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  1. #16
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    Thanks for that link Patrick. For the benefit of those following this thread be aware that Readyshare is the name that Netgear uses for their file sharing setup. It may or may not be under the same name for other manufacturers. Also, there are many routers that do not support attaching a USB drive to it. Even if the port is there it may only work for other kinds of devices (printer sharing for example).
    Last edited by Slydude; 07-21-2019 at 09:45 PM.
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  2. #17
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Also, there are many routers that do not support attaching a USB drive to it. Even if the port is there it may only work for other kinds of devices (printer sharing for example).

    A very good valid point Sly and often overlooked or not understood. And who reads the specs or any owners manual if one is even included.???



    - Patrick
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  3. #18
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    If you read the thread and what Paul said in Posts 1, 5, 9, and 12, he can attach the drive through the TP-Link router, and can read/write to it as a drive, it is just that for some reason TimeMachine cannot see/use it for backups. So that is not the issue, that the router doesn't support attaching the drive. It does, it just can't be used for TM for some reason. Probably because of the internals of the router not playing well with what TM expects.

    For Paul, I wonder if you could use the drive as a CCC target? Do you have CCC or SuperDuper?
    Jake

  4. #19
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    You're right Jake. I posted that comment mainly because there are some who may not realize that some USB ports are not intended for drive use.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
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  5. #20
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Update From TP-Link-
    I wrote & asked why Time Machine is not a choice when the instructions show a picture of the page where Time Machine is selectable.
    They wrote back and said the Archer C7 is NOT compatible with Time Machine. So this might be the end of the adventure.

    But, my mind can't help wonder why Time Machine does not see the drive as a disk- only as a NAS? Finder doesn't either.

    Thanks Jake for the Netgear instructional link.
    It looked promising when I got to the part about "If Time Machine can't see the drive". Sadly, no luck following that step.

    I tried getting Super Duper to use the drive & it can't see it. Next, since it is still on my computer, I tried getting CrashPlan to use it. No luck. It can't see it either.

    I'm starting to wonder if I skipped a giant step:
    I'm not sure how to explain this, so I'll try. Is it possible that I have to "install" a disk on the sdb1 or turn it into a disk?

    It was formatted Extended Journaled in Disk Utility

    Finder's Sidebar shows the attached USB drive as "tplinkwifi.net" which is the url for the router's configuration page. It is ejectable just like a directly attached external drive.

    Double-Clicking it opens a Finder window that has sdb1 in it. Opening sdb1 allows me to drag & drop files back and forth into the Finder window. Dragging a file straight to the sidebar tplinkwifi.net does not work. (I can drag to other attached externals, but they are actual drives.)

    The Desktop shows an icon for sdb. Dragging a file straight to the sdb1 icon on the desktop does work.

    Is it possible that sdb1 must be made into a real disk?
    I've seen web pages showing how to use a USB as NAS and many of them show a normally named drive as the example. Mine absolutely does not have the name I gave it when I formatted it with Disk Utility. But, if I plug it directly into the computer, the name I gave it is used.

    I think I am getting confused about the difference between sdb1 and a disk drive.

    I apologize, but my brain can't figure out a better way to explain this. Some photos are attached.

    I might be chasing an impossible dream, or chasing something that is not stable to use- but it will be interesting to make it work.

    Thanks Again for helping with this interesting situation.
    Paul
    PS: I really have to stop thinking so much. I just thought- "Hmmm.. I wonder if there is an external drive that can connect to one of the router's ethernet ports?"
    Oh Yeah- They call that a computer!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #21
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    The tplinkwifi.net is just a network address, not a drive address or drive. In that network is a drive called sdb1, and that is the drive you have attached. You can't move files to tplinkwifi.net because that is not a destination, but a collection of potential destinations. If you could hook multiple drives to the TP-link you would still see ONE tplinkwifi.net, but more than one sdb# drives.

    Does that help? Are you trying to get TM to use tplinkwifi.net? IF so, that may be why it's not working, it's not a drive.
    Jake

  7. #22
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Thanks Jake for your good explanation.
    I've been trying to use sda1 as the drive for Time Machine. (It's not always called sda1, Sometimes it shows up as sdb1 or similar when I connect to server. Beats me why.)

    Today, I tried connecting the drive directly to the computer's USB port and letting Time Machine complete a backup to it. The disk name is 120GB USB.
    Next, I ejected the drive and connected it to the router.
    I mounted it with Go -Connect To Server.
    The Finder shows sda1. The router does not show 120GB USB. The Finder window for the sda1 drive also does not show 120GB USB.
    I ran a Time Machine backup and 120GB USB, although on TM's list, was skipped while attached to the router.
    This tells me Time Machine can't see the 120GB USB drive when it is connected to the router.

    Next, I removed 120GB USB from Time Machine's list. Reconnected the disk to the router to see if Time Machine could then find it in Select Disk. No luck.

    I am starting to think that the sda1 has to have a "disk" on it so Time Machine can find and use it. But I am totally lost how to do this- if it is even possible.

  8. #23
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Maybe a bit of a primer on how a NAS works. Basically, the NAS sits in the network and offers a protocol to other networked devices to attach to it. The format of the hardware is invisible to the network, as that is handled by the NAS itself. Network users who want to use the storage use the protocol from the NAS to send/receive data and have no insight into the format of the drive or where it is stored on the hardware. It's almost like a wall with a window in it. Behind the wall is a storage system that says, "Ask for something in this form and I'll get it for you" and "Give me something in this form and I'll store it for you." Where and how that storage is done is not visible to the user.

