High Sierra Hidden Gem – Time Machine Server

Time Machine Server a long time component of MacOS/OSX Server is now baked in to every copy of MacOS High Sierra.

Time Machine – one of OSX / MacOS Under-appreciated Gems

How many OSs can you name that come with a world class backup system built in?

1! OSX or as it’s now know, MacOS.

Time Machine has always been a robust, world class backup system, provided free of charge as part of every Mac’s operating system. OK, the GUI is a little long in the tooth and could do with an update, however the core is world class, allowing painfree automated backups and deep dive into those backups to recover a specific file from a specific date any time in the past couple of years – disc space allowing. Until now, you either needed a Time Capsule for Wifi networked shared backups or MacOS Server to select shared backup discs. No more!

The secret High Sierra Update – Time Machine Server

One of the hidden gems in High Sierra is Time Machine Server, hidden from view, but easily set up. Let’s quickly step through setup.


Sys Pref

Next Step, select SHARING


Select FILE SHARING in the left columnFile Share

If you do not already have a target shared folder, click the + icon in the Shared Folders box


In the dialog that opens select any External Drive you may have connected, and Add New Folder if wished. At this stage it appears as if it is possible to select a folder on Dropbox or iCloud Drive (presumably also other cloud storage options) as a destination. I have selected that option, though not tried a backup at this stage.

Share 2a

With the folder selected Right Click on the drive/folder and select ADVANCED OPTIONS

Share 3Select SHARE AS TIME MACHINE BACKUP DESTINATION and select any size limit to backups you may wish.


That’s it. You’re ready to go. Select that folder/drive as your backup destination in Time Machine on other devices on the network. How simple! Try that with Windows, Linux…..

While this is all great, it does give rise to one concern for me.

Does this mean the end of the Time Capsule range that Apple have allowed to fall behind current tech? Rumours abound that Apple has abandoned Airport WiFi routers and Time Capsule.

One can only hope these rumours are incorrect, or if true, Apple comes to it’s senses as it apparently has with Apple High Res monitors.





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