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My windows development environment gets pretty slow sometimes, it's a huge code base. I was thinking of speeding this up by using an SSD, but I want a way to do it while not requiring myself to carry an external disk all the time. Optimally, I'd be able to carry my dev environment with me, and sync up local hard drive copies with what's on the SSD between two computers, and be able to use the dev environment when I don't have the SSD. I think the best way to use the SSD transparently would be to create a partition on a file with imdisk, then mount that for my development box. I keep a local copy of the disk image on each box, and if I don't have the SSD, I mount the local file to the same drive letter. To sync, I can copy.

Question 1: is there a way to tranparently sync the binary disk image file in the background, so I can just unplug and go when I need to go and avoid the ~8GB copy each time? There shouldn't be a performance hit (copies should only happen on idle I/O time)

Question 2: Is there a better way to do what I'm trying to do? Like an SSD backed caching solution?

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You might consider identifying the OS(es) you are considering for this functionality. –  user48838 Jun 11 '11 at 18:09
Windows 7 64-bit. I tried imDisk, and although it would work, it's a pain since it has to fully allocate the space. I see only paid ways to use sparse images. –  gtrak Jun 13 '11 at 15:02
In that case, you might have some additional flexibility (maybe even something that is acceptable to you) via the VirtualPC route - where you virtualize the subject desktop and just manage the virtual storage to your needs. –  user48838 Jun 13 '11 at 19:23
eek, except I'd need an extra license key, and the complexity of managing an extra installation, not to mention more disk space for the extra os –  gtrak Jun 14 '11 at 19:55
That depends on how you approach it and what your targeted systems may already be running - e.g. if the host systems are already running Windows 7 and your virtualized desktop is XP via VirtualPC, you would already have all the licensing in place. –  user48838 Jun 14 '11 at 22:06
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