    So what is key is that the drive be formatted in a format that the TP-Link needs and can use. That's key for the storage to be available. However, TM wants more, normally, to be able to use the drive if you connect it directly. But if you have a NAS and point TM to it, TM knows that it cannot proceed "normally" as it would with a direct drive, so it switches to a format called sparsebundle that can use ANY format drive. That way the data from TM can be stored on formats that normally TM would not be able to use directly.

    So, going back to your most recent post, you let TM do a backup to the drive directly. That means the drive must be in a format usable to TM, which is normally MacOS Extended Journaled. I don't know if TP-Link can use that format, but for now let's assume it can. So you detach from the Mac and attach to TP-Link directly. But you cannot see the drive name. And that's correct, you cannot see behind that wall, even if you KNOW the name. The new address for that drive is whatever TP-Link assigns, not what you named it. TM shows the name in its list because it used the drive at one time and remembers it, even though it cannot now see that name because TP-Link is hiding it. As far as the system is concerned, the only NAS drive is whatever name TP-Link assigns it, period.

    Earlier (post #20) you said TP had indicated that the TP-Link you have cannot be used with TM. That's your answer and no amount of trying will get past that. The protocol that TP-Link is using is incompatible with TM, apparently.

    So it's a waste of time and energy to try to do the impossible. And that conclusion leaves you with two options: 1) Use the drive as a NAS for other purposes, assuming you need a NAS, and get a direct attached drive for TM and 2) Use the drive for TM by directly attaching it and go without a NAS drive. But it's useless to try to get TM to use that drive attached to the TP-Link. Not going to work.
    Jake

  9. #24
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    That wall analogy is a good one Jake. That's the best way I can think of to explain what's happening.

    @PGB1 If you decide to go with a different router to give yourself network backup capability check the documentation carefully. Not many, if any are going to say they support drives formatted HFS+ extended journaled directly. Some do support Time Machine though so it will take some digging and perhaps an email or two to tech support.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
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  10. #25
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Some do support Time Machine though so it will take some digging and perhaps an email or two to tech support.

    Why even bother using an app (Time Machine.app) that doesn't even use a normal Backup Method itself???

    Wouldn't using something like Carbon Copy Cloner be better and a more compatible option???

    Or does it not work with NAS type drives either???


    - Patrick
    ======

  11. #26
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    No need to go hyperbolic, Patrick. TM is normal, it's just that given it uses hard links for the chains to support the history it depends on knowing and having access to the drive structure. And TM can be used with a NAS, as long as the NAS and TM can communicate.

    As far as CCC, I'm not sure if it can use a NAS that doesn't support TM. CCC also depends on the drive being formatted MacOS Extended Journaled. Bombich does describe a process to create a disk image on the NAS and backing up to that, but then also says that if the NAS doesn't support TM then CCC can't use it either. Here is the article from Bombich: I want to back up my whole Mac to a Time Capsule, NAS, or other network volume | Carbon Copy Cloner | Bombich Software.

    So the real issue is that the NAS needs to support the right protocol to work with CCC or TM.
    Jake

  12. #27
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    Good find Jake. I tried to find that answer earlier but I must have overlooked it.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

  13. #28
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    No need to go hyperbolic, Patrick.

    Hyperbolic...??? Jake?, hmmm... that's a bit extreme don't you think???

    But I think you will have to admit that Time Machine certainly does generate more than enough problems posted to this forum even when used in a normal circumstance and following Apple's guidelines as to how it should and can be used.



    - Patrick
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  14. #29
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    I'm not sure that's entirely accurate Patrick. It seems to me that most of the Time Machine related issues brought to the forum are not due to inherent issues with the reliability of Time Machine when it's used as designed. They seem to be due primarily to two issues:

    1. Users wanting TM to behave differently (setting / forcing a different backup interval.
    2. Users wanting to control deletion of old TM backups and not letting TM handle these issues on its own (Deleting backups via the Finder etc)
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
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  15. #30
    Wondering If Any Have Had Success With Time Machine To A NAS Drive
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    Patrick, no offense was intended, just thought there was no reason to be so emphatic!!!.

    I don't agree that TM is any more troublesome than CCC or SD. RTFM still applies. The challenge is that with downloaded software and no printed manual people don't bother to read the instructions with the software or online. And the people who don't then come here and complain or ask for directions that are in the online manuals. The fact that there are more TM complaints than for CCC and SD just means that because it's included and free, TM gets more users who try it.

    In the case of this particular thread, the issue is that the TP-Link does not support the connections that TM and CCC both want to see, so they do not work. And no amount of fiddling is likely to get them to work with the TP-Link. The core issue is the TP-Link, not TM or CCC.

    I like TM. It does what it does well. And I did RTFM.

    I also like CCC. It does what it does well. And I did RTFM for it, too.

    I don't like SD, but I did RTFM and it also can only use a networked drive if it's formatted to suit SD and even then it uses disk image and sparsebundle for the backup, so it, too, probably cannot be used with the TP-Link.

    So, all three say they don't work with all NAS devices. Can't get much clearer than that.
    Jake

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