Recently, I came across this amazing article that shows you how to turn your Ubuntu desktop/server into a Mac File Server or Time Machine volume. Not only does it allow you to share files between the two computers, but it will also automatically mount your Time Machine volume and begin the backup process. I have followed this article and am currently using this setup on my home network. If you have any questions about this article or need help, please post it in the comments.
This is a good method. This other method below might work easier if you already have a NAS.
Chimac, thanks for the link! I checked it out and your Read More redirect goes to a blog that is no longer available. Any chance that article might be hosted elsewhere? I went the Ubuntu route last night since I don’t have an OSX server at the moment. I hope you found that link I posted in my above article helpful. It has really helped me think twice about Ubuntu because before last night, I only used Ubuntu as a bootable USB OS for emergencies.
After a full day of using this method to backup my macbook pro, I have noticed that my battery life has taken a sharp hit. I’m currently getting about 3 hours per cycle whereas I was getting 8 hours per cycle prior to this. Is this because Time Machine is taking a snapshot every hour and sending it to remote server? Any thoughts?
Yes I would bet that is the case. Let me see if I can dig up another Time Machine equivalent. I have been changing over my blog to self-hosting so this is the first chance I had to see this.
I followed this method, however, when selecting my disk in time machine, I get an error. I enter my username and password and it gives an error saying it could not connect to server.local. How do I set it to connect via IP and not hostname?
Matt – is the ubuntu server and the mac on the same subnet? Also, towards the bottom of that article where it mentions editing the /etc/hosts file on the ubuntu server try adding this line if your server has a static IP address:
IP Address hostnameofcomputer
for example mine would be:
If those do not work, try restarting the netatalk service on the ubuntu server. Hopefully that works for you.