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Sharing Bluetooth devices with a virtual machine


Fusion 4, Player 4 and Workstation 8 introduce the ability to connect individual Bluetooth devices to virtual machines. Previously, the Bluetooth radio could be connected to a virtual machine. This required all Bluetooth devices to be attached to a single guest, or left with the host, Now, the Bluetooth devices connect with and pair to the host and can be passed off separately.  
This guide explains how to enable virtual Bluetooth sharing and details its limitations.


To attach a new Bluetooth device to a guest virtual machine:

  1. Enable Bluetooth sharing:

    • In Fusion: 
      1. Go to Virtual Machine > Settings > USB & Bluetooth.
      2. Select Share Bluetooth devices with (Windows/Linux)

    • In Workstation and Player: 
      1. Go to VM > Settings.
      2. Select USB Controller, then select Share Bluetooth devices with the virtual machine

    The virtual Bluetooth radio appears in the guest. You may see notifications from the guest OS that new hardware was detected, but you don't need to do anything in order for the driver to load. 

    After the driver loads, you can work with Bluetooth devices in the guest as you would on a physical computer. Use the guest's Bluetooth interface to search for nearby devices to pair with. Devices appear in the list as they are detected.

  2. When the device you want appears, select it and connect to it.

    The guest operating system tries to pair with the device. The guest operating system says that it is connecting to the device and shows a progress bar.

  3. Pair the device with the host. If you have not paired this device with this host before, you are prompted to do so now. The host may ask you for a PIN, or may display a PIN to be entered on the device. 

    The guest operating system now sees its connection to the device complete. The guest does not ask for any PIN numbers. 

    After the device pairs, the device is now available in the guest.

Based on VMware KB 2005315

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