i'm working here with two PCs and want to use only one keyboard. I don't have much space left here so i just want to use the keyboard on my "client" side computer.

I had the idea to use a remote desktop solution to get make this possible. I use x11vnc as VNC server. I have a mouse on every pc.

While using the solution with the remote desktop i realised that the "slow" update of the client-side screen is distracting me. Now i thought of a solution without transmitting the screen data, just the keyboard data. I have a screen on every pc so i don't need to display it twice.

Is there a possible solution to this? Maybe with another VNC server?

I'm using Linux Mint 18 with KDE (tried krfb but it get's stuck at the first screen).


  • You didnt say anything about a mouse. Is the 'remote' computer running a GUI? Are they both running linux? You could ssh in to remote if all you wanted was a command line. If linux GUI what about remote connect to the x-server? Start here.
    – jc__
    Dec 12 '16 at 15:39
  • resize the client window to 5x5 pixels, and type into it. it will be fast. Dec 12 '16 at 15:46

I think you want to use X2x. "x2x allows the keyboard, mouse on one X display to be used to control another X display".

Or, if you want to send your keyboard data absolutely via VNC-Protocol, you could also use X2VNC.

Both work via creation of an invisible 1px wide or high window on a screen border, and as soon as you "touch" the border with the mouse, your pointer gets "frozen" and hidden on the original screen, and your input (keyboard and mouse) gets sent to the remote X11 or VNC screen. This works with up to 4 remote computers (because your screen has 4 edges).

I have done both in the past, and still occasionally do. On my Debian both are available through the package manager. That should be that case for most/all distributions.

For MAC there seems to be the osx2x program, which can talk to X11 and VNC.


Why complicate things, just use SSH?
Already built-in or easily downloaded from repo(not at that machine, but apt-get search ssh, I think it's something openssh-related), terminal-only, as in no gui being transferred at all.

General idea(once installed):

ssh user@ip.from.remote.machine


It'll ask you to put in the password for the user account, then ask you to accept the machine's certificate.

After that, same as if you were in Terminal on the remote machine.

Side note:

man ssh

for more info on how to use

  • I tried to do it this way and i could achieve a connection. But now i can't login to the GUI at the machine it self. It shows the login-screen, i enter my PW and then it gets black and shows it again. At the terminali try to start the xserver (startx) but i get an error "../../xauth : timeout ...." after a while. So for now i can use SSH-connection but only terminal... Even on the machine itself .. only terminal.. How can i fix the x-server to get it back working?
    – Ian
    Dec 13 '16 at 8:21
  • Solved that.. Deleted the .Xauthority file in /home then it worked again.
    – Ian
    Dec 13 '16 at 8:44

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