Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Laptops and KVM switches?

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
Share
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 4:44:06 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.

With my old Thinkpad 755ce and a dock, I could also switch the laptop
through the same switch and use my full size keyboard and mouse with
the laptop. I haven't used the Thinkpad in some years as I have not
needed a laptop.

Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.

My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?

Thanks.

Guy

More about : laptops kvm switches

September 26, 2004 11:46:13 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Guy Scharf wrote:
> At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
> mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
> mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.
>
> With my old Thinkpad 755ce and a dock, I could also switch the laptop
> through the same switch and use my full size keyboard and mouse with
> the laptop. I haven't used the Thinkpad in some years as I have not
> needed a laptop.
>
> Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
> considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
> struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
> loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
> desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
> and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
> keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.
>
> My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
> What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?
>
> Thanks.
>
> Guy

I had a Sony PCG-F420 with a Belkin KVW switch and a Dell RS400. Both
computers are "last" generation for me, I have new versions of laptop
and desktop as my main computers. The Sony had a bad LCD and the
Belkin was the only way to use the laptop for quite a while until I
managed to find an LCD replacement for a reasonable price.

I think any modern laptop that you would select for a desktop
replacement will work with the KVM switch. The only caveat I can think
of is that the BIOS must be capable of being set to "external monitor"
or have a way to cycle from internal to external and maybe off and
that the laptop has a video out port.

jimbo
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 5:26:30 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Do all laptops allow redirecting the keyboard and mouse through a USB
port, or is that feature not universal? If not universal, what should
I look for in the specs to determine whether the laptop allows that?

Thanks.

Guy
Related resources
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 7:06:31 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
news:Xns956FE7528ED6Aguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
| At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
| mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
| mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.
|
| With my old Thinkpad 755ce and a dock, I could also switch the laptop
| through the same switch and use my full size keyboard and mouse with
| the laptop. I haven't used the Thinkpad in some years as I have not
| needed a laptop.
|
| Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
| considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
| struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
| loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
| desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
| and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
| keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.
|
| My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
| What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?
|
| Thanks.
|
| Guy


Hi Guy -

I'm using a Belkin USB KVM switch with my notebook and desktop computers.
Only one USB port is utilized on each computer, providing connectivity to a
USB keyboard and USB mouse. The KVM switch receives its power from the USB
cables plugged into the computers.

Both computers require an external video connection (of course). This is a
very common feature on most notebook computers.

You'll be hard pressed these days to find a current model notebook computer
with a PS/2 port. Most everything these days is USB, with very few, if any,
legacy ports still included.

On the plus side, my wireless USB mouse works perfectly attached to the KVM
switch. I would assume a wireless keyboard would probably work as well.
When I take the notebook on the road, I unplug the receiver for the mouse
from the KVM switch and toss it into my bag with the computer and mouse...
plugging the receiver directly into the computer in place of the KVM switch
connection.

Jef
September 26, 2004 7:06:32 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Jef Norton wrote:
> "Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
> news:Xns956FE7528ED6Aguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
> | At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
> | mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
> | mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.
> |
> | With my old Thinkpad 755ce and a dock, I could also switch the laptop
> | through the same switch and use my full size keyboard and mouse with
> | the laptop. I haven't used the Thinkpad in some years as I have not
> | needed a laptop.
> |
> | Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
> | considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
> | struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
> | loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
> | desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
> | and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
> | keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.
> |
> | My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
> | What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?
> |
> | Thanks.
> |
> | Guy
>
>
> Hi Guy -
>
> I'm using a Belkin USB KVM switch with my notebook and desktop computers.
> Only one USB port is utilized on each computer, providing connectivity to a
> USB keyboard and USB mouse. The KVM switch receives its power from the USB
> cables plugged into the computers.
>
> Both computers require an external video connection (of course). This is a
> very common feature on most notebook computers.
>
> You'll be hard pressed these days to find a current model notebook computer
> with a PS/2 port. Most everything these days is USB, with very few, if any,
> legacy ports still included.
>
> On the plus side, my wireless USB mouse works perfectly attached to the KVM
> switch. I would assume a wireless keyboard would probably work as well.
> When I take the notebook on the road, I unplug the receiver for the mouse
> from the KVM switch and toss it into my bag with the computer and mouse...
> plugging the receiver directly into the computer in place of the KVM switch
> connection.
>
> Jef
>
>

Wow! I just checked my current laptop, no PS/2 port! Shows how
observant I am.

jimbo
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 8:11:44 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

The issue you will run into is that many current laptops no longer have
a PS/2 port, and can connect external mouse/keyboard only via USB.


