How to Use Windows To Go in Parallels Desktop

Guest blog by Ramakrishna Sarma Chavali, Parallels Support Team

Do you remember those times when you had to carry a huge portable external drive to copy a couple of .doc files from one computer to another? We’re pretty lucky to live in the 21st century, because now you can carry a tiny flash drive with a capacity of 1TB.

But what if you could carry more than just a few Word docs with you? What if you could carry all of Windows with you? With all your files, programs, etc. Believe it or not, you can!

If you’re not familiar with Microsoft’s Windows To Go, it’s a relatively new technology for enterprise users of Windows 10 that enables consumers to boot into Windows from external USB drives. Windows To Go is a Windows 10 image that allows users to work from anywhere. To use Windows To Go, you simply insert the USB drive into your PC and boot into your personalized Windows 10 image.

With that in mind, let me predict your next question:

Q: Can I use Windows To Go with Parallels Desktop 11 for Mac?
A: Yes!

And another one…

Q: Does this mean I’ll be able to configure Windows To Go and use it on a different Mac with Parallels Desktop installed?
A: Yes!

Since Windows To Go is a full Windows 10 image, you can work with all Windows 10 applications. However, some applications that use hardware binding may not run when you roam with Windows To Go. In those cases, you will have to use those on the same computer every time.

To use Windows To Go in Parallels Desktop 11, you need the following:

Here’s how to create a Windows To Go virtual machine:

(For additional info on this process, please feel free to read this KB article on the subject.)

How to Use Windows To Go in Parallels Desktop

Here’s how to permanently assign the Windows To Go device to your VM:

(In addition, here are more details on how to connect a USB device directly to your VM.)

How to Use Windows To Go in Parallels Desktop

So, the next time you want to boot into Windows To Go, just do the following:

Easy enough, right?

A few points to consider:

That’s it! Your Windows To Go is ready to be used in your Parallels Desktop VM!

Do you use Windows To Go? Do you find it useful? Share your thoughts in the comments and don’t forget to follow Parallels Support on Twitter.


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