KVM, MacOSX and Windows

I’ve been using a KVM to switch between my two workstations, but occasionally, Windows Vista kills one or both of my monitors.

I have two workstations at my office and I thought it would be nice to use one monitor, one keyboard and one mouse to switch between my two powerhouse computers: a Xeon 16-core MacPro and another 16-core Xeon HP Z800 computer.

Many months, and hours, have gone by using this contraption and I can say that I don’t think I would do this again unless I really had to.

The problem, which I found out seems to be a Windows issue, is that as soon as the computer locks out the user, it attempts to re-query for the monitor and if you happen to be on the other workstation, which is what usually happens if you have the security settings turned on, then the PC gets all freaked out.

You select the PC on the KVM and viola! … the PC is no longer viewable. When this happens to me, I have to use Remote Desktop to log into the PC and reboot it.

After a couple incidents, I learned quickly, not to have the computer lock me out while I am not logged in. It’s okay though to lock the computer or log out while you have the PC selected, just don’t do it while you are on the other computer.

There were a couple of posts on the Microsoft support site, stating that you need an Active KVM and not a passive one, which is what I have, but for my setup, no one makes an Active KVM that supports dual DVI (MS Support Site Thread).

My Mac on the other hand doesn’t seem to be suffering the same problem the PC has. Hopefully, Microsoft will fix this.

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