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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Synergy2 for Mac and Windows-one idiot's experience

Synergy2 for this idiot and his Mac

When I say “idiot”, dear reader, I don’t refer to you. I refer to me, and my quest to learn how to use Synergy2 with my MacBook and my Windows 7 box.

Right now, at 11:54 am, I enjoy qualified success, typing on a MacBook’s keyboard and a Magic Trackpad while writing this blog post on M$ Word 2010 on my Windows 7 box.

The Secret Sauce to making this arrangement work

Last night, I finally turned on my Mac’s Firewall under 10.6.8. I had relied on my router’s firewall for security. I had thought (silly me!) that any signal that made it through the router could get to my Mac.

Well, turning ON the firewall enabled the signals from Synergy on my Windows box to get to my MacBook. First problem solved.

The other piece of the puzzle, the other dollop of secret sauce, was to use QuickSynergy from Google Code as my Mac’s GUI for Synergy. I have tried using SynergyKM, which looks nice, but doesn’t work for me. QuickSynergy solved the second problem.

QuickSynergy is brutally efficient. It only cares about setting up your Mac’s keyboard and pointing device(s) as the server for all the other machines using Synergy.

Now Synergy2 doesn’t always work for me. Sometimes I have to turn QuickSynergy on and off several times. And some times I need to reboot both systems to get them to cooperate.

On the Windows side, I use the software for Windows provided by

The Next Step

I would like to know how to get my Windows keyboard and pointing devices to control my Mac. It’s a question of intellectual curiosity. I have a way to do it with the Win2VNC program from Sourceforge. I use it with OS X’s built-in VNC server and it works great.

As for connecting Mac to Mac, I use Abyss Soft’s Teleport preference panel. Version 1.01 for PPC and 10.4, and Version 1.02 for Intel and 10.5/10.6. It works great, much better than my experience with Synergy2 between Mac and PC. That’s why I’m getting another Mac as my next computer!

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