2 questions:  1. Can you specify a DNS provider IP such as OpenDNS?  2. Can you use one USB Hard Drive to run TimeMachine backups for 2 MacBook?

I am thinking about upgrading our wireless network to an Airport Extreme Base Station from a Linksys WRT160N (use OpenDNS) to an AirPort Extreme Base Station. I want to continue to use OpenDNS Static IP Addresses for content filtering. I will also potentially be purchasing 2 MacBooks and want to be able to use TimeMachine to back up both computers to the same external drive. I saw that you can connect an external USB hard drive, but was unsure if you can back up 2 MacBooks to 1 drive.

QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

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2 Answers from the Community

  • Answer

    2) You can use Time Machine with multiple apple computers on the same external hard disk. Each individual computer/laptop with have its unique sparse disk file, containing the backup files.

    1) On the other question, I am less certain. From what I understood from the AppleStore, was that you cannot use HD that connect via USB to an Airport Base/express station for TIme Machine - they told me (after checking with a Genius) that the USB extension on a Time Capsule could only be used as shared network disk, but not as mounted Time Machine Volume. Maybe Airport Extreme/Base are different but would be surptised.

    I have 1 TimeCapsule 1TB, and backup frequently 3 laptops and 1 iMac to the same TimeCapsule. When Time Machine came out Aug 08, I was not able to use NAS drives for Time Machine. I could make them visible, using a specific Terminal command, but backups themselves failed. So I bought Time Capsule which served me well for almost 2 yrs now. As the 1TB is getting full, I check whether using the USB ports could be an easy expansion solution, but so it seems not. I am looking into new NAS as they do now offer Time Machine - 1 example is ReadyNAS, where you can have 4 drives in RAID, used by Time Machine (named backup option in system setup). This gives me more security, as if the 1 HD in TimeCapsule fails, all is lost, while with RAID, you hot swap 1 of the 4 drives, and continue as if nothing happened.

  • 1. In the Airport Utility you can manually input DNS settings/server addresses. 2. I have an iMac and and macbook and both share a single USB hard disk plugged into the Airport Extreme as their Time Machine Drive. (You can also have a usb hub attached to the AEBS to use multiple hard disks as well as a printer or two)