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Re: two workstations, one tower

On Mon, 2002-06-10 at 18:10, Brandon Adams wrote:
> I was wondering if it is viable to have two monitors using two different > video cards use different mice and keyboards but still all be wired through > the same tower. I've done a little reading on the subject and I think that > by using two different config files for X I could get this done but I'm not > quite sure. Anybody have any experience at this?

At the present time, I'm not sure it can be done.

The main problem is the keyboard.  On Linux, the keyboard isn't really a
device in the traditional sense; it's just "there", always attached to
the console.  XFree86 on Linux perpetuates this view of the keyboard;
there is just one keyboard device.  This used to be all you needed back
in the day when PS/2 keyboards were all you had, and you could only have

USB keyboard support is currently handled through a bit of a hack; when
a USB keyboard event comes in, an equivalent "regular keyboard" event is
manufactured and fired through the normal keyboard driver, as if you had
just typed on the PS/2 keyboard.  This is accomplished with the
"keybdev" kernel module.  If you don't load keybdev, your USB keyboard
won't work as a console keyboard, but you can read keyboard events
through /dev/input/eventX.

Long-term, work is in progress to make all consoles use
/dev/input/eventX, making it possible to do multi-head with keyboard
support.  You can find out more about this at

In the meantime, I suspect that getting your 486 fixed and using it as
an X terminal would be a better way to get "multi-X-terminal" stuff
working on your box.  There are tutorials available for building a
diskless X terminal, so if your disk is the problem, you can work around

Alternately, if you're not really interested in "two people working on
the same box at the same time" stuff, Xinerama might be what you're
looking for.  This way, you can drive both video cards in the same X
session, and have that much more screen real estate for your session.

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