview and Dictionary?

In case you don't know, Apple Legal asked AI to remove something, I don't know what, from the original articles. So, I am just wondering if this is going to be something like the Fast OS switching option being removed.

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 12:10 PM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:
So being old and miserable is the position you hold at Macrumors correct?

aswitcher
Oct 12, 2007, 12:17 PM
So being old and miserable is the position you hold at Macrumors correct?

I think the expression your looking for is Cranky Geek ;)

SiliconAddict
Oct 12, 2007, 12:17 PM
Yeah, sure it's now built into the OS but at what cost? Space? Speed? Internal HDs are not limitless and heaven knows not officially upgradeable.


Did you eve bother to read the article? :rolleyes: TM can use external hard drives, which is preferable anyways. One lightening strike and your backups, connected to your system are toast.

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 12:18 PM
I think the expression your looking for is Cranky Geek ;)
Every one of his posts is a complaint about something, old and miserable suits him fine.

plumbingandtech
Oct 12, 2007, 12:21 PM
Did you eve bother to read the article? TM can use external hard drives, which is preferable anyways. One lightening strike and your backups, connected to your system are toast.


Which is a reminder to people to cycle thru at least two drives and keep one of them at the mother in-laws, parents, safe deposit box and switch them out once a month.


Think TWO time machine drives. Not one.

SiliconAddict
Oct 12, 2007, 12:28 PM
Which is a reminder to people to cycle thru at least two drives and keep one of them at the mother in-laws, parents, safe deposit box and switch them out once a month.


Think TWO time machine drives. Not one.

I'm all about the DLT tape. I have a script that runs on my laptop (MBP), my desktop (Home Brewed), and my wife's laptop once a month that backs up everything onto my home server which does weekly diffs. Once every 3 months a full backup is done with verification on Backup Exec 10 which goes into my safety deposit box which has two full sets of backups at any given time. At this point in time the only thing I could lose of value are my analog photographs which is why I've been in the process of scanning them all into iPhoto and archiving them. I can recover hardware, but in the event of a fire. . . once the data is lost. Its gone forever.

Oirectine
Oct 12, 2007, 12:30 PM
Say I have both an internal and an external hard drive, and add another drive to do Time Machine. Can Time Machine make backups for files on both drives?

Sorry if this has been asked before.

thejadedmonkey
Oct 12, 2007, 12:33 PM
Did you miss this?

I guess so, thanks for pointing that out to me! :)

G4DP
Oct 12, 2007, 12:34 PM
Doesn't anyone recognise sarcasm when its written.

Multimedia was being sarcastic, or is to far an advanced concept to grab hold of.

Time machine is great and it will stop all of the threads about I lost 3 days of work because I was too ******* dumb to save it.

The chances of us being able to buy Leopard before the end of this month are virtually gone. Gold Master to mass distribution in 2 weeks, not a hope in hell. Apple would the power of a Russian Pirating empire. Realistically you need a good 6 weeks to get enough copies produced and shipped.

We'll be told you can pre-order from ??th October available from the end of Nov beginning of Dec.

zweigand
Oct 12, 2007, 12:34 PM
Very nice article. I was waiting for a full explanation of what goes on in the background. My new 500GB external HD is patiently waiting.

mkrishnan
Oct 12, 2007, 12:36 PM
3. How do you do a full restore if your main system crashes?

You'll find the answers to all your quesitons and more in our dedicated Time Machine FAQ (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=223065). :cool:

Except this one (which was also diligently asked by several others in this thread. This and the other supporting documentation provided in that FAQ, as far as I can tell, do not compellingly explain how catastrophic recovery works.

So far, it seems that...

1) The TM archive continues to sound like it is not much like a bootable clone at all, and Apple hasn't revealed a way to make it act like one.

2) It was suggested in the FAQ (but not clearly documented, that I could see) that, if you had a failure, you could re-install Leopard on your replacement drive, and then image files back onto that install of Leopard, even though they're orphaned (they do not belong to a time state instance of the drive that you're using anymore). I guess I'll believe that this works reliably when I see it.

So there's no indication that TM has the capability to directly recover from a catastrophic failure in the way that you can boot directly from and use your clone made by CCC or SD, and/or reverse clone if you so desire onto your replacement drive.

MattJessop
Oct 12, 2007, 12:46 PM
*facepalm* Ung. My head hurts after reading that article. I thought being an Apple fan was supposed to make life simpler, not delve you into hard-link quantum mechanics.

