Can time machine works with windows network drive?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Amjad, Dec 30, 2007.

  1. Amjad macrumors newbie

    Jul 10, 2006
    Hi. I really love Time machine and I'm using it on my internal drive. I know it not the best way to secure data. That why I'm planning to buy external hard drive. I read time machine and backup data on network drive, running leopard.

    So, I'm wondering is there any way to setup time machine to backup my data on network hard drive running Windows XP. I use my macbook with my windows desktop PC for internet and sharing file. It would be great if time machine can backup data on my windows desktop network hard drive.

  2. baraodeibicui macrumors newbie

    Jan 22, 2008
    Windows network


    Have the exact same question. Have a network set up here at home with a PC running Windows XP acting as a backup server.

    Was wondering if I could use its HD (or a part of it) as back up disk for Time Machine.

  3. bacaramac macrumors 65816


    Dec 29, 2007
    Not that I know of right now, but hopefully soon so I don't have to run the apple backup software every night automatically for my external drives.
  4. samh004 macrumors 68020


    Mar 1, 2004
    Time Machine requires the disk to be formatted as HFS+ currently as far as I'm aware, this would not be the case on an XP server so the answer would probably be no for now.
  5. cmaier macrumors G4

    Jul 25, 2007
    Yes, you can. I use my infrant NAS, visible on the network as a CIFS share, for this purpose. It does not have to be HFS+ formatted. Time machine creates a big disk image file and stores it on that drive when the drive isn't HFS+. Then each time it backs up it mounts the image.

    You do need to type a terminal command once to get time machine to recognize "unsupported" volumes, but after that it runs fine. Search the board for how to do this or wait until the OS update that supposedly officially supports network drives).
  6. timemachines macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2009
    Use Windows xp, nt, 2k, vista pc´s disks partitions for mac os x timemachine

    To use a win xp (or other windows os´s) machines drive for time machine it´s nearly simple

    1. First you prepare your win pc to read and write on hfs+ volumes,

    a, for that you can use apps like macdrive (commercial):cool: or maybe else ones I don´t know. Be sure about "READ and WRITE" and that its not just an os external explorer tool, but it embedds the drive for the whole win system. Okay!?!

    b, you got to format a partition or the whole drive with some tool (e.g. macdrive)to the exact same hfs+ system you use on your mac os volume, that means if you have journaled and case sensitivity on your mac, you choose this points for the formatting of the backup volume.

    c, sharing the directory on the network.:eek:

    2. Now take your mac :apple: and open the terminal (utilities)(Dienstprogramme)
    and type or copy this:

    defaults write TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

    ...and press enter...

    now choose in time machine your wanted drive and have fun with something else.
    If there is still something not clear, please don´t use computers without a touchsrceen:D, or search

  7. johnwin macrumors 6502


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hull, UK
    @timemachines How do I determine the exact format of my Leopard drive? eg "journalled and case sensitivity"? Can I find this out from 'About this Mac'?
  8. timemachines macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2009
    you´re joking.

    In finder, you do a right click ( or a tow finger tap ) on your disk where the
    operating system of mac is located,
    that means in the usual case ( and if you ask this, you have a usual case)
    in the right pane of the finder it is the first device that appers.
    With the right click you get a menu, where you can click on some like "information" or "details" (sorry, i run the german version) about this device. there it is written.

    it looks like

    "format: Mac OS Extended (case sensitivity and journaled)"
    "format: Mac OS Extended (journaled)
    and so on

    IMPORTANT! "Mac OS Extended" means "HFS+" , the rest of it (case...) are options you can choose when formatting.

    And now MOST IMPORTANT! do a little googeling if any questions left. All I know (except about life) I found there.
    so good luck and
    bye bye
  9. johnwin macrumors 6502


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hull, UK

    no I was not joking!

    thanks for your help.

  10. SHIFTLife macrumors 6502

    Jul 24, 2008
    You know, for someone who seems so cocky about how intelligent he thinks he is, you'd think you'd be a bit smarter about your instructions. This whole step is entirely unnecessary:

    It is not necessary for the drive to be HFS+ formatted. This is just as easily done by simply creating a folder on your Windows machine and sharing it. Then, using your Mac, run this command at the terminal:

    defaults write TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1
    Then, connect to the shared directory by using smb://computername/sharename in the "Connect to Server..." box and select that drive in Time Machine.

    Again, absolutely no need to use an HFS+ formatted drive.
  11. johnwin macrumors 6502


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hull, UK
    Hi SHIFTLife,

    Can you please explain

    "Then, connect to the shared directory by using smb://computername/sharename in the "Connect to Server..." box and select that drive in Time Machine."

    to me? How do I get the the shared directory? The only way I now is via the left hand pane of Finder

    Sorry to be such a nube
  12. SHIFTLife macrumors 6502

    Jul 24, 2008
    No problem.

    Do you already have a folder shared on your Windows machine? I'm assuming that's what you're trying to achieve.

    1. From Finder, click the Go menu and choose "Connect to Server...", or alternately, hit Command - K on your keyboard.
    2. In the "Server Address" box, type smb://servername/sharename, replacing servername with the network name of your Windows computer and sharename with the share name of the shared folder.
    3. Optionally, click the + to the right of the server address box to add it to your list of favorites below.
    4. Click Connect. You will be prompted for a username and password. Enter a username and password that exists on your Windows computer, and that has sufficient privileges to the shared folder.

    Now you have a connection to the shared folder.

    Make sure you have run the following command in the terminal window:
    defaults write TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1
    Keep in mind that Apple may have disabled this feature for a good reason. I make no claims to the reliability of using unsupported network volumes, and any resulting data loss is your own responsibility :) That said, I have yet to have any problems using it this way.
  13. johnwin macrumors 6502


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hull, UK
    Thanks ShiftLIFE.

    I'm still having issues with TM - 'cannot create image'

    I'm trying to back-up over WiFi to a WD WorldBook. I've read elsewhere that if I backup over Ethernet the first time then I can do all others over WiFi.

    I'll try this over the w/end

    Thanks again for your help.
  14. markfc macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2006
    Prestatyn, Wales, UK
    I've shared a folder of one of our Windows NAS Boxes.

    I connected using connect to server and confirmed I can create files using my username and password.

    I've run the terminal command and setup time machine to back up to the drive but I get The backup disk image could not be created.

    Where do I start looking to fix this?
  15. johnwin macrumors 6502


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hull, UK
    @markfc - same for me. Always get the 'disk image could not be created' message. And it seems that even if I get an image onto a NAS it will not be bootable.

    So I caved today and bought a 320gb enternal hard drive to back-up to rather than my NAS. I think this will be better in the long run. I intend to buy another next week and I'll rotate them between work and office so I have on-site and off-site backups at all time.
  16. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
  17. snowmoon macrumors 6502a


    Oct 6, 2005
    Albany, NY
    I have used samba ( windows protocol ) and I can tell you it's a PITA because it's a matter of when it will self-destruct, not if.

    10.5.0-10.5.5 got progressively worse and now with 10.5.6 I would only even try it on a fixed desktop system with ethernet networking. The only TM filesharing that I have seen to be stable at this point is netatalk with some TM patches applied.

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