Introduction: DOUBLE MOUSE

Picture of DOUBLE MOUSE


Double your productivity by connecting a single mouse to two computers! It's simple: one mouse, two USB connections, infinite possibilities. Each click of your pointer finger will be twice as powerful with this mouse mod. This is a low cost, no soldering, HOW TO that will double your clicks per hour in minutes.


Step 1: MATERIALS / PARTS LIST

Picture of MATERIALS / PARTS LIST

Part: PS/2 Mouse (serial)
Vendor: Radio Shack
Cost: $9.97 or less
Notes: You only really need one mouse but you need two serial cables. I ended up just buying an extra mouse because at RadioShack they are cheaper then a serial cable. Old serial mice are just llaying around everywhere waiting to be used, they can often be found on ebay.com for $1 or less.

Part: QVS USB-PS2Y USB to Dual PS/2 "Y" Converter
Vendor: J&R
Cost: $14.99
Notes: You are going to need two of these. There are cheaper options but this is the only one that I know works for sure.

Part: Duct tape
Vendor: Any will do.

Tools: A sharp Xacto blade and/or wire cutters.

Step 2: CUT CABLES

Picture of CUT CABLES


- Cut one mouse cable at the midpoint.

- Cut the second mouse cable an inch or so away from the mouse. This mouse is no longer needed, hide it in a drawer for later use.

- You should now be left with one longer serial cable, one shorter serial cable, and one mouse. Cut away 1.25" of the outer cable from the ends of all three cables.

Step 3: EXPOSE WIRES

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Inside the serial cable you will find smaller red, black, white, and green cables. Cut away 3/4" of the outer rubber and twist the exposed copper for each of the individual 12 cables.

Step 4: TWIST AND TAPE

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Twist together groups of three wires consisting of the same color. Tightly wrap them in tape so that none of the copper is showing. If you have a soldering iron handy you can make a better connection, however I've been using a tapped version for weeks and it seems to works fine.

Step 5: WRAP CONNECTIONS

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Once all four groups of red, white, black, and green wires are wrapped together tightly wrap them all in tape. When you're done you should have a dirt style Y cable.

Step 6: CONNECT USB ADAPTERS

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Connect the adapters to the serial cables. The connection for the keyboard will just remain empty for the purposes of this tutorial (yes, I'm leaving room for the DOUBLE KEYBOARD sequel instructable). Plug in one of the USB connections into a PC. When you have one cursor moving properly then plug the other USB connection into another PC. If everything goes as planned then you should now have the power of two PC's in the palm of your hand.... use this power wisely.

You can match the mouse speeds between your two PCs by opening the Mouse Properties:
Start Menu -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Mouse, and then hit the Motion tab.

Step 7: USES?

Picture of USES?

9 to 5 Paintings

There are many possible uses for the Double Mouse ranging from useless to pointless. The first series I have done using this new technology is the 9 to 5 Paintings. I, like much of the working world, find myself with less and less time for creative projects and more and more time spent writing emails. 9 to 5 Paintings are a way to create art and send emails, write reports, and do work all at the same time!

The set up is simple, you will need two computers connected to one Double Mouse. On one computer run a drawing / painting application at full screen. GIMP is an open source free image editing program that can be downloaded for free. On the other computer just go about your daily business. As you click and drag your way around email, the internet, and your regularly frequented applications you will leave brush strokes on the other computer. 9 to 5 paintings are a visual representation of your daily computing routines.

You can see a screen capture of the process in the attached .mov file.

Step 8: THINGS THAT DON'T WORK

Picture of THINGS THAT DON'T WORK

The smaller PS/2 USB adapters didn't work for me. I'm not sure why this is but if anyone knows please feel free to leave a comment. A common error for a non-functioning Double Mouse is for both computers to go into a cycle of mouse recognition and non-recognition. It will work on one computer for a few seconds and then on the other for a few seconds, etc. etc.

Comments

sabarirajan1 (author)2015-01-01

it wont work, i have tried this method but anyone can help to solve this problem?

i need this requirement.

joshua.kosar (author)2014-11-25

So... Logitech makes this incredibly simple to do wirelessly using their unifying receivers and logitech unifying utility. I mean, I'm all for hacking things apart and doing it with cheap crap... but you can get a logitech m325 for $15 and a second receiver for $10... so for $25 bucks you have a wireless one :)

bmlbytes (author)2009-04-27

I just wanted to point out that you repeatedly said serial mouse. While technically these run over a serial bus, they are not considered serial mice. They are PS/2 mice. A serial mouse would have a DB9 connector on it.

devicemodder (author)bmlbytes2013-07-27

i use a mouse with a db9 connector. best mouse i have

Master Of Hacks (author)bmlbytes2009-07-07

Error, Windows has malformed due to lack of patience. To resolve this problem, please install un-genuine software.

