Fax Server On Virtualised SBS 2008


I have the following setup and really need help to get this installation over the line.

We have installed VMWare server with SBS 2008 Virtual Machine and Windows Std Server 2008 - basically SBS 2008 premium. My problem is with the Fax Server. The customer needs it to work on the SBS to integrate with Sharepoint - not getting around that. Obviously USB and serial don't work with virtual stuff so I've used Fabulatech USB Over Network to share a USB modem from a client machine that the SBS 2008 connects to using the Fabulatech USB Over Network client.

I have been able to configure the fax server on SBS - no problem. It sees the USB modem (obviously with drivers installed) and configures cover sheets etc. But when I test with line in I'm getting errors:
"The fax can't be sent because of an unexpected error."
and in the Fax centre itself I'm getting "Fatal "Error" in the extended status of the job in the Outbox.

I have tried a lot to get this sorted. Upgraded the version of Fabulatech last night to an unofficial version (4.4). Reinstalled fax server service twice. By the way, get the same results whether the line is in or out of the modem on client machine (USB server) side.

Has anybody successfully implemented a fax server with SBS 2008 virtual or successfully used Fabulatech to do so.

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Alex GalbraithSolutions ArchitectCommented:
I'm lead to believe AnywhereUSB works very well:


You havent mentioned which version of VMware you are using? If it is ESX then USB pass through is still not yet officially supported, but on VMware Workstation it is.

If you are using vSphere, you could also try VMDirectPath I/O. See here for more info:



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tomfogartyAuthor Commented:


I'm currently trying to source a PCIe modem. Have already tried the VMDirectPath for USB but no luck so far. Do you know specifically of somebody who got a modem to work on virtual using the Anywhere USB device or have you just heard that it works for USB devices in general.

Alex GalbraithSolutions ArchitectCommented:
Just seen a lot of posts on similar threads with people being successful with AnywhereUSB.
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tomfogartyAuthor Commented:
I'm getting closer! Was able to get the USB Passthrough to see the modem. I've tested sending and it's working fine. I have to wait till tomorrow to complete testing of receiving - I will update.

Alex GalbraithSolutions ArchitectCommented:
Great stuff :)
tomfogartyAuthor Commented:
Good news - got it working. VMDirectPath worked. Had to run on a BIOS setting on the server and be very careful about which USB controllers were passed through (host OS is installed on onboard internal USB key) as well as passing the right USB ports through to the appropriate guest OS. Having a problem receiving faxes though. This is more than likely a different issue so I'll close it. Thanks for your help.
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