Guy Scharf wrote:

> At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
> mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
> mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.
>
> With my old Thinkpad 755ce and a dock, I could also switch the laptop
> through the same switch and use my full size keyboard and mouse with
> the laptop. I haven't used the Thinkpad in some years as I have not
> needed a laptop.
>
> Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
> considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
> struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
> loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
> desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
> and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
> keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.
>
> My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
> What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?
>
> Thanks.
>
> Guy
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 8:11:45 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Barry Watzman <WatzmanNOSPAM@neo.rr.com> wrote:

> The issue you will run into is that many current laptops no longer
> have a PS/2 port, and can connect external mouse/keyboard only via
> USB.

Are there USB to PS/2 keyboard and mouse adapters?

Guy
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 8:22:09 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

> Wow! I just checked my current laptop, no PS/2 port! Shows how
> observant I am.
>
> jimbo

You didn't notice that he wasn't asking about using an external monitor,
though. lol
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 9:37:52 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
news:Xns95706950DDAFEguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
| Barry Watzman <WatzmanNOSPAM@neo.rr.com> wrote:
|
| Are there USB to PS/2 keyboard and mouse adapters?
|
| Guy

Hi Guy -

There are... ¬°but! I am aware of no generic USB to PS/2 adaptors.

If a USB keyboard or mouse also supports connection to a PS/2 port, the
connector will generally come with the hardware from the manufacturer.

For example: my Logitech USB optical mouse came with an adaptor which
allowed it to connect to a PS/2 port. My Viewsonic USB keyboard came with
no such adaptor and will not function with the adaptor provided with the
mouse.

Jef
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 9:49:33 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Guy Scharf <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in
news:Xns95706950DDAFEguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142:

> Barry Watzman <WatzmanNOSPAM@neo.rr.com> wrote:
>
>> The issue you will run into is that many current laptops no longer
>> have a PS/2 port, and can connect external mouse/keyboard only via
>> USB.
>
> Are there USB to PS/2 keyboard and mouse adapters?
>
> Guy

Yes, see here for example:
http://www.networktechinc.com/usb-ps2.html
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 9:52:48 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"jimbo" <jimbo62@spamex.com> wrote in message
news:10ldsfbpvouicd3@corp.supernews.com...
|
| Wow! I just checked my current laptop, no PS/2 port! Shows how
| observant I am.
|
| jimbo


Hi jimbo -

No foolin'! It's amazing how you don't notice things that are of little
current use.

I was surprised when I learned the "legacy" parallel port on the port
replicator of my latest Vaio actually connects via USB.

Initially I thought I'd be somehow handicapped by having no legacy ports or
floppy drive. Darn if I've found a situation where I've needed any of them
on this machine. I acquired the port replicator because all the connectors
on my notebook are on the sides, rather than the rear, and the wires
protruding from the sides are unsightly and take too much space when
"docked" to my desk. It is handy, though, having a total of five USB ports
(one on each side of the computer and three on the port replicator).

Jef
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 10:32:33 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
news:Xns9570746617BF8guyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
| Do all laptops allow redirecting the keyboard and mouse through a USB
| port, or is that feature not universal? If not universal, what should
| I look for in the specs to determine whether the laptop allows that?
|
| Thanks.
|
| Guy

Hi Guy -

You're not "redirecting" the keyboard and mouse to a USB port. Actually you
are installing additional USB-based "Human Interface Devices" (this is where
they show up in device manager).

The keyboard and touchpad on my laptop are still active when connected to my
KVM switch.