TyMan210 (author)Master Of Hacks2010-01-09

Error, Windows has malformed due to boot up. To resolve this problem, please reinstall Windows

Redgerr (author)TyMan2102010-03-03

"MASTER OF HACKS" ERROR: CANNOT COMPUTE

Master Of Hacks (author)bmlbytes2009-07-07

PLAYSTATION 2 MICE!

stephenniall (author)bmlbytes2009-05-10

was just about to say that Lol

bmlbytes (author)bmlbytes2009-04-27

Although I do give you points for a good instructable!

WesDoesStuff (author)2006-11-28

CPU = central processing unit
Motherboard = main board that everything connects to including the CPU
Monitor = the visual interface (the screen)
Computer = housing for the motherboard, drives, and component interface cards i.e. the video card.

i hope that cleared things up.

also you may want to only connect one set of power wires to the mouse. right tnow you are giving it double what it needs and that aint too good. atleast you had pictures so PROPS! =D

Yeah but instead of merging the two voltage cables(red) cut one out. Simples!

n0ukf (author)WesDoesStuff2008-03-19

Connecting the power wires together doesn't double the voltage going to the mouse, so the mouse won't be bothered, but the regulated 5v from the two computers might not be exactly the same and try to fight each other. Though being on the USB ports, that fight would be limited to 500mA or less. Doubling the current sources won't hurt the mouse, as it will only draw what it needs from the available 5v supply. Now if you tried to feed the mouse 10v or more, then it might get heart burn and die on you. ;)

maker12 (author)WesDoesStuff2007-12-03

no no no its

CPU = brain
Motherboard = spine
Monitor = the visual interface (the screen)
Computer = skull or body!

shveet (author)2010-06-22

actually this one guy binded 6 computers and 6 mice together and played some good old WOW

TheCheese9921 (author)2006-11-28

now I wana hook up to mice to one computer

javandyck (author)TheCheese99212010-03-03

I saw an adaptor for this a couple years back. It was intended as a teaching aid. It put two independant arrows on the screen at the same time.

LiaLinda (author)javandyck2010-03-19

I also need to be able to have two arrows on a screen each working independantly... do you recall where you saw this adaptor?  Was it at an educational facility?  Or at a store (and if it was a store, do you recall which one)? 

Madrias357 (author)TheCheese99212009-04-09

done it. Doesn't do anything cool.

syme (author)2010-03-12

Idea unsure whether it would work as usb work on a set voltage and it may be damaging to devices, but why not do this with a USB extender i.e. a female usb to two male usb's, then a single usb stick can be accessed on two pc.

note. i dunno whether it would cause files to corrupt be good for someone to try with a cheap tacky usb stick lol

AT (author)2010-03-06

That is useless to pointless; I like it.

dodo91 (author)2009-03-14

i have an idea. have you ever had two computers, and wanted to put a document on both of them. you dont have anything tho take it from one to the other to have it on both. so, ou use this concept, but with the keyboard. you put word on both computers, then type. you only have to look at one screen. this is because if you made a mistake on one, it will be on the other. you can also do the mouse, so when you click somewhere, it will click on the other computer. thats what i call killing two birds with one stone!

Kazeem (author)dodo912009-04-16

or you pay £5 for a memory stick instead of mutilating a set of computer equipment, and taking longer than it takes to transfer a file :P good idea all the same.... lol

Derin (author)2008-09-06

PS/2 is not hotpluggable,even on USB.the BIOS only checks for the mouse at startup,and that is why it wont work

bwpatton1 (author)Derin2009-02-26

ya this is frustrating when you are working on computers and forget to plug into the mouse, then you have to turn off the computer restart etc.....

collard41 (author)Derin2008-09-18

complete rubbish. the mouses drivers are installed (or are already there) when plugged in so you di not have to restart your computer

Derin (author)collard412008-09-18

meh.it does not check for new equipment unless you restart,I tried it by trying to plug my USB mouse to PS/2 with the supplied adapter,it did not regocnize the PS/2 compatible mouse

tristan993 (author)2008-09-18

this is a nice instructable but u could also just plug a keyboard and mouse into a usb adapter strip and plug that into a computer, and when u need to use the other computer just use an extension usb cord and plug that into the usb adapter

roystonlodge (author)2008-08-26

This is such a genius idea that, if only you hadn't posted this idea for free on this site, I'm SURE you could have made a WHACK of money off a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. But, you posted it for free on the Internet, so no taxpayer-funded art money for you! ;-)

