I want to have a GNU/Linux setup on my computer, where I could use different distributions and isolated environments inside an operating system-level virtual machine. Then I also want to share my personal data between all of the OSes and their configurations. And also this data needs to be encrypted.

What should my setup look like?

I thought of the following:

  1. Install minimal base distribution like Parabola or Debian.
  2. Install VM on it - for example OpenVZ.
  3. Install multiple distros inside VM.
  4. Create a separate /home partition, which will be encrypted - for example dm-crypt.
  5. Share /home partition between distros.

Any reason for encrypted /? gave me an idea to use LVM instead of physical partitions, but I had no experience with it. Answers in Different linux distros sharing the same /home folder? state that sharing /home can be problematic. What are alternatives or clarifications to the scheme above?

  • just for the record openvz is a container and not a full-fledged virtualization, e.g. guests share the kernel and you can see the processes in the host system. – Ulrich Dangel Jul 21 '12 at 11:08

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