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Multiplicity 3 review: Virtual KVM software with new features and a new vendor

Jon L. Jacobi | May 12, 2014
Computing environments such as server rooms often have so many PCs in such close proximity that having a separate display, keyboard, and mouse for each is not only confusing, but a waste of space. You can of course stick with one of each, then attach them as necessary, but that's another time suck. A better solution is a KVM (Keyboard. Video, and Mouse) switch, or if you're cable- and cost-averse, KVM software such as Multiplicity 3.

Multiplicity 3 is not entirely intuitive to the uninitiated, yet the HTML docs are available only online. Sure the Internet is ubiquitous in this day and age, but I've run across many a server locked out of the Internet, or on which you must continually confirm pages as safe. In other words, Edgerunner should bundle the rather small help docs with the program for local access.

I'm also at a loss as to why you can't invoke KVM mode for a PC by double-clicking on its entry in the settings dialog or send the focus directly to a PC by double-clicking on its entry in the seamless matrix. True, it's a settings dialog, but...

Multiplicity was developed by Stardock software, but is now being sold by Edgerunner, a company it backs financially according to the press release. Edgerunner refers to Multiplicity as "disruptive" software. By that I assume they mean upsetting the status quo, as in hardware KVM, but whatever the meaning, thankfully, you don't have to hassle with an account to buy its software as you do with Stardock. Simply pay the money and activate over the Internet.

Multiplicity 3 comes in three flavors: the $20 KM, $40 KVM, and $80 KVM Pro. KM provides only seamless mode with two PCs, KVM allows seamless mode with up to nine PCs and full KVM mode for two, while KVM Pro supports nine PCs in both seamless and KVM mode. 

Multiplicity is obviously a niche product. The average user can get away with remote desktop or VNC. But if you've the need, Multiplicity is a handy way to cut down on cable clutter and control PCs that might not be close enough to reach easily from a KVM switch. All in all, a very handy program under the right circumstances.


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