OS X: Time Machine backup to Synology DS107+

I finally got the single-bay, 1TB NAS:

It took a few hours to “make” OS X TimeMachine to accept the NAS and perform backups – the steps below will outline what is necessary.

Update 2009-05-14: With 10.5.7 Apple seems to have broken the sparse-band-size, resulting in the current sparsebundle to be unmountable. Apple has reduced the band-sizes of sparse-bundles to 128MB. You can convert your existing sparsebundle via the following command: hdiutil convert -format UDSB -imagekey sparse-band-size=262144 -o new.sparsebundle old.sparsebundle

Update 2009-02-11: I have received a number of reports that large sparse-bundles (in excess of 250 gigabytes) fail to backup properly. User joar on the Synology forum has the explanation for this: “Those sparsebundle images that Time Machine uses work like this: They basically consist of a few files and one folder with all the payload files (called “bands”) in it. If the images are created automatically by Time Machine, the size of each “band” file is set to 8MB. If your backup is > 300GB you can do the math. Remember what I wrote? One folder with all the bands.

To solve this problem instead of creating 8MB bands we will create 128MB bands (262144 times 512 bytes). You are able to convert your existing sparse-bundles via (change the max-size from 70GB to whatever suits you):
hdiutil convert -format UDSB -tgtimagekey sparse-band-size=262144 -tgtimagekey size=70g -o tempfilename.sparsebundle machinename_macid.sparsebundle

I tried the conversion of the above and it took extremely long – I eventually wiped my old backups and started from fresh. You will notice as part of this exercise that your original sparse-bundle image will be larger (in my case increasing the band-size increased the initial sparsebundle from 80MB to 1.5 gigabytes)

The installation was straight forward, but you should consider a number of steps:

  1. To be absolutely sure, prepare/initialise your new hard-drive first. As I do not have a PC, I had to get a eSata (Vantec NexStar 3) enclosure, so that I could hook up the harddrive to my MacBook Air. Once the drive is connected via USB, OS X will prompt to initialise the drive and the preparation is complete.
  2. After fitting the drive back into the DS107+ case, power up the device and follow the setup-assistant. I assigned a static IP-address and named the NAS MuffinStation (well, my laptop is called MacMuffin – so there)
  3. Disable Time Machine in your System Preferences
  4. Open up a terminal session and enable NAS support for Time Machine: defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1
  5. Time Machine saves backups in a very specific format, and we will use a sparsebundle to get this done. The sparsebundle name consists of your computer name_mac address.sparsebundle. In my case the sparsebundle is named MagicDudeAir_001ec4b8f9b3.sparsebundle
  6. Find the MAC address of the machine’s internal Ethernet port with ifconfig en0 | grep ether | sed s/://g | sed s/ether// in Terminal. This will return one line of output, which is the MAC address for the Ethernet port, which will be a string of letters and numbers, for example, 00:1e:c4:b8:f9:b3. 

Even if the network backups will be done using a different port (e.g. AirPort: usually en1), the system will use the MAC address of en0 as part of the system identifier.
  7. Make a new “sparsebundle” on a local disk (NOT the Time Machine disk!). This sparsebundle is a virtual filesystem image which we’ll copy to the NAS, and Time Machine will then access it remotely (that way Time Machine’s not limited by the filesystem features of whatever NAS it’s using: all the funky stuff happens within the sparsebundle). By default sparsebundles can keep growing until they fill up the NAS, but in this scenario we keep other things on the NAS as well as backups, and we’re going to limit the sparsebundle size to 70 GB.I could torture you now through Disk Utility, but there is an easier way via the command line:
    sudo hdiutil create -size 70g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname "Backup of Gerd's MacBook Air" -fs "Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+" -verbose ./MagicDudeAir_001ec4b8f9b3.sparsebundle. This will create a 70GB sparse-bundle as a case-sensitive, journaled HFS+ without spotlight indexing. If your backups are large than 250 gigabytes, I suggest to use this command instead: sudo hdiutil create -size 70g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname "Backup of Gerd's MacBook Air" -fs "Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+" -imagekey sparse-band-size=262144 -verbose ./MagicDudeAir_001ec4b8f9b3.sparsebundle
  8. Log into your Synology Disk-Station and create a Shared Folder. I named mine “TimeMachine”:

