We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Virtual Server Machine access to host files

Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
I need a virtual server machine to be able to access files directly from the host drive.

Experts, Is this possible?

Microsoft Virtual Server 2005
Watch Question

Sure, you need to make sure that the guest machine is configured to use the same network as your host os.  Then you can create shares or access through mapping drives as normal.
Yeah, that is one way as oliver said, can you let us know are you using VMware or Virtual server? There is a better way of using the removable storage media in Vmware workstation.

you just need to add the Removable storage controller to the VM, go to File menu 'VM'-> Removable Devices-> then select the Removable storage media currently connected to the Host OS.

You may need to install the Microsoft Loopback adapter and configure it to be on the same network as the VM. Then you can create a file share like you would on physical servers.

Here is some information on the subject: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc708341.aspx
dheinmillerIT Director


It is Microsoft Virtual Server 2005

brent_caskey: The loop back may work. I will wait and see what other options are availible.

kjolivier: I need the host and virtual machines to be isolated from the rest of my network.
You can use the option 'Linked Virtual Hard Disk' but it will not help you because once you create a linked HDD, the disk will be dedicated to the VM.

You can go for accessing thru the network but seems like that is not option you have.

So, it is not possible in MS Virtual Server...
dheinmillerIT Director


I switch to VMware workstation 6.5
Can I access the host drive with this? or a usb drive?
Yes, with Vmware 6.0/ 6.5, you can use the removable media.

Plug in the removable media to the physical machine, on Vmware console, go to context menu 'VM'-> Removable Devices-> then select the Removable storage media currently connected to the Host OS.

you need to add the removable storage controller to the VM for doing this. You just need to go in to that VM's configuration to add it.

Not the solution you were looking for? Getting a personalized solution is easy.

Ask the Experts
I missed to mention- you cannot share a particular media, you can only use it on either Host or the guest OS.

A locally attached disk cannot be switched between the machines. Only applicable to Removable media.
dheinmillerIT Director


switching to VMware and using the USB drive has saved me many hours of work.
Thanks for your help!
Access more of Experts Exchange with a free account
Thanks for using Experts Exchange.

Create a free account to continue.

Limited access with a free account allows you to:

  • View three pieces of content (articles, solutions, posts, and videos)
  • Ask the experts questions (counted toward content limit)
  • Customize your dashboard and profile

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.