While searching for better software for assisting Multi-Monitor setups without packing a dozen video cards into one PC I came across MaxiVista. Although similar its not free like Synergy. But for thirty bucks it looks like you get a lot fore features. They tout it is designed to use any laptop as a monitor, but desktops should work similar. Too bad there is a 4 PC limit.

MaxiVista turns any spare Laptop or Tablet PC into a second monitor for your primary PC. Program windows can be extended across both PC’s screens, while the programs are still all controlled from the primary PC. Connect up to four PCs via Ethernet, wireless LAN, FireWire, or USB and enjoy a giant desktop real estate of up to 7,680 x 1,600 pixels. The extra desktop space helps to avoid switching back and forth between overlapping windows. Additionally, MaxiVista allows to control up to four PCs with a single mouse and keyboard. Just drag the mouse cursor to the PC you wish to control. The clipboard of all computers will be synchronized as well. MaxiVista can also mirror the display contents of your primary PC to any other PC via a network connection without signal loss. MaxiVista is based only on software. No need to buy graphics cards, monitors or keyboard mouse switches.


4 Responses to “Expand one desktop across multiple PC’s”

  1. D&D on July 3rd, 2007 12:52 pm

    I wonder if they use something with Remote Desktop to allow the windows to be moved from one comp to the other, or even stretched across windows.

    After searching and finding info on MaxiVista, it seems it feeds the second comp a live stream of whatever is happening on the main comp. So I guess in the case of an extended desktop, a virtual second monitor is create on the master computer, and the slave simply mirrors that virtual monitor.

    However, there’s a couple pitfalls to this software, in addition to your mention of the limit on the number of comps:
    1) Windows only, though it can apparently work on Linux with WINE.
    2) Doesn’t seem like you can actually use the second comp. It seems like any slave comps act as dumb terminals, simply mirroring what’s happening on the main comp.
    3) Since it’s sending full images from one comp to the other, it’s going to use a LOT of network bandwidth. I can only imagine the amount of chaos on a network when there’s 3 slaves getting images from the master. Perhaps this is the reason for the limit of a total of 4 comps (1 master, 3 slaves).

    I would say that if the other comps you’re using with this software are junk comps that you’d otherwise not use, then go for it. If you’re actually going to use the other comps, then Synergy is going to be more useful for you.

  2. Grizz on July 3rd, 2007 1:15 pm

    I agree, with reservations. If you just want to use 2 PC’s then Synergy couldn’t be freeer(sic). But sometimes you just want to buy another monitor worth of realestate without buying another video card.

  3. D&D on July 3rd, 2007 5:48 pm

    As long as the comp is cheaper than a vid card, then I can see the reason behind using software like this.

    However, if you just want to expand your desktop, and not going to be using other monitors for gaming, it might actually be cheaper to buy a cheap vid card rather than a whole comp.

    Also, most laptops have at least a VGA out, if not also a S-Video out, which gives at least one option of having a second monitor.

  4. 10+ Tips for getting a Multi-Monitor setup at work. - MultiMonitor.Net on July 27th, 2007 8:20 am

    […] way around.  If you aquire a second PC with its own monitor for your workspace you can then use MaxiVista or […]

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