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Synergy

CNET Editors' review

Synergy is a cross-platform, open-source replacement for a KVM switch. Instead of looping multiple computers through a piece of hardware, it lets you control them from a single keyboard and mouse. As a software solution, you might want to just go with the KVM switch. Synergy can be extremely difficult to configure, especially determining precise computer names and server locations. Even though the program lets you rename computers with simpler aliases, it can still be challenging to configure Synergy properly.

The interface is uninspired, but at least it's not confusing. Once you get Synergy running, you can switch from one computer to the next simply by push your mouse off-screen. You can configure that switching location to be on any or all of the four sides of your main monitor. Users can also configure screensavers to start simultaneously, and can link log-in information so that one hard drive doesn't hibernate while you're working on another one. The clipboards can also be linked, making it dead easy to transfer small chunks of information, such as URLs, from one system to the next.

This is a difficult program to set up properly, but it works well once going and might even be considered a must-have, or at least a must-try, for anybody who uses more than one computer at a time.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    4.1 stars

    out of 27 votes

    • 5 star: 14
    • 4 star: 6
    • 3 star: 5
    • 2 star: 1
    • 1 star: 1
  • Current version:

    3.8 stars

    out of 6 votes

    • 5 star: 3
    • 4 star: 1
    • 3 star: 1
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 1
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-6 of 6

  • 5.0 stars

    "Awesome program, did exactly as I hoped it would."

    February 28, 2014  |   By Acid_Raindrops

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Worked great.

    Cons

    No cons for me, for my intended use.

    Summary

    I wasn't sure if doing this was even possible, I just googled up "using the same mouse/keyboard on multiple PC's" and Synergy came up.
    I wasn't sure if it would work for me or not, as my "Host PC" uses the only available ethernet port which goes to my wireless router, then the other PC which I wanted to share the mouse/keyboard with is a laptop running off Wi-Fi, I wasn't sure if I needed to have them connected via a LAN cable or not but gladly synergy had no problem emulating the mouse/keyboard right through the router, through the wi-fi signal and to the laptop with no extra configuring.
    The mouse and keyboard functions just as well on the client PC as the host PC, no delays..etc. it's almost as if I'm just running a dual screen with a single computer but when I drag the mouse off the screen of my host PC's monitor it transfers directly onto the client PC's monitor, it knows which computer to send keyboard inputs to depending on which monitor the mouse cursor is currently on, simple as that. I give this program a 11/10, it's a life saver, very convenient! Thanks for developing this program and offering for free! :)

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Best product on the Market!"

    November 7, 2012  |   By Moonrakerrastadog

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Wonderful Easy to configure and use software. Well thought out and assembled. (Beta 1.4.10)

    Cons

    No bugs found or flaws that I'm aware of.

    Summary

    Keep up the underfund work you guys. Also anyone who checks it out Be courteous and give a contribution.

    Updated on Nov 7, 2012

    I should have added to the Cons, The only Con is getting used to using one machine to control the rest :) Also its VARY lite on system Resources.

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Don't use this program."

    March 21, 2012  |   By Win7Hater

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Works for some.
    Free.

    Cons

    Slow response from development.
    Over a year waiting for fix on serious issues.

    Easy workarounds not implemented, seems the developers have little interest in the users.

    Summary

    Go with Input Director or a paid program.

    Reply to this review Read reply (1)

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Love this tool"

    January 25, 2012  |   By emh177t

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Works great

    Cons

    Takes some learning to get setup across multiple environments (Windows/Linux)

    Summary

    Love this tool

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Works well on PCs but did not like my VMware pc on mac"

    January 10, 2012  |   By riddhim81

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Easy to use

    Cons

    Nightmare to setup

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Free and it shows"

    January 10, 2012  |   By sirpoon

    Version: Synergy 1.3.8

    Pros

    Free. That's about it. It works OK. Does some limited copy-paste between screens.

    Cons

    For me, the deal breaker is that the right shift key does not work on remote screens. This is a known bug but in typical arrogant C++ programmer fashion, they dispute who's responsibility it is to fix it. See synergy-foss{dot}org/tracker/issues/2842 for comments. Also, copy and paste is limited and often fails. It chews up CPU time, too.

    Summary

    Look for something better before using this.

    Reply to this review

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Results 1-6 of 6

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