fixed : use one printer in two networks at the same time

Question :

I have a network printer on my (private) network that I would like to make available to the people on my AirPort Guest Network, but I don’t want guests to access my private network.

Is there a way to do this ?

 

Answer :

There are options to do this, but it can’t be done the way you would find most elegant probably… the problem is the restriction in AirPort Guest Networks that users can’t connect to each other, so adding the printer to the AirPort Guest Network won’t make it available to any AirPort Guest Network user.

On the other hand, an other restriction on most network printers is that they only have one Ethernet-card that is shared between the UTP-cable port and the WiFi connection, so the cable-connection and the WiFi-connection will always have the same IP-address, making it impossible to connect the cable to your private network and joining the Guest Network using the WiFi-connection at the same time…

Your best option is to connect the Ethernet/UTP-cable and/or the printer’s WiFi to your private network and creating a separate network to be used as a Guest Network to which the printer can be connected using it’s USB-cable. Since you will need an extra wireless router or an extra (secondhand) AirPort Base Station or Time Capsule to create this separate Guest Network, you can plug the printer’s USB-cable into that wireless router / AirPort Base Station / Time Capsule.

You could also use a printer server, if it isn’t possible to connect the printer’s USB-cable into the wireless router / AirPort Base Station / Time Capsule. You can find relatively cheap print servers on Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.de

Regarding the setup of your networks, you will probably be best off doing it like this :

  • set your internet modem in router mode (if you would set it in bridge mode, you wouldn’t be able to connect two separate networks behind it)
  • connect both routers (or AirPort Base Station or Time Capsule) to the internet modem
  • setup one router (or AirPort Base Station or Time Capsule) to create the private network and private WiFi network
  • setup the other router (or AirPort Base Station or Time Capsule) to create the Guest Network and Guest WiFi Network
  • make sure that the IP-ranges issued by both routers are completely different (to prevent easy connection from the Guest Network to your private network (and the other way around)
  • if any of your routers give a “Double NAT” error, just ignore it

That’s it !

the only downsite is that having such a complex network setup with multiple routers will have negative influence on your (internet) connection speed ; this difference in speed will probably not be very big if you have few devices connected, but if you have a lot of devices connected that also use a lot of bandwidth (like video streaming) you will probably have slower internet speed than you used to…

enjoy !

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fixed : Time Capsule shuts down almost immediately after startup

Question :

I have a 1st generation Time Capsule that always used to work fine, but recently it shuts down almost only seconds after I turn it on.

How can I solve this ?

 

Answer :

Most of the time, this problem can be solved rather easily.

The cause could be a broken HardDrive inside your Time Capsule (if that’s the case, go here to see instructions on how to replace the HD), but most of the time this specific problem turns out to be an overheated (and therefore broken) power unit.

Even though this type of Time Capsule is marked obsolete by Apple, it will still function in your current WiFi network and can still be configured using the current AirPort Utility app version 6 and newer.

The main problem is probably not going to be to replace the power unit, but finding a new power unit. You might find one on Amazon, but since it will probably be a secondhand item, your will probably have more luck searching for an “A1254 power unit” on eBay, AliExpress or Google Shopping

When you have found a new (secondhand) A1254 power unit, you can build it into your A1254 “1st generation” Time Capsule this way :

  • put the Time Capsule upside-down and use a hairdryer to heat up the rubber base plate and loosen it’s glue (if you don’t do this, you will probably rupture the base plate when you try to take it off)
  • then follow the iFixit manual for replacing the power unit and make sure not to skip the important comment at Step 2 : “The two screws in the top center of this picture should not be removed at this time. They are locating pins on the hard drive.”
  • after taking out the broken power unit and putting in the new (secondhand) power unit in, put your Time Capsule back together doing the iFixit steps in reverse order
  • after plugging the Time Capsule into the power, you can reinstall it into your WiFi network using the AirPort Utility app on your Mac (or on your iPhone/iPad)

That’s it 😉

enjoy !

fixed : upgrade broken HD in old Time Capsule

Question :

My 1st generation Time Capsule always used to work fine, but now the internal HardDisk is broken.

Can I replace the HardDisk easily ?

 

Answer :

Yes you can.