Now all we need to do is reverse engineer Time Machine to pull files from the future as well as the past. That essay you're going to be set tomorrow? No problem! Hand it into the teacher before he's even set you the question!! Do that Apple, and I can guarantee you will get 100% marketshare very soon ;-)

Of course, you'd have to break the time-space continuum, but we all know Steve Jobs can do anything.

ltcol266845
Oct 12, 2007, 12:46 PM
I am curious to see TM usage when working on a Laptop. I have a MacBook Pro which only attaches to an external storage once and a while. I work on the go, in different places like work, school or even a coffee shop. How protected are my files then? If I delete something while I am at school, is it gone? Do these backups only happen when I plug in my external hard drive at home? Or are these backups stored on my laptop until they can be dumped onto my external drive at home?

I know the question of .mac has been addressed, but what if I had an external storage device that I could access remotely, like my own server or the like.

It seems like this is an incredibly powerful tool for desktop users, but maybe not so much for us mobile-only users.

jstock
Oct 12, 2007, 12:46 PM
.

We'll be told you can pre-order from ??th October available from the end of Nov beginning of Dec.

I wouldn't bet money on distrtibution taking 6 weeks or the delay ;)

jonkemerer
Oct 12, 2007, 12:51 PM
Regarding Time Machine, does anybody know if you have to let TM backup system files, programs, etc.? In other words, can I set TM to skip over my system files and have it just backup things like photos, videos, music, documents, etc?

In Vista I had to have backup, backup my Windows drive and it took up too much space, I'd rather just have it backup the kinds of things that can't be recovered period, y'know?

Thanks in advance.

chrisgeleven
Oct 12, 2007, 12:52 PM
I am curious to see TM usage when working on a Laptop. I have a MacBook Pro which only attaches to an external storage once and a while. I work on the go, in different places like work, school or even a coffee shop. How protected are my files then? If I delete something while I am at school, is it gone? Do these backups only happen when I plug in my external hard drive at home? Or are these backups stored on my laptop until they can be dumped onto my external drive at home?

I know the question of .mac has been addressed, but what if I had an external storage device that I could access remotely, like my own server or the like.

It seems like this is an incredibly powerful tool for desktop users, but maybe not so much for us mobile-only users.

I imagine the best way to handle that is get an Airport Extreme or similar router and plug your external HD directly into it.

That way, your laptop would do its time machien backup when you are home and on your wireless network.

~Shard~
Oct 12, 2007, 12:54 PM
Doesn't anyone recognise sarcasm when its written.

Multimedia was being sarcastic, or is to far an advanced concept to grab hold of.

You haven't read many of his posts, have you? I can point out at least 3 others from today alone which are quite similar... :p ;) :D

UltraNurd
Oct 12, 2007, 12:57 PM
Does anyone know if Time Machine's external disk backup is blessed in a way that it can be used as an external boot drive?

EagerDragon
Oct 12, 2007, 01:04 PM
Can the Time Machine Backup disk (BUD), be a RAID instead of a single physical disk?

If I am going to set something like this TM, I may want to get a mini and connect a bunch of external drives and create a Raid 0 and Raid 1 set or maybe a raid 5 but do not think apple supports it.

Can I use a raid like that as the BUD?

bdj21ya
Oct 12, 2007, 01:18 PM
Wow what an advanced concept. :rolleyes:

You know I'm pretty excited about this. I don't make regular backups, but I'd like to. No one else has given me a way this intuitive, so yeah, I think it's pretty advanced.

As a software developer, I'm really excited about the hourly backups. It gives me versioning without have to set anything up :).

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 01:24 PM
Can the Time Machine Backup disk (BUD), be a RAID instead of a single physical disk?

If I am going to set something like this TM, I may want to get a mini and connect a bunch of external drives and create a Raid 0 and Raid 1 set or maybe a raid 5 but do not think apple supports it.

Can I use a raid like that as the BUD?
I've never seen a RAID done of individual external drives attached through firewire/usb. That's a scary concept, I wouldn't touch. If you're really that interested in RAID, use a SAN, one of those drive cages, or setup your own server.

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 01:25 PM
As a software developer, I'm really excited about the hourly backups. It gives me versioning without have to set anything up :).
Yikes. Hourly backups is not a proper versioning system.

DavidLeblond
Oct 12, 2007, 01:28 PM
As a software developer, I'm really excited about the hourly backups. It gives me versioning without have to set anything up :).

