new airport extreme 802.11n base station, can it do timemachine backups w/ usb drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by 212rikanmofo, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. 212rikanmofo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    #1
    I plan on purchasing one of these routers. But will it be possible for it to use timemachine with it using a usb attached ext HD to it or no?

    Also how does the airdisk work? well? I am interested in it because of the 3 lan gigabit ethernet ports.

    Was planning to wire my ps3, xbox360 and powermac g5 desktop to it. Since i xfer a lot of files back n forth and stream media.

    My old round airport 802.11g is getting old too.
     
  2. kornyboy macrumors 68000

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    Sep 27, 2004
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    Knoxville, TN (USA)
    #2
    Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5F136 Safari/525.20)

    Time machine backups were originally suppose to work with it. Steve Jobs even states in a keynote that it would work but since the release of leopard it hasn't really worked and Apple has kind of swept the issue under the rug with Time Capsule. I think it was a bit silly for them to do this since many people purchased the Airport Extreme base station and an external HD with the intent of doing exactly what you are talking about. These people were a bit disappointed when leopard came out and it didn't work.
     
  3. 212rikanmofo thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 31, 2003
    #3
    that sucks, well if i get a timecapsule, will you be able to update the HD in it? or does that void warranty?
     
  4. Beau10 macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 6, 2008
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    Downtown San Diego
    #4
    Apple actually added this in a March AEBS update.

    I've been using AEBS w/ USB drive for Time Machine backups since I bought my MBP in April. It was somewhat spotty in operation at first (would have to remount many times after sleeping, corrupted the volume once, etc), but has been absolutely rock solid since the last AEBS update a few months ago. Truly set it and forget it. I don't believe Apple 'officially' supports it though - ie. you can't use Apple Care to resolve any issues you have.
     
  5. skorpien macrumors 68020

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #5
    Beau10 is correct. And since subsequent firmware updates have not disabled it as of yet (even improved it as in Beau10's case), I'd say it's a safe bet that Apple won't remove it anytime soon.

    As for your Time Capsule HDD question, it's possible and others have done it, but yes it does void your warranty.
     
  6. BLACK MAC macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2007
    #6
    I have AEBS with firmware 7.3.2. How do I get my external hard drive (western digital my book)? Each time I do this it won't work. anyone have set by step instructions on how to do this? I am so lost on this. Please help!
     
  7. Beau10 macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 6, 2008
    Location:
    Downtown San Diego
    #7
    This is what I recall doing

    1) Hook up drive directly to MBP and setup with Time Machine. Backup.
    2) Move drive to AEBS.
    3) Airport Disk Utility doesn't work for me. I have to mount the drive by clicking on the AEBS in the finder, then selecting the Time Machine volume.
    4) Once mounted, you can open Time Machine and select the volume again through that. Test backup, if successful you should be good to go.

    Note that I'm not sure if #1 is necessary, but it's highly recommended as your first backup can take forever.
     
  8. BLACK MAC macrumors 6502

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    Feb 9, 2007
    #8

    Well right now I currently back up with the USB connected to my macbook. So it seems like all I have to do is remove the cable and plug it into the ABES? Since I have been backing up with my macbook, there is no need to start over with a clean back up?
     
  9. skorpien macrumors 68020

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #9
    Yes there is a need to start over. Time Machine won't back up the same to a connected HDD as it will to a networked HDD (ie, TC; USB HDD connected to AEBS/TC). Where as it copies the files directly when the HDD is connected to the computer, it will create a sparsebundle archive when using a networked drive. So in other words, you'll need a new backup.

    Best thing to do is make sure that your external is formated HFS+ (Mac OS Extended Journaled) and connect it to the USB port of the AEBS. Then open up AirPort Utility > Manual Setup > Disks and ensure that your HDD shows up in that list. Then click on the File Sharing tab and make sure that file sharing is enabled. Once that's done (might need to restart AEBS to save settings), then go into Time Machine prefs and select your HDD from the list. Some things to keep in mind, keep the AEBS name and HDD name short (up to 8 characters, no spaces or apostrophes) if you're having trouble mounting it/backing up to it.

    They recommend completing your first backup via ethernet (this is where you're getting confused previously) due to the extremely slow speeds of wireless for the first backup. It's also more reliable and you risk less chance of a corrupt initial backup. Once that is completed, you can disconnect the ethernet from the AEBS and connect wirelessly for subsequent backups. Hope this helps.
     
  10. BLACK MAC macrumors 6502

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    Feb 9, 2007
    #10
    I want to thank you all for your help. I appreciate it and hopefully this works. Do you think the backups with ABES and external HD are going to be faster or slower then Time Capsule? Also can you use multiple Macbooks with the ABES backup method?
     
  11. skorpien macrumors 68020

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #11
    I have no experience first hand but I would wager that the speeds are relatively the same between the two (that is if they utilize the same USB controllers). As well, I'm pretty sure that multiple machines can back up to an AEBS HDD from what I've read in these forums. Since you already have the equipment, I say try it and see if it'll work. Then you'll know if you really need a TC (though I doubt you will). Just make sure to back up the drive in case you need those TM backups.
     
  12. BLACK MAC macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2007
    #12
    OK. I tired all the steps you guys mentioned, and still wont work. It must be not able for me. I can see the disk in Airport Utlity, I can add and delete files in finder, but it won't back up at all. Any ideas?
     
  13. skorpien macrumors 68020

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #13
    Did you open Time Machine preferences and add the HDD as a backup volume? Or does it even show up for you as a possible backup volume? If not, then there may be other issues that are preventing you from doing so. As you have the latest firmware on your AEBS, I can't really provide much more troubleshooting.

    Also, I'm assuming you have Mac OSX 10.5 (Leopard) installed, as previous versions won't have Time Machine. Yes I know, basic question, but I have run across people wondering why Time Capsule won't work with a system running Tiger.

    BTW, here's an Apple Discussions thread about somebody experiencing similar issues. Maybe this will have a solution:
    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=7628924
     
  14. scottie10014 macrumors newbie

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    Jan 15, 2008
    #14
    Short Name for HD Helps a LOT

    I couldn't get Time Machine to recognized my external OWC HD as an AirPort Disk. Then I renamed it from a 15 character name with spaces, etc. to just "OwcHD" and Time Machine found it right away. I then deleted the old Time Machine backup I did via USB directly to my Owc HD and started over using Ethernet. In the middle of backing up using this method. So far so good.
     

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