Software KVM Switches

I have a bunch of computers scattered around my workspace. One for the business stuff, one for recording, and the test bed (Ubuntu today, WIndows tomorrow, Centos last week). When the current one is busy out with rendering stats from the servers, burning backup DVDs or finding messages from the gods in pi, then I just move along to the next one and work on something else rather than just stare at the hourglass thing. Of course I don’t actually want to move somewhere else to control that next machine, I use a hardware KVM switch but this limits you by the number of ports and cable reach and ANNOYINGLY you cant swap BOTH monitors. I have used a virtual client such as UltraVNC or Windows remote desktop (didn’t like it), but running these programs loads the remote system’s screen into your current one, losing precious screen real estate.

So here are a couple of thoughts to play with

Synergy
lets you easily share a single mouse and keyboard between multiple computers with different operating systems, each with its own display, without special hardware. It’s intended for users with multiple computers on their desk since each system uses its own monitor(s).

and this great article over at AviDardik.com called A guide to building a software KVM switch

Here is some of the hype….

This guide, or tutorial, explains how I’ve used VNC to simulate the effect of using a regular hardware KVM-Switch to control my Ubuntu Linux server PC with my Windows XP main desktop PC.
However, this can be applied to any two sets of operating systems.

Now this looks like it could be fun. I will let you know how I go.

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