Actually according to the XCode page, XCode 3.0 gives you versioning without having to set anything up as well.

See "Take a Snapshot" (http://www.apple.com/macosx/leopard/developer/xcode.html)

Orng
Oct 12, 2007, 01:41 PM
I'm looking forward to TM, but I have a question.

does anyone know what happens if I delete something that I want to stay deleted, no matter what? Say someone sends me some stupid email jokes or worse, pictures, or I want to erase all history of my association with a certain political organization before the Stasi arrives to seize my hard drives, or I simply don't want to waste backup space on something that I am certain I will never, ever need?

And this is more complex than just "telling TM what to back up when you set it up". I'm talking about, on the fly, day to day, make this file vanish from present and past, forever. This email is spam or some stupid 4 meg video sent by someone who hasn't learned about Youtube, or it's a 50-slide powerpoint that wasn't funny, and i don't want it using up my valuable archive space, and I don't want Big Brother to be able to find it either.

Can Time Machine manage this or do i have to go through and delete all the hard links?

ltcol266845
Oct 12, 2007, 01:45 PM
I imagine the best way to handle that is get an Airport Extreme or similar router and plug your external HD directly into it.

That way, your laptop would do its time machien backup when you are home and on your wireless network.

True for when I am at home, but 70% of my usage happens away from the friendly confines. (and not Wrigley Field)

zedsdead
Oct 12, 2007, 01:52 PM
Does anyone know the ratio of Back-up Space to Actual Space Time Machine is going to require - ie. I have 750 gig iMac, should I have a 750 external?

TurboSC
Oct 12, 2007, 01:56 PM
Argh come out already :P

BrianMojo
Oct 12, 2007, 01:56 PM
I am curious to see TM usage when working on a Laptop. I have a MacBook Pro which only attaches to an external storage once and a while. I work on the go, in different places like work, school or even a coffee shop. How protected are my files then? If I delete something while I am at school, is it gone? Do these backups only happen when I plug in my external hard drive at home? Or are these backups stored on my laptop until they can be dumped onto my external drive at home?

Judging from what it says in the article, that these backups are created based on system software that keeps track of differences, it sounds like it would back up whenever connected to a drive with whatever differences have occurred between then and when you last backed up. I don't think it could possibly keep track of changes to individual files on an hourly basis while you're not hooked up to an external, only because that would require the "old" data to be saved on the local hard drive and then transfered to the external later. This would be much more potentially possible if Leopard were running ZFS and you could save only the small bites and bits that had changed locally instead of re-writing whole files if only a small part of them had changed. These kind of small changes could potentially be catalogued locally and then moved to an external drive, assuming you have a certain amount of open space on the internal drive you were willing to sacrifice until your next "sync."

But from the sound of things, yes, this sounds like it's aimed more towards desktop users for the full-featured nature of the beast, but it still offers a very convenient, OS-level way to back up your files even if you're on a laptop.

Anyone think that Apple is potentially considering shipping computers with a secondary, "hidden" drive (possibly flash-based) that could hold if not all of your back-ups, then at least the changes to files that have occurred between backup "sync"s? I could see them doing this as a way of making the backup issue transparent to the laptop user, especially after ZFS is implemented (even though it would seem to go against the basic "data pooling" nature of ZFS).

DavidLeblond
Oct 12, 2007, 01:57 PM
Does anyone know the ratio of Back-up Space to Actual Space Time Machine is going to require - ie. I have 750 gig iMac, should I have a 750 external?

I believe Time Machine will use what it can. So if you have a 750 gig internal and a 750 gig external, it just simply won't keep a history.

Of course you probably don't have all 750 gigs filled up.

I, myself, have a 250 gig iMac, 160 external, 40 gig iBook and 100 gig MBP (in my household) that I plan on shoving into a 1 terabyte drive. None of those disks are full.

mrkramer
Oct 12, 2007, 02:01 PM
Anyone think that Apple is potentially considering shipping computers with a secondary, "hidden" drive (possibly flash-based) that could hold if not all of your back-ups, then at least the changes to files that have occurred between backup "sync"s?

no they are not otherwise someone would have found it while dissasembling their computer. and why can people not understand that Time Machine has nothing to do with ZFS.

BrianMojo
Oct 12, 2007, 02:01 PM
does anyone know what happens if I delete something that I want to stay deleted, no matter what? ...Can Time Machine manage this or do i have to go through and delete all the hard links?

