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Dual User Windows PC

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the double-your-pleasure dept.

Hardware 323

cojsl writes "Anandtech reviews the Jetway Magic Twin small form-factor PC that allows two simultaneous users on one Windows PC. The article mentions a mobo only option too."

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neener (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886088)

frist pr0st!

awesome (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886091)

awesome

Faggotry abounds (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886092)

In the annals of slashdot.

Or should I say ANALS!

HAHA

FP

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886093)

F-f-f-first post? ;)

SImpson's did it! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886095)

I mean UNIX did it!

Question: MAGIC 8 BALL, WILL I GET AN FP? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886096)

Answer: ALL SIGNS POINT TO FROSTY!!

I am Howard Dean and I approve this message. Yarr.

*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_
d_______________________________________________d_ _
e_/_____\_____________\____________/____\_______e_ _
a|_______|_____________\__________|______|______a_ _
n|_______`._____________|_________|_______:_____n_ _
s`________|_____________|________\|_______|_____s_ _
e_\_______|_/_______/__\\\___--___\\_______:____e_ _
x__\______\/____--~~__________~--__|_\_____|____x_ _
*___\______\_-~____________________~-_\____|____*_ _
d____\______\_________.--------.______\|___|____d_ _
e______\_____\______//_________(_(__>__\___|____e_ _
a_______\___.__C____)_________(_(____>__|__/____a_ _
n_______/\_|___C_____)/YAARRR\_(_____>__|_/_____n_ _
s______/_/\|___C_____)RRRRRRR|__(___>___/__\____s_ _
e_____|___(____C_____)\RRRGGH/__//__/_/_____\___e_ _
x_____|____\__|_____\\_________//_(__/_______|__x_ _
*____|_\____\____)___`----___--'_____________|__*_ _
d____|__\______________\_______/____________/_|_d_ _
e___|______________/____|_____|__\____________|_e_ _
a___|_____________|____/_______\__\___________|_a_ _
n___|__________/_/____|_________|__\___________|n_ _
s___|_________/_/______\__/\___/____|__________|s_ _
e__|_________/_/________|____|_______|_________|e_ _
x__|__________|_________|____|_______|_________|x_ _
*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_d_e_a_n_s_e_x_*_


Impotent Stuff: Please try to to avoid looking like a complete buffoon and ignoramous to the entire country you jackass. Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account.

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Impotent Stuff: Please try to keep posts on topic. Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account.

All you base are belong to us (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886098)

in soviet russia post first YOU

Careful (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886100)

Two simultaneous users can cause HIV.

But how well does it handle FPS games? (4, Insightful)

Seng (697556) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886107)

I'm guessing not real well...

Bite me whoever modded my comment down (3, Insightful)

Seng (697556) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886294)

It's a legit comment you mod-nazis... They plainly push the fact that you can play head-to-head games if you get a dual-port VGA card... It doesn't do much good to tout that as a selling point if the games play like shit!

Terminal Server (2)

kannibal_klown (531544) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886108)

It's not IMPOSSIBLE to do, but I'm interested to see how they did it.

Offhand, the only ways I can think of are using Citrix or Terminal Server (on a server box).

Pretty neat though, none-the-less.

Re:Terminal Server (1)

NineNine (235196) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886227)

Windows XP is truly multi-user. I'm sure there's a little setting in there for multiple monitors. As is, multiple people can all be logged in at the same time, all running their own programs.

Re:Terminal Server (3, Interesting)

w3weasel (656289) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886257)

sadly, this is a kludge... specialized motherboard required... meaning the MoBo is actually siamese twins sharing non-critical chips (err.. organs).

Re:Terminal Server (5, Funny)

pseudochaotic (548897) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886385)

It's not IMPOSSIBLE to do, but I'm interested to see how they did it.

Yeah. Wouldn't it be great if slashdot linked to an article or something?

Big Deal (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886111)

Terminal Services and Remote Desktop have been able to do this forever. Nothing new here.

Re:Big Deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886175)

Terminal services have proved strangely ineffective, Microsft can't even get that right. I remain hopeful that after a few more releases and Windows will be following in the steps of BSD.

Re:Big Deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886231)

How is it ineffective? I use it routinely is administer windows servers put in annoying locations from workstations. It takes alot of bandwidth to do what it does, but is that any suprise? 100BaseTX seems to handle it just fine. I'm sure once upgrades to gigabit ethernet, life will be even easier. As far as being able to use it with a phone line? Hell no! But you could thats the same as X too!

