How can I get my mouse functions back after plugging into a passthrough switch?
July 29, 2005 8:58 AM   Subscribe

After adding new hardware to my computer setup, my "extra" mouse buttons and mouse wheel no longer work.

Here's the situation: I have a Logitech Cordless MX keyboard and mouse hooked to my computer, the kind of mouse with the extra buttons for Back, Forward, etc. on it. It's worked fine for the years that I've had it.

Now this morning I've added a second desktop computer to the office and am using a OmniView Keyboard/Mouse passthrough from Belkin to control both computers with the one keyboard and mouse. The problem is that since plugging into the passthrough neither computer recognizes the Logitech mouse or its mouse wheel and extra buttons. The proper software is installed on both machines, but both computers only see a "regular" two button mouse.

Has anyone run into this problem before? How can I solve it? I need my extra buttons back!
posted by Servo5678 to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Here is a long discussion about Logitech and KVM switches. I didn't see anything that specifically addresses your problem, but there's a lot there that I didn't really read, either.
posted by Dipsomaniac at 9:08 AM on July 29, 2005

Seems like a fair number of people are unhappy with the Omniview KVM's general quality.

I would suggest taking it back and replacing it with another vendor's model. I use an IOGear KVM and it works fine with my mouse's scrollwheel.

The only downside is that I had to get an extension cable for my mouse. I had to plug the mouse directly into the KVM to get it operational — I could not use my Apple keyboard's second USB port.
posted by Rothko at 9:12 AM on July 29, 2005

not sure it was "omniview", but i had a belkin kvm that was expensive, annoyingly bad, and eventually died. i now have a cheapo thing that says "iogear" on it which works much better (although i don't use the same mouse as you).
posted by andrew cooke at 9:44 AM on July 29, 2005

Response by poster: For the record, this was a freebie KVM switch. Maybe this is why it was free! I'll read through the discussion from my home machine, Dipsomaniac. I don't really want the domain name "" showing up in my logs here at the office.

I'll see if I can push for the office to actually spend money and buy a decent switch. As I said, I was given this one because it was free (equipment surplus in another department). Now that I think about, the video part of the switch is horrid - the signal that reached the monitor was a blurry mess. I ended up using my monitor's second input and now everything is clear.

But on the plus side, with all this gear set up at my desk I feel like I'm running my own Mission Control now.
posted by Servo5678 at 9:51 AM on July 29, 2005

Best answer: The summary of the blog comments on is that you should drop the Logitech drivers and download the MS Intellipoint drivers. Or get a KVM that does USB and not PS2.

My hunch is that when you plug in a Logitech mouse to the computer, it has some kind of handshake protocol with the driver that tells it "yes I'm a logitech device, please enable the extra features." When you turn on the computer connected to the KVM, the KVM sends a standard "hi I'm a mouse" PS2 signal, but not the logitech specific handshake. One poster said he was able to get around this as follows:

1. set up both computers separately to use the wireless keyboard and mouse… make sure that they are working flawlessly on both machines before step2
2. shut down your PCs and connect the KVM switch to both PCs but use a standard PS2 mouse and keyboard. Boot both machines, and make sure that everything is working properly.
3. while both PCs are running, replace the standard keyboard and mouse with the Wireless Logitech keyboard and mouse.

If my hunch is correct then that workaround procedure somehow allows the Logitech handshake to be sent to both computers. Also, by using the MS Intellipoint drivers you skip the need for any logitech-specific protocol and instead the mouse probably just emulates a standard n-button mouse (or maybe it emulates a microsoft mouse) and the MS driver is able to detect it.

All in all I think the root problem here is PS2. It was designed decades ago for keyboards only, and using it for mouses (or mouses with lots of fancy buttons) has been shoe-horned into the protocol. I'd say once you ditch it and use only USB for everything all your woes should go away. (Ignore this paragraph if your KVM is already a USB KVM, but it sounded like it wasn't.)
posted by Rhomboid at 10:32 AM on July 29, 2005

Response by poster: Yeah, it's a PS/2 KVM. I think you're right, Rhomboid; USB is the way to go. I'll see about acquiring one of those next time we have some spending money. Thanks!
posted by Servo5678 at 10:46 AM on July 29, 2005

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