Laptop and Desktop sync

I have Kubuntu running on a desktop at home, and a new laptop running Kubuntu as well. I like the convenience of working on both at any time. But it is a pain to switch back and forth. Things like email contacts, project files, etc.

I’m not foreign to rsync, but I decided being new to this on KDE, I would search around. I found Komparator and a few other GUI tools. But I don’t feel that I need all that fancy stuff popping up in my head. I’d rather just let the two PC’s talk and sync up.

My initial thoughts were to create a text file, specifying the specific directories in my /home/username path to sync up. Then I found this webpage, and liked what I saw. This turned out to be an easy to customize sample of Linux in motion. I can easily specify what to sync with symbolic links.

First, create a directory in your user’s home dir called sync. Change to the sync directory and create symlinks to all of the directories that you want to transfer.

That works well most of the time, but it had its flaws. Finally I found Unison. It is a file synchronization tool for Unix and Windows, and is very customizable!

I now synchronize my laptop and desktop with ease. There is a GUI program you can run, or if your like me, I run unison default from the command line and quickly get things in sync. I’m all for quick and simple. I did find the GUI program to be helpful when I was initially setting things up.

Before writing a simple sync file and walking away take a look at the documentation. Unison has more options to customize it the way you want.


One response to “Laptop and Desktop sync

  1. Thanks very much for writing about this. I’m using XP on my laptop because I still have issues with Ubuntu hibernating. When I used XP on my desktop, I could use the briefcase and that worked OK 99% of the time.

    Tried Vista in February and hated it so much that I put Ubuntu on my desktop rather than drop back to XP.

    Please keep tagging posts, by the way: I found you via

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