Shane Duffy

Archive for the ‘backup’ Category

This is a quick follow up post to my earlier one about creating timemachine backups on a network share.

A good tip/trick for anyone who has setup backups to a network share is to disable spotlight from indexing this volume as it slows down the backup process a lot. This can easily be disabled by going to the spotlight panel in system preferences.

To avoid this slow down, as soon as the share is mounted for the backup process go to Spotlight’s Privacy panel in System Preferences. Use the ‘+’ button at the bottom, select your backup share, and Spotlight will then ignore it. If Spotlight has already started indexing it, it should immediately stop and the backup will speed up.


The majority of us don’t backup on a regular basis. It usually isn’t until we lose a bunch of critical data that the light bulb turns on and we start backing up for maybe a week or two and then we stop. Apple’s new Leopard operating system contains Time Machine to fix that problem. Time Machine runs in the background, backing up your entire hard drive without you having to remember to manually run a backup.

This was one of the niceties which excited me about upgrading to Leopard; however I was somewhat disappointed to learn after upgrading, that Time Machine would only backup to another physically attached hard drive. In my situation I primarily like to place my backups in a remote location such as a networked server. I work of a laptop, so my physical working location is always changing and I’m not going to carry an external drive with me all the time. Luckily, after a few hours of research I found a nice tweak to let me use our office network servers as my backup location.

Here is how you do it:

Obviously you need to be running Leopard and you’ll need a network share which is larger or equal to your hard drive in your Mac. In my case these shares are in SMB and AFP.

1. Go into Applications / Utilities and open up terminal
2. Copy and paste this command into terminal (all on one line)

defaults write TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

3. Hit enter / return
4. Mount your network share, in my case my share is off our server called INAS1 and my share is called User-Backups
5. Go to System Preferences and open Time Machine
6. Click on Change Disk
7. Select the share you wish to backup to, I’ve selected User-Backups
6. That’s it, you’re done

Wait up to 15 minutes and you should be set. To verify it is working open up your network share in Finder and you should see a file which is named [your computer name] [your MAC address].sparsebundle

Be sure you post any comments or questions about this method.

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