That's a very, very good question. And if it's not a feature yet, I'm sure people will be clamoring for it soon enough.

EagerDragon
Oct 12, 2007, 02:03 PM
I've never seen a RAID done of individual external drives attached through firewire/usb. That's a scary concept, I wouldn't touch. If you're really that interested in RAID, use a SAN, one of those drive cages, or setup your own server.

DiskUtility lets you take several disks, format them and combine them as 2 raid 0, then again combine them as raid 1. This capability been there for a while, I am just not sure if TM can use it.

BrianMojo
Oct 12, 2007, 02:04 PM
no they are not otherwise someone would have found it while dissasembling their computer. and why can people not understand that Time Machine has nothing to do with ZFS.

Er, you missed the words "potentially" and "considering." And you don't understand that it has everything to do with ZFS: Right now it has nothing to do with it, sure, but everyone sees the potential and Apple would have to be blind not to see it too, considering Time Machine seems to be set up in a way that will be perfect to implement via ZFS once the file system switches over.

EagerDragon
Oct 12, 2007, 02:13 PM
Anyone knows if TM can use a software raid (raid 0 and 1) created by DiskUtility as the target disk to hold the TM backups?

Would be nice to have a 2 terabyte mirror set:
1) Would take a while to fill
2) Would allow me to repair a bad drive and recover from the hardware failure.

Thinking of doing this with a mini, and pointing TM from the other systems to the raid.

RedTomato
Oct 12, 2007, 02:28 PM
I brought a Buffalo Linkstation 500GB several months ago in preparation for this very application, (before Leopard got delayed :o ).

It links to our office network via ethernet. Now on reading the FAQ, I am completely confused as to whether it will work with TM or not.

I don't mind dedicating the whole drive to TM, but according to the FAQ,


7a) When Apple say backed up to a server do they just mean any network storage?
No, It must be a server or drive. It cannot just a remote drive on the network as 10.5 still sees the remote drive as a folder AFP mount.

But Question 9 says:

"It will work with any non-bootable volume formatted in Apple’s HFS Extended format. That drive can be stowed inside a Mac Pro, attached on the end of a FireWire or USB cable, or even mounted on your desktop from elsewhere on your network."

So will it work with a Buffalo Linkstation or not? These network drives seem to be quite popular with Apple users, which is one reason why I brought one.

Call me stupid, but I don't understand the terminology here. Q7 says it won't work with a remote drive on the network, but Q9 says it will work with a drive mounted from elsewhere on the network. It's not clear.

Analog Kid
Oct 12, 2007, 02:33 PM
What I'm curious about is whether Time Machine does anything to protect against bit rot. Does it checksum the files so it can tell if the backup (or original) is corrupted, or does it just keep a series of links to the corrupted file as though nothing happened? My fear is that one of my pictures gets corrupted and I'll never know until I try to open it. The corruption won't show up in FSEvents, because it wasn't intentional.

ZFS has a mechanism to handle this, so if it's not in TM now, I hope to see it soon.

Time machine makes regular copies of the files it backs up - it doesn't compress them. And if you have a large file and make one tiny change, the whole file is re-backed up. The advantage is, you can look through the archives yourself if you want to and just drag a backup onto your regular disk to get it back. The disadvantage is the space it takes.

In the future, I believe Apple will address this issue of it making a backup of full, uncompressed files, even when the files have only changed a teensy bit. Remember the fuss over this new ZFS file system? Once fully implemented, it can do proper, partial backups of files with no extra overhead. Once that ability is in Leopard, obviously we will see it going straight into Time Machine. If a huge file like a database gets a teenly little change, only that teeny part will need to be backed up, rather than making a new full backup copy of the file. ZFS also lets you add new hard disks to the backup pool on the fly. ZFS and Time Machine go hand in glove. I'm sure we will see Time Machine making huge gains once ZFS gets into OSX. My guess is it will happen way before OSX 10.6.
This is very similar to how Network Appliances does it's snapshots. We used this at work for a while and the whole backup system crashed and burned because we were re-generating multi-GB binary files several times a day. Didn't take long before all those snapshots choked the NAS.

ZFS isn't really a complete answer to this problem. It's a help, but not an answer. Imagine you store your data in encrypted format-- change one byte of that file and the whole file contents change. I believe ZFS snapshots at the block level, so simply inserting a byte in the middle of an unecrypted file will shift all of the data in all of the blocks, forcing a full copy to be made. I'm not an expert in ZFS though, so they might be smarter than this but I'm not sure how you could be unless the snapshots are done at the byte level.

