I work alone in some iOS projects in a local environment.

I have been thinking in a way to be able to share my development environment between my Mac Mini and my MacBook. I mostly work at home in the Mini but sometimes I need to do a demo or work outside and I would like to have the development environment mirrored in both.

I have think in using a virtual machine (via VirtualBox) with just my development tools installed. Then I could synchronize that VM with some software between both computers so I will always have the exact environment no matter what computer I use.

Is there any good reason not do do this way? I have not used virtualization too much so I have no background on the subject.

¿What about licenses?¿Is there need to have duplicated licenses in both VMs?

This are my requirements:

-Don't need to setup two environments. Just setup one and have the job done in the other(installing or updating apps, change settings, etc).

-Don't depend on having a connection when working away from my home.

My basic setup will be:

  • Mac Mini: i7 dual Core, 8Gb. OSX Mountain Lion Host OS:
  • MacBook: 2.4 Core 2 Duo. 4Gb. OSX Lion Host OS.
  • Virtual Box with Mountain Lion guest OS in both machines.
  • XCode5, Simulator, Texwrangler, MAMP, etc.

2 Answers 2


If you have enough licences, there is NO need to setup a Virtual machine and development environment in both machines. What you would need is a cloud repository like Git where you would sync your work. Btw, you may also set a private free repo with bitbucket.org.

However, if you have only one licence for development environment tools then you definitely need to set up your Virtual machine (btw, VirtualBox is a good choice), and use it in both machines that you have in mind. What will be left is just network configuration of Virtual machines, in order to get a connectivity to your cloud repository.

  • I know I can use repositories, but I want to go further so I don't have to worry about any change in the environment (new apps, updates, settings, etc.). I have to look carefully at the license conditions when installing an App in different VMs. Oct 11, 2012 at 6:56
  • Actually, using one license on two computers (by sharing the VM) is probably not allowed either. This will depend on the license and jurisdiction, of course.
    – sleske
    Oct 7, 2013 at 11:36

You don't need to virtualize anything. Just use Screen Sharing. It's built in.

Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) has an excellent screen sharing app built right into the operating system. The screen sharing app enable you to access and control the screen of another computer on your network. I like using in on my MacBook Air when I want to quickly access our family iMac. It’s perfect for troubleshooting the computer outside of the room or doing a function that’s not available on my notebook computer...

  • This will depend on having a connection when working with my MacBook and will feel slow since working remotely. Oct 11, 2012 at 6:52

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