How to make Blender plus custom resources fully portable?

I would like to bundle some custom resources together with Blender so that I can set it up as an “appliance” application (startup file, user prefs, hdri, custom addon). As far as I am aware, the best that I can do currently is to copy the config folder into Blender’s typical resource location (e.g. 2.81), and then symlink the necessary resources into that location as well (e.g. custom addon into .../2.81/scripts/addons).

Is there a way to do this without having to resort to symlinks or copying data? Ideally, it would be nice to just be able to point Blender at a specific folder via an environment variable, or better, just add a directory called something like portable to the resources folder and just have it know automatically to use that for storing user resources…

If that’s not a thing, I would be interested in taking a crack at adding that functionality myself if someone could point me at where the code is for loading resources.

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You might look at the help info from running blender -h on the command line.
Specifically, the Misc Options and the Environment Variables sections.