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Time Capsule question...

 
 
Lloyd Parsons
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      07-05-2009, 03:27 AM
In article <h2ovvd$fkf$(E-Mail Removed)-september.org>,
"barcaroller" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> "Lloyd Parsons" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote ...
>
> > Yes. Just don't set it up as a Time Machine drive. It is pretty simple.

>
> If it were set up as a Time machine Drive, would I still be able to use the
> hard-drive for other stuff (e.g. creating and mounting other filesystems)?
> If yes, would I have to partition the hard-drive?


You could, but Time Machine will eventually fill all free space, that is
how it works.

Partitioning would be the way to go, but you have to remove the HD and
connect to your Mac (using the appropriate enclosure) to do it. You
can't partition the drive inside the TC.

Possibly a better way is to buy a Time Capsule 500Gb version and add an
external USB2 HD to it. That way you can use the TC drive for Time
Machine and have another drive to use in other ways.

Or buy an Airport Extreme, attach a 1GB drive or so to it, partition it
the way you want and your done. The downside is that Apple doesn't
support that although it currently does work.
 
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David Empson
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      07-05-2009, 03:32 AM
barcaroller <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> "David Empson" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote ...
>
> > Not easily. There is no mechanism to partition the internal drive in a
> > Time Capsule. This means you are limited to working with files on a
> > single file system.

>
> Ah, that's important to know. So, just to clarify, I can't just format and
> set up filesystem partitions on a Time Capsule hard-drive, regardless of
> whether I'm using Time Machine or not. Is that correct?


Correct. The only tools available in Airport Utility for manipulating
the internal drive in a Time Capsule are to erase it, verify/repair it,
and back up or restore tofrom an externally connected drive.

You can't access the Time Capsule drive using Disk Utility's volume
maniupulation tools, so there is no way to partition a Time Capsule's
internal drive.

(Some people have apparently proved you can partition a Time Capsule by
pulling it apart, removing the hard drive, connecting to a Mac to
partition it, then reassembling the Time Capsule, but the Time Capsule
is not designed to be opeend, so this will void your warranty.)

With an external drive connected to a Time Capsule or Airport Extreme,
you can connect it to a computer (temporarily) to partition it, then
move it back to the Time Capsule or Airport Extreme, where all of its
partitions are accessible.

> > To prevent Time Machine using all of the drive, the easiest solution is
> > to create one or more fixed size disk images, and use them to store any
> > incidental files you want to keep on the Time Capsule (which won't be
> > backed up by Time Machine).

>
> I don't know what you mean by fixed disk size images. Will you please
> elaborate?


You can use Disk Utility to create disk image files.

As far as the "host" file system is concerned, the disk image is just a
big file. When you mount the disk image, the operating system treats it
as a separate volume.

There are two major types of disk image: normal disk images and sparse
disk images.

Normal disk images are a fixed size. You specify the size when you
create the disk image (or it is determined from the size of a source
volume or folder if you instruct Disk Utility to create an image from
existing data rather than just creating an empty disk image). The size
of the disk image file will be a little larger than the size of the file
system it contains, due to overhead for the disk image file itself (plus
overhead within the contained file system, e.g. directories).

Sparse disk images are a variable size on the "host" file system. You
specify a maximum size when you create one, but they start out quite
small (in disk usage) and grow as you add more files to the file system
within the disk image.

A sparse disk image may be a single file (with a nominal maximum size
but only the used parts of the file actually having space allocated on
the host file system) or a "sparse bundle", which is a folder pretending
to be a single file (a general concept known as a "package") which
contains a large number of relatively small files (a few megabytes
each).

> > Another option would be to connect an external drive to the Time
> > Capsule. Use the internal drive for your Time Machine backups and the
> > external drive for incidental file storage (which won't be backed up by
> > Time Machine).

>
> Another option is to just get an Airport Extreme with an external hard-drive
> and have Time Machine backup to the internal drive. I assume Time Machine
> is smart enough not to fill up the internal system disk (I can't imagine
> Apple developers allowing that).


You assume wrong.

First, Time Machine doesn't let you back up to the same drive as the
source data, unless you override it. If you think about it, this is a
very bad idea: if your hard drive failed, you would lose all your
original data and all your backups. It doesn't matter if you are dealing
with one or multiple partitions - you should never use the same physical
drive as a backup for your source data.

