In this tutorial, we are going to learn how to use one mouse and keyboard with two computers to do work quickly.
We often use Ubuntu/Linux Mint on one computer and Windows on another computer. So in this tutorial, we will use Linux mouse & keyboard with Windows PC or laptop.
Install Synergy 1.7.1
Synergy is software for sharing one mouse and one keyboard between multiple computers on your desk allowing to seamlessly move the mouse cursor from one screen to another (works on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X).
For 64-bit Systems –
$ wget https://synergy-project.org/files/nightly/synergy-1.7.1-master-3dcd36b-Linux-x86_64.deb $ sudo dpkg -i synergy-1.7.1-master-3dcd36b-Linux-x86_64.deb $ sudo apt-get -f install
For 32-bit Systems –
$ wget https://synergy-project.org/files/nightly/synergy-1.7.1-master-3dcd36b-Linux-i686.deb $ sudo dpkg -i synergy-1.7.1-master-3dcd36b-Linux-i686.deb $ sudo apt-get -f install
After you have installed Synergy open it from dash.
Follow a simple installation wizard-
- Select language
- Complete activation or skip activation
- Choose Server or Client – Remember, you will choose server or client depending on whether you are sharing your mouse and keyboard of this machine (Select Server)or using mouse and keyboard of another machine (Select Client).
Click Next and you will get the main windows where you can choose how you want to connect to the client computer. There are two options, the first one is ‘Configure interactively’ and second is ‘Use existing configuration’. The first option will give the list of computer that is connected to your network. In the second option you will need to create a configuration file (don’t worry it’s very easy).
Configure Synergy 1.7.1
In order to use synergy to connect to our Windows client (in our case Windows client, you can use the same way to connect to any client Mac OS X, Linux or any distro) with our Ubuntu/Linux Mint.
Open up the terminal and type the following command –
$ sudo gedit /home/username/.synergy.conf
sudo – To perform task as root
gedit – To use gedit program to create file
username – Username of your computer
It will open gedit text editor, paste the following with your computer info.
Note: To find your hostname in Ubuntu, type hostname in the terminal. In Windows, type hostname in the command line. To find your IP address in Ubuntu, type ifconfig in the terminal. In Windows, type ipconfig in the command line.
After you have done with the above configuration save the file. If you have any problem then feel free to comment in the comment section below.
Download, Install and Configure Synergy On Windows
- Visit the Synergy website and download the Windows version that suits your computer.
- Run the installer and then run Synergy.
- Select “Share this computer’s mouse and keyboard” in order to access the configuration screen.
- Once there, add your computers’ hostnames and then set the same left and right settings as before.
- After configuring that, select “Use another computer’s shared keyboard and mouse”
Running the Synergy Server on Ubuntu
- Open up a terminal window and type the following code to run the server:
synergys -f -conf /home/username/.synergy.conf
Connecting the Windows Client to the Server
- With the “Use another computer’s shared keyboard and mouse” radio button checked, type the IP address of the server (Ubuntu) and click start.
- You should now be able to use your Ubuntu desktop’s keyboard and mouse with your Windows laptop.
Shortcuts for Starting and Stopping the Ubuntu Server
- To start the server quickly, right-click the top panel and create a new launcher. In the command section, enter:
synergys -f –conf /home/username/.synergy.conf
- To stop the server quickly, right-click the top panel and create a new launcher. In the command section, enter: killall synergys
You can also start Synergy from menu or dash. After you open synergy from the menu you’ll have synergy running in the system tray. You can click and select start or stop.
Synergy is no longer free or open source. The project is still available in it’s free and open source form under the new name Barrier. Debauchee Open Source Group is the current publisher og the GNU version. You may or may not find it in the software repository as just Barrier. I saw it listed as Barrier-VMN under one distro and got it from the command line of Ubuntu 19.04 with just sudo apt-get install barrier. This didn’t work in Lubuntu 18.04 on another comp, although I did find it in the Symantec Software Manager.
Barrier is KVM software forked from Symless’s synergy 1.9 codebase.
Whereas synergy has moved beyond its goals from the 1.x era, Barrier aims to maintain that simplicity. Barrier will let you use your keyboard and mouse from machine A to control machine B (or more). It’s that simple.
Using your method, I am able to launch the server from the command line on my machine (located on the right) which is running Ubuntu 18.04. I receive the message “NOTE: started server, waiting for clients” in the command line
I am using the GUI on my other machine which running Ubuntu 19.04. When I simply check “Client” and enter in the Server name (the computer hostname physically located to the right), it says “WARNING: failed to connect to server: unknown error for: other_computer:24800”