Share USB Dongle
over Network

Olga Weis

What is USB security dongle used for?

USB dongles are used to protect software or hardware from unauthorized access or copying, i.e. for the start of software using, decode content or access a device one has to attach the dongle to the system.

A USB security dongle (also referred to as a hardware key) is an electronic copy protection device that should be plugged into a USB port of a computer in order to unlock the functionality of a particular software application. Hardware keys help to prevent unauthorized copying and distribution of licensed software. Without its dongle, the application may run only in a restricted mode, or not at all.

Share USB Dongle

Why is there a need in sharing USB dongles?

Some of the USB security keys support the network license management option, which means several users can access the same protection dongle across LAN. That network (multi-user) security keys can be installed on any computer on the local network, and there’s no need to purchase a separate key for each PC.

This scenario seems to be very convenient for big companies and corporations. However, to buy a security key of this type can be rather costly, and not all companies (much less ordinary users) can afford it. Instead, they opt for USB keys that are built for the use on a single computer.

This, of course, reduces expenses, but at times it is not really convenient. Say, the dongle is attached to the manager’s laptop, while his team that needs access to it is seated across the office or even in another city? How to share USB dongle? Over the Internet? Over Wi-Fi?

Another problem, perhaps, would be working with USB devices in the virtual environment. Usually, virtual machines provide little to no access to the host machine’s ports and, hence, to functionality and content of devices attached to them. Thus, if you need to duplicate a USB dongle, you have to figure out how to share it between a virtual and host machine. What would be the best way to share a USB dongle between two computers or, in fact, any number of computers?

How to share USB dongle over the network

USB Network Gate logo

USB Network Gate


Requirements: Windows (32-bit and 64-bit): XP/2003/2008/ Vista/7/8/10, Windows Server 2012. 5.62MB free space. Version 8.0.1859. (3rd Nov, 2017). 4.9 Rank based on 179+ users, Reviews(72)
Category: Networking Software
USB Network Gate is the solution designed by Eltima Software specifically to provide remote access to USB devices. With this product, you may copy a USB dongle or HASP key over the Internet or any other network – LAN, WAN, etc.
USB Network Gate

This advanced app is powered by a unique port virtualization technology that makes it possible to create virtual copies of USB ports and redirect devices attached to them over the network. Thanks to the powerful functionality of USB Network Gate, your virtualized security key will be recognized on a remote computer as though it were connected locally.

To share access to your USB dongle, just follow these simple steps:

  1. Download and install the app on the computer to which the device is attached, we call it Server, and the computer that needs access to the device, that’s right, this is Client.
  2. Launch the app on Server, in the list of devices select the dongle and click ‘Share’.
  3. Launch the app on Client computer, in the list of available devices locate the shared dongle and click ‘Connect’.

Here you go! Now, the key will appear in the Device Manager of the client PC.

What’s important is that all of your connections to remote USB dongles will be totally secure. USB Network Gate deploys the advanced encryption which protects network communications and traffic transmitted over the network.

USB Network Gate’s functionality allows sharing USB dongle between two computers over wifi or any other network. Another benefit you get with the software is working across platforms, it supports OS X, Windows, and Linux. Meaning that you can share the dongle on Windows PC and access it on your Mac.

USB Network Gate

Requirements for Windows: XP/2003/2008/Vista/7/8/10, Server 2012
Also available on macOS, Linux OS and Android , 5.62MB size
Version 8.0.1859 (3rd Nov, 2017) Release notes
Category: Networking Software