    (Don’t make the Shared folder hidden yet)

  9. Create a user – I named mine “TimeMachine” and give the user R+W privileges. I also assigned my user a quota of 80GB (since this is the maximum hard-drive size on my MacBook Air):
  10. Optional: In another post I will show you how the Synology can broadcast your services via Bonjour, so that they immediately appear in the Finder. This is cool, since you do not have to mount your shares, but requires that your iTunes server is running on the disk-station.
  11. In Finder, select Go>Connect to Server. For the server address, type smb://timemachine@ip-address-of-nas/timemachine. Click Connect and when prompted, enter the password and save in your keychain. It is important that you give your NAS a static IP, or use the Bonjour tip instead. Although some people prefer to mount via AFP, I chose SMB instead. I initially tried AFP and during the backup noticed the errors “Jul 15 12:37:09 afpd[7471]: bad function 4F” being logged on the DS107+. This did not give me a high level of comfort. There seems to be no speed difference either. Through the wireless-network (G/N) I get about 6MB/sec throughput. I did find however that changing from TKIP to AES wireless-security seems to have improved the speed by 20%
  12. Now copy your locally created sparsebundle into the timemachine share.
  13. Delete the sparse-bundle on your local machine.
  14. Go back to the DS107+ diskstation and verify that your quota usage has increased. My empty sparsebundle used up initially 80MB, the screenshot below shows you the quota usage:

    (if your quota is still at 0, then you have logged in with the incorrect user or did not follow the instructions properly)

  15. Almost there: Open up TimeMachine, select your “timemachine”-folder and the backup will start:
  16. For the first backup it is recommended to connect via LAN, as you will be able to get a throughput of 10-30MB/sec.
  17. Go back into DiskStation and hide the Shared Folder “timemachine”

If you ever need to restore your machine through the installation disk, open up Terminal once the DVD is booted and do the following:
$ mkdir /Volumes/TimeMachine
$ mount -t afp afp://TimeMachineUser:[email protected]/TimeMachineBackup /Volumes/TimeMachine

The above will mount the TimeMachine volume and once you return to the installation-manager will you be able to restore from the back.

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69 Responses

  1. Harald Striepe says:

    If you want to keep extra history for “Oh, durn, I should not have deleted that file last month!”, add more disk space to the bundle to prevent purging of older data.

  2. Luc Van Bogaert says:

    Thank you for this very helpful article. I’ve gotten TM to work now with my Synology DS107+.

    The only “problem” I ran into, was the mixture of uppercase and lowercase characters in the name of the share and the user on the DS. I kept getting “unable to mount volume” messages, but once I changed both the sharename and username to lowercase only, everything worked perfectly. I’m not sure if the characters were acually the show-stoppers, but at least it seemed to be.

    The initial backup took about 3 to 4 hours on a wireless connection. I’m now awaiting the second backup to see if everthing keeps working. Keep your fingers crossed ;-)

    Best regards,

  3. Dan says:

    Thank you for your help and for all the great articles Mac and Synology 107+!

  4. Matt says:

    I just picked up a new macbook today, and didn’t want to shell out the $400 for a time capsule as I already have 250 gigs on a Linksys NSLU2 NAS Server, hacked up with some linux firmware. I did the identical steps as you did to setup the NAS, and right now I have my Macbook backing up to the western digital drive on the Linksys slug.


  5. Sergey Astakhov says:

    Thank You very much for such a useful howto!
    The steps you described here are absolutely suitable for

    To enable the support of network disks in Time Machine
    I used the following application:

  6. ophtha says:

    Thank you for your wonderful information! I have a question. As you know, when I re-install OSX in a new HDD, I can import previous settings and apps form time machine during install-procedure. In order to use that function with NAS, I should access time machine in NAS during install-procedure. How can I do that? How can I use terminal session during intall-procedure? What should I type in terminal session?