The solution Apple has been pushing ever since Spotlight is to avoid monolithic files. Break your data into a bundle of many small files-- so only small parts of the bundle change. In user space, this still looks like a single entity, but in file system space it's a full directory structure. This is how iLife and iWork operate. Not everything can be atomized this way, but if you think about the data structure for a while you can usually find a way.

Peterkro
Oct 12, 2007, 02:45 PM
TM will definitely work on a partition on a network drive. Whether it will work in a folder on a partition is open to conjecture, one of the earlier betas did by using a sparse bundle but if that makes it to the final release who knows.(haven't tried with 559)

ChrisA
Oct 12, 2007, 02:49 PM
.. Will it makes it unnecessary to have a mirror raid?
.


Do you want to protect your self from a hardware failure of the Time Machine disk drive? If so then you might want to use a mirror or other RAID for Time Machine

Also your Time Machine backup drive needs to be a bit larger then all the other drives on all the Macs that you need to backup. You might want to use a RAID5 setup

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 02:56 PM
no they are not otherwise someone would have found it while dissasembling their computer. and why can people not understand that Time Machine has nothing to do with ZFS.
Because people don't even understand what ZFS is around here.

overcast
Oct 12, 2007, 02:58 PM
Anyone knows if TM can use a software raid (raid 0 and 1) created by DiskUtility as the target disk to hold the TM backups?

Would be nice to have a 2 terabyte mirror set:
1) Would take a while to fill
2) Would allow me to repair a bad drive and recover from the hardware failure.

Thinking of doing this with a mini, and pointing TM from the other systems to the raid.
If you can actually create a RAID of external harddrives there is no reason TM can not use it. As far as the OS and TM is concerned, RAID is a single drive.

Orng
Oct 12, 2007, 03:03 PM
That's a very, very good question. And if it's not a feature yet, I'm sure people will be clamoring for it soon enough.

I'm sure some smart developer will create "iShredder" to get rid of those files that you don't need to save, but would cause problems if your backup drive was stolen and fell into nefarious hands.

Imagine a well meaning mother sending her son a credit card number or bank access info via email, so he can buy some books for classes. Yeah, I know, BAD mom! but being a smart kid, the son deletes the email. He should have a way of saying, okay, we don't want this email archived on a stealable HD.

ChrisA
Oct 12, 2007, 03:05 PM
It links to our office network via ethernet. Now on reading the FAQ, I am completely confused as to whether it will work with TM or not.


I think what they are saying is that the drive MUST be HFS+ formatted and mounted as an HFS+ volume.

So thinks like SIF shars and NFS will not work

ChrisA
Oct 12, 2007, 03:14 PM
Imagine a well meaning mother sending her son a credit card number or bank access info via email, so he can buy some books for classes. Yeah, I know, BAD mom! but being a smart kid, the son deletes the email. He should have a way of saying, okay, we don't want this email archived on a stealable HD.

You can tell Time machine to encrypt the entire backup drive. This would solve this problem.

Knowing now, how TM stores data it would be easy to write a one line shell script to track down and kill all copies of a file. (See the man page for "find") It is not hard to put a simple point and click GUI around "find" for those who can't use keyboards. So technically easy to do but what needs to be done is to build this feature into the Finder. Maybe Apple needs to build a "shedder" application and attach it to the right click menu so you could "right click -> shred a file"

ChrisA
Oct 12, 2007, 03:21 PM
Can the Time Machine Backup disk (BUD), be a RAID instead of a single physical disk?

If I am going to set something like this TM, I may want to get a mini and connect a bunch of external drives and create a Raid 0 and Raid 1 set or maybe a raid 5 but do not think apple supports it.

A mini makes for a quite expensive RAID and I don't like the rat's nest of cables and wall worts. Better to buy a box that holds multiple internal drives. These boxes are cheaper than a Mini too. If you did it this way then yes TM could use it as a "BOD" because these boxes "look" just like one big drive. I think as soon as you have three disk drive RAID5 is the best option

EagerDragon
Oct 12, 2007, 03:43 PM
A mini makes for a quite expensive RAID and I don't like the rat's nest of cables and wall worts. Better to buy a box that holds multiple internal drives. These boxes are cheaper than a Mini too. If you did it this way then yes TM could use it as a "BOD" because these boxes "look" just like one big drive. I think as soon as you have three disk drive RAID5 is the best option

Well I was going to use the mini for other purposes also, but can you suggest a few Raid5 NAS that work well with Macs and can be formated like OSX likes?

mrfrosty
Oct 12, 2007, 03:54 PM
no they are not otherwise someone would have found it while dissasembling their computer. and why can people not understand that Time Machine has nothing to do with ZFS.

