I installed netatalk (AppleTalk protocol for UNIX) on the server. Now I can share my files with the two MacBooks in the house easily and I have a perfect location for Timemachine backups. It running without any problems for some month now and I’m very happy.
This guide from Christopher Warner helped me getting it up and running.
Timemachine already saved my life when I accidentally deleted 250 photos when I only wanted to delete one. The files were restored very quickly from my Timemachine backup.
The performance of Appletalk over Gigabit Ethernet is great. I’m reading large files at 75 MByte/s and writing at about 50 MByte/s over the network. This is awesome compared to the small NAS box with FastEthernet that I was running before. The previous box peaked at about 7 MByte/s (using CIFS). So netatalk, ZFS and Solaris are great team!