RackMountSales – Cat5 KVM Switches or traditional DB-15 style? There are many choices when it comes to buying a KVM Switch. A traditional KVM Switch uses a DB-15 or other similar interface on the KVM Switch side and a VGA USB Cable on the server side. Lengths for these cables are usually limited to 3 or 4 sizes due to signal degradation and manufacturing SKU limitations. However, for most typical applications these KVM switches fill a need at an affordable price. These older legacy KVM Switches used to use a bulky, difficult to manage cable set. Over the years, the cables have been redesigned with thinner material making cable management less of a concern.
Cables can be easily routed to the sides of the server rack minimizing server exhaust blockage for “at the rack thermal best practices”. Hot exhaust generated from servers can cause a number of issues if not managed properly. Keeping KVM cables routed to the side will help keep them from direct exhaust heat as well as eliminate air flow blockage. For installations with 8 to 16 servers, the DB-15 style KVM switch may be all that is needed. Cable lengths add some flexibility as they are typically available in a 6’, 10’ or 15’ lengths. In addition, these KVM switches offer some other optional features. A 2 console KVM switch features a remote Cat5 receiver which can be positioned up to 1,000 feet from the KVM Switch and allow 2 users simultaneous access to the target devices on the KVM Switch. Another option is the KVM Over IP style switch which is also a 2 console solution. One local console and one remote IP KVM Console allows for 2 simultaneous users as well. Having an IP webserver built into the KVM switch allows remote BIOS level access to your target devices which can come in handy for quick resets and trouble shooting.