Time machine has EVERYTHING to do with ZFS. Maybe not now but as soon as RW zfs arrives for OSX the whole landscape changes. I have been using zfs for a while now on Solaris and i still think is some very strong voodoo magic.

deboni
Oct 12, 2007, 04:21 PM
I have great hopes for Time Machine, but I have greater hopes for the combination of Time Machine and ZFS. What little I know about ZFS makes it seem like a natural base for implementing such automatic backup machinery. I'm really hoping it comes out very soon after (if not *with*) Leopard. That combination alone would cause me to buy a new system with drives to use as TM targets.

manu chao
Oct 12, 2007, 05:13 PM
I've never seen a RAID done of individual external drives attached through firewire/usb. That's a scary concept, I wouldn't touch. If you're really that interested in RAID, use a SAN, one of those drive cages, or setup your own server.
As several people have said, this works fine and I am actually using on as a secondary/tertiary backup for less important files.

Since I routinely upgrade the harddrives of my laptops, I now have a 20, a 60, a 100, a 120 and 160 GB external drive. The 20 and the 60 are now combined to a Raid (always buy enclosures with two connectors, so you can daisy chain several drives).

manu chao
Oct 12, 2007, 05:16 PM
This would be much more potentially possible if Leopard were running ZFS and you could save only the small bites and bits that had changed locally instead of re-writing whole files if only a small part of them had changed. These kind of small changes could potentially be catalogued locally and then moved to an external drive, assuming you have a certain amount of open space on the internal drive you were willing to sacrifice until your next "sync."

Anyone think that Apple is potentially considering shipping computers with a secondary, "hidden" drive (possibly flash-based) that could hold if not all of your back-ups, then at least the changes to files that have occurred between backup "sync"s? I could see them doing this as a way of making the backup issue transparent to the laptop user, especially after ZFS is implemented (even though it would seem to go against the basic "data pooling" nature of ZFS).

If you could use a USB stick for the temporarily (hourly) back-ups and a an external drive for the daily ones this would be cool.

Avicdar
Oct 12, 2007, 06:28 PM
Most of my critical work is done with Aperture. It has its own vault system for backups, but does require you to implicitly perform the backup (its not difficult, but does take over the program and you can do nothing else while it does its thing).

Will time machine back up aperture files?

This is also complicated by the idea that aperture will allow you to create versions of images and you can make many changes to these as you go. There is no 'save' in Aperture, so I don't see how/when time machine will recognize that there is a new version of the original file, etc.

Any theories on whether Aperture will have time machine support?

My photography portfolio - www.avicdar.com

Yuppi
Oct 12, 2007, 06:38 PM
Wow, that solution is brilliant. It's underlying technologies are extremly clean, most possibly inspired by the backend of SVN which kind of works in the same way. The integration is beautiful, and the UI is genius.
THAT really blows me away. It doesn't look like a hack like the shadow-copy thing microsoft did. And the query stuff is extremly nice.

manu chao
Oct 12, 2007, 06:44 PM
Most of my critical work is done with Aperture. It has its own vault system for backups, but does require you to implicitly perform the backup (its not difficult, but does take over the program and you can do nothing else while it does its thing).

Will time machine back up aperture files?

This is also complicated by the idea that aperture will allow you to create versions of images and you can make many changes to these as you go. There is no 'save' in Aperture, so I don't see how/when time machine will recognize that there is a new version of the original file, etc.

Any theories on whether Aperture will have time machine support?


I am sure TM will work fine with Aperture. A version is just a collection of files. It is my believe that Aperture writes all changes made to versions immediately to disk. The thumbnails might be written with a small delay.

The tricky thing will be the user interface for restores but I hope that Aperture 2.0 will take care of that.

Analog Kid
Oct 12, 2007, 09:52 PM
Most of my critical work is done with Aperture. It has its own vault system for backups, but does require you to implicitly perform the backup (its not difficult, but does take over the program and you can do nothing else while it does its thing).

