D-Link DKVM KVM / USB switch 2KU 2 x KVM / USB

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D-Link DKVM KVM / USB switch 2KU 2 x KVM / USB

The DKVM-2KU 2-port mini KVM (Keyboard, Video and Mouse) switch allows you to easily control 2 different PCs from a single set of keyboard, mouse, and...

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50% positive

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Review of "D-Link DKVM KVM / USB switch 2KU 2 x KVM / USB"

published 08/11/2011 | BNibbles
Member since : 08/10/2000
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"Sorry but our editorial and strategic line may lead us to refuse products for which no single merchant sends us offers" . How about "We don't have a link to it, so we don't want your product suggestion?
Good
Pro Neat and compact...
Cons ...until you attach the cables! Check that you have a Scroll-Lock key
very helpful
Stability
Speed
Ease of Installation
Ease of use
Reliability

"Two PCs? Not A Problem, Unless................................"

Being a bit of a computer hobbyist, Albert Steptoe and magpie rolled into one, it’ll come as no surprise that I’ve ended up with two desktop PCs.

As I write, I can almost feel one of my wife’s somewhat hypocritical* homilies relating to the difference between ‘want and need’ coming on!

(*You should see her wardrobe(s) !)

Back to PCs - there’s the one I intended to own, and there’s the other that I’ve ‘come by’ after helping someone choose a new PC, who then uttered those fateful words “could you get rid of the old one for me?” as they reached for their plastic.

Truth be known this addition to the Bnibbles clan (or should that be LAN?) is reasonably high specification, and with the addition of 4gigabytes of RAM and a ‘new’ second-hand 500 gigabytes hard drive, the old one having being the cause of its original demise, it really ‘flies’ having been loaded with the latest version of Ubuntu Linux, the freebie operating system.

Thus, I can justify to myself the fact that I’m using it to teach myself a whole new set of computer skills. I was going to call it a ‘research machine’ but that’s a bit high-flown for what I’ve got in mind!

What I can’t justify to myself is cluttering up our office, aka little bedroom, with ‘two of everything’ - monitors, mice and keyboards.

This is where a ‘KVM box’ comes into the picture, the initials standing for……………

KEYBOARD, VIDEO AND MOUSE

Since keyboards and mice, and to a certain extent monitors come with a variety of connections these days, D-Link have a variety of these ‘KVM’ switch-boxes, some allowing for digitally linked monitors (DVI input), some allowing for mice that now insist on being-USB connected rather than the previous standard known as PS/2, these being the green and mauve circular plugs at the back of your PC.

The variant I bought allows for the usual green and mauve jobs, a typical analogue VGA connection for the monitor, but with the addition of a single switched USB port. This could either be used for a ‘fussy’ mouse, or, if yours still has the PS/2 capability, some other USB device that you’d like both PCs to have access to; a back-up drive or a printer let’s say.

GETTING IT WORKING

Set-up is pretty easy. You get two generous wiring ‘looms’, one for each PC. At the D-Link end, this manifests itself as what looks like a VGA connector, with a USB plug attached. You then connect these, giving consideration to which PC you want to call PC1.

At the PC business end, you get a VGA lead, the green and mauve mouse and keyboard leads and the USB lead which you break out and plug into your respective PCs.

Someone who wrote a short tirade on this product back in 2008 was clearly connecting it up back to front as he was complaining about the video lead being a yard long whilst the other leads were only one foot long! ALL the plugs at this end go into your PC – the yard long effort goes to the box!

IN USE

The box works as unobtrusively as possible. If you only turn one machine on, then, you won’t know it’s there. Turning the second machine on makes no immediate difference, and it’s only when you press certain key-sequences that it switches, e.g. Scroll-Lock twice followed by F1 to swap PCs. There are others.

Well, that’s how it’s supposed to work. However, they really had to pick the Scroll-Lock key to initiate the ‘hot key’ switching, didn’t they?

Problem Chris?

I’ll say – I haven’t got a Scroll-Lock key on my Logitech cordless keyboard.

THE CLASH OF THE BLUE-SKIES THINKERS

In separate rooms and worlds apart, here’s how I see the storm clouds of incompatibility forming.

On the one hand, we’ve D-Link’s think-tank, pondering a flip chart upon which someone has felt-tipped ‘Which key can we use to switch PCs?

‘I know, let’s use Scroll-Lock - after all when was the last time anyone used it?’ suggests some keen little so-and-so.

Somewhere else, Logitech’s team are looking to streamline the cordless keyboard that I ended up buying.

‘I know, let’s get rid of Scroll-Lock’ pipes up some genius, ‘after all when was the last time anyone used it?’

LOW POINTS

I do find the leads a little shall we say unco-operative, being quite thick and stiff like aerial or satellite cable. If you only want to stand two PC boxes side by side, the length is something of a an overkill, and leaves a mess of leads to stuff away in true ‘sweep it under the carpet’ form. I’m reminded of swans swimming against a strong current – all is serenity on top but there’s a real mess below the surface.

Oh yes, then of course I can’t do any ‘hot-key’ switching. Actually, it’s not such a show-stopper as I tend to use one PC or the other, and alone they initiate the box properly anyway. It’s only when I try to flip-flop between PCs that the fun of trying to locate the box down there in the gloom and fumbling for its manual switch starts.

