The Edimax KVM will hopefully be on its way back to Amazon on Monday.
Extracting all the leads that I had pre-routed through the trunking behind my new built-in desk was a lot harder than I expected. This was largely because I’d run the wires through the trunking, and then attached the trunking to the wall/desk. Getting them back out without removing the trunking from the wall was not trivial. About an hour into the process I was really starting to regret (a lot) that I’d not tested the KVM before running all the cables. Needless to say, I won’t make that mistake again.
Speaking of which, the new KVM is now on it’s way.
This time I did a LOT more checking of the specifications and reviews before making my selection. Fundamentally my basic needs hadn’t changed, but this time I was a lot more aware of the subtle differences in the manufacturers descriptions of the units. It’s very clear that at the cheaper end of the market most of the manufacturers take one of a couple of old reference designs, and repackage & rebadge them. These wouldn’t support my needs. The key additional criteria I looked for this time was mention of support for laptops, and specifically support for Windows 7.
Windows 7 support is essential because it indicates a KVM that has full support for EDID emulation, which (I believe) is probably also a requirement for the newer Linux desktop environments such as Unity and Gnome Shell. I’m now pretty sure that this is where the Edimax fell short.
In the end, the two cheapest devices that did everything I needed seem to be the ATEN CS64U, and the IOGEAR GCS1804. The IOGEAR is the fuller featured device, with detachable leads etc, but it’s difficult to source in the UK, and comes with a £140 price point. Whereas the ATEN is a bit more restricted (no OSD for example), but is available from Amazon for only £40.
That made the decision trivial.