Apple Home Server: My Time Capsule Prepared For Shipment.

Order status is as follows:

tc_status.png

Right now in my home I have a Linksys WRT54GS wireless router and backup my iMac (via Time Machine) to an external USB 320GB drive. For printing I have an HP DeskJet 5850, which is a true wireless device. This setup works well, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the Linksys or HP printer to anyone interested.

However, I now have have two machines with wireless “N” networking — one of them my new MacBook currently not backing up to anything — so Time Capsule should be an excellent upgrade for me.

I realize that “N” networking won’t change my internet (cable modem) speeds, but between what I want now and in the future TC provides the following:

  • The two Macs should communicate faster between them, useful since I like iChat’s screen sharing function, and also swap/share files quite a bit.
  • “N” will help with wireless backups, which I intend to do. I plan to backup both machines to TC, so my external drive can go, and be one less power cord and USB device on my floor.
  • I’ll have a more secure WAP2 wireless network to replace my 64-bit WEP.
  • My printer has maybe a year left in it; I don’t want to have to seek a wireless printer to replace it. With TC I can get any printer(s) I want and share easily, especially nice since I’m thinking of having both a color inkjet and B/W laser.
  • I have the expandability of plugging in USB hard drive(s) for file sharing.
  • There’s MAC address filtering and NAT firewall (the latter I’ll definitely use).
  • Oh, and it’s a three-port GB Ethernet switch.

Put all the above together and it means TC is a “home server” done easy, done small, and done affordably. In other words, done right. Meanwhile, Microsoft thinks a home server must be yet another PC running a variation of Windows. Just one more example of the clear and distinct difference in the philosophy of these two companies.

I ordered a 500GB TC on 1/29, and from the above status it looks like it may be shipping soon. I’ll be sure to post my thoughts on if it meets my expectations.

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9 thoughts on “Apple Home Server: My Time Capsule Prepared For Shipment.

  1. Ben,

    I connected my 5850 to the Time Capsule via Ethernet, so I cannot comment on it via wireless to my current “n” network.

    However, it connected to my previous wireless network (a Linksys “g” series) easily. That was a while ago, but if memory serves the following applied (keep in mind this was on Windows XP):

    – A Software firewall could block the initial connection. You may need to disable it.
    – You need to know your network security (mine was WEP).
    – Obviously, you need to know your network’s name.
    – If I remember correctly, the key I entered was in Hex.

    I remember the process was pretty straightforward and it worked great. But that was years ago, so it’s a bit cloudy to me now.

    When I got the Mac eight month ago, I didn’t have to do anything. The Mac automatically found the printer on the existing “g” network, and with the OS X-supplied driver it just worked.

  2. Hi Tom,

    I have the Deskjet 5850, and also recently bought a Time Capsule. I’m currently struggling to get the 5850 to connect to the WPA wireless network. Did you have any luck with this?

    The frustrating thing is that I managed to do this with an Airport Extreme (my previous wireless router), but I can’t remember how this worked, except that it took me ages to figure out.

    Thanks for any tips.

    Ben

  3. …also you probably want to either use WPA password protection or at least change it to ‘n’-only in airport utility, so as to prevent anyone else getting on your network with a slower device, and thereby mess with your transfer speeds.

  4. NB that if you have any ‘b’ or ‘g’ devices on your wireless network, the speed of all devices will be throttled back, which means you will lose the benefit of faster backups and file sharing in the Time Capsule. If you really want to make the most of upgrading to ‘n’ then you have to upgrade every wireless device. For me, I use a wired printer over USB to the AEBS, and connect my (‘g’ only) Mac Mini via gigabit ethernet, and purchased a cardbus ‘n’ wireless card for my old Powerbook G4 to use instead of its built-in ‘b’ airport card.

  5. Thanks for the warning.

    I had seen early issues with the Airport, but thought they had been mostly worked out.

    In terms of my wireless connection, my Linksys “just works”, and so does the HP printer. I’ve had this setup over three years so I won’t have a lot of patience if the new one has failed connections, etc.

    We’ll know sooner than later. Today I received an email that the device shipped. Should be here on the 4th.

  6. Many of us Airport Extreme owners are anxious to hear your report 🙂 I have various issues with mine, which are shared by many others. Although I have the early 100 Mb/s version I doubt these issues are any different than the 1,000 Mb/s version. As a wireless access point it seems solid enough, but matters degrade after attaching an external USB disc and/or printer.

    In short, reliability and uptime then falls apart, the Airport disc and printer connections fail repeatedly, the base station needs to be restarted in the easy case, if not power-cycled, to recover.

    Then, of course, “we” expected to use our AE plus attached USB disk for Time Machine. Here’s hoping that whatever fixes that for Time Capsule applies to us!

    Steve

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