In the ‘old’ flat Time Capsule (like the A1254 “1st generation” Time Capsule), the HardDrive is rather easy to replace. And even though Apple has marked this TimeCapsule ‘obsolete’ it is still able to preform properly and it can be maintained using the current AirPort Utility version 6 and newer.

To do so, follow these steps :

  • get yourself a new HardDisk, preferably a low-energy HD like the Western Digital WD Green 2TB or 3TB (get it on Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.de) ; these low-energy HDs are especially suited not only because of their low power consumption, but also because of their ability to stay cool during operation since these old TimeCapsules tend to overheat when a regular HD is installed
  • then, place the TimeCapsule upside-down and warm up the rubber bottom plate with a hairdryer to loosen the glue (if you don’t do this, it is nearly impossible to get the rubber bottom plate of without rupturing it)
  • then follow the steps as outlined in this manual by iFixit and be sure to read the important note at Step 2 : “The two screws in the top center of this picture should not be removed at this time. They are locating pins on the hard drive.”
  • then replace the HD and rebuild your TimeCapsule doing the MacFixit steps in revers direction
  • when done, plug your Time Capsule into the power and access it using the AirPort Utility app on your Mac (or iPhone/iPad)
  • in the AirPort Utility app, select the TimeCapsule’s icon and click Edit
  • in the window that opens, go to Disks, then click Erase Disk
  • when that’s done, your new Time Capsule’s HD is ready for use

That’s it 😉

enjoy !

fixed : shared disks not visible in Finder

Question :

When I’m at home, I usually am able to see my Time Capsule in the paragraph named “Shared” in the shortlist on the left side of each Finder window.

But today, I don’t even see the “Shared” paragraph… How can I connect to my Time Capsule to view the files I’ve stored on it ?

Answer :

There can be several causes for your problem, but these two are the most common :

#1. you have accidentally switched off viewing of shared volumes in the Finder preferences

to correct this :

– click on the Finder icon in the Dock (the half-blue-half-grey square-face icon)

– then, in the top menu bar, go to Finder –> Preferences

– in the window that opens, click on the “Sidebar” tab

– then, in the “Show these items in the sidebar:” list, make sure there’s a checkmark in front of “Connected servers” (in the “Shared” paragraph)

– then close the Finder Preferences and you’re done ; enjoy !

#2. OSX has automatically logged on to a different WiFi-network than your primary WiFi-network (getting logged on to your Guest-network can cause this problem for instance…)

to correct this :

– click on the AirPort/WiFi-icon in the top menu bar (the ‘piece of pie’-icon)

– in the list of available WiFi-networks that appears, click “Turn Wi-Fi off”

– then click on the AirPort/WiFi-icon in the top menu bar again, click “Turn Wi-Fi on”, wait for the available WiFi-networks to appear in the list, then select your primary WiFi-network to connect to

– this should resolve your problem, but to make sure your Mac won’t auto-connect to the wrong WiFi-network again, do this also :

– go to the Apple-icon (top-left in the top menu bar) –> System Preferences –> Network

– in the window that opens, select “Wi-Fi” in the shortlist on the left

– then click the “Advanced”-button

– in the window that opens, select the “Wi-Fi”-tab and scroll down though the list of “Preferred Networks:” until you come to the name of your Guest-network (or other WiFi-network you unwillingly connected to)

– then click on the ‘Minus-sign”-button to delete your Guest-network (or alike) from the list of preferred networks, then click the ‘OK’-button to save and exit

…that’s it !

enjoy 😉

Note : if situation #1. occurs, your Time Machine backup would still be operating, but if situation #2. is the case, Time Machine won’t be able to see your Time Capsule either, even if you have internet access…

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fixed : This file sever will not allow any additional users to log on

Question :

I got this error “This file server will not allow any additional users to log on, please try again later” when I tried to access files that were on my network, but not on my Mac itself.

How can I fix this ?

Answer :

You can get this error when trying to connect to either another Mac or a Time Capsule in your network. The solution depends on the type of ‘server’ you are trying to connect to.