Will time machine back up aperture files?

This is also complicated by the idea that aperture will allow you to create versions of images and you can make many changes to these as you go. There is no 'save' in Aperture, so I don't see how/when time machine will recognize that there is a new version of the original file, etc.

Any theories on whether Aperture will have time machine support?

My photography portfolio - www.avicdar.com
Time Machine will be much appreciated by Aperture users... You know that warning Aperture gives you when you update a vault? The "Are you want to back up your data and keep it safe, because when you do that it's going to blow away the existing backup that's keeping your data safe" warning? Won't have to deal with that anymore... More backups, more better...

Avicdar
Oct 12, 2007, 10:54 PM
Time Machine will be much appreciated by Aperture users... You know that warning Aperture gives you when you update a vault? The "Are you want to back up your data and keep it safe, because when you do that it's going to blow away the existing backup that's keeping your data safe" warning? Won't have to deal with that anymore... More backups, more better...

Don't know what version of Aperture you're using, but I never get a message like that. I just get a message asking me if I really want to do it (presumably because its going to take a while).

Then a compare is done to the current library versus what is backed up to determine differences, and the differences alone are backed up. Aperture doesn't destroy the current backup to create a new one. It just adds to it.

Analog Kid
Oct 13, 2007, 01:40 AM
Don't know what version of Aperture you're using, but I never get a message like that. I just get a message asking me if I really want to do it (presumably because its going to take a while).

Then a compare is done to the current library versus what is backed up to determine differences, and the differences alone are backed up. Aperture doesn't destroy the current backup to create a new one. It just adds to it.
What I get is this:
"Are you sure you want to replace the contents of 'Aperture Vault' with the current contents of your library?

Updating this vault will back up all metadata, and all managed images added to your library.

This vault was last updated on Feb 10, 2007.

This cannot be undone."

That wasn't so much my point though-- I was being a bit "flip". My point was Time Machine will be a better solution than the current vaults.

chrisgeleven
Oct 13, 2007, 09:44 AM
I imagine Apple will release updates for all of its current apps to support Time Machine.

psychofreak
Oct 13, 2007, 09:47 AM
Wow, that solution is brilliant. It's underlying technologies are extremly clean, most possibly inspired by the backend of SVN which kind of works in the same way. The integration is beautiful, and the UI is genius.
THAT really blows me away. It doesn't look like a hack like the shadow-copy thing microsoft did. And the query stuff is extremly nice.

It really is a great combination of great software and great looks...Apple seem to have done a fantastic job. Hopefully by the time we get Time Machine v.2 or v.3 in the next OS or 10.7, average broadband speeds will be good enough to backup using TM easily and quickly onto a server like .Mac...

QuarterSwede
Oct 13, 2007, 12:40 PM
I imagine the best way to handle that is get an Airport Extreme or similar router and plug your external HD directly into it.
Or just go cheaper and get a NAS drive and hook it up to your current network.

Regarding Time Machine, does anybody know if you have to let TM backup system files, programs, etc.? In other words, can I set TM to skip over my system files and have it just backup things like photos, videos, music, documents, etc?
Read the article. The answer is yes you can have it ignore whatever you want.


1) The TM archive continues to sound like it is not much like a bootable clone at all, and Apple hasn't revealed a way to make it act like one.

2) It was suggested in the FAQ (but not clearly documented, that I could see) that, if you had a failure, you could re-install Leopard on your replacement drive, and then image files back onto that install of Leopard, even though they're orphaned (they do not belong to a time state instance of the drive that you're using anymore). I guess I'll believe that this works reliably when I see it.

So there's no indication that TM has the capability to directly recover from a catastrophic failure in the way that you can boot directly from and use your clone made by CCC or SD, and/or reverse clone if you so desire onto your replacement drive.
I highly doubt you can boot from a TM backup since it's really just a database. Apparently what can be done is to pop in the Leopard Disc and choose to restore from a TM BUD. And if that's the case, who needs CCC or SD?
...this would mean it's probably not bootable but the Leopard install CD has an option to restore a disk from TM BUD (confirmed by c-Row).

manu chao
Oct 13, 2007, 07:31 PM
I highly doubt you can boot from a TM backup since it's really just a database. Apparently what can be done is to pop in the Leopard Disc and choose to restore from a TM BUD. And if that's the case, who needs CCC or SD?

