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If anyone doesn't know about synergy, it's basically a KVM switch over the lan, but you don't have to switch anything. It allows you to move your mouse from one machine to the other like if you had dual monitors.

My question is: is it possible to set up your config so that you have 1 server and 1 client, both have dual monitors, but the client machine has its monitors such that one is on the left of the server's left monitor, and the other is on the right of the server's right monitor? So for example:

------------  -----------  ------------  -------------
|  client  |  | server  |  | server   |  | client    |
|  screen1 |  | screen1 |  | screen2  |  | screen2   |
|          |  |         |  |          |  |           |
|----------|  |---------|  |----------|  |-----------|

Hopefully my ascii is good enough to understand.

The reason I ask here is because both machines will be running linux, and I'm fairly certain that there's no supported way to do this in the synergy configs.

But I am completely willing to muck with X configs on the client to get it to work. I would set this up so that the only way the client could be used is through this synergy setup, so any X mucking won't have to be changed.

How synergy config works is that on your server, you give it the configuration of your screens. So you'll say client1 is right of server, and server is left of client1. What I was thinking is, is there a way to somehow make X think each display is connected on a different server. So I could say like clientS1( is left of server. And clientS2( is right of server. And X will know which screen it is?

I'm sure that last paragraph is confusing, but maybe someone who knows more about synergy or X can point me in the right direction.

share|improve this question
I can't resist my curiosity: why would you want such a set up? – David Oneill Nov 24 '10 at 19:52
@David.... how can you not want 4 linked screens, unless you already have more? – Stefan Nov 24 '10 at 19:57
@stefan, my question is more: why not have them in the order: client1, client2, server1, server2? He clearly wants to have them in a very non-standard arrangement. That's what I'm curious about... (I use synergy to have 3 monitors until I can afford a fourth which will be promptly added to the mix) – David Oneill Nov 24 '10 at 19:59
I don't think this is such a weird arrangement. I want the screens on either side of my main work machine. The idea is that I'm going to put my client screens in portrait mode flanking my server screen – Falmarri Nov 25 '10 at 17:51
up vote 3 down vote accepted

What if you switch client screen1 with 2 ?

------------  -----------  ------------  -------------   
|  client  |  | server  |  | server   |  | client    |   
|  screen2 |  | screen1 |  | screen2  |  | screen1   |   
|----------|  |---------|  |----------|  |-----------|   

This way you are able to set the right of cl scr2 to left of srv scr1 and leftof cl scr1 to right of srv scr 2. Then, if you need, you can just move your taskbar to the desired screen and set the DE's behavior to open new windows on the screen where the mouse cursor is located.

I had a similar setup, with the only exception that in the middle was a client with a single display and server with 2 screens on left and right... or something like this.

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+1 Doesn't exactly do what the OP asks for, but it an interesting setup that I hadn't thought of before. – David Oneill Nov 24 '10 at 20:04
Hmm, that's a really good suggestion – Falmarri Nov 25 '10 at 17:50

This can't be done with the configs yet. ( or at least last time I checked )...

The closest you'll get to a sollution, without hacking into X, is to configure you screens like this:

------------  -----------
|  server  |  | server  |
|  screen1 |  | screen2 |
|          |  |         |  
|----------|  |---------|  

------------  ----------- 
|  client  |  | client  | 
|  screen1 |  | screen2 | 
|          |  |         | 
|----------|  |---------| 

And then stack them out like you wanted. Will make life a bit confusing at first, but you will get used to it.

If you on the center two screens, you will have to move your mouse up to get to the outer screens. And then down to get back to the center screens.

Have Fun and Good Luck!

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Have you used this set up before? How long did it take you to get used to it? – David Oneill Nov 24 '10 at 20:05
took me about 2 hours... although I must admit it was only 3 screens. My desktop's two screens flanking my laptop screen. – Stefan Nov 25 '10 at 7:32

You might be able to set it using something similar to what's described in this situation:


Took me a bit to get my head around this idea but it does make sense. I have a similar situation to what's described here except my middle monitor is running Ubuntu server and so no X server. I installed GPM (General Purpose Mouse) which allows a mouse and copy and paste in the terminal on the server. I also then installed Synergy and tried it out but it doesn't work. I've been thinking of using Actions --> Keystroke in the config to switch to the server monitor with a hotkey, but I doubt it'll work. I think it requires an X session. I think I just need a HW KVM. Anyhow, enough about that. So, you might be able to set this up by configuring your monitors backwards in the OS and then "tricking" synergy by defining left and right for the middle monitors somehow. with 4 monitors that alternate like that though it sounds like it might get pretty complicated. I hope this helped.

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