SUMMARY: Master View USB KVM switch on Sun Blade 150?

From: Dirk van Hennekeler <>
Date: Wed May 28 2003 - 20:03:53 EDT
Exec summary:

According to ATEN the ACS-1724 KVM is
not supported for Sun USB; but the
CS-104U KVM is.

Setting firmware variable "input-device"
to "keyboard!" didn't work for me; must be
deprecated for the Sun Blade 150.
[When I tried the above I did get it to boot, but
then it wouldn't startx (presumably becuase there is no keyboard).
I could telnet in from another machine without problem, but when I
used the KVM and switched back to the Sun box in question I got
a kernel crash. ]

The details....

Steve Flaherty writes:

I had a similar problem with an IOGear MiniView USB KVM switch.  I could
the video, and I could use my Sun USB keyboard and mouse with the three
on the other ports, but I could not use the keyboard and mouse on my Blade
100 when attached through the KVM switch.  IOGear's website claims that Sun
uses a "proprietary" USB interface, and that their KVM switches won't work
with the Sun machines.  I was able to return the KVM switch and get my
back, but I still would like that capability.

I will look into purchasing the NTI product, but it is much more expensive
than the IOGear KVM switch.

I checked out the Aten website, afer finding the description "MasterView
ACS1724" there.  It looks like Aten is the OEM for the IOGear products that
I tried.  The exact same support message describing the problems with Sun
USB is on the Aten site as is on the IOGear site.

Jason Bufford writes:

I have had nothing but trouble getting our Sun Blade 100s to work with
ATEN equipment. We tried using ATEN USB/PS2 converters to hook our
boxes up to Cybex and Raritan switches and they didnt work - we had to
use Raritan brand converters.

My theory is that the Blades need to get some kind of response from the
USB device and the ATENs either dont respond or respond in a manner
that confuses the OpenBoot PROM.

Have you tried other brands of USB KVMs?

I got in touch with a past Sun firmware developer.

Mitch says:

The firmware polls the keyboard to ask for information like what kind of
keyboard it is and which country the keycaps are localized for.  If the
KVM isn't responding to the poll, then the firmware doesn't think the
keyboard is present.  Some KVMs are smart enough to spoof the poll and
supply the correct answer (or at least an answer).

It used to be possible to force the firmware to use the keyboard anyway
by setting input-device to keyboard!, e.g.:

   ok setenv input-device keyboard!

If that doesn't work, I'm not sure what to suggest.

ATEN product support says:

Thanks for using ATEN product.
Actully,The CS-1724 can't support SUN solaris system.
The our other products CS-104U and CS-102U can support it .
sunmanagers mailing list
Received on Wed May 28 20:03:46 2003

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