1.    25 Jul 2016 #1

    Windows HOST, attach Linux external USB to Linux VM


    Hi there

    I usually run a LINUX HOST for testing Windows VM's - but I need to test some new releases of various Linux distros so I've created some VM's --easy enough and running them on a Windows Host.

    However I can't attach a USB drive with a Linux file system (XFS) to the VM as the Windows HOST rejects the HDD wanting me to format it !!. There's 2.7 TB of media files on it - I want to test running media server in a VM.

    Anybody know how to bypass the Windows nag prompt about the HDD and be able to attach it direct to the VM.

    (The other way round is no problem -- never a problem loading NTFS HDD's on to Linux machines -- however the NTFS file system is SLOW compared with XFS -- on USB3 device on Native windows transfer rate of 1 TB of files from fast NTFS HDD to NTFS USB3 device is max 82 Mib/s - average for whole transfer. On same machine with Native Linux and XFS to XFS (using same HDD's and USB 3 port avg speed is 350 mib/s !! -- HUGE difference !!!).

    Note I have to have a Windows Host for this --I know I could run Linux VM's from a Linux Host but in this case I do have to use a Windows Host as that will be the destination system at the end of testing.

    BTW I'm running VMWARE workstation 12.1 on W10 Pro Host.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    25 Jul 2016 #2
    Join Date : Dec 2015
    Posts : 5,344
    Windows10

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo45 View Post
    Hi there

    I usually run a LINUX HOST for testing Windows VM's - but I need to test some new releases of various Linux distros so I've created some VM's --easy enough and running them on a Windows Host.

    However I can't attach a USB drive with a Linux file system (XFS) to the VM as the Windows HOST rejects the HDD wanting me to format it !!. There's 2.7 TB of media files on it - I want to test running media server in a VM.

    Anybody know how to bypass the Windows nag prompt about the HDD and be able to attach it direct to the VM.

    (The other way round is no problem -- never a problem loading NTFS HDD's on to Linux machines -- however the NTFS file system is SLOW compared with XFS -- on USB3 device on Native windows transfer rate of 1 TB of files from fast NTFS HDD to NTFS USB3 device is max 82 Mib/s - average for whole transfer. On same machine with Native Linux and XFS to XFS (using same HDD's and USB 3 port avg speed is 350 mib/s !! -- HUGE difference !!!).

    Note I have to have a Windows Host for this --I know I could run Linux VM's from a Linux Host but in this case I do have to use a Windows Host as that will be the destination system at the end of testing.

    BTW I'm running VMWARE workstation 12.1 on W10 Pro Host.

    Cheers
    jimbo
    Not a direct solution but wouldn't it work if drive was formatted as exFAT instead which can be read or written on Linux (may need to add support).

    Perhaps putting a small fat 32 partition on drive so you can get drive mounted in vm, and then use tools in vm to read xfs partitions might work?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  3.    26 Jul 2016 #3

    Hi there

    Thanks for the suggestion -- but I don't want to do that as the HDD is actually a "2 port" hornttek HDD-->USB3 enclosure with 2 X 3 TB drives already arranged via the boxes own internal physical RAID controller (Computer BIOS shows as Single HDD). This would mean re-formatting it. Note this adapter comes either in JBOD version or one that has RAID as well --I've got the RAID version - brilliant.

    I think this method though could work although this is from VirtualBox

    How to access USB Drive in VirtualBox guest OS?

    I'll see if there's some "Pass thru" that I can use in VMware.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    26 Jul 2016 #4
    Join Date : Dec 2015
    Posts : 5,344
    Windows10

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo45 View Post
    Hi there

    Thanks for the suggestion -- but I don't want to do that as the HDD is actually a "2 port" hornttek HDD-->USB3 enclosure with 2 X 3 TB drives already arranged via the boxes own internal physical RAID controller (Computer BIOS shows as Single HDD). This would mean re-formatting it. Note this adapter comes either in JBOD version or one that has RAID as well --I've got the RAID version - brilliant.

    I think this method though could work although this is from VirtualBox

    How to access USB Drive in VirtualBox guest OS?

    I'll see if there's some "Pass thru" that I can use in VMware.

    Cheers
    jimbo
    Not sure I understand. VMWARE does this automatically as far as I can tell already.

    When I insert a flash drive or usb hard drive, VMWARE automatically picks it up if VMWARE window has the focus, and you cannot see the usb drive in the host OS but of course the host OS must be able to recognise the usb drive first to enable host to pass usb to VMWARE.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    26 Jul 2016 #5

    Quote Originally Posted by cereberus View Post
    Not sure I understand. VMWARE does this automatically as far as I can tell already.

    When I insert a flash drive or usb hard drive, VMWARE automatically picks it up if VMWARE window has the focus, and you cannot see the usb drive in the host OS but of course the host OS must be able to recognise the usb drive first to enable host to pass usb to VMWARE.
    Hi there

    the problem is Windows 10 comes up with a popup boc containing the message "This drive must be formatted before you can use it". If you cancel the popup and don't format somehow the USB drive isn't recognized and hence the VM won't see it.

    I'm playing around with the configuration to see if I can get this as a "Pass thru" device -- for example I've been able to load a mini disc driver on to an XP VM even though there's no Mini-disc drivers on Windows 10. (Mini-Discs - the old recording stuff -- still great for "boot legging" high quality audio recordings at gigs etc- much better than mobile phone internal recorder).

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  6.    26 Jul 2016 #6

    Hi there

    re-installed vmware WKS 12, updated to 12.1 via automatic update -- now working fine -- no problem attaching HDD's with Linux Fs.

    PLEX on Linux VM working fine and serving to remote TV's / Chromecasts using Linux HDD's. Host Windows 10 x-64 PRO.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    27 Jul 2016 #7
    Join Date : Dec 2015
    Posts : 5,344
    Windows10

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo45 View Post
    Hi there

    re-installed vmware WKS 12, updated to 12.1 via automatic update -- now working fine -- no problem attaching HDD's with Linux Fs.

    PLEX on Linux VM working fine and serving to remote TV's / Chromecasts using Linux HDD's. Host Windows 10 x-64 PRO.

    Click image for larger version. 

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Views:	1 
Size:	187.3 KB 
ID:	92237

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	plex.png 
Views:	1 
Size:	70.8 KB 
ID:	92238

    Cheers
    jimbo
    Yeah - I am running 12.1. This does pass through as I though automatically - I thought 12.0 did but hey it's a .0 release :-)
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    27 Jul 2016 #8

    Hi there.

    WKS 12.0 should also have worked - but 12.1 is fine.

    Using the Linux VM as the multi media server with the Linux formatted HDD's is so much better than the NTFS file system and using PLEX on Windows. Running also another Audio server (Logitech squeezebox server -- also works 100% too.

    With the VM on an SSD speed is brilliant. No probs whatsoever. File serving other data from another Hornttek external USB drive from Linux is fine -- SAMBA beats Windows Networking any which way you care to name it - and it works straight out of the box (OK slight edit in Samba.conf but not difficult).

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 


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