Breaking the Barrier

Multiple computers, a keyboard and a mouse to control them all

Barrier is an open-source KVM (Keyboard, Video, Mouse) software that allows users to share their keyboard and mouse across multiple computers. This allows users to move their cursor and type on one computer while the keyboard and mouse inputs are sent to another computer.

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Barrier also supports the use of multiple monitors, allowing users to move their cursor seamlessly between different screens.The software is designed to be simple, easy to use, and highly configurable. Barrier is available for many operating systems and can be downloaded from GitHub.

A little bit of history:

Barrier was created as a fork of Synergy due to certain limitations and issues that the developer of Barrier, Debauchee, experienced while using Synergy. Due to these limitations and issues, Debauchee decided to create a fork of Synergy, called Barrier, with the goal of addressing these issues and providing a more stable, customizable, and actively developed alternative to Synergy. Some of the features that Barrier added that Synergy didn’t have at the time like multi-monitor support, encryption, and improved cursor handling. Since then, Barrier has continued to be developed and maintained, with new features and improvements being added on a regular basis. It is also actively supported by its developer community, which aims to provide a stable, customizable and actively developed KVM solution for those who need it.

I was an early user and even an Early Adopter of Synergy but was disappointed by the changes and bugs in version 3, then I switched to Barrier and never looked back.

The official Raspberry Pi website praised Barrier with a nice article and a video guide.

The configuration is easy and straightforward. You can find the instructions on how to install and configure Barrier on the GitHub page or watch the video.

Tip: You can use Scroll Lock to lock on a computer and don’t switch by accident to another, e.g. when playing a game.

George Litos
George Litos
Senior Software Engineer