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Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB


First time posting here, but long time reader.
I've been using a Belkin KVM switch (dual ps/2 and video sharing) to operate both my computers from one keyboard and mouse and monitor. All was fine until my keyboard started to play up (and I can't seperate the keyboard and mouse either) so I decided to buy another.

I bought a Microsoft Wireless Desktop 1000 and was all happy again. Until I realised the Belkin will not accept it under any circumstances. It requires 2 connections and not one. I've even got a USB to PS/2 connector but it still refuses to play ball. I need something that can work off one usb connector.

What I am after is a method that will allow me to share my USB Keyboard and mouse (single usb connector) and monitor between computers. I live in the UK, so sites / products that are availabe in my region would be preferable. Both computers are running Windows XP (SP2) but will be upgrading to Windows 7 in the near future on both, so it has to be compatible with that system as well.

Any help you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated.


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Two USB connections to be switched with one KVM

In reply to: Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

I think you are saying you have two devices (a mouse and a keyboard) that communicate to the USB wireless transceiver, but you have a KVM that has just does not switch a USB port. Instead your KVM has mouse & keyboard PS/2 ports.

Don't fool around with USB to PS/2 converters, that is just needlessly complicating a fairly simple connection. Connecting to PS/2 ports usually are not too happy with devices plugging in when your computer is up and running. USB devices don't have that problem, USB devices are "hot swappable" and PS/2 devices are not.

I have had a keyboard combo "Microsoft Wireless Desktop 1000" and it does not require two USB ports at all. There is one transmitter that plugs into a single USB port of your computer. That one transceiver communicates to the mouse and keyboard.

You only need to have a single USB, from each computer, plugged into the KVM, and have that one transceiver plugged into the switched USB connection of the KVM. I am doing that now with my "Microsoft Wireless Desktop 8000" and I did it that way several keyboards ago.

You need to replace your PS/2 KVM with a USB KVM. They are pretty cheap. So do yourself a favor and scrap the older KVM and get one that can also switch USB ports.

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Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

In reply to: Two USB connections to be switched with one KVM

Hi Chuck,

Thanks for replying. My Microsoft Desktop 1000 has just one USB connector and this is the problem I think, or am I way off base here ?

You say to get a KVM that has USB support, but the only ones I can find are a 2 port KVM USB switcher, that requires Mouse and Keyboard to be on seperate usb connectors (something mine is not).

Could you perhaps show me an example of the idea you are suggesting? At least that way I can see if there is a viable solution available here in the UK.

Cheers for your help thus far. Much appreciated.

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You're not WAY off base

In reply to: Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

You're not WAY off base, it is just that your problem is with not having the correct KVM switcher. There are plenty of KVMs with USB ports. Just do a Google shopping search for "kvm usb" I have seen many in the $20 to $40 range (15 to 30 Euros), some even cheaper, and a few as much as $100. It really all depends upon what features and size you want.

Here is a doc from IOGear that has a large selection of many different types of KVMs:

I haven't seen KVMs with PS/2 support and USB together. I am not saying they don't exist, it is just I haven't seen any. The idea of PS/2 ports are rapidly going away. My two newest computers don't even have mouse/keyboard PS/2 ports on them. They use USB exclusively.

If you are using that Microsoft Wireless 1000 keyboard, that has a single USB connection which needs to be plugged into your computer. The receiver has 2 wireless channels in it, one for the mouse one for the keyboard. You only need one USB connection! If you are using a KVM with USB support, then you only need to switch that one USB connected receiver from computer 1 to computer 2.

Here is a video that will show you an example of a KVM with USB.
In this video notice that the device shown has two USB ports to connect your mouse and keyboard. Since you only need one (for your receiver) just use one, and the other one doesn't need to be connected to anything.

What is not shown in the video is the two sets of cable that come with the using to connect to "PC1" and "PC2" The cable sets for the computer side are all connected to a sort of "octopus" cable through the multi-pin connectors. My current KVM with USB is made by "AirLink 101" and it has the same sort of multi-connect plug. Some KVMs might have all the cables hard-wired to the switch.

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My take on this.

In reply to: Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

I also use a Belkin wireless keyboard and mouse, and connect to two computers.

Now, I don't know much about this but are you saying you are attempting to get a Microsoft Wireless keyboard and mouse to communicate with the Belkin wireless receiver?

If so, I just wonder if they are incompatible. For example, they may both use different wireless frequency ranges.

Why not get a new Belkin setup? You know they work.

One thing to think about in the future. You say you will be upgrading to Win 7 in the future. If you mean upgrading one or both of the systems you have, then no problem, (at least as far as Belkin is concerned), but if you are planning on getting a new system, beware that it has the right video connections, and two PS/2 connections for mouse and keyboard. Some new systems only have one PS/2, and do not have an old style VGA monitor connection.


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I think you are reading him wrong

In reply to: My take on this.

Anthoni does not have a Belkin receiver for his Microsoft Wireless 1000 keyboard. That would not work anyway. Microsoft has their own receiver for their own keyboards. It is not going to work with other brand of receiver. In fact, even Microsoft has changed their receivers, from the old v1 type to the more recent v2 type (you can see the version number on the bottom). I have a half dozen Microsoft wireless mice (I buy them when I see them for like 50 cents at someone's garage sale) and some use my v1 receiver, and the other use the v2 receivers. For some reason people seem to not have the receivers for sale as often. (??)

