2 Replies Latest reply: Feb 24, 2009 9:54 PM by Camelot
ÜberMacHead Level 3 Level 3 (655 points)
I have a Mac mini running 10.5 Server that operates as my home server.

Is there any way to assign two separate hard drives as being available Time Machine network backup drives? IOW, if I had six Macs on my network and I wanted three of them to back up to Time Machine Drive #1 and the other three to back up to Time Machine Drive #2, is this possible? If so, how? It seems like Time Machine Server will only allow me to assign one drive as a network backup volume.

24" iMac 2.8GHz 4GB/320GB, Mac OS X (10.5.6), Accessories by Apple, Matias, Microsoft, Epson, Dymo, Sony and others. w00t!
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (262,780 points)
    OK, here's the deal with TM. First is to know to what TM will backup:

    Requirements to use Time Machine

    Time Machine is only available with Leopard (10.5.x)

    1. External FireWire or USB 2.0 drive
    2. Time Capsule
    3. Drive shared by a Mac running 10.5 or later using File Sharing
    4. Drive shared by a Mac running 10.5 Server
    5. SAN volume managed by Apple's Xsan file system

    A TM drive must be partitioned with either APM (PPC) or GUID (Intel) and formatted Mac OS Extended (Journaled.)

    Second, because TM is an incremental archival backup system the backup drive should be at least twice the capacity of the total capacities of the drives it backs up.

    Now, each Mac on your network can use TM to backup their computer to a drive selected in the TM preferences on their computer. Multiple machines can backup to a single TM backup drive. TM will create separate backup folders on the target drive for each computer. Each computer needs to have a unique Computer Name (Sharing preference.)

    Note that this is set up on each computer on your network, not through the server itself. As far as I'm aware TM only backs up to one drive. Thus, each networked computer can backup to a drive. The server on the other hand has its own separate TM backup.

    You will need to manage the exclusion list to minimize space usage on the backup drives. Most likely you would want to have each client machine only backing up a Home folder. I would set up a /Home/Applications/ folder on each client machine exclusively for third-party user applications unless all applications are installed exclusively on the server.
  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
    If you're running Mac OS X Server then you can use Server Admin to create multiple share points. Each share point can be flagged as 'Enable as a Time Machine destination' and it is this flag that allows remote clients to backup to the sharepoint via Time Machine.

    Since you can create multiple sharepoints you can create one for each external drive. Then the control of which clients backup where is based on which volume you mount - if you mount External #1 and setup Time Machine then that client will backup to that disk while another client mounts External #2 and uses that for its backups.