By Ellie / Last Updated March 20, 2024

Can you connect multiple laptops to one monitor?


Hi, I have 3 different work laptops (I have multiple jobs) that I’d like to view simultaneously across 1 ultra-wide monitor and possibly 1 or 2 more standard monitors. Also would like to use only use 1 shared keyboard, mouse, and video camera between all 3 laptops. They are all PCs with Windows 10.Any ideas for a good solution?”

- Question from Reddit

Multiple Computers

Monitoring multiple laptops from one computer grants the ability to access and control these devices remotely, offering unparalleled convenience. There are five methods available for monitoring multiple laptops from one computer, each with its own set of advantages and limitations.

How to monitor all laptops from one computer [5 ways]

Exploring five approaches to monitor all laptops from one computer at a time. It’s essential to first glance at a brief overview comparing these methods.

  AnyViewer (Remote Desktop) SolarWinds NPM (Network Monitoring) Mouse Without Borders (Cross-computer Control) VMware (Virtualization) KVM Switch (Hardware)
Technology Type Remote Desktop Software Network Monitoring Tool Cross-computer Control Software Virtualization Software Hardware
Key Functionality Remote desktop access and management of multiple laptops Real-time network monitoring and performance analysis Control multiple laptops using one mouse and keyboard Virtualized laptop environments on a single host computer Single monitor, keyboard, and mouse control for multiple laptops
Ease of Setup Easy Moderate Easy Moderate Easy

-Real-time access

-Efficient multi-session support

-High-quality visuals

-Comprehensive network monitoring

-Real-time visibility into metrics

-Customizable dashboards and alerts

-Seamless interaction between laptops

-Facilitates file transfer and clipboard sharing

-Allows creation of virtual machines representing each laptop

-Comprehensive monitoring and management

-Allows switching between laptops using single peripherals

-Hardware-based solution


-Requires software installation on laptops

-Requires SNMP configuration on laptops

-Focuses on network performance

-Limited to mouse and keyboard control

-May not provide real-time monitoring

-Limited detailed monitoring capabilities

-Requires significant resources

-Complex setup compared to other methods

-Limited to controlling peripherals

-May require additional adapters for compatibility

Suitability Remote management across different locations Monitoring network health and performance within a centralized network infrastructure Enhancing productivity through streamlined interaction between laptops  Detailed monitoring and management of laptop environments Basic control and monitoring needs with direct access to laptops via peripherals
Cost Free with upgrade option Paid subscription Free Paid software Hardware cost

Way 1. Remote desktop software - AnyViewer

The monitoring of multiple laptops from a single computer can be accomplished by employing a remote desktop application that facilitates multiple sessions. This approach allows for remote management of one or more laptops from your main device, irrespective of their geographic location.

An excellent choice for monitoring all laptops from one computer on Windows 10 and 11 is AnyViewer. It's a remote desktop software known for its reliable multi-session support and fast connections. With its Screen Wall feature, you can easily manage multiple computer screens in one window, boosting efficiency. Plus, AnyViewer ensures high-quality visuals for clear and sharp screen displays.

Step 1. Download and install AnyViewer on each laptop.

Download Freeware Win PCs & Servers
Secure Download

Step 2. After installation, open AnyViewer on your primary computer and log in with your account details.

Log in AnyViewer

Step 3. Sign in to the same AnyViewer account on all other laptops you want to manage.

Free Editions

Step 4. On your computer, go to the "Device" section, select your local device, and then choose "Screen wall."

Screen Wall

Step 5. Click on "Create screen wall."

Create Screen Wall

Step 6. Select all the laptops you want to control simultaneously, and then click "Add."

Add Devices

Step 7. You can now monitor and manage all the added laptops from a single window.

My Screen Wall

★Here's a tip:
Consider upgrading to an Enterprise plan for optimal performance if you intend to create multiple screen walls. This will ensure the best experience for managing your desktops efficiently.


Way 2. Network monitoring tool- SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor (NPM)

SolarWinds NPM is a network monitoring tool that enables administrators to monitor the performance and health of network devices, including laptops, switches, routers, and servers. It provides real-time visibility into network traffic, device status, and performance metrics, allowing users to identify and troubleshoot issues quickly. SolarWinds NPM offers customizable dashboards and alerting mechanisms for proactive monitoring and management.

To monitor multiple laptops simultaneously using SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor (NPM) from one computer, you can follow these steps:

Step 1. First, ensure that you have SolarWinds NPM installed on your computer. You may need to purchase and download the software from the SolarWinds website if you haven't already done so.

Step 2. SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) is commonly used for monitoring network devices. Ensure that SNMP is enabled on the laptops you want to monitor. You'll need to configure SNMP settings such as community strings and access permissions on each laptop.

Step 3. Launch the SolarWinds NPM application on your computer. Navigate to Settings > Manage nodes > Add Node. Enter the IP addresses or hostnames of the laptops you want to monitor and provide the necessary SNMP credentials.

Add Node

Step 4. Once the laptops are added as nodes, configure the monitoring parameters you wish to track, such as CPU utilization, memory usage, disk space, network traffic, etc. You can customize thresholds and alerting settings according to your monitoring requirements.

Customize Thresholds

Step 5. After configuration, you'll be able to view the monitoring dashboard within the SolarWinds NPM interface. This dashboard will display real-time performance metrics and status indicators for each monitored laptop.

All Nodes

Step 6. Regularly review the monitoring data and analyze trends to identify potential issues or areas for optimization. SolarWinds NPM provides various reporting and analysis tools to help you troubleshoot network performance issues efficiently.