DIY Dave (author)2008-05-21

Does anyone know how to make a PS/2 USB adapter?

jeffconnelly (author)DIY Dave2008-08-22

There's an instructable on it

=SMART= (author)2008-08-16

Haha those 9 - 5 drawings are great :P

rocksalt2342 (author)2008-05-27

couldn't you just connect two monitors to the computer?

Spencerr (author)rocksalt23422008-07-08

the whole point was to work on separate computers.

Sullen70 (author)2007-04-22

I appreciate the 9-5 paintings as 'process art', but I think any UI/human factors specialist might retrieve some value in the images as data. Clever concept.

jeffconnelly (author)Sullen702008-04-24

no, I think it's pretty secure, seeing as you can't tell when he put each dot on the screen.

actually, it can help ergonomics. the the more "dense" the image, the less he had to move the mouse, the less dense, the more he had to move the mouse assuming that the paint program was set to trace all mouse movements. it could be useful in designing GUI's in a manner that can minimize the need to move the mouse about, and thus help to avoid repetitive motion injury. set it to track the density of mouse clicks and you might be able to find out which tools in a program are used the most, and lessen the number of clicks needed to access that tool. lots of uses for this actually.

Toulouse (author)2007-10-23

i was going to suggest synergy. it's pretty neat

Mr. Smart Kid (author)2007-06-07

step 8" reason it did not work they come with certin duail usb/ps2 mice

Squee (author)2007-05-31

I've used realVNC before, I might have to give synergy a try. I tried to do something simlar using a demo of a pay program but it never worked and I wasn't willing to shell out the $80 for a full copy+tech support when I could use realVNC for free. Although what I was really looking for was essentially a software KVM switch.

heav (author)2007-05-21

yeah, I just don't understand how fi5e does control in which computer he wants the click, since didn't saw the switch part, still, software controlled mouse/ keyboard is much more elegant and practical than messing around cutting cables, etc... but any ways that's for real use, this approach is for creating some kind of strokes logger, mmmm still some software from synaptics touchpad can do the same.

earthstation (author)2007-05-14

this is certainly an interesting project. i think i might just have to go make one sometime...

randofo (author)2006-11-30

Soldering! It's the future. Pretty awesome. Have you tried this with a keyboard yet?

fi5e (author)randofo2006-11-30

I'm anti-solder for now. I just got the keyboard finished and will update it shortly. (PS, I see you have been busy, nice work) Thanks to Grendel for dropping some needed knowledge on this post. And as for all the picture comments, it's just a Cannon PowerShot on a tri-pod in portrait mode (eg close up mode) with a lot of light on the table. I usually do a little brightness contrast adjustments in GIMP ( I don't remember if I did that here). The real issue here, however, is the window of opportunity that opens when you double your mouse productivity!

zachninme (author)fi5e2006-12-05

Double keyboards would be stupid to hook up to a single computer, as it would double your strokes, or do nothing new...

Grendel (author)2006-11-29

The reason the small adapters don't work is because they are just connector converters and you can't have 2 USB Hosts on the same bus. The larger units interpret the PS/2 signal, reformat the data into USB HID packets, and send them on to the PC. The reason you can split the PS/2 mouse this way is the clock and data come from the mouse. The only time the PC sends data to the mouse is at startup, and if you have some special drivers for the mouse. Since the adapters mask the mouse, theres no data going from PC to mouse. Not very useful of a hack, but interesting non the less. Good work!

Myself (author)Grendel2006-11-30

You should still be careful, since this arrangement bridges two PC power supplies. If one machine is on while the other is off, badness can happen. If they're plugged into different outlets or otherwise don't share a ground reference, badness will almost certainly happen.

cry_wolf (author)2006-11-29

Amazing pictures, by far the best i have seen on Instructables. I like the mouse, very clean and easy, and i have GIMP too =]

theRIAA (author)2006-11-27

those pics look surreal! what kind of camera do you have?

Clevinger (author)theRIAA2006-11-28

He's shooting natural light with a fast f/stop; like f/2.8 or lower. The blur you see in the background is known as bokeh. He probably has a tripod and is doing a pre-metered, delayed shot.

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