  7. You might want to use this to get the machine’s mac address in the right format.

    ifconfig en0 | grep ether | sed s/://g | sed s/ether//

    Also, be clear about how to get the machine’s name – `hostname` might return a fully qualified name different to the machine’s own name.

    (Please let me know the answer to that last point!!)

  8. Answer to my own question:

    networksetup -getcomputername

    Thanks to http://lists.apple.com/archives/macos-x-server/2004/Oct/msg00879.html

    However, http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1760 says you have to take out certain characters from your computer name, including ‘ – this being a default…

  9. Maurits says:

    Fantastic thank you! I am just wondering two things:
    - do you have to repeat this for every account on the macbook?
    - can you still have normal activities (shared folders etc.) using your regular user name?

    PS. I am also trying to get NFS wowrking on the Synology, could timemachine also work with NFS?

  10. Maurits says:

    It works! I have a 207+
    However: after sleep/standby or when logging out all users while a backup is in progress the backup fails and TM will not be able to connect to the backup volume anymore, a reboot is necessary
    Is there a workaround this?

  11. Doug says:

    Great tutorial, thanks a lot. I had to rename my computer in System Preferences/Sharing to get it to work. One thing that isn’t clear in the tutorial is that the sparsebundle can be deleted once it’s copied over to the NAS.

    My problem: after my first few backups, it fails stating “The backup disk image could not be mounted.” I am able to access the volume without problems in the finder.

    Any ideas?

  12. P3t3r says:

    …indeed GREAT tutorial, but I get the same error-message as Doug (posting 11.)

    “The backup disk image could not be mounted.”

    and I am curious about (.10) autom-ounting? Probably my error is resolved than as well?


  13. Marc says:

    Great tutorial.

    I too am getting the “unable to mount disk error” but I actually want to use an external USB hard disk connected to the synology as my Time Machine backup.

    The synology sees the disk and automatically names it “usbshare1″, and I can access it via Finder however my probelm is that you can’t seem to assign user quotas to external disks.

    Can this be done?

    Thanks again!

    Can this be done?

  14. gnaschenweng says:

    I have not received any of those errors. I am running on 10.5.5 – not sure if this has anything to do with it? I had one case, where the sparsebundle seem to have been corrupted (that was related to before a fix in 10.5.4 where TimeMachine did not expunge expired backup-sets — after applying 10.5.4 I have been running fine)

  15. Marc says:

    I too am running 10.5.5 and the first backup (connected via ethernet) worked fine.

    I can also read and restore from this backup, however, subsequent incremental backups (over WLAN) don’t seem to work and I get the “cannot mount disk image” error.

    Could it be the MAC identifier i he file name being from en0 and i am trying to backup via en1???

  16. gnaschenweng says:

    @marc – this is a valid point. In my case I always connect via one interface (i.e. wireless which is en0). I have not tried to connect via a wired-link.

  17. Samir says:


    Thanks for a very detailed instruction. I am new at mac – just ordered my new macbook.

    I am going to use af NAS to backup with time machine.

    I have one question regarding point 7 where you make the virtuale sparsebundle at 70 GB.

    I was wondering, will this step you mention make a sparesfile of 70 GB from the right beginning? and there by taking up 70 GB of space on the NAS-server? Or should i understand this step as that the sparsebundle will keep growing but only up to 70 GB?

    I am not interested in allocating 70 GB of NAS-space from the beginning, but willing to accept that it can use up to 70 GB as the file-folders i backup becomes bigger and bigger…

    anyone that can help me with this issue?


  18. gnaschenweng says:

    @samir – it will not allocate a 70GB sparsebundle upfront and the sparsebundle will grow to 70GB. It will limit the sparsebundles size to a max of 70GB and TimeMachine will purge older backups to make enough space to place newer backups into the sparsebundle.

