You can add one or more USB passthrough devices from an ESXi host to a virtual machine if the physical devices are connected to the host on which the virtual machine runs.

If a USB device is connected to another virtual machine, you cannot add it until that machine releases it.


If you have the Apple Frontpanel Controller device in your environment, you can safely add it to a virtual machine. However, this device has no documented function and no known use. ESXi hosts do not use it and do not provide Xserver functionality for USB passthrough

Verify that the virtual machine is using hardware version 7 or later.

Verify that a USB controller is present. See Add a USB Controller to a Virtual Machine in the vSphere Web Client.

To use vMotion to migrate a virtual machine with multiple USB devices, you must enable all attached USB devices for vMotion. You cannot migrate individual USB devices. For vMotion limitations, see Configuring USB Devices for vMotion.

When you add a CD/DVD-ROM drive that is backed by a USB CD/DVD drive on the host, you must add the drive as a SCSI device. Hot adding and removing SCSI devices is not supported.

Verify that you know the virtual machine requirements for USB devices. See USB Configuration from an ESXi Host to a Virtual Machine.

Required privileges: Virtual Machine.Configuration.HostUSBDevice


Select a virtual machine.

In the virtual machines and templates inventory tree, select a group of virtual machines and select a virtual machine from the list on the right.

Search for a virtual machine and select it from the search results list.


In the VM Hardware panel, click Edit Settings.


Click Virtual Hardware.


From the Add a device drop-down menu, select USB Device and click Add device.

The USB device appears in the virtual device list above.


Click the USB device triangle to expand the USB device options.


Select the device to add.

You can add multiple USB devices, but only one device at a time.


If you do not plan to migrate a virtual machine with USB devices attached, deselect the Support vMotion option.

This reduces migration complexity, which results in better performance and stability.


Click OK.