Settings/docs sync between desktop virtual linux and laptop native linux
Greetings. I'm just getting started with Linux, I've been primarily using Mint 7.
I currently have a Windows 7 desktop pc that I use solely for playing high end games, minimal customization/changes are made besides game installations (Wine didn't cut it for me). On the desktop I have been setting up a Virtualbox VM with Mint 7 to use as my portable "work/GTD environment". I also have a laptop with Mint 7 installed natively on the localdisk. Additionally I will be setting up a dedicated NAS file server at home (Synology DS-409) that could possibly be used for hosting the Linux virtual disk instead of the desktop. VMWare ESX with a dedicated virtual machine would be the most ideal for my situation but I do not have a server for it yet.
I would like to synchronize the interface customizations/documents/application settings/etc between the desktop PC's linux virtual machine and the laptop's native linux local install. I've been looking at Unison to do this synchronization for me but am not sure which way to set up my infrastructure.
My questions are as follows:
1. What method would you recommend for setting up the clients(see ideas below)?
a. Virtual disk/machine hosted on desktop and synced with laptop when both are online.
b. Sync settings/docs to/from file server from both desktop and laptop to be used as a central storage repository.
c. Do either of the above methods but use a virtual machine on the laptop instead of a native install. --If done this way, would you recommend to sync the entire virtual disk as opposed to the contents?
d. Simply have an external hard drive that stores the virtual disk with Linux, use the desktop or laptop virtualbox to access it via USB, and routinely back up the contents to the file server (this option would thus not require any synchronization between the desktop or laptop) With this option I would then prefer to use a livecd or usb flash drive bootable OS (with virtualbox installed) in order to access the virtualdisk without having an internal local disk. This would be similar to VMware pocket ACE but with less overhead and more flexibility
2. Is it feasible to synchronize application installations themselves, such as the equivalence of portable apps on a USB stick? For example if I were to install a new application on my laptop could I have that application be installed on the desktop virtual machine when the sync runs?