  19. pg says:

    Hi, Your article is great.
    I´m stuck in nº12.
    If I have to copy the .sparsebundle file … where is it? How can I can copy it into the timemachine shared?

  20. gnaschenweng says:

    @pg – you mount the share first: smb://timemachine@ip-address-of-nas/timemachine (as in 11.) then you copy the sparsebundle onto the share

  21. pg says:

    Thanks for the fast response … but what I don´t know how to do it is “copy the sparsebundle onto the share”
    Is the spasebundle a file? Where is located on my Mac to select it and then copy onto the share?

  22. gnaschenweng says:

    @pg – the sparsebundle is created in step 7. you just take that file and copy it to your share. The sparsebundle is created wherever your current directory is (when you open a terminal session)

  23. Marc says:

    Thanks for all your help, it works perfectly!

    I have one more question:

    I modified the script to create a 250Gb sparsebundle, but have reconsidered and would like to allocate 400Gb of space to the TimeMachine backup.

    Is it possible to change the size of the sparsebundle once you have started using it to backup to?

    I have all my backups since I started using the NAS on the drive and can’t start all over again.

    Once again, thanks for your help on this.

  24. Samir says:

    finally i got my macbook, my first one :-) and as NAS from DS 207+

    I am having difficulties. if i leave the NAS, for go to work with my macbook and return, then TM will not connect to server.. or if it find it, then it return like that it could not open the folder.. what to do?


  25. Addy says:


    I just followed your instructions and the backup is running as I’m typing this! You Rock!! Hope it keeps on working, but for now… life is great and cheaper.. Next time you’re in the netherlands, I’ll buy you a beer!

  26. martijn says:

    Very clear explanation. However, after running sometime I get “unable to mount”: it seems that closing the lid on the macbook corrups the sparsebundle.
    The only solution seems to be to recopy the sparsebundle to the diskstation.

    I am using SMB to mount the sparsebundle, possibly the AFP mount works better.

  27. BrandX says:

    Like many others, I get “The backup disk image could not be mounted.” It looks like I got all the steps right, but I can’t back up to my DS508. Any ideas?

  28. gnaschenweng says:

    “The disk image could not be mounted”: Can you share specifics of your environment – i.e. what version of fixpack (10.5.6 vs older ones).
    - Is your mount point AFP or SMB?
    - Via which interface (LAN or WAN) did you initially create the sparsebundle?
    - Via which interface does your backup fail?
    - Are you able to manually mount the bundle?

    I am puzzled by those incidents. It works on my 107+ rock-solid. I can stop backups half way through, shut down the DiskStation during backup, disconnect the network during backup and no corruption or mount issues.

  29. Leonardus says:

    I followed the instructions and have mounted the shared folder and is visible in the finder. This was all do able (even for a PCguys). It has the sparsebundle (at least visible in the finder). But when I start timemachine it cannot see the shared folder. I have bougth my mac yesterday and I have a DS107+.
    Any thought on what I can do about this. Using the DS would be a great asset.

  30. ~OutSideR~ says:

    When I run bonjour on the ds209+, then Time Machine backup not work correct. In logs:

    09-01-11 15:15:27 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[3264] Mounted network destination using URL: smb://timemachine@ds/timemachine
    09-01-11 15:15:27 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[3264] Backup destination mounted at path: /Volumes/timemachine
    09-01-11 15:15:28 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[3264] Failed to mount disk image /Volumes/timemachine/._outsider.001ec200e58d.sparsebundle (DIHLDiskImageAttach returned: 107)

    When bonjour is off, all correct work.

  31. gnaschenweng says:

    @Leonardus – have you opened TimeMachine and then selected change disc to select the backup volume?

