Thursday, March 28, 2013

Synchronizing Notes in XFCE with Dropbox/Ubuntu One

If you have a lot of notes like me, you would probably want instant access to them. While Evernote is a good application to get the same results, I find the everpad interface on ubuntu rather annoying. And I prefer to use the native app in XFCE for notes - conveniently called "Notes". This app has the advantages of being lightweight, fast and easily accessible - but only on my personal laptop. What if I need access to some of this information when I am at work? The answer is simple - your favourite online sync service.

The good thing about Notes is that it saves everything in the plain text format - no hassles there. You could just take these files with you and use any reader to open them. Even on your mobile device! All you need to do is sync them using Ubuntu One or Dropbox (or any other sync service of your choice). The folder to sync is :
Sharing this with Ubuntu One is easy. Just fire up Ubuntu One, and add the above folder and everything should be smooth.

For Dropbox, however, there is no straightforward way to accomplish this. But with a little trick, this should be as easy typing a line out on the terminal - literally. Open up your terminal and navigate to the Dropbox folder and type:
user@pc:~/Dropbox$ ln -s ~/.local/share/notes/
This command creates a symbolic link in your Dropbox folder that points to the location of your locally stored notes. Presto! Now your notes are synced across all of your devices with Dropbox. It also becomes easier to share specific notes with certain people through Dropbox. If I wish to share the travel notes I have made for the upcoming trip with my girlfriend, I could just share the ~/Dropbox/notes/Travel folder with her.

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