I've setup Time Machine Backup services on Mavericks Server. I want to backup the backup server itself using Time Machine, but to the folder that I setup "Time Machine Backups" where all the other backups are being stored, instead of backing up to the root drive.

The only option I have when I select a disk using the server's Time Machine configuration is the drive itself, and not the "Time Machine Backups" folder I see from remote machines.

Is what I'm trying to do possible?

2 Answers 2


No, you cannot. Backing up to a local volume (what you're having the server do) uses a slightly different backup format than a network backup (what your server is allowing clients to do). With a local volume backup, the backups are stored inside a folder named Backups.backupdb which is at the root of the backup volume (not in a subfolder). With a network backup, the backup is stored inside a disk image, and the Backups.backupdb folder is at the root of the volume inside that. Because the network backup is wrapped in a disk image, that image can be almost anywhere (volume root, folder, subfolder, whatever); but this flexibility does not exist for a local volume backup.

  • Couldn't you mount that image, locally to the server, and then backup to the mount-point? (I mean, all Time Machine cares about, is ‘an HFS+ volume with /Backups.backupdb at the root.’ If you mount the disk-image, you should satisfy that requirement, right?) Dec 21, 2015 at 1:59
  • @ELLIOTTCABLE: I've seen conflicting reports about this; for example, this Mac OS X Hints entry describes one way of hacking it, with another (closer to what you describe) given in the comments... along with replies from people who couldn't get it to work. There's also another question on askdifferent along these lines... and a (deleted) comment from someone who coudn't get it to work. So go ahead and try, but I don't know if it'll work. Dec 21, 2015 at 6:19

Can't you point the OSX Server's Local time machine to its own share?

Like point it to afp://osx server ip

Or is it not possible to mount a local share locally?

  • Please rephrase your answer to answer the question instead of asking clarifying questions. Apr 16, 2015 at 12:43

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