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Is there any way to exclude items from Time Machine when it's set up on a computer being managed with Workgroup Manager/Open Directory?

We have some Macs set up with Open Directory and have used Workgroup Manager to tell them to make Time Machine backups on our file server, which works fine. The problem is that this greys out the Time Machine section of System Preferences, preventing the options screen and hence the list of exclusions from being accessed. Is there any way to set some exclusions (either with Workgroup Manager or on the individual machines) without turning off management in Time Machine which requires that every Mac be set up individually?

I'm not sure if this is best posted here or Server Fault - I posted here because there seem to be more Mac people around, but if a moderator disagrees please transfer it.

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Some more details on what is excluded by StdExclusions.plist, and by the extended attribute com.apple.metadata:com_apple_backup_excludeItem, in Does Apple's Time Machine app really copy everthing. –  Arjan Nov 9 '10 at 20:59

1 Answer 1

/Library/Preferences/com.apple.TimeMachine.plist contains the excluded items under the key SkipPaths. You can try editing this file by hand or automated (assuming it's not protected/overridden by Workgroup Manager).

Unfortunately the .plistformat is binary, so you probably need to use Property List Editor from the developer tools, or edit the file using a plist API.

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Or use plutil to do the conversion. –  Arjan Nov 9 '10 at 20:56

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