Time Machine Backups to Server 2012 Essentials

Discussion in 'OS X Mavericks (10.9)' started by bmouthboyo, Apr 28, 2014.

  1. bmouthboyo macrumors member

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    Feb 4, 2013
    #1
    Hi Guys,

    I am aware from my research that it is possible with some tweeking to get my time machine backups for my macbook air and my wifes imac to use my new HPN54L micro server which is running on Server 2012 Essentials R2.

    I am new to this server stuff so still very much learning but intend to use a 3TB HDD exclusively for OSX Time MAchine backups, a personal Network folder each for bits and bobs, and a shared Folder for Software etc we both might need access to.

    My question is, can I format the HDD's as windows server will see fit (not sure what that would be? FAT32? NTFS?) or will I need to partition the HDD and format the Time Machine partition as something TM wants like SMB or APF (no idea what these are TBH).

    Furthermore will I have issues with Windows based OS and OSX based both using network folders. I remember having to install software on my MAC or PC to be able to share a HDD.

    Also if I had issues with my MAC will I be able to restore from the network backup? Or would I need to transfer the backups to a HDD and plug that into a USB on the mac?

    Sorry for all the questions, just about to install my 3x 3TB HDD's and want to ensure I set them up and format correctly.
     
  2. bmouthboyo thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 4, 2013
    #2
    A little more research has shown that Mavericks uses SMB2 which is what Microsoft uses so should be fine. My only question really is is it wise to create a partition on my 3TB HDD dedicated to Time Capsule backups or can I just use a dedicated shared folder?
     
  3. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #3
    Just format the drive to whatever the native format is for the server software. Since the drive is networked, OS X won't care about the format.

    Networked Time Machine backups are stored inside a sparse bundle file that is sort of like a self contained ZIP file of sorts that creates the required OS X file system inside the bundle.

    The problem I see here is a networked Time Machine backup needs a server that supports the Apple Filing Protocol (AFP) to work properly. I don't know if your server supports AFP?
     
  4. bmouthboyo thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 4, 2013
    #4
    I am not sure if it will support AFP also. Is this just needed in the event of needing to do a full restore from the network drive? If so could I transfer the sparse bundle to a USB drive and restore locally?
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #5
    No, Time Machine needs AFP to actually make the backup. I have seen articles with workarounds using SMB, but it is unstable.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #6
    AFP is what's needed, Apple may be moving away from that and using SMB2 moe and more but at this point Time Machine relies on AFP
     
  7. melman101 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    #7
    Just to chime in here, this is a terrible idea.

    I ran with it for a while, using the latest version. Everytime I actually needed it, it broke, or it would force me to complete a new backup every few weeks or something. Super unreliable.

    I went out and bought a Time Capsule and have had 0 issues since then.
     
  8. bmouthboyo, Apr 30, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2014

    bmouthboyo thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 4, 2013
    #8
    I am pretty gutted to be honest, yet another issue caused by OSX. Unbelievable how incompatible these Apple devices are with industry standard technology. Oh unless you buy their premium priced products.

    I get mixed answers regarding time machine to windows shared drives, on some sites it states there are work arounds

    http://lifehacker.com/5691649/an-ea...ne-to-back-up-to-a-networked-windows-computer

    http://www.berserkcomputers.co.uk/save-time-machine-backups-to-a-network-share-on-another-computer/


    but others say no. Frustrating having this large home server space and my iMac slapped there like a lemon not able to use it efficiently, nice one Apple. More like Plum...
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #9
    I don't believe you can use TM with a windows share. Its easy enough to test, by trying to set up TM. If it doesn't let you select the share, then you have your answer.

    FWIW, I got a NAS that was setup without AFP support and I was unable to use it for TM, so I returned it.

    As for your comment on industry wide compatibility. Macs market segment is not the enterprise so its ability to fully integrate into a Microsoft network can be problematic. Though its gotten better. Macs are more of a consumer product that as some connectivity to AD, servers and exchange but its strong point is the consumer.
     
  10. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #10
    Those work arounds do work, but they are not stable. Don't trust your backups to this IMO. Time Machine is designed to use AFP, and without it will be unreliable.

    You could use the utility Carbon Copy Cloner to backup to a sparse bundle image on your networked drive. It does not require AFP. Here are instructions.
     

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