Forum Thread

recommendations for a inexpensive USB KVM

doctorevil30564 550 117 August 17, 2015 at 07:35 AM
I currently have a 2 port Trend KVM that is driving me insane. Here is my issue with it.

It has the the number lock set as the hot key to swap inputs on the kvm. I work from home in the afternoons and on fridays and I work on vmware guest server systems that I support and build for my job. Unless I am extremely careful and use the ctrl-alt shortcut to exit out of the console whenever I am either troubleshooting a problem or building a new server instead of just moving the mouse out of the window after installing the vmware tools on it, it toggles the num lock and causes the KVM to switch to the other input which has my gaming PC on it.

here are my requirements.

Ideally I want a inexpensive USB KVM that will come with any necessary cables I need to get it working, or that will work with the same cables that I use for my current KVM. I would like for it to have two inputs (more is OK but I probably will never use them).

I don't care if it has audio. I use the built in speakers on my laptop, and the speakers that are hooked to my gaming PC when I am using it.

I want the new KVM to either not have a hot key to switch inputs, where I have to press the button on it to switch, or have it use another hotkey besides the num lock.

Any recommendations?

7 Comments

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#2
DVI, VGA, or are you willing to switch inputs on the monitor and use the kvm for input only?
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#3
What about a software kvm? http://www.synergy-project.org/
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#4
disable NumberLock with Sharpkeys? i don't know if this works. even it works, maybe not worth the time if you install many new VM everyday.
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#5
If your keyboard still has scroll lock, that was another popular key used by KVMs. Also suprising how many PS/2 kvm are still out there and how few support anything but vga. Frustrated with the KVMs on the market, I actually built my own back in 2008. If I can still find the gerber files I might open source my design, though sourcing the same parts could be difficult.

Here's a pretty good option: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Pro...-_-Product
it uses display port not vga and uses scroll lock as a hot key. It looks like you can't control its auto-scan function.

Many USB KVMs will prevent some of the special keys and buttons found on many keyboards and mice today from working.
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#6
Quote from quotidian View Post :
DVI, VGA, or are you willing to switch inputs on the monitor and use the kvm for input only?
I need at least one VGA connector. My work laptop only has a VGA connector for the external display. My gaming PC has DVI connections on the video card, but I'm currently using a VGA to DVI adapter on it.

Quote from jkee View Post :
What about a software kvm? http://www.synergy-project.org/
I would prefer a hardware KVM.

Quote from Left4Deal View Post :
disable NumberLock with Sharpkeys? i don't know if this works. even it works, maybe not worth the time if you install many new VM everyday.
I tried it and unfortunately it only works on the keyboard keys, but doesn't fully disable the num lock function, so when I switch into a vmware guest console in my RDP session it still toggles the num lock and switches the KVM input.

A KVM that uses scroll lock would work ok, that doesn't get toggled when switching into the local console for a vmware guest system.
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#7
Quote from doctorevil30564 View Post :
I need at least one VGA connector. My work laptop only has a VGA connector for the external display. My gaming PC has DVI connections on the video card, but I'm currently using a VGA to DVI adapter on it.

I would prefer a hardware KVM.
Well you generally don't find KVM's that mix different display output types. You can use adapters between dvi, display port, and hdmi. DVI to VGA adapters only work on DVI-I ports which are usually only found on the video card itself. If you want to use DVI, you'd need to use multiple inputs on your monitor.

Here are a couple to consider:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Pro...-_-Product <--- uses keyboard to control, but has quite a few settings you can change should work for you. Audio quality may be poor. Better emulation of keyboards with more buttons in latest revision.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Pro...-_-Product <--- uses a physical button to switch, I don't think there are any keyboard commands
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#8
Quote from jkee View Post :
Well you generally don't find KVM's that mix different display output types. You can use adapters between dvi, display port, and hdmi. DVI to VGA adapters only work on DVI-I ports which are usually only found on the video card itself. If you want to use DVI, you'd need to use multiple inputs on your monitor.

Here are a couple to consider:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Pro...-_-Product <--- uses keyboard to control, but has quite a few settings you can change should work for you. Audio quality may be poor. Better emulation of keyboards with more buttons in latest revision.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Pro...-_-Product <--- uses a physical button to switch, I don't think there are any keyboard commands
That first one looks good, I don't need the audio and the second one has gotten a lot of bad reviews.

Thanks for the recommendation. I'll probably order one when I get my next paycheck from work on the 28th
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