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I use time machine with a non HFS+ network drive to backup my data thank to the following command:

defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1

Everything was working until the day I format my mac and try to restore with my time machine backup : the migration assistant cannot see my network drive!

Is there a way to recover my data from the MYMACHINENAME.sparsebundle file?

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2 Answers

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I'll bet it's just that Migration Assistant doesn't know about TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes. Try putting your sparsebundle on a supported network volume and see if Migration Assistant sees it then.

Even if that isn't an option or doesn't work, realize that a sparsebundle is just a sophisticated form of a disk image. You can work with it like you'd work with any .dmg. You could use Disk Utility to restore it to a USB or FireWire drive, and it would probably act as if it had always been a local (directly connected) Time Machine backup drive.

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Remember to set the name of your Machine in the "Sharing"-panel of System Preferences.app to MYMACHINENAME, where MYMACHINENAME must be the name of the Machine before you formatted it.

In addition to that follow Spiff's advice and set TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes to 1.

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You misstated my advice. I was saying that TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes is a setting that may well only apply to the TM panel in System Preferences. I don't think setting it will make a difference. Also, I don't think Migration Assistant requires the same machine name (it would be kinda silly if it did). –  Spiff Sep 18 '10 at 23:43
    
The TM panel and the Migration Assistant both require the parameter to be set, if the Backup is stored on an unsupported network drive (i.e. no TimeCapsule, [Snow] Leopard Server, etc.). –  lajuette Sep 19 '10 at 6:27
    
You may be right about the fact that the Migration Assistant doesn't need the hostname to be the same. My fault. I only used it once (without resetting the hostname first). The Assistant modifies the backup's sparsebundle so match the current hostname (and MAC-address) of the device, so TM can continue using it. By setting the hostname to the old value (and keeping your old MAC-address) you can just continue to use the old TM-backup even if you don't like to use the Assistant (there may be good reasons for that). –  lajuette Sep 19 '10 at 6:31
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