Time Machine w/o HFS+???

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by dlb253, Jun 26, 2012.

  1. dlb253 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #1
    I'm delving into the realm of NAS for file storage & backup. I think I've narrowed it down to two solutions:
    • Simple NAS (WD My Book Live)
    • Nas Enclosure (Synology DS-212j)
    I think I like the idea of the NAS enclosure as it allows for multiple bays, RAID config, and potential for future upgrades.

    My question is - I thought Time Machine required the backup drive to be HFS+ format? Reading through some Synology forums, it appears HFS+ isn't supported. So how do they claim compatibility with TM?

    Also, in Appple.com forums I've heard several horror stories of people backing to 3rd party drives, then not be able to recover from them when needed. Anyone have any real experience with either of these drives + restoring from TM?

    Thanks,
    DB
     
  2. waw74 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    #2
    once a drive is shared on the network it's format doesn't matter. the RAID box talks to the drive and "translates" it for network sharing, so your computer never sees the format of the disk
     
  3. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #3
    To elaborate on waw74's post, the DS-212j doesn't support HFS+ but it does support AFP networking protocol which is what's required for Time Machine over network. The HFS+ requirement is for drives connected directly to the computer.

    I've heard nothing but great things about the Synology line. The support may be broken from time to time by Apple updates, but the Synology team is usually quick to release firmware that fixes it again.

    I own a Time Capsule, and with the experience and knowledge I have now as opposed to when I first bought it, I would opt for a Synology product now.
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #4
    The format still matters, I had a seagate nas unit, which advertised AFP support but I was unable to use it for my Aperture library because Aperture stated the file format was incompatible. So either the AFP implementation was suspect or the file format of the drive caused the problem.

    I opted for the QNAP device, but Synology has been very well reviewed here and give the features it provides, recommend that unit
     
  5. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #5
    Ok, so if you're going through AFP protocol to back up, then I assume you have do do the same to restore?

    I imagine this is the reason people have had issues with restoring from 3rd party NAS servers?
    http://forum.synology.com/enu/viewtopic.php?f=159&t=49914

    I'd hate to buy a network drive, only to have it incapable of wireless backup.
     
  6. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #6
    I wasn't aware of the wireless issues with the Synology products. Given that information I'd go with another NAS that would have better support if you want to use Time Machine.

    I've read about people that backed up wirelessly to a USB HDD connected to an AEBS and were able to restore via USB instead, but I'm not sure if that'll work with a NAS unit. I also doubt that it has anything to do with the issues that those users in that thread are experiencing.

    In the end though, the only official way to back up using Time Machine via NAS is the Time Capsule, so any solution that works now has a chance of failure in the future, and if the manufacturer decides to no longer support it then you're out of luck.

    The safest thing to do if using a third party NAS would be to use a third party backup utility.
     
  7. marzer macrumors 65816

    marzer

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #7
    File format of the physical NAS drive does not matter, it was probably the AFP implementation. A client has no idea of the underlying file format of the NAS device. All file operations between the client and host take place at a logical level.
     
  8. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #8
    We've been backing (Lion) up via WiFi - TM to our DS212j (and previously 110j) for ages. No problem.
     
  9. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #9
    Have you ever tried restoring from it? Not arguing, just wondering.
     
  10. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #10
    Yes. No problem. Did it with three MacBooks on the older DS110j and once on the DS212j. For the restores I went with wired Ethernet.

    That said, I'm using a Netgear WNDR3700 (5GHz WiFi, factory firmware) and all works great. I've had issues when using a D-Link DIR-601 (rubbish router with serious flaws, with or without dd-wrt) and sporadic grief with a Cisco M10 Valet on on a friends setup.
     
  11. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #11
    Normally I'd agree with you, but the error I got: "The library could not open because the file system of the Library's volume is unsupported" leads me to think its not AFP but the actual file format.
     

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