-A-

On a Mac running a normal (non-server) version of MacOSX, only 10 clients can be connected at the same time. If you get this error, despite the fact that you have less than 10 clients connected, try this :

– on the Mac you want to connect to, open the Terminal.app and type this command :

sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.AppleFileServer idleDisconnectOnOff -bool YES

– then press RETURN and you will be asked for your password

– type your password, press RETURN, quit the Terminal.app and you’re done (please note that the cursor will not move while typing your password in Terminal.app)

– whenever you want to undo (or reverse) this action, follow the same routine, but use this command :

sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.AppleFileServer idleDisconnectOnOff -bool NO

-B-

If you get this error message when connecting to a Mac and you need to have more than 10 clients connected, try this :

– upgrade the version of MacOSX you’re running (on the Mac you want to connect to) to the server-version of MacOSX, as OSX Server can handle an unlimited number of clients ; you can get the latest version of OSX Server in the Mac App Store

-C-

If you are trying to connect to a Time Capsule and you get this error message, the problem is something completely different. The Time Capsule can handle up to 50 clients at the same time, so chances of running into that limit in a regular household are low. But, the average internet provider has a limit of only 10 concurrent internet connections on it’s modem at the same time, so if you get this error when trying to connect to a Time Capsule, the 10 internet connections limit will probably be the cause. So try this :

– startup the AirPort Utility on your Mac

– click on the Time Capsule icon so the ‘info balloon’-window will open

– click on the “Edit”-button

– in the window that opens, click the “Network”-tab/button

– at “Router Mode:” select “DCHP and NAT”, so not “Off (Bridge Mode)”

– then click on the “Network Options…”-button

– in the window that opens, at “IPv4 DHCP Range:” select a range of IP-addresses that is different from your internet modem’s IP-range. So, if your internet modem’s IP-range is 192.168.1.xxx select an IP-range like “192.168.2.2 to 200” and click the “Save”-button

– in the next window, click the “Update”-button

– then, back in the ‘info balloon’-window of your Time Capsule, at “status” you will get “Double NAT” with an error mark (yellow dot) next to it… so, click on the “Double NAT”-text and in the pulldown-menu that opens, select “Ignore”

…that’s it !

Enjoy !

😉

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fixed : use the Terminal to repair corrupt .sparsebundle-file

Question :

I have a corrupt .sparsebundle-file (a TimeMachine-backup file), that I would really like to fix, because there’s some files in there that I need.

I have tried using the Disk Utility app, but that didn’t work.

I also read that it should be possible to use the Terminal app to do this, but I’ve never used the Terminal app before, and I can’t find clear directions on how to do it…

What exactly should I do ?

Answer :

The Terminal app is not a regular OSX-application, it is a command-line tool (a.k.a. console) to program and reprogram in the underlings of OSX (more or less like the DOS-prompt in Windows). So, as you are going out of the ‘OSX comfort zone’ when you start using the Terminal app, you should beware since messing things up there can really mess up OSX, and lead to having to re-install OSX.

Having that said, here’s a step-by-step guide to fixing your .sparsebundle-file using the Terminal app :

– first, connect your backup-drive (the one with the broken .sparsebundle-file on it) to your Mac, using a USB- or FireWire-cable

note : if the backup-drive is inside a Time Capsule, you’ll probably be best of getting the harddrive out of the Time Capsule (as outlined in this iFixit How-To) and then temporarily hooking it up to your Mac using something like this SATA-to-USB connector (or an old USB-harddrive-enclosure). Even though this breaks the warranty on your Time Capsule, it’s probably the best solution since the direct USB-connection is much faster than the usual network-over-ethernet-connection… (and bringing the Time Capsule in to an Apple-dealer for repair, will definitely mean losing all your data, since that is part of the regular repair-policy… and bringing it to a specialized data-recovery company will cost more than buying a new Time Capsule)

– then, open the Terminal app (which can be found in the Utilities folder that is in the Applications folder)

– in the window that opens, you will see the name of your Mac followed by a colon (:) and a tilde (~), so if the name of your Mac is MacBook Pro, you will see :

macbook-pro:~

that is the “prompt”, when you see that, you can start typing the commands

note : some basic knowledge about working in the Terminal :

