Using Mac/PC together without KVM!!

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by nylon, Jan 25, 2005.

  1. nylon macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2004
    So I've been in a bit of a dilemma recently. I am a PC user and have never owned a Mac. However, with the advent of the mini, and with some experience with my friends 15" Powerbook at uni, I will shortly be purchasing one of these delightful Mac minis. The main draw for me is OSX and the included iLife apps.

    Now, unfortunately I do not want to purchase an extra keyboard and mouse since my current set up includes a Dell PS/2 keyboard and the Logitech MX1000 mouse. I own a Samsung 173P monitor with both a VGA and a DVI inputs. You can switch between inputs at the touch of a button, so I can just connect the mini to the VGA input and switch between the PC and Mac screens when I wish.

    But what about the keyboard and mouse!? I do not want the extra clutter and cost of a KVM.

    Well I was recently reading when a reader suggested an application called KMremoteControl. Apparently, with this program one can control two computers over a network without the use of a KVM. Basically if the KMremoteControl program is installed on a PC it will allow your mouse and keyboard remotely control the Mac over the network connection and all you need to press is one (or a combination) of the keyboard buttons which you assign as hotkeys.

    Since the software only costs $25 it seems like an awesome little program. However, I would like to know if anyone on this forum has used this program and cares to describe their experience with it?

    The website is:
  2. Logik macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2004
  3. h0e0h macrumors 6502a


    Aug 30, 2004
    West Monroe, Louisiana

    If i were you i'd just go with the KVM switch. I had a similar situation and my mom uses that software at her work... sometimes to me it feels laggy and hard to operate if there is alot of traffic on a small network. I went w/ a KVM and its really like day and night, and you can switch between the mac and pc with the flip of a switch as opposed to the press of a button... just think about it at least... you can get a KVM off the net for like 40 bucks...
  4. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2004
    Thanks for the feedback guys.

    From what is see the software has some excellent reviews. Nobody has complained of lag. Afterall it is minimal information being sent across the network.

    This is only on a home network with one other computer so traffic is minimal. I guess the only way to find out is to try it out myself. Good thing they allow you to try the software beforehand.

    I wonder if KVM's support wirless mice though (Since I have a MX1000). Would I be able to have access to the drivers for my mouse and keyboard independanty on each platform with a KVM.
  5. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    The data being sent across the network is not minimal. This is basically using the VNC technology, which you can get in many many apps made by Microsoft, Apple and more. It is in no way an acceptable alternative to a KMV unless all you are doing is inputting text into a console window every few hours.
  6. Logik macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2004
    the issue with the wireless mouse comes with a bit of a problem... but since the MX1000 is not bluetooth you shouldn't have a big issue like you would if you had the MX900. any good KVM will allow you to plug the basestation into the KVM and it will sort the rest out, there's no reason to worry. just grab a $40-50 KVM and you'll be happy you did. it's certainly cheaper than buying another monitor, keyboard and mouse.. the software solution is ... pathetic... i only use that type of software for maintaining hardware from one computer.. basically as a system admin, that is all. do yourself the favor, save yourself the money on that crappy software and get a hardware solution that will actually make you happy instead of some half-assed solution. seriously not trying to be rude but you'll just regret it in the end.

    for example, any graphics intensive application will likely die a horrible death when you try to input from that network end of things. anything that requires you to be acurate with the mouse is suddenly more difficult. try it and see but i'd spend the money and get a KVM that doesn't lag and have a delay to it.
  7. real_murray macrumors member

    Aug 19, 2004
    Great Software

    I use this software to control my Windows XP machine from my mac. It works GREAT. There is no lag at all. Excelent if you have two machines and two monitors, but only want one keyboard.

    Please note that this software does not switch the display like a hardware KVM switch (picture a kvm switch with no video cables hooked to it). each machine will need its own monitor.
  8. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2004
    Thank you everyone for your informative opinions. I believe I will head your advice and pickup a cheap KVM just for the mouse and the keyboard. My monitor already has two inputs (VGA/DVI) and I don't mind using the analog input for my mini until there are some cheap and reliable DVI KVM's on the market. The belkin SOHO DVI KVM is out of the question since there have been terrible reviews and the fact that it does not work with Apple Displays.

  9. Logik macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2004
    i seriously think you'll be happier with that choice.. i've been really happy with my linksys KVM. however they dont' offer a usb one .. so do some research but you can get them pretty cheap within the sub$50 range
  10. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    I'm actually going to be getting a USB sharing device from Belkin I believe... it doesn't do Monitor of course but it will do my logitech wireless keyboard/mouse. It's between my iBook and my PC. Although at some point when I talk myself into a Mac Mini it might be PC to Mac Mini since my monitor has 4 video inputs anyhow.
  11. TDM21 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 7, 2004
    your set up also sounds good for a program called Synergy. The program is basically a km switch (not kvm). It currently supports using one keyboard and mouse for 2 computers. Those computers can be Windows, Linux, or Os X. Basically what you do is set it up so when the mouse moves to one edge of the screen (any 4 edges), the mouse jumps to the screen of the other computer. This allows you to use the mouse and keyboard on that computer.

    Of course you will have to make the mouse jump to the other computer then press the button on your monitor to switch screens, But you can press the Scroll Lock key and keep the mouse from jumping screens.

    BTW: Synergy works over a network so you will have to set one of those up if you don't already. Also, its FREE
  12. azrussell132 macrumors member


    Jan 26, 2005
    Phoenix Arizona
    I have the same need as the original poster...

    current setup is one pc with Dual flat Emac sits in the middle of the flat panels. ALL I'm interested in doing is is sharing the Keyboard ONLY for both computers (win and mac). I want each one to use their own mouse. If I purchase the kvm switch I saw at the store today can I use my Mac keyboard to run my windows pc??? might be a dumb question but I'm not dropping $50 bucks unless I can keep the mac keyboard for BOTH machines. thanx in advance for any suggestions.

    Russell in Phoenix AZ. :)
  13. MACDragan macrumors newbie


    Aug 5, 2004
    I'm using SynergyOSX as well and I have to agree. Although, if you're trying to setup a mini with a peecee, and one monitor, then the KVM would prob be best. I'm using SynergyOSX with my 12" PB so I have two displays. There is ABSOLUTELY NO lag. None whatsoever.

    azrussell132, if you're trying to use multiple monitors/computers with one keyboard/mouse, then I would suggest the free software solution (Synergy). Just make sure to download SynergyOSX for the MAC (setup is a little tricky)...

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