Keyboard, Video, Mouse


Keyboard, Video, Mouse (KVM) is a term related to computer technology, specifically to hardware devices used for input and output. KVM can also refer to KVM switches, which are devices that allow a user to control multiple computers from one keyboard, video display monitor, and mouse. This technology often saves space, time, and cost by eliminating the need for additional keyboards, monitors, and mice.


Keyboard: /ˈkiːˌbɔːrd/Video: /ˈviːdɪoʊ/Mouse: /maʊs/

Key Takeaways

  1. Multi-device control: Using a Keyboard, Video, Mouse (KVM) switch allows you to control multiple computers using just one set of a keyboard, mouse, and monitor. This saves space and eliminates the need for multiple sets of peripherals, leading to a more efficient workspace.
  2. Range of models: KVM switches come in a variety of forms to serve different needs. Some models support only two computers, while others can support up to 32 or more. Some models also support advanced features, such as on-screen display, audio switching, and support for USB devices.
  3. Improved efficiency: KVM switches improve efficiency for network administrators and others who need to manage multiple computers by allowing them to switch between different systems quickly without needing to move around or plug and unplug devices.


The technology term “Keyboard, Video, Mouse,” often abbreviated as “KVM,” is particularly important as it refers to hardware devices that allow users to control multiple computers from one keyboard, video monitor, and mouse. This is essential particularly in server environments or places where multiple computers are in use but space for peripherals is limited. Instead of having separate keyboards, monitors, and mice for every computer, a KVM switch consolidates them, saving space, decreasing hardware costs, and improving efficiency. Users can switch between computers without needing to physically move, making tasks such as administrative work, testing, or data monitoring more convenient and streamlined.


Keyboard, Video, Mouse (KVM), in the realm of technology, refers to hardware devices that help users control multiple computers from a single keyboard, video display (monitor), and mouse. In essence, it’s a switch that allows users to command multiple computers without needing different peripherals for each. This reduces clutter and eliminates the need for unnecessary hardware equipment, making it an efficient solution for managing multiple systems or servers.This technology is mostly used in IT environments, especially in data centers where one might need to handle several servers fitted with different operating systems. With KVM switches, a user can manage multiple computers, switch between different systems, and share information between computers without much hassle. It streamlines workflow as users are no longer required to go to the physical location of each machine to control it. KVM technology has expanded to encompass both analogue (direct cable connection) and digital (over an IP network) forms for increased flexibility and extended reach.


1. KVM Switch: A KVM switch is a piece of hardware technology that allows a user to control multiple computers from one keyboard, video display (monitor), and mouse. This is particularly beneficial in data centers where multiple servers are placed in a rack and connected through a KVM switch. The user can easily switch control between different computers without needing to plug in different keyboards, mice or monitors.2. Remote Desktop Applications: Software technologies like Microsoft’s Remote Desktop or TeamViewer also implement the keyboard, video, and mouse (KVM) concept virtually. They allow users to remotely control another computer or server as if they were sitting right in front of it, using its keyboard, viewing the video display, and controlling the mouse.3. Video Game Consoles: Some consoles may be controlled with a keyboard and mouse instead of or in addition to traditional game controls, providing options for user interface designed to emulate a PC gaming experience. Users can view the game on a video display and control the gameplay using the keyboard and mouse.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

Q: What does KVM stand for in technology terms?A: KVM stands for Keyboard, Video, Mouse. It’s a term used to describe a type of switch that allows you to control multiple computers from a single keyboard, video monitor, and a mouse.Q: How does a KVM switch work?A: A KVM switch works by connecting multiple computers to a single device through their respective keyboard, video, and mouse ports. The user can then switch between controlling each computer simply by pressing a button on the switch.Q: What is the primary use of a KVM switch?A: The primary use of a KVM switch is to save space, reduce cost and streamline management in a setup that requires control over multiple computers. For instance, in server farms, data centers or in setups with limited desktop space.Q: Can a KVM switch be used for laptops?A: Yes, a KVM switch can be used for laptops as long as the laptops have the necessary ports for connecting a keyboard, video, and mouse. Q: What types of KVM switches are available?A: There are essentially two types of KVM switches: analog and digital. Analog KVM switches are hardware-based, while digital KVM switches can operate over networks using IP technology.Q: Do KVMs support all types of keyboards and mice?A: Most modern KVM switches support both USB and PS/2 interfaces for keyboards and mice. However, it is always recommended to check the compatibility before purchasing a KVM switch.Q: Does using a KVM switch cause any latency problem?A: No, using a KVM switch should not cause any noticeable latency. The switch is usually just a pass-through for the keyboard, mouse, and video signals.Q: Can I connect different operating systems through a KVM switch?A: Yes, a KVM switch is an operating system independent device. You can connect different operating systems like Windows, Mac OS, Linux, etc., through a KVM switch.

Related Tech Terms

  • Input Devices
  • Display Technology
  • Peripheral Devices
  • USB Interface
  • Computer Hardware

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