In recent months we have been adding a few computers to the audio booth. The latest being the multitrack recording computer. I don’t have enough room to have more than one keyboard and mouse on the desk and really don’t want the confusion of more the one of each. Most of the time you would look for a KVM switcher that will allow you to switch between each machine with one keyboard, mouse and monitor. Not in this case we wanted to be able to have both monitors running all the time.
Synergy is an open source project for Mac, Windows and Linux that allows you to share a mouse and keyboard from one machine with another over the network. In our case we have a PC and a Mac. I made the decision to use the PC keyboard, so that becomes the “server” for Synergy. The setup on Windows is easy, all done through a GUI including setting it to autostart. On the mac you have to do everything from a terminal. It is a little time consuming, but not to difficult to get it working and the documentation on the site was good.
Most of the setup is done on the PC to build what Synergy calls links. The link is a definition of where the mac machine was in relation to the PC. In our case the mac monitor is to the right of the PC monitor. Make sure when you set it up you define the screens using the proper network name of the computers. We decided to name the PC Oscar and the mac Felix, but Oscar saw the name of Felix as it’s full name of Felix.local. After getting that figured out we got everything working.
So far in our testing everything seems to be working. I have tested the option and command keys as well as all the function keys and everything seems to be working. Check out Synergy at http://synergy2.sourceforge.net.