    @Outsider – try to mount it via AFP – just replace smb:// with afp://

  32. Leonardus says:

    @ gnaschenweg
    When I mount it through either smb or afp, the disc is there with a #recycle and the .sparsebundle file. Then when I go to the Time Machine and go for Choose Backup Disk, there is an empty window without any discs to choose from.
    The IP address in the name is the one that I got from the terminal and the name is the one from the terminal as well… I use Mac OSX 10.5.6
    And I have used the terminal and wrote “defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1″. Is that wrong maybe?

  33. Leonardus says:

    @ gnaschenweng
    Maybe some more information.
    The volume shows up under “devices” and the info is
    Kind: volume
    Disk image: /Volumes/TimeMachine/Liesbeths-iMac_022329b1634.sparsebundle
    Created: Sunday…
    Format: Mac Os Extended (Case-sensitive, Journaled)
    Capacity: 99.68 GB
    Available: 64,99 GB
    Used: 34,69 GB on disk.

    Now this latter I do not understand. How can it have used almost 35 GB on the disk (I had set it to 100GB), I haven’t been able to put anything in cause I cannot see it through the time machine.

  34. gnaschenweng says:

    @Leonardus – I would try a manual mount as explained at the very end of the article. If the volume mounts, but does not show in TimeMachine, then you must have named the sparsebundle incorrectly – recheck your MAC-address.

  35. Leonardus says:

    @ gnaschenweng

    Thanks for all your feedback.
    Finally I got it working. The problem was in the name of the computer and therefore the file as well. Now the computer sees the mounted drive.
    The problem of the free disk space on the mounted drive stays thought (a total of 100G is reduced to 65G free space..).
    Any thoughts on that?

  36. soulmate says:

    First off, thank you very much for your well-appreciated step by step instruction. I followed it 100% and it workedwell…well so it seemed…

    My system:
    -Macbook Core 2 Duo 2 GHz, 2 GB ram
    -Mac OsX Leopard 10.5.6 with all updates
    - Synology DS 107 with WDC WD7500AACS-00ZJB0 (the greenline)

    The first time machine backup I made via airport worked . However, incremential backups failed (“unable to mount backup device”).
    I noticed TM mounting a volume on my desktop (untitled) which is identical to the timemachine sparsebundle backup -> nothing new. The problem seems to be, after finishing the backup the volume is not unmounted – so the next backup fails. If I unmount the device the next backup will work.

    How can I automatically unmount the device after each “time machine backup”?
    Maybe someone with a similar problem can manually unmount the device so we are 100 % sure this is the cause.

    Thank you very much…

  37. Ed_Switzerland says:

    Thanks this tutorial was perfect, got the whole thing running on my Synology DS108J in 10 minutes !

  38. Stefan Hauge says:

    When i try make the SPARSEBUNDLE i get an error and can’t get the SPARSEBUNDLE made :-( the error i get is:

    iHauges:desktop shauge$ sudo hdiutil create -size 150g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname “Backup of Shauge MacBook” -fs ook”Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+” -verbose ./iHauges_002332d896da.sparsebundle
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: interface 4, score -1000, CWOUDIFDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: interface 5, score -1000, CRawDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: interface 7, score -1000, CSparseDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: interface 8, score 1000, CSparseBundleDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: interface 9, score -1000, CCFPlugInDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreatorProbe: selecting CSparseBundleDiskImage
    DIDiskImageCreateWithCFURL: CSparseBundleDiskImage
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 0, score 100, CBSDBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 1, score 1000, CBundleBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 2, score 0, CRAMBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 3, score 100, CCarbonBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 5, score -100, CCURLBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: selecting CBundleBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreateWithCFURL: CBundleBackingStore
    DIFileEncodingCreatorProbe: interface 2, score -1000, CEncryptedEncoding
    DIFileEncodingCreatorProbe: nothing to select.
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 0, score 100, CBSDBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 1, score -1000, CBundleBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 2, score 0, CRAMBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 3, score 100, CCarbonBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: interface 5, score -100, CCURLBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreatorProbe: selecting CBSDBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreateWithCFURL: CBSDBackingStore
    DIBackingStoreCreateWithCFURL: creator returned 0
    DIBackingStoreCreateWithCFURL: creator returned 0
    DIDiskImageCreateWithCFURL: creator returned 0
    DIHLDiskImageCreate() returned 22
    hdiutil: create: returning 22
    hdiutil: create failed – Ugyldigt argument
    iHauges:desktop shauge$

