How to Move a Mouse Out of Virtual PC

When you use a computer virtualization such as Microsoft Virtual PC or VMware Player, the machine runs in a window over your primary Windows desktop. You can interact with a virtual machine using your mouse and keyboard, just as you would on your physical computer. Usually, you can move the mouse pointer freely between the Windows desktop and the virtual machine. However, you may occasionally find that the mouse pointer is "stuck" in the virtual machine window and that you are unable to return to the Windows desktop. Microsoft Virtual PC and VMware Player both have keyboard shortcuts that you can use to release the mouse from the virtual machine and return it to the host machine.

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The mouse pointer can sometimes get stuck in a virtual machine window.

Moving the Mouse out of a Microsoft Virtual PC Virtual Machine

Step

Press the right "Alt" key on the keyboard and then test the mouse. You should now be able to move the mouse out of the virtual machine window. If not, continue to the next step.

Step

Press the "Ctrl," right "Alt" and left-arrow keys simultaneously, and then test the mouse. If the previous keyboard shortcut did not work, you should now be able to move the mouse. If not, continue to the next step.

Step

Press the right "Alt" and "F4" keys simultaneously. This brings up a new window asking if you are sure that you want to close the virtual machine. You should now have control of the mouse.

Moving the Mouse out of a VMware Player Virtual Machine

Step

Press the "Ctrl" and "Alt" keys simultaneously. This releases both keyboard and mouse input from the virtual machine, giving you control of the mouse pointer. In most cases, VMware Player allows you to move the mouse pointer out of a virtual machine window automatically. If this is not the case, you may need to reinstall VMware Tools. Continue to the next step to learn how to do this.

Step

Click the "Virtual Machine" drop-down menu at the top of the screen and then click "Reinstall VMware Tools."

Step

Click "Next," select the radio button labeled "Repair" and click "Next" again.

Step

Click the "Repair" button at the bottom of the window.

Step

Click "Finish" when the repair process is complete, and then click "Yes" to restart the virtual machine. When the machine finishes restarting, you should have full control of the mouse.