Do remote common storage solutions exist which you can mount to your local filesystem?

Let me first explain what I have in mind: I have 3 different pc’s and a lot of unorganized personal files scattered between all three of them. Only my small coding projects are well organized and in sync thanks to git, github and gitlab. So what I am looking for is some way to have some type of storage solution (either online/offline) which can be mounted to the filesystems of the 3 pc’s such that I can use/access it as if it’s just a directory in my $HOME (for argument’s sake) such that I have common storage space between them and specifically without needing a desktop/browser app to access/manage my files (or at least have the option NOT to use it; I find these tools needlessly complicates things instead of simplifying).

My internet searches for online solutions didn’t turn up anything promising since it seems all online storage solutions available has a desktop/browser app with which to access/manage your files, but I cannot tell for certain since I believe what I’m looking for is a very niche feature which would hardly be great marketing material. I know DropBox has the synchronized directory feature, but is not necessarily well advertised. I also don’t think these solutions are necessarily designed to be used this way.

I know a NAS comes to everyone’s mind, but from what I can tell it also suffers from the same problem, that being from what I can gather it also requires at least a browser app which you need to use to access/manage your files (referring to Synology’s NAS’s). But I’ll admit I didn’t do a deep dive into this or any of the online storage solutions so I can be horribly mistaken about this.

The most promising thing I could find in terms of the functionality I was looking for is setting up a NFS. It seems to require just a little work, however, I’ve found the minimum amount of work/effort needed to do something involving networking is more often than not deceiving. Nevertheless I guess this would be quickest and cheapest way would by choosing one machine as the server and setting up NFS to the others. If it’s possible to do this with a NAS as well that would be even better in my opinion.

I would appreciate anyone that could contribute to the discussion that have more knowledge on such solutions and what fits what I’m looking for the best. I’m aware that the answer to my search might be so trivial that it’s kind of unspoken knowledge so I apologies if this is the case. Also apologies if this thread is initially not posted in the appropriate category.

with nas, we can use samba,nfs, ftp …
with this protocols, we can see these remote files as local files (in gui or terminal)

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Sharing my use case, in case it comes close to yours.

I have a laptop, which i often brought to RPG sessions, since i use it to use and update my digital character sheet.
But my main computer is a desktop. Sometimes, in order to prepare the next session, i’d rather update my sheet from my desktop.
So i installed a two-way synchronizing tool – i chose syncthing – so my character sheet is automatically synchronized between my two computers.

Thanks for the info. I’m a bit uncertain how one would do this on a NAS. Having no hands on exposure to such a unit I’m terribly unfamiliar with the tech. At this point it is too expensive of an investment to do myself.

On the other hand I found this thread which from first impressions is a good guide to do what I have in mind. And if I could afford a NAS at some point I would want to try it on that as well.

Thanks for the suggestion. I’m aware of syncthing. I did do some synchronizations uisng rsync at some point, but in the end it’s not completely aligned with what I’m trying to do/have done.

RPG with friends for the win! A bit unrelated, but when you say digital character sheet are you referring to a pdf document or something else?

I made my own custom sheet in LibreOffice Calc.

Probably not what your looking for buy I use Dropbox to sync all my files between devices. Dropbox folder is in the home directory and is also connected with nemo file manager so does everything I need it to

With rclone you can mount virtually any remote storage. Google Drive, Amazon S3 (and s3-compatibles like Wasabi) and many others.

I want to second the NAS approach, as I use it myself (SMB, via TrueNAS). Essentially, you configure an SMB share on the server (which is cross-platform compatible), and then mount/attach the share on each respective Linux, Mac, or Windows client. For the most part, it will behave as a folder on the client’s PC. (With some exceptions!)

It does take some familiarity with setting it up, and you are right that it does require extra cash to be dropped to get things started (especially for a robust solution.)

An added plus of using a native ZFS solution (such as TrueNAS) is the built-in and powerful “record-based” snapshot feature. Without going into detail, you can manually or automatically create instant snapshots of the file-system at any point in time, fully usable and protected by the server as a read-only file-system. Those familiar with ZFS or BTRFS know that “block-based” (or “record-based”) snapshots only take up space of the additional blocks/records. (In other words, if you modify 6MB worth of data on a 2GB file, taking a snapshot immediately afterwards only consumes an additional 6MB, even if it appears like you have a new 2GB that resides on the snapshot; even if you rename the file!)

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