  39. gnaschenweng says:

    @stefan hauge – look at your hdiutil command – it does not look right – you have ‘-fs ook”Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+” ‘ in there.

    in my opinion it should be:
    sudo hdiutil create -size 150g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname “Backup of Shauge MacBook” -fs “Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+” -verbose ./iHauges_002332d896da.sparsebundle

  40. MacBook Air says:

    A small tip to further improve these excellent instructions.
    Step 17 (remove the sparsebundle file from your local machine) should be done before doing the first TM backup. Otherwise the file will be backed up and waste a small amount of NAS space. So move step 17 to right after step 12: copy the newly-created sparsebundle over to the NAS volume, and then delete it from the local drive.

  41. aero_alex says:

    great tutorial!

    had trouble first time around with “unable to mount” error when using TM to back up directly to Synology. However, I was able to back up to an external drive connected via USB to Synology using same instructions (modifying destination to “usbshare1″ with “timemachine” user. Now both my NAS and macbook are backed up to an external. Thanks for the instructions!

  42. thomas holzknecht says:

    The instructions work perfect for the FIRST Macbook you connect to the NAS ( DS108), the second fails. Currently I use 1 account (backup) for both laptops. I will test with following:
    1. make separate shares for each MacBook on NAS
    2. Use separate accounts for Backup logins.

    Also to mention: I used in Step 7 the large file option, which seems to be unstable. I recreated this morning for the FIRST Laptop a spargeimage with standard size params, and he backs up a bit faster.

    On a Linksys WRT54GL with Tomato, the DS108 makes “only” 2.8 mbit over air and 4.7 over wire. Is this normal?

  43. gnaschenweng says:

    @tholzknecht: If you want to use quotas across the different MacBooks, than you have to create separate accounts/logins on the NAS. I have multiple Macs backing up to the NAS and didn’t experience any problems – provided that you have created different sparsebundles for each Mac and created separate accounts on the NAS to have the quota working.

  44. OS X: Time Machine backup to Synology DS107+?great discovery..

  45. Nutela says:

    It is the computername.
    By default I had Nutela’s Macbook Pro as a computername, and in Terminal it would be nutelas-macbook-pro, made it nutelambpro et voila.
    It works now.

  46. Jean-François Théorêt says:

    I just upgraded to 10.5.7 and the whole shebang does not work anymore. I redid the whole steps, and got the first backup to work, but as soon as I disconnected the LAN it would not work on en1. Any ideas?

  47. Ferdi says:

    thanks for the tutorial. i did everything you told, but after chosing the timemachine-volume as a backup in the timemachine program, comes the preparing and then this message (i try to translate…) :

    “this backup is to big for the backup volume. for backup there is a need for 1095.1 GB, but there are only 69,6 GB”

    but in fact my backup volume is totally empty, so i got 1,34 TB space. what’s wrong here?

    i used the second code for the terminal you wrote, because my backup will be 1,2 TB big. i set the timemachine user quota on synology to 1300 GB. i tried everything, please help.

    thanks a lot,

  48. dedeisep says:

    Thx for this reallu helpfull post, time machine now work with my DS 108-j!

  49. samir says:


    thank you for your very good blog. i got my TM up and running on my synology DS207+ by following your instructions.

    however i have realized that i will soon run into the issue of the 70GB limit. Initially i did not think, that i woud need more than af 70 GB big sparesbundle file. But this is not the case.

    So what are my options to increase the size of sparesbundle?

    1. make a complete new sparesbundle file with a higher limit on the sparesbundle file. and then make a complete backup?

    2. can i somehow change the limit without having to make a new backup…?


  50. gnaschenweng says:

    @samir: Just do the “hdiutil convert” and specify a larger size in the “size=” statement.

