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How to share a USB dongle?

Olga Weis Olga Weis Jul 21, 2022

Owners of USB security dongles often do not have the remote connection necessary to access the device and take advantage of its full functionality. This article discusses how to share a USB dongle over a network to resolve this issue. We look at how to share a dongle using a hardware and software solution. Keep on reading to find out more about both of them.

How to share a USB dongle over a network?

Donglify is designed to virtualize USB ports and provide remote access to USB security dongles attached to them. The program is fully compatible with the Windows operating system and also with macOS. With its help, you can freely access your remote security key from several computers at a time. Sounds exciting, right? Well, you can give it a try straight away. Please, follow this guide to find out how to share a USB dongle across a network (Wi-Fi or wired — all the same):
First, sign up for Donglify account. Then download the app and install it on all computers that need to access your USB dongle remotely. Also, make sure to install the program on the PC to which your physical dongle is attached directly (we’ll call it a device server).
 install Donglify
Next, start Donglify on the server computer and sign in to your account.
 sign in to your account
Once done, click the “Plus” icon in the window that will open and you’ll see the list of local USB dongles available for sharing.

Note, there should be the “Multi-connect” or “Single-connect” icon next to the USB dongle you are going to share. The first one means you can share a USB key dongle and it will be accessible to several remote machines simultaneously. The “Single-connect” icon indicates that a shared dongle key will be available for use on only one machine at a time.
 USB dongles available for sharing
Select the required USB dongle by checking the radio button in front of it and click “Share”.
 Select the required USB dongle
On a client computer, launch the program and sign in to the same Donglify account.
 Start Donglify on a client computer
In the app’s window, you’ll see the list of devices available for connection.
 devices available for connection
Find the one you need and click “Connect”.
This is it! Now, the shared USB key will appear in the remote system as though it were connected to that computer physically. It really is that simple to access USB security dongles from anywhere on your network with the help of Donglify.

Sharing a USB dongle - Video Tutorial

We recommend you watch this video guide to learn more about how to share USB dongles over the network:

Share dongles

Donglify Pros and Cons

With the easy and secure connectivity and the multi-connect feature, Donglify is beyond all doubt a very handy and user-friendly app. And now that you know how to share a USB dongle over the network, let's talk about Donglify’s pros and cons.


  • A USB security dongle can be shared over a wireless network connection so multiple users can remotely control and manage the device.
  • Donglify eliminates physical wear and tear on the dongle and protects it from being stolen without limiting the ability of users to access the device.
  • Donglify is a cross-platform solution that lets you share license keys with computers running Windows or macOS.
  • Donglify is an easy-to-use solution that requires minimal effort to install and configure. You can get started quickly and don’t need additional hardware or software to share a USB dongle over the network.


  • You can’t use Donglify if one (or both) of the machines you’re using it on doesn’t have an Internet connection.

How to share a USB dongle between 2 computers?

There is another solution you can use for sharing a USB dongle between two (or more) computers: a hub. It’s a hardware device, and thus understandably has some limitations as to the number of dongles you can plug into it, and how many machines can access a dongle at every instant. Plus, you only can use this option if you have physical access to your dongle. By way of example, let’s take a closer look at Smart Logic’s USB dongle sharing hubs:

SmarterX-USB. It’a a wired dongle sharing hub, so you won’t be able to use it on a remote PC if it’s more than 5 meters away. There are two versions of it — with 3 and 5 USB ports. Both are compatible with every type of dongle on the market and work with Mac OS and OS Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7/8/10. The ceiling amount of users you can share your dongle with through this hub is 5.


SmarterX-NET. It’s a USB dongle sharing hub that works as a USB dongle server. You plug it into your LAN switch, and every dongle connected to it becomes instantly accessible from all networked machines in your office. This eliminates the need to physically attach the dongle to each user’s machine for them to see it just as if it was plugged into their computer directly. The maximum number of remote PCs that can connect to a dongle in parallel is 6.


The bottom line

When sharing a USB dongle over the network with a dongle sharing hub, you are physically limited by the hardware in terms of how many dongles you can insert. There is also a limit to how many connections can be made concurrently to the physical dongle. You also, of course, need to have access to the physical dongle.

Using a software solution like Donglify overcomes these restrictions. Donglify’s multi-connect feature allows multiple simultaneous connections while keeping the physical dongle safe and secure in one known location.

Unlike USB dongle sharing hubs, Donglify also offers additional benefits in terms of how you make your USB accessible:

  • You can give users direct access via your Donglify account.
  • You can create and send invites to other users to connect to your device with their own Donglify accounts.
  • You can create and share login tokens to allow others to use your account without having to actually divulge your login credentials.
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