Step 7. As your network grows or evolves, you can easily scale and expand your monitoring setup in SolarWinds NPM to include additional laptops or other network devices.

Way 3. Cross-computer control software- Mouse Without Borders

Mouse Without Borders, a software from Microsoft Garage, empowers users to monitor all laptops from one computer free using just one mouse and keyboard. It fosters seamless interaction between multiple devices, allowing tasks like file transfer between screens, text copying and pasting, and clipboard sharing across laptops.

This tool proves invaluable for those juggling multiple devices simultaneously, including software developers, designers, and professionals across diverse fields. Mouse Without Borders streamlines workflow and enhances productivity by eliminating the need to switch between various input devices for each computer.

Step 1. Download Mouse Without Borders.

Step 2. Install the downloaded file and follow the on-screen instructions.

Mouse Without Borders Install

Step 3. Once installed, access the Settings dialog either through the desktop shortcut or by clicking the icon in the system tray on the taskbar.

Step 4. On the first computer where you've selected the mouse and keyboard as controllers, choose "NO" at the start of the dialog.

Mouse Without Borders No

Step 5. Take note of the security code and computer name displayed, or keep the dialog open and move to another computer.

Mouse Without Borders Security Code

Step 6. On the second computer, repeat steps 1-3 of the installation process. Then, select "YES" at the beginning of the dialog.

Mouse Without Borders Yes

Step 7. Enter the security code and computer name from step 5 when prompted, then click the "LINK" button.

Mouse Without Borders Link

Step 8. Repeat steps 6-7 for each additional computer you want to connect.

Step 9. Once connected, simply move the mouse cursor from one computer to another across the screen edges. Keyboard input will follow your mouse cursor to other laptops.


Step 10. After configuring your laptops, access the Settings form by clicking the system tray icon or using the shortcut (Ctrl + Alt + M). Here, you can add more laptops, rearrange computer thumbnails via drag-and-drop, and adjust other settings as needed.

Way 4. Virtualization software - VMware

VMware offers a comprehensive solution for monitoring multiple laptops from a single computer simultaneously. With VMware's innovative virtualization technology, you can create virtual machines (VMs) on your computer, each representing a separate laptop environment. This enables you to monitor and manage several laptops concurrently without the need for physical hardware.

Step 1. Start by downloading and installing VMware software on your host computer. You can choose from various VMware products such as VMware Workstation, VMware Fusion (for Mac), or VMware Player (for Windows). Follow the installation instructions provided by VMware.

Step 2. Once VMware is installed, create multiple virtual machines, with each VM representing a separate laptop environment. To do this, open VMware and select the option to create a new virtual machine. Follow the wizard to configure the virtual machine settings, including the operating system, memory, storage, and network settings.

Create A New Virtual Machine

Step 3. After creating the virtual machines, install the desired operating systems (e.g., Windows, Linux) on each virtual machine just like you would on a physical laptop. VMware provides options to install the operating system from an ISO file or directly from a CD/DVD.

Install Desired Operating Systems

Step 4. Ensure that each virtual machine is properly configured to communicate with your host computer and the network. Click Edit virtual machine settings to configure.

Edit Virtual Machine Settings

Step 5. You can set up networking options such as NAT, bridged, or host-only networking depending on your monitoring requirements.

Network Settings

Step 6. Once the virtual machines are set up and configured, start each virtual machine within VMware. You can simultaneously run multiple virtual machines on your host computer.

Step 7. Use VMware's management interface to monitor the performance, resource utilization, network activity, and other relevant metrics across all virtual machines. You can access the management interface to view statistics, configure alerts, and perform troubleshooting tasks.

Step 8. VMware offers advanced features such as snapshotting, cloning, and remote access, which can further enhance your monitoring capabilities. Utilize these features as needed to streamline management and improve efficiency.

Way 5. Hardware - KVM switch

A KVM switch (abbreviated for Keyboard, Video, and Mouse) enables the management of multiple laptops using just one monitor, keyboard, and mouse. Transitioning between laptops can be executed via a keyboard shortcut or a physical switch on the hardware, which connects the laptops to the single monitor, keyboard, and mouse configuration.

Compatibility plays a pivotal role in the effective functioning of a KVM switch within the system. For instance, if the laptops utilize USB mice and keyboards, the KVM switch must support USB input or be equipped with suitable adapters. Similarly, the monitor connection inputs must align with the outputs available on the laptops or be paired with appropriate adapters.

Step 1. Power off all laptops and the monitor you want to connect.

Step 2. Connect the monitor, keyboard, and mouse to the KVM switch. The standard setup provides ports for each peripheral, along with cables to link them to individual laptops.

KVM Switch

Step 3. Attach the cables from the KVM switch to the different laptops. Ensure that the video, mouse, and keyboard connections on each cable are plugged into the same computer.

Step 4. Turn on the monitor and all laptops. The computer connected to the first position on the switch will appear on the screen. To switch between laptops, use the switch's toggle or a supported keyboard shortcut. For example, the Belkin KVM switch allows switching by pressing Scroll Lock twice followed by either the up or down arrow on the keyboard.

The bottom line

In summary, monitoring multiple laptops from one computer offers great convenience. With five methods explored—remote desktop software, network monitoring tools, cross-computer control software, virtualization software, and hardware solutions—there's a solution for every need. Whether it's remote access, network monitoring, seamless device interaction, or hardware consolidation, these methods provide effective ways to achieve the goal. Simply choose the approach that fits your requirements best and enjoy streamlined management across your laptop setup.