- the computer physically connected to the USB device — the server machine;
- the computer(s) that will access the shared USB device over Wi-Fi — the client machine.
Most peripheral devices and hardware require a USB port to function. USB connections depend on — you guessed it — a reliable (though sometimes imperfect) cable to link USB devices to a computer.
Furthermore, there’s also one major hindrance that USB devices suffer… limited cord lengths. The utility of a USB device hitches entirely on its proximity to a workstation.
In other words, no matter how incredible a USB device is if it’s down the street (let alone on the other side of the world), it’s useless.
However, there is a solution for a secure and reliable way to access and manage USB over wireless (Wi-Fi) connection.
In this article, you’ll learn how to share USB over Wi-Fi and make any USB device wireless, as well as our recommendations for secure, efficient, and easy solutions for USB over wireless capabilities.
Many folks may be unaware that they can connect remotely to another computer/laptop’s USB ports without a physical cable needed.
Not only can they connect to remote USBs, but users can fully access and control the USB device attached to a remote machine’s USB port.
This means users can take control of USB devices (no matter where they are) and use them as if they were plugged directly into their workstations.
Just imagine what such flexibility and convenience could mean for one’s personal and professional endeavors.
The first option on our list is USB Network Gate software by Electronic Team, Inc. This USB over Wi-Fi solution enables remote connections to USB devices on another computer over the network.
This wireless USB connector software offers users a means to securely manage their remote USB peripherals as if they were physically connected to their local machines.
Follow the steps below to attach USB devices wirelessly USB using USB Network Gate software.
And that’s it! USB Network Gate makes it easy and quick to remotely access and operate a USB device over Wi-Fi.
✅ USB Network Gate easily and quickly enables sharing USB devices (like printers, dongles, etc) and connecting them to multiple computers via a wireless USB bridge — allowing users from one’s home, office, etc, to use them as though they were physically connected to their computer.
✅ Some may, understandably, worry about the security risks of connecting to a USB device over a wireless network. Thankfully, those concerns are unnecessary since USB Network Gate uses the industry’s high-level security standards and encryption.
✅ One of USB Network Gate’s most notable pros is how it provides users with complete control over the shared USB device’s activities. USB Network Gate also permits users to establish connection passwords to more thoroughly manage access to USB wireless devices shared via Wi-Fi.
✅ The software is compatible with Mac, Windows, Linux, Android, and Raspberry Pi operating systems making it possible to initiate cross-platform connections.
USB Network Gate provides a 14-day free trial. Users can evaluate the app’s functionality and determine if the app suits their needs.
Users can purchase their copy of the USB Network Gate for $159 for one shared USB port.
FlexiHub is a professional-grade service allowing users to attach USB devices (like printers, USB security tokens, 3D mice, external hard drives, etc.) to any remote machine over wireless WAN.
The following steps will help you attach a USB device over a wireless network to a remote computer with FlexiHub.
Done — it’s that easy! Now the client computer will see the remote USB as if it were a physically-attached device. The USB device can be found in the Device Manager on the computer.
Once the user logs into their FlexiHub account on the server computer, all USB peripherals become accessible to other computers over the Wi-Fi while offering low latency and great responsiveness.
✅ Users also can limit or restrict access to any local USB devices by clicking the “Lock” button beside the device’s name in FlexiHub’s UI.
✅ Platforms supported by FlexiHub include Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and Raspberry Pi OS.
✅ FlexiHub provides a 30-day free demo account allowing users to share a single local USB device and test the service before committing to purchase.
FlexiHub is a subscription-based product. The cost of a yearly Personal plan starts at $159.99 per connection.
There are more than just software solutions available when it comes to connecting USB devices wirelessly.
Regarding hardware options currently on the market, wireless USB hubs and extenders allow users to attach a USB over Wi-Fi and access a remote device without a direct/physical connection to the server computer.
Wireless USB 3.0 hubs are available in various sizes and fit a variety of USB slots.
Most models of wireless USB hubs provide anywhere from one to four “wireless” USB ports.
This means the wireless USB hub can simultaneously share up to four devices via a network connection.
The mission of a wireless USB hub is to transform data that is received from attached USB devices into network data which is then relayed to nearby computers over Wi-Fi.
The peripherals that need to be used remotely should be directly plugged into the hub’s USB ports to be shared across the local network. By using software that comes along with the hub, all attached peripherals can be accessed wirelessly from remote computers located in the same Wi-Fi network.
Peripherals with remote access requirements must physically attach to the wireless USB hub’s ports to become shareable over the local network. Utilizing the hub's software, all attached peripherals are wirelessly accessible from remote computers sharing the same WI-Fi network.
Below we’ve included several essential factors to consider when choosing between multiple USB hubs:
✔️ The quantity and generation of included USB ports
When selecting a USB hub wireless hardware solution, the most important factor may be the number and generation of USB ports it offers. This is because USB 2.0 ports offer lower maximum data transfer speeds compared to USB 3.0-type ports.
✔️ Power charging
Some models come with a power charging tool — providing them with an added advantage over alternative wireless USB hubs.
Another critical element is that not all wireless USB port extenders will be compatible with your devices. Thus, it's recommended to read the fine print and ensure the device you’re buying works with your computer and USB peripherals being shared.
USB Network Gate