Re:Big Deal (1)

Peeet (730301) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886432)

I don't know if this is just a setting that I am missing, but I am pretty sure that using Remote Desktop (regarding Win XP Pro) prevents anyone at the actual desktop from using the computer, for the sole purpose of preventing two people using the same computer/software at the same time.

Whenever I try it from a laptop, it turns my desktop's monitor blank and then when I logoff RDP on the laptop, my desktop's monitor will come back up with a password prompt.

On (U|Li)n[iu]x (1)

Rikus (765448) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886112)

... that would be as simple as providing two X terminals and a display manager.

Re:On (U|Li)n[iu]x (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886143)

And on windows this would be as simple as using Terminal Services. What's your point?

Re:On (U|Li)n[iu]x (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886258)

And on windows this would be as simple as using Terminal Services. What's your point?

Does Terminal Services come with Windows or do you have to pay extra for it? If the former, which versions of Windows does it come with?

Re:On (U|Li)n[iu]x (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886296)

Linux is the best. Everyone Insightful should use Linux.

Re:On (U|Li)n[iu]x (3, Funny)

stonedyak (267348) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886325)

Linx? Uniux? Those aren't operating systems. You're just making this up now!

I want the opposite... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886115)

I want to be able to use multiple computers via one user interface...

Re:I want the opposite... (2, Informative)

metallicagoaltender (187235) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886135)

Don't KVM switches and/or ssh/VNC/Terminal Services/PC Anywhere/etc. pretty much solve that problem?

Re:I want the opposite... (0)

sweet cunny muffin (771671) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886322)

How would that work? One person presses a key, switches the KVM, then the other person gets their turn to press a key and perhaps move the mouse, they switch the KVM, and guy 1 gets to press another key... Stupid!

Re:I want the opposite... (3, Informative)

esac17 (201752) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886236)

That problem is easily answered when considering 1 or 2 computers run off one interface (VNC, TS, telnet, ssh). But the problem comes when one wants to manage their whole lab infrastructure or every computer in their home from one interface. Windows 2003 comes with a neat little MMC snapin called "Remote Desktops" that lets you manage all of your TS sessions. The problem with that is that there is one process for each computer, and if you can imagine, 100-1000 mstsc.exe processes can consume quite a bit of memory. As well it doesn't support features that KVM does like being able to broadcast to all of the machines at once.

What would be nice is software that lets you split your computers into groups, allow you to broadcast to those specific groups, etc..

Re:I want the opposite... (1)

MrRuslan (767128) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886309)

just make a bewolf cluster.

Re:I want the opposite... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886364)

Plan9 will do this. http://cm.bell-labs.com/plan9dist/

Wondering about licensing and grammar (5, Interesting)

The I Shing (700142) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886117)

I wonder how licensing will work for software installed on such a computer.

Will software makers insist that multiple licenses be bought for software that will be used by two users simultaneously?

And speaking of things being equal, I feel a Grammar Raid coming on...

"Magic Twin looks like a pretty unique solution..." the article says. Why do people insist on qualifying the word unique? Something is either unique or it isn't. An object cannot be "somewhat unique" or "almost totally unique." The word means one of a kind, and without equal. Something either has equals or it doesn't.

Grammar Slammer Bammer slam Igor tomorrow, for sure!

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886172)

Considering that Windows allows multpile users, built into the operating system I don't think so. In XP, you can switch from user to user at will, and with Terminal Services, Citrix, Remote Desktop, etc. you can operate the system remotely with other users logged on at the same time. Considering the MS is the one who released Terminal Services, I doubt they would have ground to stand on for charging for two licences.

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (5, Funny)

Mr. Bad Example (31092) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886195)

> An object cannot be "somewhat unique" or "almost totally unique." The word means one of a kind, and without equal. Something either has equals or it doesn't.

That's the most perfect description of a superlative I've ever seen.

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (2, Funny)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886269)

> An object cannot be "somewhat unique" or "almost totally unique." The word means one of a kind, and without equal. Something either has equals or it doesn't.

That's the most perfect description of a superlative I've ever seen.

And my addendum is the worstest joke on the subject, ever.

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (1)

bev_tech_rob (313485) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886212)

Most software is either licensed on a 'per seat' or 'per processor' basis. This setup would get around the 'per processor' deal, but 'per seat' might be interesting to see how that would pan out.....