Secondly, Time Machine doesn't care what drive you are using to do the
backups as far as its disk usage is concerned. If you were foolish
enough to store your Time Machine backups on your startup volume
(ignoring Time Machine's warnings about not doing that), the Time
Machine backups would eventually fill the entire volume and your system
would probably be unbootable because it wouldn't have space to store
temporary files and virtual memory swap files.

--
David Empson
(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Kevin McMurtrie
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      07-05-2009, 07:26 AM
In article <1j2dxhd.d0y266uqmahN%(E-Mail Removed)>,
(E-Mail Removed) (David Empson) wrote:

> barcaroller <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> > "Fred McKenzie" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message ...
> >
> > > The limit is how much space is available. Eventually, when the HD is
> > > full, Time Machine will start deleting old backups to meet its needs.

> >
> > So Time Machine will make backups until the hard-drive is physically full?
> > Can Time Machine not be configured to use only a specified amount of disk
> > space (say 250GB or 25%)?

>
> No. The usual way to force that is to partition a hard drive but the
> Time Capsule can't be partitioned.
>
> > > But that doesn't give you any free space for additional data.

> >
> > Why is the newly-freed space not available for my own data?

>
> Because when Time Machine deletes old backups because the volume is
> nearly full, it will immediately fill most of that space with new
> backups, and will keep filling it until the drive is nearly full again.
>
> You can't easily control when the deletion of old backups will occur, so
> you wouldn't have a predictable opportunity to use any of the space that
> Time Machine freed by deleting an old backup.
>
> In addition, on a Time Capsule, Time Machine uses Sparse Disk Images to
> hold its backups. Typically these will NOT shrink in size when an old
> backup is deleted - there will be additional free space within the disk
> image but not on the Time Capsule's own file system.


I think you can limit Time Machine by shrinking the sparsebundle when
it's first created. At least, Time Machine hasn't expanded the ones I
made yet. I'm backing up three computers to one crappy LaCie 5big with
no partitioning or quotas so I have pretty much the same problem.

--
I will not see your reply if you use Google.
 
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barcaroller
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      07-05-2009, 02:46 PM

"Michelle Steiner" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message ...

>> So Time Machine will make backups until the hard-drive is physically
>> full? Can Time Machine not be configured to use only a specified
>> amount of disk space (say 250GB or 25%)?

>
> Only by partitioning.


Except that, if I understood David, partitioning is not possible on a Time
Capsule hard-drive (unless the hard-drive is extracted from the Time
Capsule).



 
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barcaroller
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      07-05-2009, 03:02 PM

"David Empson" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote ...

> Correct. The only tools available in Airport Utility for manipulating
> the internal drive in a Time Capsule are to erase it, verify/repair it,
> and back up or restore tofrom an externally connected drive.
>
> You can't access the Time Capsule drive using Disk Utility's volume
> maniupulation tools, so there is no way to partition a Time Capsule's
> internal drive.
>
> (Some people have apparently proved you can partition a Time Capsule by
> pulling it apart, removing the hard drive, connecting to a Mac to
> partition it, then reassembling the Time Capsule, but the Time Capsule
> is not designed to be opeend, so this will void your warranty.)
>
> With an external drive connected to a Time Capsule or Airport Extreme,
> you can connect it to a computer (temporarily) to partition it, then
> move it back to the Time Capsule or Airport Extreme, where all of its
> partitions are accessible.
>
>
> You can use Disk Utility to create disk image files.
>
> As far as the "host" file system is concerned, the disk image is just a
> big file. When you mount the disk image, the operating system treats it
> as a separate volume.
>
> There are two major types of disk image: normal disk images and sparse
> disk images.
>
> Normal disk images are a fixed size. You specify the size when you
> create the disk image (or it is determined from the size of a source
> volume or folder if you instruct Disk Utility to create an image from
> existing data rather than just creating an empty disk image). The size
> of the disk image file will be a little larger than the size of the file
> system it contains, due to overhead for the disk image file itself (plus
> overhead within the contained file system, e.g. directories).
>
> Sparse disk images are a variable size on the "host" file system. You
> specify a maximum size when you create one, but they start out quite
> small (in disk usage) and grow as you add more files to the file system
> within the disk image.
>
> A sparse disk image may be a single file (with a nominal maximum size
> but only the used parts of the file actually having space allocated on
> the host file system) or a "sparse bundle", which is a folder pretending
> to be a single file (a general concept known as a "package") which
> contains a large number of relatively small files (a few megabytes
> each).


