Time Machine best practice

vinny83
New Contributor III

Hey Everyone,

A number of our critical engineers have asked if its possible to introduce network Time Machine backups; so that if anything happens to their MacBooks (breakage, theft, etc) they are able to borrow a loan machine and get running again quickly.

I've done some initial proof of concept testing; using a 2010 Mac Pro running OS X 10.10.5 Server; loaded with hard drives and then I shared its local storage via the Time Machine service - this worked a treat from an AD security/permissions and speed point of view. However, our core Mac servers are Mac Minis in our server room. I thought, could we use a network volume mounted to the Mac Mini and shared via Server.app's Time Machine feature?

Alternatively, would it be better if each Mac client mounted the Time Machine volume from the network and ran their own backups via their Time Machine clients. I had a quick look if this was doable but didn't get very far as I couldn't see the Time Machine share in my MacBook's Time Machine client. Also, I have seen references to changing whether OS X can use "unsupported network volumes". I'm not keen on "fudging" a workaround to make it work, I'd like to have an "enterprise" type solution that's supportable.

Ideas and help would be most welcome!

Info:
Core JSS: Windows Server 2008 R2 running JSS 9.82 (VM)
Mac Minis running OS X 10.10.5 Server / Used primarily for NetBoot & Caching services
Clients: OS X 10.9.5 to 10.10+ (no El Capitan yet)
Storage: EMC Isilon (sharing volumes primarily via SMB)
Time Machine Volume: smb://isilon.domain/timemachine$

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

bpavlov
Honored Contributor

I'm not well versed but there was a recent question about this on the MacEnterprise mailing list (and maybe even @rtrouton spoke on this). In short, use Time Machine as personal individual backup tool. Don't try to use it as an enterprise backup tool.

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4 REPLIES 4

randy
New Contributor

You can certainly use a NAS to hold your time machine back-ups. At one point in a deployment we had less than ~200 machines and used a few Promise Pegasus RAID hooked up to a Mac Mini with encrypted back-ups and it seemed to work good enough for us and did not notice a lot of pain in getting back-ups done, etc.

Other option you may want to consider and look into especially for Enterprise is Crash Plan - you can host locally or remotely - they have a great rapport with JAMF and we switched to them for managing back ups.

bpavlov
Honored Contributor

I'm not well versed but there was a recent question about this on the MacEnterprise mailing list (and maybe even @rtrouton spoke on this). In short, use Time Machine as personal individual backup tool. Don't try to use it as an enterprise backup tool.

View solution in original post

vinny83
New Contributor III

Thanks for the replies guys.

@randy, I use CrashPlan for home use and works great. I'll have a look around for more info.

GabeShack
Valued Contributor II

Here is how we have started using Time Machine to back up our Admin's user accounts using a qnap and this script:
https://jamfnation.jamfsoftware.com/discussion.html?id=18257

Gabe Shackney
Princeton Public Schools

Gabe Shackney
Princeton Public Schools