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How can i efficiently use my dual monitor setup along with the same keyboard and mouse with dual machines, (Home Gaming pc and work laptop)

sometimes i need to work from home using my work laptop, but i don't want to disconnect all the Hdmi cables and connect new mouse or keyboard from my existing PC setup

i am thinking about plugging my laptop with usb 3.0 Docking station with multiple display outputs

current setup:

  1. LG 34" Ultrawide with 2x thunderbolt, 2x hdmi, 1x Displayport (Display port is used by PC)
  2. Acer 24" monitor with 1 HDMI, 1 DVI, 1 VGA (HDMI used by PC)
  3. Logitech M720 wireless Mouse (Bluetooth can pair up to 3 devices, easy to switch)

Need suggestion for wireless multi-computer keyboard(mechanical gaming keyboard would be ideal) and good usb3.0 Docking station

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It so happens that there is a software only way to do this.

I was watching LinusTechTips and they were advertising this software on their end of video sponsor.

The software is called Synergy.

It actually works by creating some sort of local network and communicating over your own computers, making the experience very, very fast. The benefits of this over a hardware KVM switch is that this is software (not hardware duh ;)) and it is priced as low as $19, depending on the option you pick.

The $19 option would be perfectly suitable for your needs, other options are encryption over the network, and unless your network is already insecure, you dont really need it.

As per a concern below, it runs on both wireless and wired connections!

Hope this is a suitable suggestion for you.

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  • On principle I avoid wireless wherever I can because I'm apparently a grandpa in my mid-20's, but that looks like a potentially awesome solution that I hadn't heard of. Looking forward to taking a closer look this afternoon. – jcam3 Aug 16 '17 at 17:23
  • If your computers are hardwired to the network, that will also work, so good luck :) – Edward Nunn Aug 16 '17 at 17:24
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I'm having trouble finding anything that actually has all of the ports and connectors that (I think) you'll need, but I can explain how I would go about this. If you can get me specifics on what display outputs are available on your PC and laptop, as well as your monitor resolution and refresh rate, I'll take some time to find you the exact equipment.


What you want is a KVM switch, a mechanism designed to use one keyboard, mouse, and monitor (in your case two monitors) as a workstation that can dynamically swap between two computers. I recommend this over a standard dock for ease of use, flexible configurations, and preservation of desk surface real estate.

You've basically got two approaches. One is expensive and the other is somewhat convoluted.

https://www.startech.com/Server-Management/KVM-Switches/

That site is a good place to start, they make high end switches and they're just about the only company I can find that even does digital video formats or dual monitor outputs in any significant capacity. Almost everything else I've been able to pull up has been either analog (VGA) or DVI with maybe a few DVI-Dual Links in there. The downside of this approach is that you're probably going to drop $200+ on this solution.

The other method you could use would be to downgrade your cable connections to DVI (or whatever you can find that is compatible) and get two cheap units that handle single monitor outputs. This is still likely to run you $60+. There's also a concern about what resolution and refresh rate you're running at, as each type of cable has a ceiling on how much data it can transfer and thus what resolutions and frame rates it is capable of transmitting. I haven't found any single monitor HDMI or DisplayPort boxes that were cheap enough to consider over the StarTech products linked above, but you may have more luck. I searched Amazon, Newegg, and PCPartPicker if you were curious. Office Depot or Office Max might be worth a try.

PLEASE KEEP IN MIND: Most of these KVM switches do not come with extra cables, so plan your layout and figure out the types and lengths of cables you will need beforehand and order them alongside your KVM solution. This will save you headaches and irritation and time waiting for shipping.

Again, if you want to reply with those related specs that I mentioned above, I can find some time before Friday to help you hunt down specific hardware.


Keyboards are really up to you. If you don't mind a 60% board I can recommend an Anne Pro, I have one for work and love it; however, I haven't used it for gaming since it has a tiny layout and red switches. I can confirm though that it has built-in bluetooth (comes with dongle for non-BT devices) and hotkey device swapping for up to four connected devices, so it would fit your requirements there. Bonus points for being under $100 and having quality RGB because colors are fun. If that doesn't catch your eye, I know that Filco also has some good offerings, and CODE keyboards are always worth a look as well.

The subreddit for mechanical keyboards has this wiki page listing wireless options:

https://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalKeyboards/wiki/wireless-mechanical_keyboards

You could also search around on that forum to see what other people have used and what they liked/disliked, it's an active community with a good amount of content.

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