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How to use the Incredible Time Machine

on the Samba disk winstorage

This guide is based on the invaluable work of Joaquin Vanschoren. Below is a modified version (and modifiable by you) of Setup automatic Time Machine Backups at TUE by Joaquin.

Authors: Kees Huizing

Tested on Mac OS X 10.9.2 (Mavericks), 3 April 2014.

Access Samba server

Get the dialog “Connect to Server” via the Finder menu or Cmd-K

Type as the server address:


where your_username is your Exchange user name, probably an initial and your last name.

When you click Connect, and it succeeds, you will see the volume in the sidebar of Finder windows under 'SHARED'.

Note 1: The address “smb:/ /winstorage/users/your_username” works as well, but is less robust, since it is a local address.

Note 2: If you want to access winstorage from outside the TU/e, use a VPN connection.

Prepare Time Machine Volume

Use for this a command line tool (Terminal in Utilities). $ is the prompt of the terminal.

$ cd <some-local-directory-writable-by-you>

$ hdiutil create -size 1000g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -fs "HFS+J" -volname "NameOfBackup" NameOfBackup.sparsebundle 

Replace 1000 with the maximum size you expect to need. 1000g is 1000 Gigabytes. Real size will be smaller in the beginning and expand when needed.

Replace NameOfBackup with whatever you like.

Message on success: created: /Path/To/Your/Local/Directory/NameOfBackup.sparsebundle

Drag this sparsebundle file to your winstorage place (in Finder, or use a command such as rsync)

$ hdiutil attach /Volumes/users/NameOfBackup.sparsebundle

This mounts the newly created backup volume.

$ sudo tmutil setdestination -a /Volumes/NameOfBackup

This adds the volume to your Backup volumes. You can also do this via TimeMachine Preferences and Select Disk. }

Backing up

Every time you connect your computer to the TU/e network you have to start up the backup process. As long as you stay connected, it will automatically make (incremental) backups every hour.

Starting up the backup process amounts to:

1. Mounting the winstorage disk (cmd-K etc.)

2. Mounting your backup volume (double click the sparsebundle icon)

3. Choose Back Up Now from the Time Machine menu.

Joaquin has written an AppleScript that does this every time you start up your computer. It's on his Setup automatic Time Machine Backups at TUE page.

Since I usually do not reboot my laptop when I come to my work, I have modified this script a bit and added it to my AppleScript menu. All I have to do when I enter my office is choose this script from the menubar.

AppleScript that does step 1, 2, and 3 above

Download the file and copy it to your (local) script library:


You can go there in the Finder by choosing Go To Folder from the Go menu and typing this. Change the name if you like and do the following.

1. Open the file winstorbackup.scpt. AppleScript Editor will open.

2. In the text, replace username with your TU/e username (two places).

3. (test) Run the script by pressing the Run button. Volume should be mounted, backup should start, and “” should appear in the Result window.

4. Choose Preferences… and check the box Script menu in menu bar.

Now you can start the backup process every time you enter the TU/e premises by choosing the script from the AppleScript menu in your menu bar (the scroll paper icon).

mac_wiki/time_machine_on_samba_disk.txt · Last modified: 2016/06/07 20:29 by keesh