The ability to use locally attached USB drives on your Hyper-V virtual machine can be very convenient for creating backups or accessing massive data bulks. As Hyper-V workstations have very limited USB connectivity, you need to set up a Hyper-V USB passthrough to access local USB drives from your guest OS.
In this article, we’ll show you four different ways to redirect a USB drive to a Hyper-V VM using both the free built-in options and a convenient third-party software solution.
In a nutshell, this USB pass-through method is all about disconnecting your USB drive from the host machine (while it remains physically attached to it) and connecting it to the virtual machine’s SCSI Controller.1
Note: Alternatively, you can add your USB drive to the IDE Controller. In this case, the only way to disconnect this drive from your VM will be to turn it off.
Once you click OK, you’ll be able to access the USB storage from your Hyper-V VM’s File Explorer as if it was attached there directly.
To safely disconnect your USB drive from your Hyper-V VM with no data loss, do the following:
With this method, you make your USB drive accessible in Hyper-V (along with all the other USB devices attached to your host) by enabling the enhanced session mode from the guest OS of your virtual machine. VM).
Note: Enhanced Session Mode is enabled by default in Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 computers, so you can skip the next segment and move straight to USB redirection.
After that, all the USB devices plugged into your host become accessible from Hyper-V VMs’ systems.
Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) allows you to access USB drives without using the VMConnect client. This method works both for the devices connected directly to your host and other USB devices in your network.
The most convenient way to connect a USB drive to a Hyper-V workstation is by using purpose-specific software. USB Network Gate is an advanced tool that enables you to access any network-attached USB drives over Ethernet from any physical or virtual machine.
Once the connection is established, you’ll be able to access and control the USB drive from your Hyper-V VM like it was directly connected to your virtual machine.