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (1)

antonpiatek (223233) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886247)

Will software makers insist that multiple licenses be bought for software that will be used by two users simultaneously?

I believe the licence for MS Word/Office still goes along the lines of one install on your desktop, and one on your laptop (under the same licence). It is specific to the second PC being a laptop.

As they are the same PC, does this qualify as a new licence? Im pretty sure it does, especially as Office makes you enter a name when installing it to say who its registered to (so does windows for that matter).

So to be legal, you have to buy a multiple user licence for everything both people use!

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (1)

bluekanoodle (672900) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886319)

Except that you are only installing it once, and then time slicing between it. I could see this a s a novel way to cut back on our Microsoft Licensing fee's For example our accounting department doesn't need a fast computer, but if we could rreduce the number of pc's from 100 to fifty, thats a heck of alot of costs savings for a mid size company. 50 license for windows instead of 100 50 license of office instead of 100 50 Server CAL's instead of 100 Hmm, how much do these cost?

Re:Wondering about licensing and grammar (1)

Big_Al_B (743369) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886352)

I disagree. For example, the inability of some to understand how one can creatively use a literally defined word in a less literally defined phrase is "somewhat unique" to digital-thinking geeks.

Software makers already do. (4, Informative)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886408)

There are already a few misguided posts on the matter so hopefully, I can clear this up for you.

Microsoft and many other software makers already address this licensing issue. On this machine Microsoft requires either two licenses for Windows or one Windows license and a Terminal Server Client Access license. For MS Office a license is required for each per seat instance. SO, two users in Word requires two licenses.

This same licensing system is also required by many/most other commercial vendors. Anyone familiar with Terminal services or Citrix should be familiar with this licensing model. If they aren't Microsoft will enjoy speaking with them.

Watch out for the licensing issues here (5, Insightful)

Amiga Lover (708890) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886118)

from the review the units abilities"

1 PC can be used by 2 users at the same time

2 users can browse the internet, send and receive email at the same time

2 users can access all software installed on the PC at the same time (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Data Base, games, etc.)

2 users can play games against each other with a dual-port VGA card


I know many softwares of mine have claims that only one person may use it on one machine at one time. What does this mean? If two Excels are loaded on the same machine at the same time where is the licensing happening? No check over network will find any but it's own self running when really it's running for another user anyway on the same machine and that would still end up being a violation of the licensing of a product.

MS would not be amused.

Re:Watch out for the licensing issues here (1)

Peredur (597190) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886248)

Great, now MS will buy these guys out after a long lawsuit. Then they will add this feature to their "premium" OS and charge twice as much for it. One thing though... will a BSOD affecting one person affect the other? I'd bet so.

Re:Watch out for the licensing issues here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886384)

1 PC can be used by 2 users at the same time

2 users can browse the internet, send and receive email at the same time

2 users can access all software installed on the PC at the same time (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Data Base, games, etc.)

2 users can play games against each other with a dual-port VGA card


You left out one......

2 users can curse their Windows box for crashing at the same time.

Wow, Just wow (2)

JoeShmoe950 (605274) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886119)

Thats a great idea. Never seen anything like it. I have similar problems. For example, while my sister visits barbie, I wouldn't get kicked off,we could both be on it and not know it. Playing two intensive games at once might not work though. Its a great idea. All I can say

Ready for the jokes? (4, Funny)

eric76 (679787) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886121)

How about the blonde who had one of these with a KVM switch to handle both screens?

Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886124)

Is it good or is it wack?

Happens all the time where I work (3, Funny)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886125)

The user of the windows box and the admin trying to fix it working together as one. I see it everyday.

awesome. two player doom3 (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886128)

Awesome! Now we will be able to play two-player Doom 3 using one computer.

Taking a step back? (3, Interesting)

mizidymizark (669232) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886129)

Is it me, or is this returning to the days of dumb terminals? I think this is practical for some of the suggestions they had, ie. 2 children doing homework, but this is hardly a revolutionary idea.

Ad? (4, Interesting)

Gyorg_Lavode (520114) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886136)

What's it mean when there is an advertisment for the box being reviewed right beside the review?...

Re:Ad? (5, Funny)

Ark42 (522144) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886223)


It means you aren't blocking advertisements properly.

Re:Ad? (1)

Gyorg_Lavode (520114) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886345)

We don't get that kinda lee-way at work. We can't even change our background image.

