Available article translations:

How can I connect devices to my virtual machine and get them to work?

  • Parallels Desktop 3 for Mac Standard Edition
  • Parallels Desktop 2.x for Mac Standard Edition


Parallels Desktop for Mac supports USB devices. You can connect them to the virtual machine at runtime using the Devices menu or by right-clicking (Ctrl+clicking) the USB device icon at the bottom-right corner of the Parallels Desktop window.Parallels Desktop for Mac doesn't support Express Card, Bluetooth and Firewire devices.
The common workaround for the device access problems is using a network connection to access the device from the guest OS. Generally, it's applicable to printers and USB data storage devices:
  • Printers: You can set up printing in a Windows VM by sharing your printer on the network on Mac OS X side. To do so open System Preferences - Sharing - Services - check Printer Sharing service in the list. Then go to System Preferences - Print & Fax - Sharing and make sure that your particular printer is configured as a shared printer. Download and install Apple Bonjour for Windows version ( Please make sure that you select the Generic/Postscript printer driver in Bonjour regardless of your particular printer model. You need a Postscript/Bonjour compatible printer for this operation.
  • USB Data Storage: If your USB data storage device is not detected in your guest OS, you can connect the device on Mac OS X side and share it with the VM by using the Shared Folders feature of Parallels Desktop. Check your Parallels Desktop for Mac User Guide for instructions on how to set up Shared Folders.

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