I received an interesting request today. Namely, is it possible to setup a networked Time Machine to backup the Desktops of 11 workstations on a LAN.
While I'm familiar with OSX, I haven't attempted to setup Time Machine until today.
I work with a group of professional photographers/videographers/graphic artists that regularly produce a large volume of products. They already have a large (ie 30+TB) NAS they use to archive old projects but there are cases where some deliverables were accidentally deleted prior to backup.
- A Mac Mini loaded with Mavericks
- OSX Server
- 5TB of SAN
- Load OSX Server on the Mini
- Mount the SAN via iSCSI
- Partition the SAN with 2 Volumes, Storage & Backup with a 3:1 ratio
- Setup OSX to backup using Time Machine
- Create one folder for each workstations desktop on the Storage volume
- Share the Storage volume via SMB
Note: iSCSI allows the OS to transparently mount a networked SAN as a local disk.
On the workstations I'll create symbolic links to replace the user's local Desktop folder with the Desktop folder on the network drive.
Then, if a file is lost somebody can remote into the Mac Mini and wind back the Time Machine to recover any lost files.
The Mini will be dedicated to this and sharing printers alone so I don't think the backups will overwhelm the server. The SAN will be configured in a of Raid50 array with 2 drive redundancy. This setup will reside on a trusted, private, air-gapped network so security isn't an issue. All network connections are hard-wired.
Are there any special Time Machine quirks/limitations that I need to look out for before I invest the time and effort to build this beast?