@ wrote... (9 years, 8 months ago)

Despite my previous [/tech/time-machine-on-a-network-drive post] on how to get Time Machine backing up to a network drive, this turned out to be flaky. So far using iSCSI has been bomb proof and without having to do anything arcane, it is likely a lot more reliable.

My network backups stopped working at some point, possibly when I upgraded to Snow Leopard. Actually I'm pretty sure that's when it stopped working.

With my new hard drives tech/raidcosts_2 I decided to look into iSCSI. What an easy solution, at least on my Fedora 10 box.

  • install netbsd-iscsi on Linux box, configure it (see below)
  • install globalSAN iscsi on your OSX box (see below)
  • run netbsd-iscsi
  • connect to iscsi
  • if this takes longer than 20 minutes you're doing something wrong

I made a 50GB partition in my LVM drive (system-config-lvm) and then shared it out.

/etc/iscsi/targets:
# extents       file                    start   length
extent0         /dev/lvm-0/timemachine  0       50GB

# target        flags   storage         netmask
target0=TimeMachine             rw      extent0         192.168.5.100

Note, for 'length' don't put in 'size' despite what the man page says, the drive will show up as 2.2TB in OSX and not work. I just saved you an hour. The IP address is of course my OSX box.

Fire up the iscsi target

$ chkconfig netbsd-iscsi on
$ service netbsd-isci start

# or to run netbsd-isci in the foreground to trouble shoot
$ service netbsd-isci stop
$ isci-target -D

Install globalSAN iSCSI, that's pretty straight forward. Under the 'portals' tab add your linux box, TimeMachine will automatically show up under 'targets'. That's another hour I just saved you.

You may have to change globalSAN 'Initiator Name' (under preferences) to match what is in '/etc/isci/initiatorname.iscsi', I'm not sure but at some point before everything was working 100% I did this and haven't changed it back to see what would happen.

I'm not using ipsec and I checked 'Data Digest' and 'Header Digest' but I don't think they actually do anything with the slightly primitive (but still awesome!) netbsd-iscsi implementation.

At this point your drive should magically show up and TimeMachine should ask if you want to use it as your TimeMachine drive. I said yes.

Note: if you want to hide the TimeMachine icon from your desktop:

SetFile -a V /Volumes/TimeMachine

and to show it again

SetFile -a v /Volumes/TimeMachine
Category: tech, Tags: linux, osx
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