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What is the optimal way to use the same Dropbox account on multiple virtual machines residing on the same computer?

I could just install Dropbox on the main user of every VM, but that would be inefficient in terms of both space and read-write activity, especially if both are on the same physical disk.

I might be able to put Dropbox on the host or in one VM and then share it via NFS to the other VMs. However, it sounds risky from what I’ve read.

Maybe I could try putting Dropbox in a VM with a SAN filesystem, so that each VM can access it via iSCSI. This is appealing from both a space efficiency and performance perspective, especially if I put Dropbox on a really fast drive. However, I’ve never tried to do anything SAN related, I’m not clear on whether there are any SAN filesystems that can be accessed by both Linux and Windows. However, if this is a viable option, relevant links would be welcome.

The last option would be to have Dropbox on one VM and then use something like Unison to periodically sync a folder on the other VMs with the Dropbox folder. However, I don’t know enough about the mechanics of Dropbox LAN sync between VMs, NFS between VMs, or Unison syncing to have any idea which would offer the best performance and use the least resource overhead.

Can anyone advise me on the merits of these options, or suggest ones that I did not list here?

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  • You may share same folder of host OS to VM by enabling guest additions features. – Biswapriyo Jun 11 '17 at 8:59
  • My understanding is that it's not recommended to share a Dropbox folder, because dropbox won't be aware of the changes made by the guests, which can result in data loss. If there is some way to do this safely though, I'm open to it. – Stonecraft Jun 11 '17 at 9:11
  • See this superuser.com/questions/344726/… – Biswapriyo Jun 11 '17 at 12:12
  • I have been successfully using a vboxsf filesystem in VirtualBox as a workaround for their atrocious OS X client, but now dropbox is killing support for this leaving me in bad shape. – Michael Oct 24 '18 at 0:16

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