Fixed: Mouse Not Working in VMware on Windows 10 /11

You have installed VMware and created a VM inside. Either you have run VM and found out that your keyboard or mouse is not working or you have installed VMware Tools and afterward found the keyboard or mouse not responsive. So, here is how you are going to fix the keyboard or mouse not working on VMware on Windows 10 or 11.

Related: Download VMware for Windows 10 or 11

Keyboard or mouse not working on VMware

If your keyboard or mouse isn’t working properly in a VMware virtual machine on a Windows host, it could be due to a variety of reasons. Here are some common symptoms and potential causes:

1. Complete Non-Responsiveness: The cursor doesn’t move at all or moves erratically. Same as the key presses has no effect.

2. Laggy or Delayed Response: Mouse pointer lags behind the physical mouse movement. There’s a noticeable delay between pressing a key and the corresponding action.

3. USB Device Passthrough Issues: The mouse is a USB device and isn’t being recognized by the VM. Similar to the mouse, a keyboard connected via USB may not be recognized. Both mouse and keyboard do not appear in the Device Manager.

4. Interference from Other Software: Other software running on the host system might be conflicting with the VMware input. Background applications might be intercepting keystrokes.

Possible Reasons why you experience the issue?

Driver Issues: The mouse driver in the guest OS may be outdated or not compatible. Similar to the mouse, the keyboard driver in the guest OS may be causing issues.

Snapshot or VM State Issues: If you’re using snapshots or the VM is in a suspended state, this could potentially cause input issues.

VMware or Host OS Updates: Recent updates to VMware or the host OS might have introduced compatibility issues.

VMware Tools Not Installed or Updated: VMware Tools includes drivers for better integration between the host and guest OS. Make sure it’s installed and up to date.

Incorrect Configuration: Check the virtual machine settings in VMware to ensure that the correct input devices are connected.

Host System Performance Issues: If the host system is under heavy load, it may affect the performance of the virtual machine.

Insufficient System Resources Allocated to VM: If the VM doesn’t have enough resources, it can lead to lag.

Fix keyboard or mouse not working on VMware on Windows 10 or 11

vmware windows 10 mouse not working
keyboard or Mouse Not Working in VMware on Windows 10 /11

If you’re experiencing issues with your keyboard or mouse not working in a VMware (VM) on Windows 10 or 11 host, you’re recommended to go through these troubleshooting steps one by one to identify and resolve the problem

1. Confirm Focus on Virtual Machine

Confirming focus on the virtual machine means ensuring that the virtual machine’s window is active and ready to receive keyboard and mouse inputs. Clicking into the virtual machine’s console window brings it into focus, allowing seamless interaction with the guest operating system. This step is crucial for directing input to the virtual machine effectively.

  • Click on the virtual machine > Preferences.
  • Confirm it’s active for Input.
Confirm Focus on Virtual Machine
Confirm Focus on Virtual Machine
  • Ensure the mouse and keyboard work inside the VM.

2. Adjust Mouse Optimization Settings

If the mouse is slow or behaving erratically, you may need to change the optimization settings. Refer to the appropriate documentation for guidance.

To adjust mouse optimization settings:

  • Open VMware and go to VM > Settings.
  • Select the Display option. Adjust the slider to Optimize the mouse for games or programs that require precise mouse tracking according to your preference.
  • Click OK to save changes.

3. Update or Re-install VMware Tools

Updating or re-installing VMware Tools is an essential step in resolving many integration and functionality issues between the host system and virtual machine. Here’s how to do it:

1. Power on the virtual machine. Go to the VM (Virtual Machine) menu.

reinstall VMware tools
reinstall VMware tools

2. Select Reinstall VMware Tools.

3. Run the installer in the guest OS. Follow on-screen instructions.

4. Restart the virtual machine.

Updating or reinstalling VMware Tools helps optimize integration between the host and guest OS, resolving various functionality issues.

4. Check Wireless Devices

If using a wireless mouse or keyboard, remove and re-add the USB Controller from the virtual machine to ensure a proper connection.

5. Restart Host Computer

A simple restart of the host computer can sometimes resolve issues. Minor issues within the VM can also make the keyboard or mouse not working on VMware.

You are recommended to restart your host (Windows) and check your VM.

6. For Windows Hosts

The Windows System Configuration utility, often referred to as “msconfig,” is a built-in tool in Windows that helps manage startup processes and system services. It allows you to selectively disable software and services that might be causing conflicts or performance issues.

  1. Press Windows+R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type “msconfig” and press Enter.
  3. In the System Configuration window, go to the Startup tab.
  4. Review the list of programs that start with Windows. Uncheck the boxes next to programs you suspect might be causing issues. Be cautious and avoid disabling critical system processes.
  5. In the System Configuration window, go to the Services tab. Check the box that says Hide all Microsoft services. This ensures that you don’t accidentally disable crucial system services.
  6. Also, uncheck any services from third-party applications that you suspect might be causing issues.
  7. Click Apply and then OK.

You’ll be prompted to restart your computer. Choose to do so.

7. Additional Input Devices

The “Additional Input Devices” involves connecting a second mouse or keyboard directly to the virtual machine. This can help determine if the issue lies with the original input devices or if there’s a problem with the virtual machine itself.

8. Check for Additional Drivers or Software

update drivers of mouse or keyboard
update drivers of mouse or keyboard

Look for any third-party mouse/keyboard drivers or software in the virtual machine and remove them. If removing them hasn’t fixed the issue then you are recommended to update them.

And if even the updating of drivers won’t solve the issue, then you are recommended to reinstall VMware. Reinstalling VMware often resolves integration issues between the host and guest operating systems.

Remember to go through these steps in order and test after each one to see if the issue has been resolved. If the problem persists, proceed to the next step in the sequence. This should help you identify and resolve the issue with your keyboard or mouse in VMware on Windows 10 or 11.

Related: Fix VMware: Virtual Machine Disk Consolidation Is Needed Status

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