2 mini's, only one monitor and keyboard?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by gpspad, Dec 8, 2016.

  1. gpspad macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    I am considering running one mac mini as a desktop, and another as a fileserver for backups and media. The only problem is space is very limited and I don't have room for two monitors, two keyboards, two mice, etc...

    How do you guys with multiple mac minis handle this?

    Can you buy switches or adapters to switch between them and share the display and keyboards?
  2. elf69 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    Yes tons of KVM switches out there

    We use them at work.
  3. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816


    Feb 16, 2010
    Dayton, Ohio
    A lot of my monitors have multiple inputs (DisplayPort, DVI, HDMI, VGA, etc.); so I plug different computers into different ports on the same monitor, and switch between them on the monitor itself.

    But I do generally give each machine its own keyboard and mouse. I just put them away beside the machine or beneath the desk when I'm not using them. :) (And I tend to only use one machine directly; I normally log into the others remotely when I want to work on them.)
  4. MultiFinder17 macrumors 68000


    Jan 8, 2008
    Tampa, Florida
    If you are using one of the machines as a server, you can just run it headless and access it via screen sharing. That's what I do with my mini server. That way there's no need for a KVM switch or second set of peripherals.
  5. 960design macrumors 68030

    Apr 17, 2012
    Destin, FL
    I stack mac mini servers. Run the bottom mac mini to the 50", keyboard and touchpad. Use Apple Remote Desktop to talk to the others.
  6. Boyd01 macrumors 68040


    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    I use the regular Apple screen sharing from two different Macs to connect to my mini iTunes server, although it does have its own screen and monitor. Somewhere I read that there are issues with not connecting a monitor to the Mini, but these may have been older computers.
  7. gpspad thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    Thanks for al the replies, I have a better idea now. i like the idea of plugging them both into the same monitor, but unfortunately I am using a 27" thunderbolt monitor. Don't think thats going to work, plus if I use a bluetooth wireless keyboard, it will only be paired to the one mac.

    I have some research to do.
  8. Pakaku macrumors 68000


    Aug 29, 2009
    Screen sharing will let you use the main Mac to control the other Macs without having to do any extra plugging around. There might be some input lag, but it's still probably the smoothest option.

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