- Apple confirmed it: no backing up with Time Machine over the drives you have connected via USB to your Airport Extreme. Also, no Time Machine backups to SMB shares — AFP network shares only. Again, yes, Time Machine can back up over the network, but ONLY to AFP shares, ok?
- When plugging in a disk Time Machine does its song and dance, but what we wanted to know is whether it requires you dedicate that disk for backup use exclusively. The answer: it doesn’t, you can go on using your external drive’s free space as you please, but Time Machine will also take advantage of selected disks for backup. And no, if it’s an HFS-formatted disk you’re plugging in, it won’t ask you to format it.
Walt Mossberg states:
- While Time Machine can perform backups over a network, the backup destination can only be a hard disk connected to a Mac running Leopard.
So the notion that Apple just makes everything work and is intuitive to the user without having any advanced computer knowledge or tweaking is bogus, especially in this case. The truth is users have limited backup functionality with Time Machine and will be frustrated when it doesn’t backup their external drives, non-AFP formated shares, or files from networked pre-Leopard OS X machines as some might expect it will.
With all that being said, Time Machine, in my opinion, is still pretty cool and very innovative in terms of its user interface. So, if your more concerned about backing up your local machine than files on a mixed PC or OS X environment, then you’ll be more than pleased with this new addition.
Aside: That gets me thinking…. [RANT] It smells of a forced upgrade path to use *new* features. It’s not that Apple couldn’t support older versions of OS X since it already supports AFP, they chose not to do it that way so you would upgrade your machine to their latest $129 OS. And if you couldn’t upgrade your OS, due to (in their eyes) sub-par system hardware, you would have to go buy a new machine. Ah, isn’t life grand (at least for Apple’s bottom line)?
UPDATE: I updated the “rant” with a link to show that AFP has been supported on OS X for a while. If Time Machine makes use of a point upgrade of the current AFP protocol, why not roll out the upgrade to pre-Leopard releases so a newer Mac loaded with Time Machine can scan and backup those?
Filed in: Software