I work on different systems using different OS. What I have ben wanting for a long, long time, is an easy way to sync application settings. Just like syncing files, but with some extra logic. For instance, here are some applications I use daily and how ideally they would bevahe:

  • Sublime Text: same theme/font/preferences on all systems, basically the preferences files
  • Opera: Opera already does a very good job, in fact it is a good example on itself: it keeps contacts/bookmarks/passwords/... in sync across all instances. I love it. But also preferences/mail should be synced.
  • Visual Studio: sync everything (basically everything under options + ui customizations) except eg recent files across systems.

What I tried already is just putting an entire application in DropBox or similar. This gets extremely messy when working on multiple systems simultaneously, especially for software like Sublime Text which uses cache files etc. So I'd need something smarter. Maybe I can get away with making sym/hard links to just the actual settings files/directories and then syncing a dir containing those links. But then I have to figure out for each application exactly what to sync.

Questions: is there an application that does something like this already? Surely I am not the first one with this idea. If not, any tips on how I could create something that does this?


I use unison to synchronize files and configuration settings for a number of applications etc. For example for firefox I have set up symlinks to only synchronize my bookmarks, preferences and a few other files. It does require some additional pre- and postscripting, though, to "normalize" these files, e.g. remove last access time stamps to prevent updates every time.

All in all, it's not a perfect solution, but once set up it does the job well enough.

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  • +1 I only started reading the tutorial, and not only does this seem like a really clever program, it also seems useful for my case. Will try and let you know how it turns out – stijn Jul 12 '12 at 9:18
  • played around with it and once you get hold of a good workflow it works surprisingly well, thanks! – stijn Jul 14 '12 at 7:35

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