Jef
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 10:32:34 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Jef Norton" <jefn_REMOVE_YOUR_SHORTS_@sbcglobal.net> wrote:

> "Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
> news:Xns9570746617BF8guyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
>| Do all laptops allow redirecting the keyboard and mouse through a
>| USB port, or is that feature not universal? If not universal,
>| what should I look for in the specs to determine whether the
>| laptop allows that?
>|
>| Thanks.
>|
>| Guy
>
> Hi Guy -
>
> You're not "redirecting" the keyboard and mouse to a USB port.
> Actually you are installing additional USB-based "Human Interface
> Devices" (this is where they show up in device manager).
>
> The keyboard and touchpad on my laptop are still active when
> connected to my KVM switch.

OK, is this a universal capability on laptops or do I have to check to
see whether the capability is offered on any laptop I consider?

Guy
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 10:34:24 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Frank le Spikkin" <zaq@invalid.jp> wrote in message
news:Xns9570BF860BC45FlSxxx@130.133.1.4...
| Guy Scharf <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in
| news:Xns95706950DDAFEguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142:
|
| Yes, see here for example:
| http://www.networktechinc.com/usb-ps2.html


I guess my backwards was thinking there.

Somehow I got in my head we were talking about connecting USB-based
keyboards and mice to PS/2 port(s) rather than PS/2-based devices to a USB
port.

I'll go wash out my brain in disgrace...

Jef
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 26, 2004 11:20:37 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Guy Scharf <guy@spamcop.net> wrote:
>At home, I have two desktop computers but only a single keyboard,
>mouse, and CRT all switched through an Edimax KVM switch. Keyboard and
>mouse use PS/2 connectors; they are not USB devices.

>My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
>What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?

Get a USB->PS2 converter that'll take PS2 keyboard and mouse and allow
them to be used on your laptop, and run it into a spare port on your
existing KVM switch. Just choose a laptop with DB15 video output and
you are all set.
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 27, 2004 2:46:36 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

"Guy Scharf" <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message
news:Xns95709BE6F6629guyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142...
|
| OK, is this a universal capability on laptops or do I have to check to
| see whether the capability is offered on any laptop I consider?
|
| Guy


Hi Guy -

It's actually more a function of the operating system. The computer simply
provides the USB support.

So, yes, it would be considered a universal capability.

Jef
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 28, 2004 8:11:13 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Guy Scharf <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message news:<Xns956FE7528ED6Aguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142>...

<snip>

> Now I need one again and am considering which new laptop to get. I am
> considering two solutions: a) a minimal laptop that will let me
> struggle through some image processing while away from home, or b) a
> loaded laptop that can serve as a desktop replacement. If I go the
> desktop replacement route, I will want to switch its keyboard, mouse,
> and CRT connections through my KVM switch, as I've never seen a laptop
> keyboard and mouse that I could stand to use for any length of time.
>
> My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
> What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?

Great last name there Guy.

There are three solutions:

1. The USB PS/2 Adapter you noted (not just a connector changer, it's
got a chip inside that converts PS/2 to USB).

2. Changing to a KVM that supports USB.

3. Buying a notebook that has an optional dock with PS/2 ports and
other legacy ports (serial, parallel).

Most docks now go through a USB port, which can be bad if you're using
some legacy devices that don't like this, but with XP, the few devices
that depend on directly accessing the hardware won't work anyway.

I just went through the notebook selection process and narrowed it
down to the Dell Latitude D505, the Compaq X1000, and the Toshiba
Tecra M2-730. I need a parallel port for use with some test equipment
I use, which narrowed down the options considerably. I also wanted
1394, and FIR, which narrowed it down to those three systems. I went
with the X1000 due to the higher resolution display that was
available, the much larger capacity battery, and the larger disk
drive. But any of the three would have been fine.
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
September 28, 2004 9:38:59 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.laptops (More info?)

Guy Scharf <guy@spamcop.net> wrote in message news:<Xns956FE7528ED6Aguyspamcopnet@216.196.97.142>...

> My question is: Is this possible with currently available laptops?
> What features do I need to look for to accomplish that?

Check the Fujitsu E8010 series. These still provide a PS/2 port. Not
sure if you get two (with a Y cable) or what. There are enough pins on
a single PS/2 port to use both a mouse and a keyboard with a Y cable.
!