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Sharing connection & Monitor

dgreen007
Grafter
Posts: 169
Registered: 05-03-2008

Sharing connection & Monitor

This may sound like a dumb question but is it possible for two PCs to share one single monitor and a single Internet connection.
Ok, so the internet connection is probably an obvious one as I'm sure there is a switch or hub that I could use but the monitor question is a bit more tricky.
Is there a switch for this too.
19 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,441
Thanks: 686
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Not only the monitor - the mouse and keyboard as well. You need a KVM switch.
There's some here: http://www.ebuyer.com/search?store=4&cat=122&subcat=1272
For the internet I assume you currently have a USB or PCI modem. A router will serve you a lot better and you can get one for just the cost of the postage from Plusnet if you agree to stay for a year (providing you have no other specials that prevent this). You will then need an ethernet card in each PC. You might find your speeds improve.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
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Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Many monitors have 2 inputs and you just switch between them by pressing a button.
Both of my most recent flat-screen purchases have this, nominally one digital and one analogue (VGA).
KVM switches have been round for years, bog-standard stuff.
jackoab
Grafter
Posts: 368
Registered: 14-08-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

I have this setup using a switch I got from Maplins, had all sorts of problems trying to use a KVM as they don't like a keyboard or mouse other than very basic wired system,Jack.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Quote from: HPsauce
Many monitors have 2 inputs and you just switch between them by pressing a button.
Both of my most recent flat-screen purchases have this, nominally one digital and one analogue (VGA).

That is how I switch between PC, but in my case its not "just switch between them by pressing a button."
Its more like; Press Button 1,Then Button 2,Up arrow and Button 2 again. Then pull the USN connection from the front of one PC and plug it in to the other.
Maybe a KVM switch would be a good idea.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Quote from: chillypenguin
in my case its not "just switch between them by pressing a button."

True.
One of mine is just a button, dead easy. The other is a menu a bit like yours.
No re-plugging though, I have 2 leads permanently on each even if the 2nd PC isn't there..
Both monitors auto-sense so if only 1 PC is on they switch to the active one automatically.
None of this is ever in enough detail in the pre-sales information though.  Sad
dgreen007
Grafter
Posts: 169
Registered: 05-03-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Thanks for all the advice.
Just to give you a little more detail:
This setup is down in a shed at the bottom of the garden, I have a cat 5 cable running down there from my Netgear router in the house.
So would I need another router in the shed?
I suppose I would I need two additional cabels for the monitors coming from the KVM switch going into the two PCS, any ideas as to what they are called and where I can get them from?
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
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Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

You would need a cheap (£5?) 4-port switch/hub.
KVM switches often include the cables if you check the specs.
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,441
Thanks: 686
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Here is a very good brand new one http://www.ebuyer.com/product/35437 - you should be able to do far better in price than that.
And on Ebay:
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130283488788
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180308845532
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
dgreen007
Grafter
Posts: 169
Registered: 05-03-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

thanks.
I've just realised I've got a router from Talk talk which I've never used, would this be ok?
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

If it is a 4 port router, then yes you can just use it as a switch.
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,441
Thanks: 686
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Just don't connect it to the phone line.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
dgreen007
Grafter
Posts: 169
Registered: 05-03-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Thanks for all your help.
One other thing, does the KVM switch allow you to share speakers...
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,441
Thanks: 686
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

No idea what this one is like, but http://www.ebuyer.com/product/142316 on the page I linked says it does, but that is a USB.
Edit: Looking further down http://www.ebuyer.com/product/117144 looks promising
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
dgreen007
Grafter
Posts: 169
Registered: 05-03-2008

Re: Sharing connection & Monitor

Quote from: jelv
Just don't connect it to the phone line.

Thanks Jelv, I've just ordered that KVM you suggested.
What do you mean don't connect it to the phone line, I didn't think a cat 5 cable with a network plug would fit into the phone socket anyway.
Sorry for sounding thick but please explain.