This is good and all but... (5, Funny)

TechnologyX (743745) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886139)

How will it know which virus to run first?

Get ready to pay (1)

MakoStorm (699968) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886142)

I am sure Microsoft will find a way to double charge this with fee's or they all ready have some way to recoup their "loss" in this.

You never get something for nothing......ever..

I'm not bitter.

XP License (1)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886206)

http://slashdot.org/yro/02/03/17/2333207.shtml?tid =109>Microsoft XP License prohibits VNC?

Re:XP License (1)

MakoStorm (699968) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886407)

Indeed.

But there is a lot of stuff about an XP machine to remote fix another XP machine or lower. It seems if you use an XP machine to VNC another XP machine or "lower" OS like Win2k you are allright. But if you use Win2k to Remote fix an XP machine, you are in violation.

*shrugs* If you have windows legally on both machines it shouldnt be a problem!

Sooo (5, Funny)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886147)

what happends when you BSOD twice? Do they cancel each other out and the computer works again?

Re:Sooo (3, Funny)

say (191220) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886412)

Well, minus multiplied with minus becomes a positive. So I guess it would cancel out. On the other hand, Windows would probably BSOD when trying to multiply something. So, we get (--)-, which is -. A BSOD. Now, if the bluescreen subroutine (known internally in microsoft as "void releaseDateFixer(void)") also BSODs, you would be back in the graphical interface again. To crash the BSOD routine, you would probably need to do something as cruel as... plugging in a new printer or something.

These have been around for some time (3, Informative)

spidergoat2 (715962) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886151)

These are nothing new. The PCBuddy has been around for a number of years. We don't pay much attention to this stuff in the USA because PC's and parts are cheap. These devices are popular in third world countries where resources are streched.

I have this already (2, Insightful)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886153)

Two users on my PC at once? I already have this. Not only am I using it, but Bill Gates apparently has free range over the thing, as does Bonzi Buddy. I bet if I run AdAware, I'll find a half-dozen other unknowns sharing it with me as well!

Can someone please tell me... (1)

Steamhead (714353) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886154)

What the difference between this and remote xwindows session is?

cost? (1)

nizo (81281) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886159)

It kept saying low cost, but no prices (or resellers) were mentioned, and the manufacturer decided that everyone had to have shockwave to view their website :-(

an idea (3, Insightful)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886164)

the PC model is kind of really not that good of an idea, all things concidered. I am sure those of who are network admins or some such at companies know that individual PCs on the desks of the employees is headache central.
Why not take the terminal server model into the homes? There would need to be only one machine, it could sit in the closet w/ the cable modem or whatever, out of the way. Perhaps with a CD changer or virtual disk mirrors to keep it from really needing to be accessed. Then there could be wireless heads around the house, one for each member of the family, say. Then everyone can use the computer at the same time and need only one copy of the OS, anti-virus, et cetera. It'd be a lot neater to handle.

So buy a server, install... (1)

Ayanami Rei (621112) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886314)

Citrix or Unix (whatever variety), then use XTerminal thin clients or Citrix thin clients.

Duhhh! Welcome to the 1980s.

Soooooo.... (4, Insightful)

pr0ntab (632466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886165)

Does the hard drive look seperate for each user? Or are they piggy-backing onto the Fast User Switching / Built-in Terminal Server feature of XP to provide user seperation?

The article is _light_ on detail for a five page pseudo-advertisement.

Fuck.

Anyone remember the BUDDY? (2, Informative)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886168)

Betwin Buddy [newworldtelnet.com]

Buddy betwin - Betwin B-680 - Enables 2 Users or more to share 1 PC

Sometimes one computer just isn't enough. With buddy betwin, you don't have to spend thousands of dollars on a second PC. This device lets you connect a second keyboard, mouse and monitor to your existing computer to create a second, fully functional PC. Share drives, printers, scanners, software, and even surf the Internet at the same time using only one modem, one telephone line and one Internet Service Provider account. Start taking full advantage of your computer's power! Every member of your household can be online simultaneously. You can track your investments while your spouse sends e-mail and your high-schooler downloads information for a homework assignment - all at the same time, and using just one Internet connection. It enables up to four additional users to share the computing power and resources of a single computer running Windows 2000 or XP. This is perfect for the home and small office. Simply install it into your computer and connect an additional monitor, keyboard and mouse. Windows ® will recognize all the devices automatically. Now you can do your work while the kids play their games!


