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Windows Server 2008 R2 Thread, HyperV and USB in Technical; Just been told hyperV cannot connect to host USB devices?? Is this true?? Virtualbox has been doing it for years! ...
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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    HyperV and USB

    Just been told hyperV cannot connect to host USB devices?? Is this true?? Virtualbox has been doing it for years!

    I need to connect my virtual nagios box to a USB cable so I can hook it up to a cellphone for SMS.

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Unfortuantly Hyper-V does not support Native USB Passthrough. You may find this usefull virtualboy blog : Hyper-V and USB...

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Microsoft purposely pulled this out. At a Microsoft event i asked why, they didnt explain why just that it wasn't even on the cards to go back in.

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    just use rdp and connect usb devices that way rather than through hyperv console

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sted View Post
    just use rdp and connect usb devices that way rather than through hyperv console
    But the USB device needs to be permanenlty connected..

    Ill look into one of the usb -> ethernet things.. Or I might just move it to a Virtualbox Host instead.

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RabbieBurns View Post
    But the USB device needs to be permanenlty connected..

    Ill look into one of the usb -> ethernet things.. Or I might just move it to a Virtualbox Host instead.
    Just move to the proper VM soultion VMware Virtualization Software for Desktops, Servers & Virtual Machines for a Private Cloud

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    define 'proper' ?

    ESX and Xen dont do USB Passthrough either from what Ive read today..

    How is VMWare desktop/workstation any better than Virtualbox?

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    I suppose VirtualBox is very similar, I have a preference for VMWare as it's one of the solutions I'm trained in. Having never used VirtualBox before I can't really comment.

    As long as it works, then it's ok, does VirtualBox support USB?

    D

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    DMcCoy's Avatar
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    Enterprise stuff is *less* likely to support passthrough due to the higher probability of migrating machines. I believe ESX supports only serial and ESXi doesn't even do that.

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Yeap, Hyper-V does not support parallel either which means I have to run our dodgy Avaya rubbish on a VMWare Server install (thanks to the dongle). If Virtualbox offered the ability to run VMs as a background service I would use it instead as I have found it faster and much lighter weight.

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    Yeap, Hyper-V does not support parallel either which means I have to run our dodgy Avaya rubbish on a VMWare Server install (thanks to the dongle). If Virtualbox offered the ability to run VMs as a background service I would use it instead as I have found it faster and much lighter weight.
    Virtualbox supports 'headless' mode (in linux at least, i assume it does in windows too) whereby it just launches a process and an rdp server, and to connect to it you just RDP to it.

    @danrhodes: Yep, virtualbox does usb passthrough, but its free. AFAIK you need to pay for VMWare Workstation?

    @DMcCoy: I can see the thought behind high availability / auto migration of VMs messing up a USB passthrough, but surely it should at least be an option?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    Microsoft purposely pulled this out. At a Microsoft event i asked why, they didnt explain why just that it wasn't even on the cards to go back in.
    VMware recommend you disable unused USB and CD-ROM devices because they consume CPU resources even when idle. Perhaps Microsoft was thinking along those lines?

    Source: http://goo.gl/ZU6P (Page 16)

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    So does that mean if I use Hyper-V Server running virtual 2008 R2 servers and want to use removable USB HDDs to create and store backups from within the 2008 guests, I can't?

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by djones View Post
    So does that mean if I use Hyper-V Server running virtual 2008 R2 servers and want to use removable USB HDDs to create and store backups from within the 2008 guests, I can't?
    Yes. Your options are:

    • Plug the devices into another server and host them as network shares, putting files on that way
    • Getting an ethernet -> USB host such as Sharkoon USB LANPort 400 - Aria Technology
    • Using a different VM system such as Virtualbox or VMWare Server.

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    You can use a USB drive in Hyper-V, however it's not as easy as in (say) their competitor VMWare:

    You can "pass-through" the external USB drive to a virtual machine by setting it to Offline in disk management on the host. After you've done that, you can set it as a local HDD in the virtual machine settings.
    -Ken

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