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VGA Switcher

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Ive started collecting computers for folding, and Ive got four set up in my basement at the moment. Id like to be able to check on them, but without having to move them away from the wall and connect the VGA cable to each computer manually. Is there some way I could switch from VGA-1 to VGA-2 to VGA-3 with a box of some sort? I know they make KVM switches, but I dont need the K or M part. Basically, Im looking to do this

Computer 1 \
Computer 2 ---- switchbox --- monitor
...
Computer n /

After doing some reading, Ive discovered that there are nine signal lines, and five ground lines (red, blue, green, sync, and ground). Would it be possible to connect all the ground lines as one, and use the other nine signal lines, inputted into some chip, that will allow me to turn all the lines on or off at once, with a single switch? Instead of having ten switches for each computer... I appreciate your input :)
 

Sceadwian

Banned
Yes, the grounding lines are for indvidually shielded cable. If each cable doesn't have it's own ground and the run is short, you can lump them together under the same contact with acceptable results.
 
To the top! Would I be able to run the h/v sync lines from one video card, and just switch the r/g/b cables? The h/v sync should all be the same, since theyre running at the same resolution and refresh rate, right?
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
ParkingLotLust said:
To the top! Would I be able to run the h/v sync lines from one video card, and just switch the r/g/b cables? The h/v sync should all be the same, since theyre running at the same resolution and refresh rate, right?

Silly idea! - they won't be syncronised!.
 

Torben

Well-Known Member
Hi there,

I know this isn't an electronics solution per se, but it would be a lot easier. If you know Linux (or are willing to learn) you could set up a cheap hub or router between the machines, run Linux on them (you don't necessarily need the X Window system, if you want to save resources), and just monitor the systems using terminal logins from your main (monitoring) computer. You can have all four terminals open on your screen with minimal resource usage, for constant monitoring and no need for switching. Your monitoring box could be either one of the folding boxes, another machine, a palmtop-type device, or whatever else can run a simple text terminal client--you're not limited to local access requiring VGA-compatible hardware.

Presumably you could do the same thing with Windows boxes and terminal servers or remote desktop apps on each one, but that would run better with beefier machines.

If you want the KBM switch solution, please pretend you never read this. :)


Torben
 
Haha, well, all I need is the monitor to show up on each one, I dont even need two-way access. VNC was an option Ive been considering, and I think Ill probably end up going that way. Is there any windows-based program that will display all the clients on one screen, and I could click on a screen and maximize it, then make it smaller and check the next one? I use RealVNC sometimes, but I dont need full-screen access, or even to take over the computer.
 
Did some searching and came up with SmartCode VNC Manager. Does everything I need; even has thumbnail views of each computer. Guess I didnt need the complicated KVM afterall :)
 
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