HIGH POINTS

If you actually have a Scroll-Lock key, then the box can be trusted to be left behind your PCs down among the dust bunnies as it can be controlled from the keyboard. I’ve had a couple of instances of having to operate the switch manually (or in other words, once a year). I put these down to the order in which things were switched on.

I SHALL NOT REST....

…until I’ve found some alternative to the Scroll-Lock problem. True both Windows 7 and the Ubuntu ‘distro’ of Linux have what are called ‘on-screen keyboards’, which in Windows’ case you invoke by typing OSK into the search box. These then allow you to ‘click’ on a virtual scroll-lock key.

Yes it sounded initially like a work-around of sorts but the keystrokes have to actually come from the keyboard for the D-Link box to detect them. What I REALLY need is a new keyboard (not an option), or some means of physically entering key strokes that are the equivalent of Scroll-Lock, rather than in any software that comes with the Logitech. Perusal of the internet forums tends to indicate that this is not going to solve itself quickly.

GETTING ONE

These seem to retail for around £34, but my version came via a 'refurb' specialist on E-Bay for £11.99.

Probably someone returned it after finding out about the Scroll-Lock problem!

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Comments on this review

  • Bigbaz published 01/01/2012
    Baz being a tight buggar set up a dual boot system, Ubuntu did it for me if I remember, there was also the problem of the army surplus hand crank generator and Mrs Baz's sore arms.
  • tallulahbang published 09/12/2011
    I bet when you walk into Maplins you do't even have to speak: you just psychically commune with the scary, beardy techy men. xx
  • fahim1rocks published 22/11/2011
    I also never knew such a product existed...
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Product Information : D-Link DKVM KVM / USB switch 2KU 2 x KVM / USB

Manufacturer's product description

The DKVM-2KU 2-port mini KVM (Keyboard, Video and Mouse) switch allows you to easily control 2 different PCs from a single set of keyboard, mouse, and VGA monitor, and to share a USB device with 2 PCs. It includes 2 sets of built-in cables for ready connection to 2 PCs. If you have 2 PCs and need to use them at the same time, the DKVM-2KU saves you the money and space by allowing you to control your 2 computers from a set of keyboard, monitor and mouse. Or, you may have a better, bigger monitor and want to connect both PCs to it, the DKVM-2KU allows you to do this. 2 sets of cables are attached to the KVM switch ready for use, dispensing you of the need to prepare separate cables and connect them to the switch. The DKVM-2KU supports VGA, SVGA, and MultiSync monitors at up to 2048 x 1536 resolution at 72Hz refresh rate. Support for Microsoft IntelliMouse is provided. There is also a control button located on the front panel that allows you to switch between the PCs. A USB 2.0 port is built into this KVM switch to allow connection to a USB-supported device or a USB hub. This allows you to share your USB printer, scanner, card reader or other devices among the 2 connected PCs.

Product Details

Product Description: D-Link DKVM 2KU - KVM / USB switch - 2 ports - desktop, D-Link DKVM 2K - KVM switch - 2 ports - desktop, D-Link DKVM 2 - KVM switch - 2 ports - rack-mountable

Device Type: KVM / USB switch - 2 ports - PS/2, KVM switch - 2 ports - PS/2

Enclosure Type: Desktop, Rack-mountable

Subtype: KVM

Ports: 2 x KVM / USB, 2 x KVM port(s)

KVM Users Qty: 1 local user

Compliant Standards: USB 2.0

Dimensions (WxDxH): 10.4 cm x 6.2 cm x 2.8 cm, 14 cm x 6.2 cm x 2.8 cm, 11.9 cm x 10.5 cm x 4.6 cm

Weight: 0.57 kg, 420 g, 0.7 kg

Interfaces: KVM

Manufacturer Warranty: 1 year warranty

General

MPN: DKVM-2KU, DKVM-2K, DKVM-2

Device Type: KVM / USB switch - 2 ports, KVM switch - 2 ports

Enclosure Type: Desktop, Rack-mountable

Subtype: KVM

Ports: 2 x KVM / USB, 2 x KVM port(s)

KVM Local Users Qty: 1 local user

Keyboard / Mouse Interface: PS/2

Max Resolution: 2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1536 @ 72 Hz, 1600 x 1200

Compliant Standards: USB 2.0

Status Indicators: Port status

Interfaces: KVM

Expansion / Connectivity

Interfaces: 2 x VGA - HD-15 ¦ 2 x keyboard (PS/2) ¦ 2 x mouse (PS/2) ¦ 2 x USB - Type A ¦ 1 x mouse (PS/2) ¦ 1 x keyboard (PS/2) ¦ 1 x VGA - HD-15 ¦ 1 x USB - Type A

Miscellaneous

Cables Included: 2 x keyboard / mouse / video / USB cable - 1.8 m, 2 x keyboard / mouse / video cable - 1.8 m

Compliant Standards: FCC Class B certified, C-Tick

Dimensions & Weight

Width: 10.4 cm, 14 cm, 11.9 cm

Depth: 6.2 cm, 10.5 cm

Height: 2.8 cm, 4.6 cm

Weight: 0.57 kg, 420 g, 0.7 kg

Environmental Parameters

Min Operating Temperature: 0 °C

Max Operating Temperature: 40 °C

Humidity Range Operating: 0 - 80%

Software / System Requirements

Software Included: Drivers & Utilities

Manufacturer Warranty

Service & Support Details: Limited warranty - 1 year

Service & Support: 1 year warranty

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