VMware Workstation: Add TPM to virtual Maschine (VM)

Add TPM to Windows 10 virtual machine

There are certainly a few reasons why one might want to add the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) to an existing virtual machine (VM) in VMware Workstation. For example, one reason might be to upgrade a virtual machine that has Windows 10 installed to Windows 11. If you check whether the virtual machine is compatible with Windows 11, this may fail because the virtual PC does not have a TPM installed (see image below). We have already shown how to install Windows 11 directly from an ISO with TPM in another article.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation no tpm available
No TPM available in virtual machine

Fortunately, the TPM can be added to the virtual machine afterwards. To do this, select the relevant VM in the list of virtual machines and right-click on it to display the context menu. Then select the “Settings” entry there.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation context setting
right click for hardware settings

Next, the various settings for the VM’s hardware are displayed. There you click on the “Add” button to add further hardware components, such as the TPM.

Note: To be able to edit the hardware settings at all, the VM must be shut down.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation add additional hardware settings
add additional hardware settings

Among the list of further virtual hardware components that follows, you will also find the “Trusted Platform Module“. Unfortunately, it cannot be added directly. As you can see, the “Finish” button is still disabled. This is because you have to encrypt the virtual machine first.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation Hardware Settings
TPM can’t be installed because vm is not encrypted

Encrypt virtual machine

To encrypt the virtual machine, go back to the “Settings” and select the “Options” tab. Under the “Access Control” entry, you can then initiate the encryption by assigning a trusted password.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation encrypt virtual machine
encrypt virtual machine

The encryption then takes a moment.

Install TPM for VM

Now you can finish the installation of the TPM on the virtual machine by clicking the “Add” button in the hardware settings again. As you can see in the screenshot below, the “Finish” button is now clickable.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation add TPM
Now adding TPM is possible

Once you have done this, you can select one of the different methods to check if TPM is present. Windows’ PC Health Check no longer grumbles and the VM hardware is now suitable for an upgrade to Windows 11.

Screenshot VMWare Workstation Virtual Machine with installed TPM
Installed TPM on virtual machine

This should now allow you to run the Windows 11 Installation Assistant or whatever you had in mind that requires the Trusted Platform Module.

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  • Mitchell, Dan (Author)

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