Never got to use one. How did/didn't it work?

Double the users, double the trouble. (0)

b0r0din (304712) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886169)

Now there's two users one could hack into. Like MS doesn't have enough vulnerabilities, now Billy can inadvertently kill Dad's work computer. I have to admit, though, it's a pretty neat idea. Not surprising that something like this would be developedm but you have to wonder if the price is even worth it, since nowadays you can build a desktop PC for probably something like 200 bucks. I guess you're paying for the form factor too, but I don't see this as a business alternative, unless you're trying to look cool.

Not the first... (1)

tbase (666607) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886181)

Maybe the first SFF, but I remember seeing a PCI card available in some catalog somewhere that would allow you to do this with any PC. Anyone remember the name of that one?

Unique? No... but legal questions? (4, Interesting)

NitroWolf (72977) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886183)

It's not unique. This has been around for more than a decade. I remember an add on card for sale in CompUSA that allowed this exact thing.

I never bought one, because I never had a need. But this is no unique, in so far as allowing to people to use the same box via a mouse and keyboard. It's kinda nice to see this functionality updated, but it's certianly not unique.

However, it leads to some legal question for software licenses.

Most EULA's say you can run "One instance of the software on ONE machine at a time" - how does this apply to this machine? If you run two instances of a software package on the same machine, are you in violation of the EULA? My gut reation is yes... but will they really care?

Depends. If it's not popular, this obviously won't be inforced, but if this is something that becomes more popular, will we start to see software that won't let you run multiple instances of it at once?

The article says you can play head to head VGA games against each other... but how does that work if you're only running one instance, or are you running two instances?

This just doesn't seem all that practical for game playing. For productivity apps, though, this could be killer for cube rats. IT could deploy one machine for two cubes, cutting your hardware budget, and support in half!

Lots of questions, both technical and legal need to be worked out before this could really take off. Couple that with the fact that previous attempts at this didn't seem to fly, for whatever reason, it makes me wonder if this isn't already a dead technology.

Re:Unique? No... but legal questions? (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886255)

The article says you can play head to head VGA games against each other... but how does that work if you're only running one instance, or are you running two instances?

Just imagine the resources byte from two players on the same box.

Unless tehy are playing DigDug from maime.

Re:Unique? No... but legal questions? (1)

DeepDarkSky (111382) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886289)

I think you need to define "one instance", and you need to find out whether "run" is included, as in "run one instance..."

The reason that's important is you could INSTALL one instance and RUN multiple instances on one machine at a time. Most applications (MS Word, Excel, etc.) allows multiple instances to RUN on one machine, but not necessarily allow multiple instances to be INSTALLED on one machine.

In those cases, in any case, we know the intention is really, one user per license per machine. In many application servers that used, say, Terminal Services on Windows (Remote Desktop), where people are actually running their windows sessions on the server, they need to have a license for an application per desktop, but it's dynamically allocated by use.

Re:Unique? No... but legal questions? (1)

lboxman (587913) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886399)

IT could deploy one machine for two cubes, cutting your hardware budget, and support in half!

Actually, I bet it would increase support costs, not to mention the fact that if one box goes down, two users can't work.

Re:Unique? No... but legal questions? (2, Informative)

Xeo 024 (755161) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886415)

You're right this isn't unique, in fact they had a mini-computer called the Virtual PC Buddy B-210 [active-hardware.com] , but the main difference between the Jetway machine and the PC Buddy, is that the PC Buddy could share it's resources with up to five people, instead of Jetway's two.

Re:Unique? No... but legal questions? (1)

LaForce (688117) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886424)

I'm more interested to know if the system does in fact support games on both terminals at the same time, as the article fails to mention testing anything but office apps.

According to the article, they use a standard Nvidia card for the graphics. AFAIK, current 3d chipsets(excluding CAD cards) will only render on one of the attached monitors at a time.

Anyone know how this might work?

Two blue screens of death for the price of one... (3, Funny)

SmackCrackandPot (641205) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886188)

... that's got to be a bargain!

One-Bit UID for a Two-Bit OS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886214)

Oh. My. Gawd! Like, it's almost like a multi-user system. They've invested the UID. Granted, it's only a one-bit UID. How long before they introduce a "Pro" version with 2^2 = 4 or even -- can you believe it? -- 2^8 = 256 users?!? Why the possibilities are endless!!!!

