Gordon Dexter on 18 Apr 2010 22:03:58 -0700

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[PLUG] How to manage your files among multiple PCs

Way back when I only had one computer organizing my files was easy.  I 
had nice and organized folder heirarchy, with everything in it's proper 
place.  I'm a packrat, so I accumulate lots of junk, but as long as I 
put everything in the right place it worked nicely.

Now I have a desktop, a server/HTPC that sometimes acts as a desktop, an 
Eee (with not much space), and a few server accounts, and everything is 
haphazard all over the place.  My laptop has some files, my desktop has 
some different files, my server has a different set of files, and 
everything is messy and disorganized.  My media collection is in spread 
over two computers and my personal documents are sprawled out across 
three or four, all the computers have some form of 'download' directory 
with some useful stuff, and I'm starting to forget where I put things.  
I even have older copies of my home folder from old installs, sitting in 
subfolders of my current home directory.

I have been running my own Dovecot IMAPS server, so email is 
synchronized among all computers, and I just set up Xmarks BYOS so 
bookmarks are similarly common.  Those things are really nice, since I 
don't have to think about what is on what computer, but I don't think 
that would work for my media collection, at least in part because it 
wouldn't fit on the server, and certainly not on my Eee.

I want to figure out a better way to organize files.  Network mounts 
sound like the most obvious solution until my laptop is somewhere 
without internet (or without port 22 outbound permitted).

What do you guys do to organize your home directories, media 
collections, sprawling document piles, etc?  I've heard of people using 
versioning systems, network mounts with offline cache, etc.  I'm sort of 
looking for a series of specific programs or practices that might be 
integrated into a holistic system for managing my digital clutter.


P.S. Bonus points if my wife's Mac can use it for backups

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