It is possible to use one computer to connect to multiple OT-2s. This can be done by disconnecting from the OT-2 via the app and then connecting to a different OT-2 in the app. You can expect a delay of a few minutes when switching connections to a different OT-2.
We highly recommend one computer per OT-2 for the following reasons:
It could slow down the overall process of running/testing the samples.
It could introduce confusion about which laptop contains the required protocol, labware, and/or other experimentation data files
It would limit our ability to troubleshoot more advanced issues. The OT-2 requires a generated key to SSH into and keeping track of the keys would become very confusing.
Having one dedicated computer per OT-2 simplifies the connection process and mitigates the risk of potential connection problems.
If using a wired connection, you would need to move the computer around the room, switch cables, and connect to each OT-2 separately.
The app is optimized to work with one OT-2 at one time, it is clunky, and there are generally unknown bugs that can come up:
The OT-2s could lose its place in the calibration flow when switching between the different OT-2s.
Even if your computer has multiple USB ports, there can be weird routing issues that can lead to the inability to connect to the different OT-2s.
If you need to use one computer for multiple OT-2s make sure to complete calibrations, run the protocol, and properly disconnect through the app before switching to a different OT-2. Once you are connected to the different OT-2 you can flick the deck lights to verify you are connected to the correct OT-2.
We do understand you might have limited computer resources so if you do want to operate multiple OT-2s with one computer you can:
Connect your computer to OT-2 #1
Upload your protocol
Calibrate required pipette and labware
Run the protocol
Disconnect from OT-2 #1
Connect computer to OT-2 #2, flick the deck lights, and repeat steps 2-4
Repeat steps 5 and 6 for remaining OT-2s