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Synergy – Two PCs for the price of one

August 21, 2009 Leave a comment

webAt work I have two PCs setup so that I can use one while the other is processing data.  Most of my co-workers switch between there two PCs using a KVM switch.  The problem with the KVM switch is that even though you have two PCs your still limited to performing one task at a time since you only have one monitor.  You can have processes running on both PCs but your non-active PC is really just running processes in the background since you cannot monitor them.  You would only know that something is wrong when you switch back to that PC.  My solution was to grab a second spare monitor so that I can have both PCs be active at the same time.  Obviously now that I can see both PC monitors at the same, the amount of switch between desktops increased as well.  Using the KVM switch for the keyboard and monitor is a hassle since you have to stop and double tap the scroll lock to switch to the other PC.  I would much rather have an type of extended desktop that spans both PCs and simply scroll over to the other PC and use my keyboard and mouse instinctively.

The solution to that problem is Synergy.  Synergy is software that runs on both PCs and acts as a server and client allowing you to seamlessly scroll from one monitor to the next and even share clipboards so you can copy text from one PC and paste it into a file on the other.  All of this is done seamlessly without user input.  If your mouse is on the right pc and you want to type on the left PC simply scroll over to the other monitor and being typing.

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