Pair programming (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886234)

Now I can do pair programming!

Big *TWO* users? (1, Interesting)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886251)

> who | wc -l
488
> uptime
2:27pm up 54 days, 21:23, 488 users, load average: 0.09, 0.18, 0.23

Re:Big *TWO* users? (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886387)

I'll bite. Why do you have 488 users [unique or multiple logins]? I mean I just did the same thing on my box [one shell open, in X/icewm, firefox/tvtime/gaim open] and got "2".

So either you have way too many of shells open or have a lot of users of one computer...

As for the uptime that's nothing spectacular.

Tom

If I load Mandrake 10... (1)

AhBeeDoi (686955) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886265)

...will I owe Darl $1,398?

The Great Microsofto! (1)

WwWonka (545303) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886270)

Audience applauds as the the Great Microsofto finishes showing his "two users logged into one Windows PC trick".

[The Great Microsofto] And now ladies and gentlemen I will take this text file and magically change the owner!!!

audience gasps as he waves his wand over the file

[The Great Microsofto] WALLAH! This file has now mysteriously changed owners!

audience explodes withs cheers

[Guy in back row to a friend] Ha, that's no trick I saw him use "chown" from here.

Obligatory (1)

wembley (81899) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886271)

"Imagine a Beowulf cluster of this!"

(Not "these", in this case)

Ummm... (2, Insightful)

redune45 (194113) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886291)

It appears that it doesn't even do the dual user function out of the box
From the article "What Do You Need for a Twin PC?.... Dual Head VGA - the 860Twin comes with just a single VGA connector, so you must add a Dual Head VGA card for Twin PC operation."

So I would buy this box, then have to immediatly buy a new graphics card, thus making the one it came with useless?

Hard to see the advantages of this thing outweighing two seperate machines.

this wasn't a review (5, Insightful)

bmajik (96670) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886299)

this was an ad.

not a single thing was said about how it works. How does the 2nd keyboard direct its keystrokes to the 2nd display ? Is the 2nd display an RDP client, or is it a 2nd monitor of window session 0 ? Are the two users running as different XP logins ? what does the magic twin software do ? new keyboard driver ? new mouse driver ? new audio driver ?

Without knowing how this thing works, it's a non article.

More information plus pricing (5, Informative)

erick99 (743982) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886313)

This website [zipzoomfly.com] does a pretty good job explaining the technology involved and also provides some pricing.

Happy Trails!

Erick

The Mainframe is BACK! (3, Interesting)

code addict (312283) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886334)

Am I the only one that thinks this sounds like a mini version of a mainframe w/terminals? Maybe that's the next trend in computing, one PC per household, with multiple terminals for each family member!

First we have unix on mainframes, then Windows on PCs, and now we're moving back to Unix on mainframes again... ;)

Standard "Multi-threading" issues? (0)

Kjella (173770) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886337)

How would this work if say one computer is updating the "All users" profile, or updating the common areas of the registry, and the other computer gets a timeslice? Can in then read a registry in half-written, corrupt state?

Normally, you'd have to use Mutexes in order to ensure they never corrupted each other's data. I can see how they can make both computers operate on the same OS installation, I just can't see how they do it *safely*.

Kjella

XP Tablet Edition (1)

FriedTurkey (761642) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886339)

If you click on the "PC" link on the page it will take you to the Windows XP tablet edition. This leads my to believe one of the users is actually a "tablet".

What about windows 98? (1)

Darth Fredd (663620) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886347)

I remember being able to do this all the way back in 98. Multiple keyboards, mice, monitors..at least, it was claimed. I never got the hardware together to test it, and I would, except I still don't own enough hardware (aka USB mice and keyboards), and my former 98 box is running redhat now.

But anyways. Back in the day, this was one of the things that enthralled me as a computing newbie. I wasn't sure how it worked, and looking back, I suppose it used USB (did they have usb?), and.. ..ah, the memories.. ..ah, the blue screens..

could developers.... (3, Interesting)

zogger (617870) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886357)

..use this? Be compiling and what not on one side, running the compiled code or working on writing on the other? Seems like one practical use. Or having one of the sides be for casually being on the net, while the other side is more open in admin mode for working, or are they both as vulnerable?

no, didn't RTA.

Also via a PCI card (5, Informative)

phoebe (196531) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886363)

Applica [applica.com] have been doing this for a bit, they also sell 4-station cards so that 5 users can share one PC!

