Do you have a Mac or MacBook that doesn’t have backups? What would you do if you lost all the data on your hard drive?
Enter the Perfect Time Machine Server! This lightweight Linux distribution will act as a network Time Machine Server and back up your Mac. This Linux is meant to run on its own computer with no maintenance or hassle. You can even run it inside a Virtual Machine if that suits you. It’s also FREE!
Here I am releasing the first version of my Perfect Time Machine Server! This Linux distribution comes with all the software needed to act as a server for your Mac. It doesn’t have a GUI interface and only runs on the command line. All the steps are easily explained on the introduction screen, so don’t worry if you’re not good at using Linux. You should have a large hard drive to store backups. About 500 gigs will be fine. If your Mac has a large hard drive, you will need to account for that with your backups disk. By default the Perfect Time Machine will use this entire drive for backups. Below you will find the .ISO or virtual machine download.
If you’re not sure which version to use, go with the ISO version. Burn it to a CD using a slower burning speed.
- Insert CD into your computer and boot.
- Login using the username “root”, and password “timemachine”. Type “./help” for instructions or keep reading.
- Type “yast” and choose “Miscellanous”. Press tab to highlight “Live Installer” and press enter. Follow the instructions. Reboot.
- From your Mac, open a terminal. (Press Command+Space, then type Terminal) Inside the terminal type: “defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1″
- From your Mac, click on the desktop. Press Command+K. Type in the following, but using the ip of your server: “afp://192.168.1.100″ If you don’t know the ip of your Time Machine Server, type “./help” from the command line. Use the username “tux” and password “linux”
- Now that you have connected to the Server, you need to configure Time Machine. Go to System Preferences, and choose Time Machine. Click “Select Disk” and choose the time machine volume.
- All done! Your Mac will start backing up automatically.
- You will probably want to keep the Time Machine at a fixed IP. To do this, type “Yast” and select “Network Devices” and then choose “Network Settings”. When the page loads press the right arrow key twice. This takes you to the “routing tab” from which you can put in your router’s address. Now tab back to the top and press left twice to get back to Overview. Tab to Edit, and choose “Statically assigned IP Address”. Fill in an fixed IP. You can probably use “255.255.255.0″ for the subnet mask. You can also choose a hostname here.
- To configure where backups are stored, edit the symlink in the home directory by typing “nano AppleVolumes.default”. The very last line is an entry for the default share, which is /macbackups Change this line to backup to a different location.
- If you have two hard drives, one large and one small, you can still install the Time Machine server. In the installer, mount the larger drive at the mountpoint /macbackups. You can also use a different mount point if you want, just be sure to change the share as.