Using Centos 7 as a Time Capsule Server

What follows below is a modified version of Darcyliu install script. I’ve changed it to account for changes resulting from the newer versions of netatalk.

Starting Point

# For this project, I start with a Centos 7 – Minimal install.  Install the Centos 7 – Minimal distribution. After install, update the packages to current:

yum -y upgrade

# then reboot the server:


# When the server is finished rebooting, it is time to get to work.   First, lets enable EPEL and install the first group of packages:

yum install -y
yum install -y rpm-build gcc make wget
# install netatalk
yum install -y avahi-devel cracklib-devel dbus-devel dbus-glib-devel libacl-devel libattr-devel libdb-devel libevent-devel libgcrypt-devel krb5-devel mysql-devel openldap-devel openssl-devel pam-devel quota-devel systemtap-sdt-devel tcp_wrappers-devel libtdb-devel tracker-devel bison
yum install -y docbook-style-xsl flex dconf perl-interpreter
# Now we need to build up netatalk.  At the time of the writing 3.1.11 is the current version.
# Install the source RPM for Netatalk:
rpm -ivh netatalk-3.1.*
# Build the RPM from sources
rpmbuild -bb ~/rpmbuild/SPECS/netatalk.spec
# Next install the netatalk binary
yum -y install ~/rpmbuild/RPMS/x86_64/netatalk-3.1.*
# Lets add the config files
# configuration
cat >> /etc/avahi/services/afpd.service << EOF
<?xml version=”1.0″ standalone=’no’?>
<!DOCTYPE service-group SYSTEM “avahi-service.dtd”>
<name replace-wildcards=”yes”>%h</name>
cat >> /etc/netatalk/AppleVolumes.default << EOF
/opt/timemachine TimeMachine allow:tmbackup options:usedots,upriv,tm dperm:0775 fperm:0660 cnidscheme:dbd volsizelimit:200000
cat >> /etc/nsswitch.conf << EOF
hosts: files mdns4_minimal dns mdns mdns4
cat >> /etc/netatalk/afp.conf << EOF
[Time Machine]
path = /opt/timemachine
valid users = tmbackup
time machine = yes
cat >> /etc/netatalk/afpd.conf << EOF
– -transall -uamlist,, -nosavepassword -advertise_ssh
# Add a user. This user id and password is what you’ll use when you mount the Time Machine folder. Also create the directory tree and change its ownership.
useradd tmbackup
mkdir -p /opt/timemachine
chown tmbackup:tmbackup /opt/timemachine
# Set firewall commands
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=548/tcp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=548/udp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=5353/tcp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=5353/udp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=49152/tcp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=49152/udp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=52883/tcp
firewall-cmd –zone=public –permanent –add-port=52883/udp
firewall-cmd –reload
# Enable and start the services
systemctl enable avahi-daemon
systemctl enable netatalk
systemctl start avahi-daemon.service
systemctl start netatalk
systemctl restart avahi-daemon.service
systemctl restart netatalk
# set password for tmbackup
passwd tmbackup
A word about strategies.  If you want to back up more than one Mac, you can simply have the users share the login and password and as long as the Macs have different names, there will be no collisions in files created. Just use a good password to encrypt each backup.
I’m not a huge fan of sharing credentials. in fact, I think its a bad idea.  In order to use more than one login, create all the users and set a good password for each. Next, edit ( /etc/netatalk/afp.conf ) and add a duplicate of the entry above and change the share name (the string in between the brackets) and valid user to match the user id.  Do one entry for each user id.
[Time Machine1]
path = /opt/timemachine/user1
valid users = user1
time machine = yes

[Time Machine2]
path = /opt/timemachine/user2
valid users = user2
time machine = yes
[Time Machine3]
path = /opt/timemachine/user3
valid users = user3
time machine = yes
Next create user ids, folders in /opt/timemachine and change the owenrship of each user id
# EG:
adduser user1
adduser user2
adduser user3
mkdir -p /opt/timemachine/user1
mkdir -p /opt/timemachine/user2
mkdir -p /opt/timemachine/user3
chown user1:user1 /opt/timemachine/user1
chown user2:user2 /opt/timemachine/user2
chown user3:user3 /opt/timemachine/user3
# Now set a password on each:
passwd user1
passwd user2
passwd user3
Lastly, reboot the server just to make sure all the services start.  Next, attach to the server.  If you are on the same network, then you should see the server in your browse list.  If the server is on a different subnet, then you’ll have to point to the server manually.  Here’s how:
With Finder being the current app in the forground. Click Go -> Connect to Server
For server address, type the IP of the server and press enter:
Fill in the login and password from those that you just created.
Next “Open Time Machine Preferences…”
Select your new disk.