Windows stealing (2, Funny)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886368)

It wasn't enough to steal Windows from Xerox. Now they have to go and steal ideas from *nix. Hasn't that been standard in *nix environments for awhile?

Does this mean that when purchasing a Windows liscense users will now have to decide whether or not the need a liscence and a half? Or just the single.

Oh I'll have the single please. And crack it later

What will this do to Grandma and Grandpa computer user? Imagine your grandparents out getting their first PC.

The technobable alone is staggering.
I know what you are thinking, "not me I'm the uber geek".

Well think back to your first box, how much did you know?
Chances are older consumers purchasing new systems, some for the first time, may be frightened off or taken advantage of.

Microsoft needs to stop. How much money is enough?

I have an idea for Microsofts new business model.
Do one thing.
Do it well.
You guys already have the world by the short n curlies.

Besides when the rest of the world realizes that there are Linux distros out there for less than half the cost of a Windows liscnse, they will switch.
As for me, I've had enough B$ from M$.

THANK YOU!
Mr. Torvalds

Surprised no one mentioned it yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886374)

Unix/Linux has been multi-user for HOW long?

forget the licensing issues... (2, Interesting)

No. 24601 (657888) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886381)

this is one of the most useless ideas out there. I don't see any reason for people to purchase hw so they can use the same Windows box. PCs are sufficiently cheap right now that you're better off buying two and hooking them up over ethernet. You can still share files, share apps, etc. but crashes will affect only one user rather than two. Windows is not a multi-user system... it was designed for one user, and when it comes down to it XP is just a hack for multiple profiles.

A real solution, that's already been mentioned here, is having one Linux box and setting up multiple desktops with VNC. That's if you absolutely must combine your systems or want to have apps installed on one setup. You can have as many dumb terminals as you want hooked into that machine.

Making a machine multi-user is a software problem not a hardware one and this idea will FAIL.

Great Idea (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886383)

This is just a Great Idea.

Lets take an OS with a Security model that can't even handle a single user, and put a second user on it!

Now when my wife clicks on the nice little file attachment in her email I get the secret toy suprise.

Simply brilliant.

Install guide has some more details... (3, Informative)

morcheeba (260908) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886396)

From their MagicTwin XP software install manual [210.201.178.73] :
We can only guarantee that the program will properly run on a completely reinstalled Windows XP system, using the latest hardware drivers and system requirements,
without third-party software and hardware.
.. so as long as you don't try to run any applications on it, you'll be fine! The software is fully tied to Windows XP, so no chance of running other operating systems. It looks like there is only one copy of Windows XP running, but then Page 13 has this quote:
Microsoft Windows License Request: After you have read and accept the Microsoft license terms, the MagicTwin software will explicitly ask you, the licensee, whether you have obtained a sufficient number of Windows licenses. If your choice is "NO" then at every restart the software will notify you of this issue.

Page 8 tells you to turn off the system standby in XP's power management. Guess they don't have that working well. But they do warn the second user if the first user decides to shut down the system.

great... (1)

jacobhoupt (728382) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886406)

now i can play myself at bf1942:dc.

how the fuck do i fly two helicopters at once?

SunBlade 2500 with two users and two keyboards (2, Interesting)

maitas (98290) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886411)

Actually sun's SunBlade 2500 workstation can be used by two users simoultaneously, with two keyboards and two graphics boards sharing resources! (Solaris 9 and up only)

what d'ya bet (1)

ch-chuck (9622) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886421)

that one user will end up sending email to the other via an AOL server in Chicago, when they could have easily used "net send ..." ?

linux and windows (1)

xluap (652530) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886422)

Would it be possible for 1 user to run windows, while the other user runs linux?

Someone interneted me some spam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8886425)

I'm scared and there are wolves after me.

should possible on any PC with sufficient hardware (1)

anarcat (306985) | more than 10 years ago | (#8886429)

Ingredients:

- 2 video cards
- 2 screens
- 4 free keyboard/mouse ports (USB or PS/2)
- appropriate keyboards and mice (USB or PS/2)
- a PC with enough RAM and CPU power
- any UNIX with X installed

Recipe:

(1) setup a first X with the first set of video/mouse/keyboard, in its own config file
(2) redo (1) with the second set.

What am I missing here? What's keeping 2 X servers to use their own displays and inputs on a same machine?

I don't see the big deal here.
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