How to copy-paste files to Hyper-V VMs

Unlike VMWare, on Hyper-V it’s not possible to copy & paste files across between the host and the Virtual Machine, even if you are running Window OS on the host and the guest. You have to rely on alternative ways:

1. Using standard Windows Shares to transfer files between the host and VMs

This requires a proper (external) Hyper-V Virtual Switch to have network access. That’s a no-brainer.

2. Connect via a Remote Desktop Connection

RDP is handy but less robust, if big file transfers are required; if you just need to copy/paste some text, RDP works great.

3. Mount the virtual hard disk and copy the files directly

This is most probably the fastest option for big chunks of files:

  • First, Turn the VM off,
  • locate the virtual hard disk image file .vhd of your VM
  • Right click the vhd file and select mount it: You get “System Reserved” and “Local Disk” drives.
  • Open the “Local Disk” drive (this is the OS drive of your VM)  
  • … and paste your files.
  • Finally unmount/eject the drive(s).
  • Run the VM and go the c:\ drive to find your files.

That’ all. Fair enough, it would argue.