Thank you for this detailed, informative response.



> You assume wrong.
>
> First, Time Machine doesn't let you back up to the same drive as the
> source data, unless you override it. If you think about it, this is a
> very bad idea: if your hard drive failed, you would lose all your
> original data and all your backups. It doesn't matter if you are dealing
> with one or multiple partitions - you should never use the same physical
> drive as a backup for your source data.
>
> Secondly, Time Machine doesn't care what drive you are using to do the
> backups as far as its disk usage is concerned. If you were foolish
> enough to store your Time Machine backups on your startup volume
> (ignoring Time Machine's warnings about not doing that), the Time
> Machine backups would eventually fill the entire volume and your system
> would probably be unbootable because it wouldn't have space to store
> temporary files and virtual memory swap files.


Yes, I understand the senselessness of backing up to the same physical
hard-drive but I don't really care that much about Time Machine backups (aka
System Restores on Windows). I tend to back-up my own "critical data"
independently anyway (never to the same physical drive). Complete system
backups are just a mere convenience for me.

I am surprised that Time Machine will continue filling up a disk without any
consideration to the consequences. It should be a minimal enhancement for
Apple developers to set some kind of physical limit.




 
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Michelle Steiner
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      07-05-2009, 03:14 PM
In article <h2qelc$5h5$(E-Mail Removed)-september.org>,
"barcaroller" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> >> So Time Machine will make backups until the hard-drive is
> >> physically full? Can Time Machine not be configured to use only a
> >> specified amount of disk space (say 250GB or 25%)?

> >
> > Only by partitioning.

>
> Except that, if I understood David, partitioning is not possible on a
> Time Capsule hard-drive (unless the hard-drive is extracted from the
> Time Capsule).


True, but you can remove the drive from the TC, partition it, and put it
back in the TC. I doubt that it's worth the effort, though.

By the way, you can partition the sparse bundle, but I don't know what
good, if any, that would do.

--
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Tom Stiller
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      07-05-2009, 03:17 PM
In article <h2qfi8$e03$(E-Mail Removed)-september.org>,
"barcaroller" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Yes, I understand the senselessness of backing up to the same physical
> hard-drive but I don't really care that much about Time Machine backups (aka
> System Restores on Windows). I tend to back-up my own "critical data"
> independently anyway (never to the same physical drive). Complete system
> backups are just a mere convenience for me.


Do you mean to imply that System Restores on Windows and Apple's Time
Machine are equivalent facilities? If so, either I misunderstand
Window's System Restore, or you misunderstand Time Machine.

--
Tom Stiller

PGP fingerprint = 5108 DDB2 9761 EDE5 E7E3 7BDA 71ED 6496 99C0 C7CF
 
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Michelle Steiner
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      07-05-2009, 03:21 PM
In article <h2qfi8$e03$(E-Mail Removed)-september.org>,
"barcaroller" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> I am surprised that Time Machine will continue filling up a disk
> without any consideration to the consequences.


Time Machine is based on the premise that the backup volume will be used
solely for the Time Machine backup. Therefore, there are no
consequences to its filling up the volume.

--
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Member American Civil Liberties Union
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John McWilliams
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      07-05-2009, 04:24 PM
Michelle Steiner wrote:
> In article <h2ovvd$fkf$(E-Mail Removed)-september.org>,
> "barcaroller" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>> "Lloyd Parsons" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote ...
>>
>>> Yes. Just don't set it up as a Time Machine drive. It is pretty
>>> simple.

>> If it were set up as a Time machine Drive, would I still be able to
>> use the hard-drive for other stuff (e.g. creating and mounting other
>> filesystems)?

>
> Yes.
>
>> If yes, would I have to partition the hard-drive?

>
> No.


Yes, if by 'other file systems' the poster means non Mac file systems.

--
John McWilliams
 
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