  1. each line of commands (a.k.a. “command line”) you type should be activated by pressing the ENTER-key
  2. as long as you do not see the prompt, the Terminal app is still busy executing your last command line
  3. the Terminal can not handle names with spaces in them, as spaces play an important roll in a command line ; they separate the subsequent commands given in one command line, e.g. if your backup-file’s name is MacBook Pro.sparsebundle, the Terminal app requires you to type is as MacBook\ Pro.sparsebundle or you can type the entire path to the file in quotation marks, like : “…/…/MacBook Pro.sparsebundle” (another option is to temporarily change the filename to one that has only letters and numbers in it)
  4. you don’t need to type the entire path to a file’s location in a command line manually, you can just drag-and-drop the file itself onto the command line and the entire path to the file will be automatically generated (a handy trick to prevent mis-typing)
  5. when typing your password in the Terminal, the cursor will not progress, so there will be no visual feedback whatsoever about what you’ve typed… so, type your passwords only with total focus on what you’re typing !
  6. ! BEWARE : be sure to double-check your typing when using the command line, as one mis-typed letter can generate an entirely different, unwanted outcome, screwing up your entire OSX installation !
  7. when working in Terminal app on a MacBook (Pro/Air), the advice is not to use an external keyboard, but the on-board keyboard

Now, when you see the prompt appearing, type this (followed by pressing the ENTER-key) :

admin$ sudo su –

Then, when you see the prompt appearing again, type this (followed by pressing ENTER) :

root# chflags -R nouchg [drag .sparsebundle-file here]

Then, at the next prompt, type this (and press ENTER) :

root# hdiutil attach -nomount -noverify -noautofsck [drag .sparsebundle-file here]

And at the next prompt, type this (and ENTER) :

root# tail -f /var/log/fsck_hfs.log

Look closely in this next file when you need to type what, and what the feedback should look like (kind of) :

  • bold green text = this is the command line prompt
  • bold black text = you should manually type exactly this text
  • bold purple text = drag-and-drop your .sparsebundle-file here, and your sparse bundle’s path will be displayed
  • black text = this text is generated by the Terminal, indicating what is busy and/or finished, and will be the same when your replicate this proces
  • blue text = what is displayed here depends on your specific situation
  • if problems are found, they will be listed in-between these lines, and it will also be indicated how it was fixed

console log sparsebundle repair

note : as you can see from the time-stamps in the picture, the entire process will take quite a long time to complete (it took nearly 6 hours to repair this harddisk – a 500GB harddrive that was temporarily taken out of a Time Capsule and connected via USB2.0)

so, from there on it’s wait, wait, wait, do something entirely different, wait (again), get a good night’s sleep… and wake up in the morning with a repaired hard drive…

that should be it 😉

fixed : “No Volumes Found in backup”-error

Question :

I was trying to get Migration Assistant-app to put all my data on my new Mac, but when I select the sparsebundle backup-file from Time Machine in Migration Assistant, I get an error : “No Volumes Found in backup”.

How can that be ? I’ve made a new TimeMachine-backup just minutes before, and I didn’t get any errors there… what is wrong ?

What can I do to fix this ?

Answer :

Time Machine is great. But there seems to be a bug in the backup-software that causes this “No Volumes Found in backup”-error you’ve encountered. Normally, this error-message should only be displayed when a sparsebundle backup-file is corrupt (for some reason), but it turns out that it is now also displayed when a sparsebundle backup-file is incomplete…

This is probably due to a disconnection from the backup-disk during the TimeMachine-backup process (for instance because of shutting down the Mac, or switching from WiFi- to Ethernet-connection or vice-versa, during backup).

If the original files are still available on your Mac, the solution is rather simple : just go back to your Mac and use Time Machine to make a new backup. If you want extra insurance to prevent this error, either make a new Time Machine backup to a new/fresh harddrive (preferable an external USB- or FireWire-harddisk), or follow the backup-routine outlined in this post.

If the original files are no longer available on your Mac (e.g. your Mac is stolen, sold or you’ve just done a clean install on it, wiping off all of it’s data), you are in trouble…

…in that case, you could try using Disk Utility to repair the sparsebundle-file. If that works, you are in extreme luck… if that doesn’t help, you have very few options other than using the Terminal-app or a specialized expensive retrieving app like DiskWarrior (the cheaper knock-offs turn out not to work in most cases… too bad…).

I will be posting instructions on how to use the Terminal-app for this shortly (in a new post).

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