  51. wapib says:

    Just one question to the ‘hdiutil convert’ entry (51) – can it be done directly on the NAS ? I have a quota of 320 GB with about 89 GB free and I would hate having to copy it back and forth :-|


  52. wapib says:

    I have also seen the ‘unable to mount’ on occations.
    One thing that has worked for me it to re-start the afp on the NAS (Synology 207+) on firmware 728 or greater.


  53. El Hadi says:

    Thank you very match, I got TimeMachine working on my Synology DS209.
    Merci beaucoup!!!!

  54. d says:

    Been looking for up to date instructions that work for a while. Many thanks.

  55. Jim says:

    I found exactly my problem on this blog. I’ve recently purchased a Synology 209+II with DSM 2.2 and was trying to use Time Machine. The darn backup always stopped with error 109 after 249.97GB and I never thought the size <250GB to be related to the band size… stupid limitation I must say. No doubt Apple has a reason, but it’s a bit poor.
    So I read up this blog entry and created a new Sparsebundle file locally. My Quota for the TimeMachine space on the NAS is set at 800GB, so I adapted the sparsebundle file to be limited at 800GB ->
    sudo hdiutil create -size 800g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname “Backup of MacBook Pro” -fs “Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+” -imagekey sparse-band-size=262144 -verbose ./MBPname_MACaddress.sparsebundle

    I let the backup run overnight…and oh wonder!! it works!
    I’m a happy person

  56. Luke says:

    Question: If I have 2 Macs – an iMac (“Jupiter”) and a MacBook (“Mercury”), do I create 2 different sparebundles and copy both to the same “timemachine” share folder? Will the TimeMachine on iMac be smart enough to backup to the Jupiter_–.sparebundle and the TimeMachine on the MacBook backup to Mercury_—.sparebundle?

  57. Moritz Aemisegger says:

    Worked like a charm! Thank you so much!

  58. mgrad says:

    Thanks for a great tutorial. Everything works smooth on DS210j together with Leopard. Greetings.

  59. mads moller says:

    I tried your tip on my macbook pro and my DS209j. when I tried to create the sparsebundle with the sudo command (sudo hdiutil create -size 150g -type SPARSEBUNDLE -nospotlight -volname “Backup of Mads’ MacBook Pro” -fs “Case-sensitive Journaled HFS+” -verbose ./MadsMllersMacbookPro_c42c03230d6e.sparsebundle). I got a warning and a demand that I enter my password. I tried to enter my password but wasn’t able to and I had to use crtl C to get the prompt back. Any tips to what I have done wrong?

  60. wradgio says:

    Work well with 3 macs and DS410j and both Leopards. Thank you.

  61. Sambas says:

    thanks! very helpful post!! like the template btw ;)

  62. mimil says:

    Very clear article. Thanks.

    created sparsebundle space. Converted it using hdiutil convert -format UDSB -imagekey sparse-band-size=262144 -o new.sparsebundle old.sparsebundle

    copied to the timemachine shared on DS 209+.
    mounted the share as per instructed. Ensured the name of the sparsebundle is following the naming convention (not sure here if the suffix .local should be used, when query hostname, the machine name.local is returned).

    When opening time machine, set up time machine, no drive appear.
    tried to rename the sparsebundle using suffix .local, same result.

    running os version: 10.6.5

    Assistance appreciated

  63. Rudi van Houten says:

    great article. I run now backups from two mnac mini’s to a CS406e. Next week those machines will be replaced. Can I continue the backups to the sparsebundles by renaming them with the new machine names and MAC addresses?

  64. Love the article, but wanted to inform anyone visiting this article that Synology now supports Time Machine.

    - Log on to your Synology server
    - Create folder that you want your backup in
    - Choose Control Panel – Win/Mac/NSF – Mac File Service
    - Enable Mac File Service and choose the correct folder from the dropdown menu.
    - This folder should now be showing up in the Time Machine Preferences!

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