A clone can get you working in a few minutes, a full restore can take five or more hours.
Moreover, running some diagnostics like DiskWarrior is also faster if you boot of a hard drive and not of a DVD. And a lot of diagnostic tools do not have a bootable DVD, ie, all the Unix command line tools.

EagerDragon
Oct 13, 2007, 09:58 PM
I am curious to see TM usage when working on a Laptop. I have a MacBook Pro which only attaches to an external storage once and a while. I work on the go, in different places like work, school or even a coffee shop. How protected are my files then? If I delete something while I am at school, is it gone? Do these backups only happen when I plug in my external hard drive at home? Or are these backups stored on my laptop until they can be dumped onto my external drive at home?

I know the question of .mac has been addressed, but what if I had an external storage device that I could access remotely, like my own server or the like.

It seems like this is an incredibly powerful tool for desktop users, but maybe not so much for us mobile-only users.

You need to connect to the external drive to bback it up. Filrs are not kept local on you laptop with the exception of the originals as normal.

EagerDragon
Oct 13, 2007, 10:00 PM
Does anyone know if Time Machine's external disk backup is blessed in a way that it can be used as an external boot drive?

You can boot from the DVD then using the dvd do a restoration of your entire disk drive including the OS and everything else. This is assuming you did back it up. At the end your machine will be bootable again down to the last backup. But no, the TM disk is not bootable.

jwdsail
Oct 13, 2007, 11:38 PM
I'm wondering if it would be possible to have 2 TM drives.... One in my office, and one in my home office for use w/ my MBP?

Anyone know if this will work?

jwd

contoursvt
Oct 14, 2007, 12:07 AM
I think what he's getting at which I agree with is that while the idea sounds cool, its not something 'totally new'. Its offering backups and data security which a user can have right now anyway if they plan things out. I think the option is great for people that dont do any kind of routine backups.

For example (I'm going to use windows for my examples because I primarily use that for my main system). These are things I've done to make sure I'm safe no matter what. In my opinion its not that difficult or intrusive.

-Made a System Image of the computer with nothing but the OS installed. I did this when I first built my machine. Burnt it to DVD - 2 copies.

-Make a secondary System Image after I installed all my main apps and hardware support for my devices and burnt it to DVD, again made 2 copies.

-Mounted my documents folder to my network server which stores the data on a mirrored 250GB set. Weekly full backups and incrementals done daily to a external USB 2.0 320GB drive. The backups run at 4am to ensure I never experience any slowdowns on my network when using the computer.

In addition to the above, whenever I'm working on an important document, I keep my own revisions. I mean how hard is it to have say a file called "resume" and when making a change, save as "resume-2".."resume-3"..etc? I could use the Vista previous version function to restore documents to a previous state but I've never needed it because its part of my process and its not any extra work.

Also the cost of what I've done is not high. My 'server' was a free computer given to me as it was obsolete. I added a $25 SATA controller, $13 USB 2.0 controller, $99 external HD, 2x $65 for the 250GB SATA drives. So the data redundancy and storage and all ended up being about $260 or so to implement. Power consumption is less than 100W so its not adding a huge drain. I dont even have a keyboard and mouse connected to the box. Just sits tucked out of the way and if I need, I can remote desktop into it.


So being old and miserable is the position you hold at Macrumors correct?

mkrishnan
Oct 14, 2007, 08:38 AM
I highly doubt you can boot from a TM backup since it's really just a database. Apparently what can be done is to pop in the Leopard Disc and choose to restore from a TM BUD. And if that's the case, who needs CCC or SD?

Okay, that's different from what I read. If you can restore using TM directly from the install DVD without having to first install OS X, that's fine with me. :)

woodsie
Oct 16, 2007, 08:41 AM
Time to buy a new external HDD

But the questions is, how big do we need?:confused:

woodsie
Oct 16, 2007, 08:47 AM
Time machine is great and it will stop all of the threads about I lost 3 days of work because I was too ******* dumb to save it.


people will still lose stuff if they forget to attached the back up drive.

handotr
Nov 1, 2007, 11:51 AM
I'm a newbie and have a question about HFS+ & Time Machine. I understand that I cannot use an HFS+ formatted drive on a windows machine but if I ever wanted to use Time Machine files on a windows machine, ie. word documents and music files, could I do it ? Maybe somehow transfer those files to another mac, reformat a new drive to fat 32 and copy the files over to a new drive. If I couldn't, I would have to reconsider even using time machine.:confused: