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Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) Support RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • Is Microsoft planning to update/modify WHS 2011 to improve Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) support?  Specifically, AFP support for Time Machine backups, and ability to install/run WHS 2011 Launch Pad in OS X?
    • Changed type triplespeed Saturday, September 10, 2011 10:21 PM Discussion
    Saturday, September 10, 2011 10:20 PM

All replies

  • I can't speak for Microsoft, but I would expect they will eventually update Windows Home Server to correct the Launchpad issue. The problem is that both the Apple tool and the Microsoft tool have the same name, so only one can be installed. (There's a workaround to get both running now, but I expect things will break the first time something is updated.) Any update will take a while; the number of Mac users who want to be able to access their home servers is probably pretty small, so there won't be an "out of band" update, and Update Rollup 1 (UR1) was just released a few weeks ago.

    As for Time Machine, at the end of the day you need to blame Apple for it not working. Every time NAS vendors reverse engineer the protocols required to allow a Mac to back up to a network share, Apple "updates the protocol to improve reliability" and you're back to using Time Capsule. The obvious questions:

    • Will Microsoft update Windows Home Server to allow Time Machine backups from "Lion"?
      I would hope so, but see my first sentence.
    • How long will it be if they do?
      Don't know.
    • Once updated, will it be a permanent fix?
      Ask Apple, but I would bet the answer is "no".

    (You will get the impression I think Apple is being a pr*ck about Time Machine, and you will be right...)


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Saturday, September 10, 2011 11:25 PM
  • Ken - no doubt you're right on most of this.  That doesn't change the fact that a) most people will just want these two companies with shared customers to be grownup and try to play well together (i.e. just as other vendors ensure their existing products work well with OS upgrades, MS and Apple would try to focus on customers first and do likewise), and b) as to your point "the number of Mac users who want to be able to access their home servers is probably pretty small," that's open for debate.  The flocking to Apple's products has been a significant shift in the overall market.  I've no hard figures to back this up (though they're probably out there), but I think the number of mixed-OS households may well surprise some.  Particularly as not so long ago the "your either a Windows or a Mac-type" view was pretty much a given (rapid adoption of iPhones and iPads has been a huge accelerant to this).


    I am one of those people with WHS, Windows 7 and a mac.

    Thursday, September 22, 2011 10:29 AM
  • I'm talking about the realities of software development. If there are a few dozen people affected by this (I would estimate it's in that ballpark) I don't see Microsoft investnig a lot of time and effort into making it a high priority. The Windows Home Server team is small, Windows Home Server V1 sold better into small businesses than it did to home users (seriously better, mostly because you can't buy a significantly better backup solution, and it's hard to match the "per seat" cost), and Microsoft is going to chase the money, so they'll focus on growing that side.

    And since OS X is Apple's OS, they can do whatever they like and Microsoft has to adapt. Apple knows this, and uses it as a tool to retain market share, just like Microsoft, except without (most of :) ) the lawsuits. Neither company is going to do something that's good for a competitor unless they think that the benefit to them will outweigh the boost to the competition.

    Also, people with mixed OS households should know going in that they're buying into an integration headache. It's completely obvious, and good business practice, that neither company is deeply interested (in a positive way for consumers) in users "integrating" their products with products from other vendors. Apple is worse than Microsoft in that regard, IMO. Microsoft recognizes at some level that they supply tools, and others supply solutions built on those tools. Integration is a fact of life. Apple wants to deliver "soup to nuts", and puts effort into making sure that their own products integrate better and (I firmly believe) to make sure that other manufaturer's products don't.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, September 22, 2011 1:50 PM
  • Hi Ken - totally get what you mean about the commercial realities.  Am surprised though that you'd estimate 'a few dozen people' would be affected by this.  I'm confident it would be some order of magnitude more (unless I'm vastly overestimating how well WHS has sold...very curious to know how many installs there are!)
    Friday, September 23, 2011 2:44 AM
  • My estimate would put the number who are affected, and who actually care much, in the very low hundreds, so we're not all that far off. :)

