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KVM-over-IP mouse synch problems

Posted on 2009-03-30
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Hi,

I've just purchased an 8-port Aten (Altusen) KH1508i KVM over-the-net switch.  It comes with both a windows app and a java app through which you can control the screen,keyboard and mouse of an attached PC.  There is a serious problem with mouse synchronisation.  Using either client, you get both crosshairs (accurately following your own mouse movements) and the normal mouse cursor (of the PC you're accessing) which follows behind and is always several inches out of synch with these crosshairs, rendering some parts of the PC's screen unreachable.  I've only seen this behaviour before with really bad VNC apps.  It can be solved by ensuring that the PC I'm controlling only has the basic Microsoft mouse driver.  But this isn't practical in a repair shop where random PCs are being attached all the time, some of which don't even have a usable windows installation.

I'm not necessarily looking for a solution to the above (allthough that would be great) but what I'm wondering is:-

Is this a problem which is common to all KVM-over-IP switches when administering remotely?  
If not, can anyone recommend an 8-port alternative which they've exerience of and which doesn't have this problem?
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Question by:mark_D74
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ndary earned 500 total points
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I will explain first why this happen and later write some tips how you can improve the situation.

What you experience happens in all brands of KVM over IP that are PS/2 based, this is due to the fact that every operating system has its own mouse acceleration algorithm. the accelerated mouse movement of windows XP/2003 is different than in windows 2000 or Linux etc..

Most KVM over IP manufactures recommend to disable the mouse acceleration. in windows XP/2003 for example you can do this by un-checking the 'enhance pointer precision' at the mouse driver), in Linux type: "xset m 1". this will ensure that the mouse speed is identical on all computer and the KVM switch does not need to calibrate the mouse acceleration every time you switch to another port.

Some KVM over IP devices can hide your local mouse so you only see the remote mouse.. its a kind of workaround for the synchronization problem... see if your KVM/IP has this feature...

I recommend to take a look at Minicom KVM over IP switches, Minicom devices took a different approach where you can 'teach' the KVM switch which acceleration mode you would like to set to each port..

You can instant test drive Minicom various KVM switches at the following link: http://www.minicom.com/requestdemoip.cfm  

There are new models KVM over IP that are USB based, in those you do not have to disable the mouse acceleration in any operating system any more.. they have an 'absolute mouse' feature which will send to the server the mouse position through the USB port. (Minicom's PX unit has this feature)  
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