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Windows 7: Using 1 keyboard & mouse for 2 PCs

26 Feb 2019   #1
InterMedDude15

Win7 x64
 
 
Using 1 keyboard & mouse for 2 PCs

Hi Forum:

I'd like to use one keyboard and one mouse for two computers.

It seems that there are two possibilities to accomplish this:
a) devices like UGREEN USB Switch Selector or IOGEAR 2 Computer 4-Port USB 2.0 Peripheral Sharing Switch or...
b) a USB hub, a bunch of USB cables and software like Synergy.

If it's a), which device would you recommend I get? Also, is there anything else I need to keep in mind?

Many thanks.

InterMedDude15


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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26 Feb 2019   #2
F22 Simpilot

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Synergy shouldn't require a bunch of USB cables like you mention. You would install the program on both machines and use one keyboard and mouse.

The KVM route WOULD use a bunch of cables.

If you only need to access the other PC a few times, then try Team Viewer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2019   #3
townsbg

Windows 7 pro 64-bit sp 1
 
 

Keep in mind that those would only allow you to share devices among 2 computers. If you want to go from one computer to the other you would still need to change sources on your monitor. A KVM switch would include that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Feb 2019   #4
F22 Simpilot

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

You would see the second screen in Synergy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2019   #5
InterMedDude15

Win7 x64
 
 

Hi F22 Simpilot and Townsbg:

Thanks a lot for your replies.

Actually, right now I need to reinstall Win7 pretty bad (and also install the latest Linux distro). So, I need to be able to go online with my 2nd PC to look for software or google for solutions to a problem that might come up - and using 1 mouse and 1 keyboard sounds like a nifty idea. Right now at least I'd need to access the other PC a few times only (although that might change).

What I'm a bit confused about right now is whether using a KVM makes more sense (If you want to go from one computer to the other you would still need to change sources on your monitor. A KVM switch would include that.) or rather Synergy or Team Viewer. BTW, what do you mean, Townsbg, by saying I need to change sources on my monitor? And how?

Anyway, if I use software wouldn't that require at least 1 USB cable between the 2 machines to be able to access either one or the other PC?

Thanks again.

InterMedDude15
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2019   #6
dg1261

Windows 7/8.1/10 multiboot
 
 

I don't think the devices listed in post #1 are for quite the purpose you need. A KVM switch would be better, such as this one. (I'm not sure why the IOGear device in post #1 is as expensive as it is, given the IOGear KVM is much more functional for about the same price.)

I have a CPA friend who uses the IOGear KVM to use one mouse, keyboard and monitor between four computers. A tiny button sits next to his keyboard, and pressing the button cycles sequentially through the four computers, all humming along on the floor behind his desk.

As a CPA, he depreciates and buys a new computer every few years, and every time he does he uses the new computer for new clients, keeping old clients on the old computers. Don't ask; I've told him he can put everything on the new computer, but he doesn't like to work that way. I guess there's something psychological about clicking over to an old computer for old clients.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2019   #7
townsbg

Windows 7 pro 64-bit sp 1
 
 

Yes the devices you posted will only do mouse and keyboard as well as 2 other devices such as a printer or a usb drive. It will not control your monitor. Your second computer will need to have it's own connection to your monitor and you will need to switch inputs on the monitor to go from one computer to the other. A KVM switch will also include your monitor so when you change which computer you are using it will also change your monitor. I used to use a KVM switch and all i had to do was hit num lock key twice and it would switch from one computer to another for the monitor and keyboard. My mouse was separate. It doesn't say it directly but Synergy looks like it is remote control software. It will launch a separate window on one computer and connect to another. The downside is that you need both computers functional to use it. It sounds like for the kind of work you are doing a kvm will be best so that you can switch back and forth between computers while installing an OS and then updating it. Once you get it up and running then you can use something like synergy for a remote connection.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Mar 2019   #8
InterMedDude15

Win7 x64
 
 
Using 1 keyboard, mouse & monitor for 2 PCs

Hi 'dg1261' and 'townsbg':

Thanks a lot for your latest feedback and my apologies for not replying sooner.

I was able to get a used but fully functional IO Gear GCS24U for a pretty good price, which came a few days ago. Setting it up was really easy. However, only one of my 2 computers, a Lenovo 'Slimcase', is available when I press the remote switch button. The other PC, a HP 'refurbished' (used) machine, of course boots but the monitor stays dark no matter which of the remaining 3 LEDs I turn on.

While the Lenovo has a Siemens VGA monitor the HP has a HDMI-capable LG monitor, which additionally has a D-SUB port. I tried both the Siemens and the LG monitor, the latter with the D-SUB port, with always the same result .

Also, the HP boot sequence is set to I think USB (?!). I tried to change it to HDD several times and save it by pressing F10 (Save and Exit). But each time I checked the boot sequence had gone back to USB. The HP does boot, but maybe this is one of the reasons it cannot be accessed by the IO Gear like the Lenovo?!

Btw, how can I save the boot sequence in the HP BIOS, if F10 (as indicated by the onscreen notes) doesn't work? Are some BIOSes perhaps manufacturer-specific? Actually, in the HP BIOS there are two places where the boot sequence can be changed and saved (sorry, I should've noted the names when I accessed it), one by pressing F9 right after booting, the other by pressing F10.

Sorry also this is a somewhat longer post. And my apologies for probably not using the right tech terms (I'm not a computer whiz ). I hope, though, that my explanations make sense.

Many thanks again.

John aka IntermedDude
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Mar 2019   #9
townsbg

Windows 7 pro 64-bit sp 1
 
 

If you can't get video I would either call their tech support to see if there is something that you are missing or exchange it. Something might be wrong with it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Mar 2019   #10
InterMedDude15

Win7 x64
 
 

Hi 'townsbg':

I'm definitely going to do that. I'll also contact LG (re. HT remove the monitor HDMI driver if that's necessary) and HP (re. HT save the changed boot sequence).

Once I know more and have hopefully fixed the problem I'll get back to you guys and mark the post as solved.

Thanks.

John aka IntermedDude
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Using 1 keyboard & mouse for 2 PCs




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