USB sharing between computers with USB switch and special software

Olga Weis

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you needed to access a USB device plugged into one PC from another computer? If yes, which solution did you choose? As experience shows, most users just unplug the peripheral to connect it to the other machine. Well, it works. But what if we tell you that there are much more convenient and efficient methods to share a USB device across the network so that multiple computers can freely access it. More than this, with a proper USB over IP tool (software or hardware), you’ll be able to connect to a remote peripheral as though it were attached directly to your PC. Want to know more? Read on to find out about the advanced USB sharing software, USB Network Gate, and a handy hardware solution USB switch box.

USB switch

Contents


  1. Software USB switch: access USB devices over network
  2. Share USB over IP with a hardware tool: KVM USB switch

USB Network Gate: software tool


Let’s imagine that you have a USB drive attached to your home computer but you need to access its contents from your desktop at work. The simplest way to do this is by installing the dedicated app, USB Network Gate, on both machines and redirect the device over the Internet with a couple of clicks.

USB Network Gate is probably the most popular solution in the market of network technologies. This versatile program helps create virtual copies of USB devices and transport them to a remote PC in such a way that the computer “thinks” the peripherals are attached to it directly.


USB Network Gate logo

USB Network Gate


Requirements: Windows (32-bit and 64-bit): XP/2003/2008/ Vista/7/8/10, Windows Server 2012. 5.62MB free space. Version 8.0.1859. (4th Nov, 2017). 4.9 Rank based on 179+ users, Reviews(72)
Category: Networking Software
The app allows to flawlessly redirect local USB ports over the RDP channel and makes it possible to forward peripherals to guest operating systems.
USB Network Gate

Another great advantage of USB Network Gate is that the utility is extremely easy to install and use. Here are the three simple steps you need to follow to share your device across the Internet.

  1. First of all, download USB Network Gate and install it on both computers: the one (server) where the USB device is connected physically and the one (client) which will access the peripheral remotely.

  2. Share the device in the software interface on the server PC.

  3. On the client machine, start the app, go to the “Remote Devices” tab, and click “Сonnect” next to the required peripheral.

That’s it! Now, the desired device will appear in the Device Manager of the remote machine without being directly plugged into that computer.

USB peripheral switch: hardware solution


Alternatively you can try a specialized hardware - KVM USB switch. This solution gives the way to share one or several USB devices between different computers. A simple press of the button is enough to change the connection of multiple devices (like a USB keyboard, mouse, etc.) from one PC to another.

To share your devices with a USB keyboard mouse switch, do the following:

  1. Attach the device you’d like to share to a USB switch box.

  2. Connect the USB switch to the two computers that will get access to the device.

  3. Now, with the press of the button on your USB switch, the USB peripheral plugged into the hardware will change its connection from one PC to another.

Conclusion


When choosing among the best USB switch solutions users usually take into account a few important factors such as the number of USB devices that can be shared at a time, the distance of work, the ease of use, etc.

Having compared the software and hardware methods it seems obvious, that the software solution, USB Network Gate, provides more benefits for users. It wirelessly connects devices regardless of the distance between them, works over the RDP channel, and can redirect USB to a virtual machine. On the other hand, the hardware tool is rather popular for its affordable price. But with the advanced functionality offered by USB Network Gate, its price seems to be fully justified.

USB Network Gate

Requirements for Windows: XP/2003/2008/Vista/7/8/10, Server 2012
Also available on macOS, Linux OS and Android , 5.62MB size
Version 8.0.1859 (4th Nov, 2017) Release notes
Category: Networking Software