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RemoteFX USB Redirection: Definitive Guide

Jul 27, 2021

RemoteFX USB redirection technology boasts numerous benefits, but that doesn’t mean that it’s flawless, since certain devices do not function properly with RemoteFX USB redirection. Besides, RemoteFX for USB devices does have issues with operating system cross-compatibility (most notably regarding RemoteFX USB passthrough on Mac).

Today, we’ll share solutions for these RemoteFX USB device redirection issues, as well as how to successfully configure RemoteFX USB redirection. Additionally, users will learn the easiest method to overcome these challenges with USB for remote desktop software.

Software method for RemoteFX USB redirection

For users looking for a reliable and easy-to-use tool that makes RemoteFX USB passthrough a breeze, USB Network Gate by Electronic Team Inc. is the ideal solution. It is designed to forward devices over RDP in such a way that they appear in a remote system like they were physically attached to that machine. USB Network Gate is software allowing remote access to any USB device connected to a machine with network access.

Requiring little configuration, USB Network Gate is ideal for setting up RemoteFX USB redirection to remote desktop, allowing full control over a remotely accessed USB device.
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 USB for Remote Desktop

For now, the native methods of the RDP protocol allow redirecting only devices of certain types. Often, these are printers and USB flash drives. But if you want to forward USB peripherals without any limitations concerning device type, you can opt for a USB Redirector like USB Network Gate (UNG).

The software will help you share a physical USB port with your virtual desktop. This means any device inserted into the shared port will become available for remote connection while you are working over RDP. If you unplug one peripheral and plug another one, the latter will be redirected to the remote desktop automatically.

Using USB Network Gate for Microsoft RemoteFX USB redirection

First of all, you need to install the app on both computers that will take part in the connection:

  1. 1
    The machine on which you’re going to share the device over RDP. We’ll call it UNG Server. The required peripheral is attached physically to this PC. On this computer, you are running the client for Microsoft RDP protocol.
  2. 2
    The remote desktop from which you’re going to access the shared device. We’ll call it UNG Client. You are running the server component for Microsoft RDP protocol on that PC.

Once done, just follow these simple steps:

On the RDP client:

  1. Install and start USB Network Gate.
  2. In the "Local Devices" tab, find the required USB port/device and click "Share" next to it.
  3. Connect to the remote desktop via Remote Desktop Connection.

On the RDP server:

  1. Enter the password if required.
  2. Launch the software.
  3. Find the shared peripheral in the app’s "Remote Devices" tab and click "Connect".
ung
Redirect any devices to remote desktop
 Printer and scaner
Printer and scaner
 keyboard
Keyboard
 webcam
USB webcam
 Gamepad
Gamepad
 Hard disk drive
Hard disk drive
 Barcode scaner
Barcode scaner

So, now when you connect to the Terminal Server over RDP and get access to the locally shared USB device using USB redirection software, the peripheral will appear in the server’s Device Manager and all programs installed on that computer will work with it as though the device were connected to the server directly.

Benefits of USB Network Gate for RemoteFX USB redirection

  • Cross-Compatibility: Effortless cross-platform redirection for macOS, Windows, Linux, and even Android.

  • Limitless Device Access: Freely redirect any devices during remote desktop sessions.

  • Secure: Advanced encryption options mean powerful protection for your data.

  • No Additional Drivers Needed: No need to install additional drivers on client PCs as long as the server computer has all necessary drivers.

  • Easy Set-Up: Instantly see and control all USB devices redirected from the host with the same functionality as if they were physically connected to the client machine.
RemoteFX USB redirection without limits
14-day free trial

How to configure RemoteFX USB redirection

  1. Run "gpedit.msc" to configure RemoteFX USB device redirection on the client machine.

    For a centralized configuration open Group Policy Management Console. From there, create and configure a new policy. Link the policy to the Organizational Unit with the targeted computers.

  2. Go to: Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Remote Desktop Services\Remote Desktop Connection Client\RemoteFX USB Redirection.

  3. Under the "Allow RDP redirection of other supported RemoteFX USB devices from this computer", set the option to "Enabled". enable remotefx usb redirection
  4. Specify all desired accounts that should have access/rights to RemoteFX USB redirection.

  5. Hit “OK” and close the policy editor window. give access to remotefx usb redirection
  6. Run "gpupdate/force" to update the computer’s policy.

RemoteFX USB redirection requirements

Probably the biggest difficulty you may face when trying to use RemoteFX is the complex configuration it requires. What’s more, you’ll need to make sure that:

  • you run Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2, or 2016 on your RDS session host;

  • the Desktop Experience feature is installed; how to enable RemoteFX USB device redirection
  • you run Windows 7 SP1 (with Remote Desktop Connection 8.1), Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 on VDI desktop;

  • you run Windows Workspot client 2.x.x on your client system. (You should have a RemoteFX-capable client (Remote Desktop Connection 8.1 or later)).

As you can see, there are quite a lot of requirements for enabling the RemoteFX USB redirection feature.

Easy RemoteFX USB device redirection
14-day free trial

What is RemoteFX?

RemoteFX is a set of protocols used for delivering Windows virtual desktops over LAN. This technology allows redirecting devices to guest OSes, which means you can get access to peripherals inserted into your host when working in your virtual machine.

Using RemoteFX greatly enhances the experience of a standard remote desktop as it boasts advanced graphic visualization and coding. RemoteFX permits users to work remotely within Windows desktop virtual environments.

With virtual desktops deployed by RemoteFX, users can run 3D applications and watch videos with the same control and functionality as a native desktop.

What is RemoteFX USB redirection?

So, what is RemoteFX USB redirection? It allows users to access and control peripheral USB devices within an RDP session when the default RDP can’t support the redirection/passthrough on its own.

RemoteFX supplements multiple high-level redirections like Port Redirection, s.a. Easy Print, Plug and Play Device Redirection, and more.

Starting from Windows Server 2012 and higher, RemoteFX offers extended capabilities for USB redirection over RDP. These include:

  • Dynamic forwarding of USB devices to a remote session. It is possible to redirect USB to a remote session not only at the start of such a session (at the moment the connection to the host is being established) but also when a session is already running.
  • USB forwarding to any virtual machine whether or not a dedicated GPU is assigned to it.
  • The possibility to independently redirect USB devices to the same VM from several clients. For example, you can forward several USB flash drives, which are physically connected to different clients, to one VM with a guest Windows 8 Enterprise, and each of these devices will be isolated and available only in the session during which it was shared.
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