VMware provides devices, resources, profiles, and vServices that you can configure or add to your virtual machine.
Not all hardware devices are available to every virtual machine. The host that the virtual machine runs on and the guest operating system must support devices that you add or configurations that you make. To verify support for a device in your environment, see the VMware Compatibility Guide at http://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility or the Guest Operating System Installation Guide at http://partnerweb.vmware.com/GOSIG/home.html.
Sometimes, the host might not have the required vSphere license for a resource or device. Licensing in vSphere is applicable to ESXi hosts, vCenter Server, and solutions and can be based on different criteria, depending on the specifics of each product. For information about vSphere licensing, see the vCenter Server and Host Management documentation.
The PCI and SIO virtual hardware devices are part of the virtual motherboard, but cannot be configured or removed.
Starting with vSphere 7.0, you cannot add, remove, or configure floppy drives, parallel ports, or SCSI devices. For information, see https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/78978.
|CPU||You can configure a virtual machine that runs on an ESXi host to have one or more virtual processors. A virtual machine cannot have more virtual CPUs than the actual number of logical CPUs on the host. You can change the number of CPUs allocated to a virtual machine and configure advanced CPU features, such as the CPU Identification Mask and hyperthreaded core sharing.|
The motherboard uses VMware proprietary devices based on the following chips:
|DVD/CD-ROM Drive||Installed by default when you create a virtual machine. You can configure DVD/CD-ROM devices to connect to client devices, host devices, or datastore ISO files. You can add, remove, or configure DVD/CD-ROM devices.|
|Hard Disk||Stores the operating system of a virtual machine, program files, and other data associated with its activities. A virtual disk is a large physical file, or a set of files, that can be copied, moved, archived, and backed up as easily as any other file.|
|IDE 0, IDE 1||By default, two Integrated Drive Electronics (IDE) interfaces are presented to the virtual machine. The IDE interface (controller) is a standard way for storage devices (floppy drives, hard drives, and CD-ROM drives) to connect to the virtual machine.|
|Keyboard||Provides keyboard input from any virtual machine consoles.|
|Memory||The virtual hardware memory size determines how much memory applications that are running inside the virtual machine have available to them. A virtual machine cannot benefit from more memory resources than its configured virtual hardware memory size.|
|Network Adapter||ESXi networking features provide communication between virtual machines on the same host, between virtual machines on different hosts, and between other virtual and physical machines. When you configure a virtual machine, you can add network adapters (NICs) and specify the adapter type.|
|Parallel port||Interface for connecting peripherals to the virtual machine. The virtual parallel port can connect to a file. You can add, remove, or configure virtual parallel ports.|
|PCI controller||Bus on the virtual machine motherboard that communicates with components such as hard disks and other devices. One PCI controller is presented to the virtual machine. You cannot configure or remove this device.|
|PCI Device||You can add up to 16 PCI vSphere DirectPath devices to a virtual machine. The devices must be reserved for PCI passthrough on the host on which the virtual machine runs. Snapshots are not supported with DirectPath I/O passthrough devices.|
|Pointing device||Mirrors the pointing device that is connected to the virtual machine console when you first connect to the console.|
|Serial Port||Interface for connecting peripherals to the virtual machine. The virtual serial port can connect to a physical serial port, to a file on the host computer, or over the network. You can also use it to establish a direct connection between two virtual machines or a connection between a virtual machine and an application on the host computer. You can configure a virtual machine with up to 32 serial ports. You can add, remove, or configure virtual serial ports.|
|SATA controller||Provides access to virtual disks and DVD/CD-ROM devices. The SATA virtual controller appears to a virtual machine as an AHCI SATA Controller.|
|SCSI controller||Provides access to virtual disks. The SCSI virtual controller appears to a virtual machine as different types of controllers, including LSI Logic Parallel, LSI Logic SAS, and VMware Paravirtual. You can change the SCSI controller type, allocate bus sharing for a virtual machine, or add a paravirtualized SCSI controller.|
|SIO controller||Provides serial and parallel ports, floppy devices, and performs system management activities. One SIO controller is available to the virtual machine. You cannot configure or remove this device.|
|USB controller||The USB hardware chip that provides USB 1.x and USB 2.0 function to the USB ports that it manages. The virtual USB Controller is the software virtualization of the USB 1.x and USB 2.0 host controller function in the virtual machine.|
|USB xHCI controller||The USB hardware chip that provides USB 3 function to the USB ports that it manages. The virtual USB xHCI controller is the software virtualization of the USB 3 host controller function in the virtual machine.|
You can add multiple USB devices, such as security dongles and mass storage devices, to a virtual machine. The USB devices can be connected to an ESXi host or a client computer.
|VMCI||Virtual Machine Communication Interface device. Provides a high-speed communication channel between a virtual machine and the hypervisor. You cannot add or remove VMCI devices.|
|NVMe controller||NVM Express controller. NVMe is a logical device interface specification for accessing nonvolatile storage media attached through a PCI Express (PCIe) bus in real and virtual hardware.|
|NVDIMM controller||Provides access to the non-volatile memory resources of the host.|
|NVDIMM device||Non-Volatile Dual In-Line Memory Module. NVDIMM modules are memory devices that sit on an ordinary memory channel, but contain non-volatile memory. You can add up to 64 virtual NVDIMM devices to a virtual machine.|
|TPM device||Trusted Platform Module. When you add a virtual TPM 2.0 device to a virtual machine, the guest OS uses the device to store sensitive information, perform cryptographic tasks, or attest the integrity of the guest platform.|
|Virtual Precision Clock device||A virtual clock device that provides a virtual machine with access to the system time of the primary ESXi host.|
|Virtual Watchdog Timer device||To ensure self-reliance related to the system performance within a virtual machine. If the guest operating system stops responding and cannot recover on its own due to software glitches or errors, the watchdog timer waits for a predefined period of time and then restarts the system.|
|vSGX device||Virtual Intel® Software Guard Extensions (vSGX) provides a virtual machine additional security to your workloads. Intel SGX is a processor-specific technology that defines private regions of memory, called enclaves. Intel SGX protects the enclave contents from disclosure and modification in such a way that code running outside the enclave cannot access them.|
|RDM disk||You can use a raw device mapping (RDM) to store virtual machine data directly on a SAN LUN, instead of storing it in a virtual disk file.|
|PS2 controller||PS2 controller provides access to the virtual keyboard and point to the PS2 interface.|
|Video card||A virtual graphics card that provides graphics acceleration and display capabilities for virtual machine consoles.|