OS X Lion – The Network Backup Disk Does Not Support the Required AFP Features

OS X Lion was released yesterday and I was super excited to upgrade for all the new features like Launchpad, Mission Control and full-screen apps. Once installed, it’s definitely been worth the $30 to upgrade. Except for one little problem! After about an hour, I got a message from Time Machine telling me the backup failed to complete.

I took a look at the message and this was the error:

The network backup disk does not support the required AFP feature.

Whoops! Not only that, I had my entire iTunes library stored on my NAS and all of a sudden it was not connecting to the media folder on the NAS either! Not good!

Well, apparently, Apple is requiring that all devices have to support the new Netatalk 2.2 protocol instead of any older versions. Netatalk is an open source AFP file server that supports the Appletalk protocol. It allows your Mac to connect and use a NAS for Time Machine backups, etc.

os x lion time machine

Unfortunately, most NAS devices on the market today that support Macs are running the older version of Netatalk. This means that once you install Lion, you will not be able to use your NAS for Time Machine backups or in iTunes as an alternate location for your media library.

So is there any kind of workaround? Nope, unfortunately not. You basically have to wait until your vendor releases an updated version of the OS for your NAS. Luckily, the one I have from Synology, has an update coming soon specifically for fixing this issue with Lion.

Below are links to some of the news or forum discussions about this problem for various NAS manufacturers such as Synology, QNAP, etc.

Synology – http://www.synology.com/dsm/index_dsm3.2.php?lang=us – DSM 3.2 will support OS X Lion. It is currently in beta.

QNAP – http://forum.qnap.com/viewtopic.php?p=182079 – Some users have posted a few possible workarounds that might work until an update is released. Might be in version 3.5 beta.

Netgear ReadyNAS – http://www.readynas.com/?p=5742 – If you have a ReadyNAS from Netgear, check this link out because it looks like they just released some updates to fully support OS X Lion!

Buffalo NAS – No firm date, but they are aware of the problem and a fix is going to be released “soon”.

Lacie NAS – http://www.lacie.com/us/more/?id=10121 – If you have a NAS from Lacie, you’re in luck because they have updated the Lacie Desktop Manager to support Lion.

HP MediaSmart Server – http://www.wegotserved.com/2011/07/03/osx-lion-breaks-hp-mediasmart-server-mac-backup/ – If you have a Window Home Server running on an HP MediaSmart server, keep tabs on the WeGoServed log as they are following the problem and an update may be released soon.

If you have any other links to updates or workarounds for your NAS, post it in the comments and let us know! Good luck!

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Comments [5]

  1. QueBall says:

    Drobo just updated the firmware on their NAS style devices too:

    Updates for the following Models:

    Drobo B800fs

    Drobo Pro FS

    Drobo FS

  2. MacGeek says:

    The problem is that the NAS needs to include a newer version of Netatalk – version 2.2 – which has these features in it. Netatalk is the open source implementation of AppleTalk. The problem? Version 2.2 is still a beta, non-stable release right now. There are few NAS vendors that are going to put an unstable release into their production software. Translation; be patient.

  3. Pieter says:

    Unfortunaly, Synology only makes the DSM 3.2 available for systems of series 8 and newer. So if you happen to have e.g. a DS207+ you're out of luck. :-(

  4. Raymond says:

    @Pieter: Synology WILL also support the 7-series of their NAS product-line: http://www.brandonsga.com/technical/2011/08/osx-l

  5. Rick says:

    This worked for me to get around the AFP error.


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