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I want to easily move multiple linux distros between my machines (Mac & Windows) via flash drive. Each machine will have VMware player installed to boot the OS rather than booting directly from thumb drive. I also need changes to be persistent as I shut down and move from place to place.

How can this be done? I have seen tools such as pendrivelinux but this require booting directly from the flash drive rather than using virtualization software.

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As long as you're using the same VMware on the OS's, it should be as easy as installing the virtual HD on the flashdrive you're using, and then mapping that to the VM software you're using. –  Rob Apr 26 '12 at 17:37

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It isn't really a sound idea to install VMware Player on the thumb drive. It's best to install it on each system, then make sure the USB drive is always mounting to the same point (same drive letter in Windows, same folder in Mac), and then just build the VMs, and store them on the flash drive. Once they are built, take them to the next system you want to use it on, import the files, and tada you have access to it. Make sure, MAKE SURE, that you 1) power down your VMs every time properly, 2) properly disengage the USB device BEFORE removing it. If you fail to do either of these, or both, you will likely irreperably damage your VM files.

The only concern is that if one of your installs is setup to do automatic snap shots, that may complicate things beyond what you want to do. It may still be feasible however.

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