As for needing, or even recommending, the same operating system on both computers. Not needed. I have used KVMs that switch between not only operating systems (different versions of Windows, Mac, Unix, Novell servers, etc) but also as many different screen frequency rates, as well.

It is required that the one monitor you use has a multi-sync capability. Because as you switch between these different computers the monitor is going to have to adapt to the new rate.

There are as many VGA (the "V" of the KVM abbreviation) video type of KVMs as there are DVI. And I suspect there will be soon HDMI KVM switches, if there aren't already.

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(NT) Yep, you're probably right.

In reply to: I think you are reading him wrong

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Correct - It's a Microsoft Reciever

In reply to: I think you are reading him wrong


Thanks for all the suggestions so far. Just so we are clear, this is my new keyboard and mouse, unfortunately it doesn't show the reciever. However it is just the basic Microsoft Reciever, except now both run off a single USB cable.

I think it is the single point of control that was confusing me, because I've seen USB KVM switches on Amazon BUT they always say 2 port, so I presumed (obviously incorrectly) that I needed a seperate USB connection for each item, thus one for mouse and one for Keyboard.

However, from what I can gather, I just plug my MS USB Reciever into one of the KVM ports and then I plug the cables from the KVM dongle into both my computers USB ports. Is that correct ?

If I am right, then I will purchase one of these from Amazon immediately.

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Think found one that will work - Suggestions

In reply to: Correct - It's a Microsoft Reciever

Hello again,

OK, so I think that I found one that will do what I need it to do. Excuse the long URL as it's Amazon or same URL smaller

It is an IOGear 2Port USB KVM and from what I now understand, my Microsoft Reciever plugs into one of the ports at front (my monitor into the VGA port [and it's multi-sync]) and then I plug each of the cables from the KVM into the USB ports of my computer and presumably the video cable will also be at the end.

Is this the right one, or one of the right ones ?

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Yup, that will work

In reply to: Think found one that will work - Suggestions

The Dixons website also has one, if you prefer that company. It is the same company where you mentioned you got your keyboard.


They also have one that switches the audio. Just look for Belkin model F1DG102UUK

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Re: presumed (incorrectly) that I needed a separate...

In reply to: Correct - It's a Microsoft Reciever

That is the point I had brought up. My cheap 1to2 KVM has two USB ports. The people who make them don't know if you are going to plug in a separate USB keyboard and USB mouse, or just a single plug for a USB receiver that already handles both.

It is a USB port, and if you want to plug in some other USB device, then go right ahead. In mine I use my 2nd KVM USB port to plug in a Flash-drive. It works fine. Typically the USB switching circuit inside will not be "Hi-Speed" (480Mbps), but connects at the slower speed (12Mbps). So, as long as I am not transferring large amounts of data the speed is fine.
Note: keyboards and mice do not need Hi-speed USB, that 12Mbps speed is plenty.

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Thank You

In reply to: Re: presumed (incorrectly) that I needed a separate...

Thank you so much for your help. I have ordered the IOGear one and it will arrive Tuesday / Wednesday. Looking forward to it.

Will post here when get it and using new Keyboard and Mouse Grin

Once again, thanks.


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Working Perfectly

In reply to: Thank You

As promised, I would write here using my new keyboard and mouse once I have set up the KVM. The keyboard is taking some getting used to because it differs slightly from my previous Microsoft one, but as you can see it works perfectly.

Also, I can control my other computer using the same, just like before.
Thank you so much for helping out, it is definately much appreciated.


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Glad you got it sorted

In reply to: Working Perfectly

and thanks for reporting back.


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A suggestion

In reply to: Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

I have an Aten CS64U KVM switch. The mouse port will take either a mouse or a USB hub. I just tried it out with my wireless keyboard and mouse using the same dongle plugged into a hub (with nothing plugged in the keyboard port) and it worked fine. (It might work with the mouse and keyboard dongle directly in the port, but my dongle is too broad to fit, so I needed to use the hub.) It's a 4-port switch and I don't know whether it's still available, so that one might not suit you, but if you look for a switch that says that the mouse port can take a mouse or a USB hub (which is what it says about the CS64U) it should work. I'd suggest taking your dongle with you to the shop to see whether the monitor connector and dongle can fit side by side or not if you want to try it without a hub.

I also have a Belkin flip with USB ports and (I'm pretty sure, I'm going from memory) I used to use my wireless keyboard and mouse with it by putting a dongle in each computer - my Logitech setup would work with more than one dongle, you can sync the equipment with the dongles. I don't know if that's any use to you unless you have another Microsoft dongle lying around and unless the Microsoft equipment can share dongles like the Logitech equipment.

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Context Switch Freeware

In reply to: Two Computers - One Keyboard and mouse - Single USB

Hey, this topic is pretty old, but just in case anyone runs into the same issue in the future, I recently ran into Context Switch, a free Synergy-like software which serves the purpose of syncing PC accessories (headset, keyboard, mouse).

I've been using it for coding lately and I'm satisfied with the results.

Find it at

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