    I can't tell you how many installs there are, because I don't know, but I can tell you that to the best of my knowledge there were more installs of Windows Home Server V1 into small and micro businesses (including charities, etc.) than into homes. All businesses use it for is simple file sharing and bare metal backup/restore. On the latter front, an HP Mediasmart server had a "per seat" cost of around $50-$60 assuming 10 client computers actually backing up to the server every day. All by itself, that's cheaper than any robust alternative I know of, and when you factor in central storage of backups, and efficient use of storage space (the single instance storage at the block level is genius, because your average computer contains probably 50 GB or more of stuff that's identical to every other computer in a business), overall cost is way lower.

    All of this is why Microsoft has brought out three products in V2, 2 of them business oriented, and why Microsoft made some of the implementation decisions they did. It's sad that it's taking so long for OEMs to get any of them into the market...


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, September 23, 2011 1:50 PM
  • As for Time Machine, at the end of the day you need to blame Apple for it not working. Every time NAS vendors reverse engineer the protocols required to allow a Mac to back up to a network share, Apple "updates the protocol to improve reliability" and you're back to using Time Capsule. The obvious questions:

    • Will Microsoft update Windows Home Server to allow Time Machine backups from "Lion"?
      I would hope so, but see my first sentence.
    • How long will it be if they do?
      Don't know.
    • Once updated, will it be a permanent fix?
      Ask Apple, but I would bet the answer is "no".

    (You will get the impression I think Apple is being a pr*ck about Time Machine, and you will be right...)

    I am i no way an "apple fanboi", so don't take this the wrong way. But as more information on the situation becomes available, it also seems your conslusions about this issue are wrong.

    The issue incompatibility is due to Apple dropping support for a number of authentication-types. Including the widely used DHX (DHCAST128), clear text, and several others. From Lion and onwards only DHX2 authentication is available.

    According to Apple the reason for the change is that DHX2 is more secure.

    In addition to this Lion is now using a more recent version of Netatalk, namely version 2.2. It is the AFP client/server file sharing software used in OSX as well as most NAS devices. Netatalk 2.2 has support for the recent AFP 3.3. and many NAS devices are not yet using the new version of Netatalk.

    Several vendors have updated their firmwares though, and I bet more are on the way. For example Synology has fully restored their Time Machine support in their more recent products.

    We can boil this down to a really simple description.

    Apple has updated its OS to use more recent and secure protocols. Devices connecting to their latest OS must have their software updated to the new versions of these protocols.

    The only thing we can really blame Apple of, is removing support for the old stuff. Updating software to use new versions of protocols is a perfectly legit thing to do.

    And mind you - also something Microsoft does all the time, not in the least to piss of the SAMBA team (so while you may thing Apple is being a "pr*ck" about Time Machine you seem to forget that Microsoft has a history of doing this EXACT thing as well!).

    The solution to all of this?

    The best solution is for Microsoft to update the WHS 2008 software to support the latest versions of the protocols involved. This is perfectly normal software maintenance work so there is really nothing special about it. And the protocols involved are documented and available. No fancy reverse-engineering is required.

    The second option is using some of Apples work-arounds. Which is to enable support for older authentication types. It solves the problems for some, but not for WHS because the WHS has BOTH the authentication and file protocol issue at the same time.

    So no. Apple is not being a pr*ck about Time Machine. You could argue that they are being pr*cks with their backwards compatibility, but that is really besides the point.

    So here is what really happened: Apple updated a bunch of protocols. Like Microsoft themselves have done hundreds of times. The specs weren't even new. Apple just finally decided to use the most recent versions. And Microsoft hasn't bothered to catch up yet - in essence showing us all that ongoing support for WHS is a low priority. If they had bothered to read the releasenotes available in the Beta versions of Lion they would have known about this months before its release.

    But what is really bugging me the most, us the fact that the big NAS vendors have fixed this issue. And MS hasen't. So I am now a laughingstock with friends and family to whom I have argued that WHS was vastly superior to a primitive NAS...

