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I'd like to gradually use more Linux. In order to that i'm looking for cross-platform applications with abilities to synchronize its files. I would like it to be almost automatic - sharing files, settings between win and linux. What is more I'd like to have possibility to sync data between PC and laptop. What I have already found out:

  • Java Dev - Netbeans
  • Text Editor - Gedit with many plugins... (in oder to bring notepad++ features)
  • Calendar - Google Calendar
  • News Feeds - Google Reader
  • IM - Pidgin with settings stored in dropbox
  • Online File Sharing between PC's - Dropbox
  • 'offline' (without online storage) file sharing - Unison
  • Web browser - Chrome with bookmarks and extensions syncing
  • Mail - Thunderbird - accounts configured with IMAP
  • Video Playing - VLC
  • Passwords - Keepass (wine on linux) with database stored on dropbox
  • Notes and TODO lists - and that is the problem. I'm looking for application with client for windows and linux but with content stored online (and maybe with ability to edit notes via web browser). I've tried tiddlywiki but it becomes slow when it grows... For small notes works Tomboy with notes stored on dropbox (but no possibility to edit files online). But I need also something more complex with e.g. latex support and syntax highlighting for pasted source code.
  • For syncing Linux application settings - conduit synchronizer or simply home directory stored in Dropbox (or Ubuntu One in Ubuntu) with symbolic link
  • For linux - it is possible to export and import list of installed packages - sync between computers.
  • For windows its probably impossible to sync list of installed applications...

Do you have any other ideas to improve this "dual-boot dual-computer" system?

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And for the question: Notepad++ runs fine in WINE too. –  BloodPhilia Aug 23 '10 at 22:48
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1 Answer

To avoid having to reboot your PC, run one of the OSes in a virtual machine. If you have a permanent internet connection, set up your PC so that you can use ssh (and possibly https if you have a use for it) to connect to it from your laptop when you're not at home. Then whenever you are, if you have internet access, you can reach the host OS on your PC. This will simplify your life.

For any file that's supposed to be identical across machines unless you've just edited it, Unison is a good choice. I recommend it over a third-party service like Dropbox because you're not depending on your ISP and the Dropbox website to be working when you want to synchronize stuff.

For notes and todos, a wiki is indeed a good idea. Your slowness issue is definitely not a problem with all wiki software (just look at the size of wikipedia; their software is mediawiki, which is packaged in Ubuntu).

On Debian/Ubuntu-based Linux, the command dpkg --get-selections prints the list of installed packages (more precisely, the list of packages that you've requested to install). You can import this list on another computer with dpkg --clear-selections; dpkg --set-selections <other_computer_selections_file; apt-get install`.

Last but not least, I recommend the use of a version control system (subversion or git are quite popular these days, but there are other choices). It takes some learning at the beginning, but it's a good way of organizing your data. A version control system will make it difficult to overwrite a file with an older version, and will tell you if you've inadvertently edited a file in parallel on different machines. An added benefit is that you'll be able to recover older versions of a file if you delete something by mistake and don't realize it immediately. Once you've set things up, the day-to-day workflow is fairly routine: checkout/edit/commit (for subversion) or pull/edit/commit/push (for git). Also install and enable etckeeper to put your Linux system configuration (/etc) under version control.

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