    - Jesper

     

    Sunday, September 25, 2011 3:11 PM
  • The solution I am using for now is to run freeNAS in a VM on my WHS2011 machine purely to provide a Time Machine destination.  VMware Server 2 is free to use or there is the ability to host shared machines with VMware workstation 8.  It might not be for everyone but it's another option until MS update WHS2011.

    Cheers,
    Al


    -- Free AV for WHS : http://whsclamav.sourceforge.net/
    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 9:56 PM
  • ... until MS update WHS2011.

    Because of the nature of the changes in Time Machine (it now requires AFP for network backup, and can't work over SMB any more), I think it unlikely that Microsoft will ever update this version of Windows Home Server to support Time Machine backup.
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, November 17, 2011 1:09 AM
  • The solution I am using for now is to run freeNAS in a VM on my WHS2011 machine purely to provide a Time Machine destination.  VMware Server 2 is free to use or there is the ability to host shared machines with VMware workstation 8.  It might not be for everyone but it's another option until MS update WHS2011.

    Cheers,
    Al


    -- Free AV for WHS : http://whsclamav.sourceforge.net/

    Hi Al, would you mind sharing specifics (or linking me) to a site that explains how to do this?  I tried VMWARE Workstation 8 and VMWARE Player 4 (latest) but couldn't get their bridged networking to work (so that I could assign a static IP to the VM running FreeNAS).  Would only run in NAT which defeated the purpose since my Mac couldn't see the VM itself.

    Anyway -- I was able to setup Oracle Virtualbox on my WHS2011 box as I had hoped.  However I've not yet created any storage shares or AFP volumes, etc.  Simply have a virtual FreeNAS (32 bit) instance running.  I didn't want to start trying to backup to this VM until I spoke to someone knowledgeable in fear of having a huge dynamic storage volume on the C drive of my WHS2011 box.  I wasn't sure if I needed to relocate the VM itself onto a share under /serverfolder, etc. before beginning to do timemachine backups from OS X lion, etc.

    Thanks in advance.

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011 7:44 PM
  • From reading this post, at least one person has Lion backup running over SMB. May be worth a look. http://forum.wegotserved.com/index.php/topic/20845-osx-lion-time-machine-backup-to-whs/
    Ben Ogilvie www.hdtvtoyz.com
    Thursday, December 1, 2011 6:00 PM
  • Any updates on this since the latest rollup?  Even though I'm not sure I have it.  I see SP 1 in my about screen, but not sure if Rollup 2 actually shows anywhere.

    Thanks.

    JR

    Wednesday, May 2, 2012 3:25 AM
  • I agree!  I personally know a dozen mixed computer households!  I love Windows Homeserver 2011 and all Microsoft Windows u products, but I also like some Apple products.  I am lapping up every word I can read about Windows 8! And have installed the consumer trial version and LOVE it! I wish Microsoft and Apple would do the right thing and fix this software compatibility problem!  Maybe Apple should issue the Windows protocol updates corresponding to the improvements they make to the protocol, like they do for the iTunes software. 

    Del Thibodeaux

    Sunday, May 6, 2012 1:32 PM
  • Bump, have set up dozens of WHS2003/2011 on different network both at homes and business, and everyone says it is the best option, not too costly and (used to have ) support for both main OS platforms. Please include support for AFP!!!! Or Apple produce a AFP addon for windows!! Or we would need to take the GNU/linux route...( might be just as good, if not better, since we do not need to wait for MS to make up their mind about sales. )

    MS is killing their server home-marked.

    Friday, January 25, 2013 3:36 PM

  • MS is killing their server home-marked.

    Microsoft has killed its Home Server market with the announcement that there will no longer be a WHS range of products (support for WHS2011 continues until 2016). The only MS option you have in the longer term is Windows Server 2012 Essentials but that's a lot more expensive than WHS and more of a business product.

    Phil P.S. If you find my comment helpful or if it answers your question, please mark it as such.

    Friday, January 25, 2013 4:58 PM