The Best 6 Virtual COM Port Drivers for Windows
We have compiled a list of the top virtual serial port driver applications that are on the market. If you require the creation of virtual COM ports on a computer running the Windows 7 or Windows 10 operating system then read on. One of these software solutions may be just what you need to help you create virtual COM ports.
- Best 6 Virtual Serial Port applications:
- How to create virtual COM port with VSPD?
- Why are serial ports still used?
- In which areas and what is the use of virtual serial ports?
Virtual Serial Port Driver
Virtual Serial Port Driver is a software package developed by Eltima Software that functions as a virtual COM port emulator on Windows machines. The software enables you to create virtual COM ports that you can connect in pairs by using a virtual null-modem cable. Every virtual serial port that you create will communicate with your serial applications as if they were actually physical ports.
This virtual null-modem software runs on both the 32 and 64-bit flavors of the Windows operating system up to and including the most recent release of Windows 10. Microsoft has officially signed Virtual Serial Port Driver so you can be assured of its compatibility with Windows.
An OEM License brings you a Dynamic Link Library with VSPD that enables you to use your own applications to directly control virtual serial ports. Faster serial communication is a by-product of emulating serial interfaces. The virtual null-modem cable affords higher data transfer rates than a traditional, physical null-modem cable. The average speed of the emulated null-modem cable is 5.5 Mbytes/sec and is based on your system’s processor speed.
Virtual COM Port Driver enables the user to create an unlimited number of virtual COM ports that are instantly identified by any serial hardware or software that you install. The application does not occupy any physical serial ports, and the virtual ports function in the same way as a hardware interface. Functionality such as strict baud rate emulation, emulating serial line breaks, and full HandFlow control support are characteristics of the virtual ports that you create.
Flexibility is a feature of Virtual Serial Port Driver. Using the tool you can create ports only intended for the current user session. RDP users have the ability to create ports using the same name, such as COM1, in each user’s session. You can also delete interfaces that are already opened and in use by other programs.
VSPD supports both VMware and hyper-threading.
Virtual Serial Port Driver PRO - advanced functionality
The PRO version of Virtual Serial Port Driver offers some advanced functionality that may be useful for your situation.
Among the features of VSPD PRO are:
- The ability to split one physical or virtual serial port into multiple virtual ports.
- You can merge an unlimited number of virtual or hardware serial ports into one virtual port.
- You can create complex port bundles.
- Serial traffic can be forwarded from one real port to another physical or virtual port.
- The capacity to set individual read handwrite permissions for each virtual port.
- Using the Activity Log to save data regarding application’s port usage.
- Automatic port switching with the Switcher feature that allows your program to communicate through any free port as if it was always the same interface.
Virtual Serial Port Kit
FabulaTech’s Virtual Serial Port Kit is a software tool that enables you to emulate serial ports. These virtual ports that are created can be connected with a virtual null-modem cable. The functionality of the virtual COM interfaces is identical to that of a physical serial port.
When data is transferred to one of the virtual ports it is simultaneously available to the interface at the other end of the virtual pair. All of the virtual ports that you create on your system are available before user login as the application runs as a Windows system service. This ensures that they will be recreated after a system reboot.
Free Virtual Serial Ports
The solution offered by HDD - Free Virtual Serial Ports is focused on the emulation of custom plug-and-play serial and I/O ports interfaced by 16550 UART.
This free virtual null-modem emulator software allows the creation of a virtual copy of hardware null-modem cables with either DB-25 or DE-9 connectors. Two RS-232 DTE devices can communicate with each other without the need of a modem or any other DCE. This RS-232 null-modem emulator application’s stability is facilitated by the fact that is works exclusively in user-mode.
Virtual Serial Ports Emulator
The next entry in our list of virtual com port software is Virtual Serial Ports Emulator which is developed by Eterlogic. It is designed for software engineers that need to develop serial applications and allows them to create, test and debug applications and devices that employ serial interfaces.
Some of the benefits of this program and the virtualization of ports are that the same device can be opened by multiple applications and you can create pairs of virtual serial ports.
Serial interfaces can also be shared by multiple applications at the same time and a COM interface can use TCP to enact sharing of the port on a local network.
This program offers support for Windows 2000, XP, Vista (32/64), and
A free license is available for 32-bit platforms. If you require the 64-bit version you will need to obtain a paid version of the software.
This solution is an open source kernel-mode virtual serial port driver that enables the emulation of serial communication interfaces. A COM interface can be created with this program that works with device emulation applications. Essentially, this means that you can connect a device emulation app to one end of a serial port pair while the other end of the pair is occupied by a Windows application that requires communication with the device.
An example of this in practice is sharing faxes over an IP network. You simply connect a Windows Fax application to a modem using a pair of virtual serial ports.
More details of these software solutions are available by visiting the developers’ website. There are definitely differences among the options including the fact that some of them are free while others require a financial investment. In certain cases, you may need to expose your source code in order to use them for application development.
Note: Not all of the solutions support the newest Windows OS version which may pose problems for you.
How to choose the best solution for your needs?
A benefit of a paid solution is that you receive regular program updates and customer support for your money. This can be a determining factor if you are doing serious development and want the most up-to-date null-modem emulator application available. We hope that this brief overview of your options assists you in choosing the right virtual RS-232 software for your specific project or usage scenario.
The preceding comparison of virtual null-modem software tools indicates that Eltima Software’s Virtual Serial Port Driver offers more features than the other solutions. Ease of use, quality customer support, and a focus on data protection are some of the advantages of this product. It also features a user-friendly interface that makes it an easy task to create and delete virtual COM ports.
In the next part, we describe step-by-step tutorial how to create virtual serial port pairs with VSPD by Eltima Software and you will be able to check by yourself this COM port emulator.
The extended capabilities of the PRO version make this flexible software application an effective and powerful tool for developers or users who need to work with serial devices.
How to create virtual COM port with VSPD?
Here are a few simple steps you should follow to add a virtual serial port to your machine with this dedicated Virtual COM Port Windows 10 utility:
- Download Virtual Serial Port Driver on your Windows machine.
- Install the application on your system and launch it.
- Choose “Manage Ports” in the application’s main window.
- Click the “Add pair” button to create a pair of virtual serial ports. You are not limited to COMx names and can name them as you wish.
- The created pair of ports will appear in your Device Manager and be available for use immediately upon creation.
Why are serial ports still used?
Serial or COM ports have been the standard method of connecting peripheral devices to a computer ever since the introduction of personal computers in the late 20th Century. The introduction of the more flexible USB ports has caused a decline in the number of devices and computers that make use of COM interfaces.
In fact, many of the computers that are manufactured today are not equipped with any serial ports at all. Some machines take it a step further and do not have ports of any type, relying on wireless connectivity to peripheral devices.
The reduction in reliance on COM ports in machines and devices used for general purposes has not eliminated the requirement for serial connectivity. There are many special-purpose devices that still make use of serial interfaces to communicate with computers. Some examples are industrial automation monitoring devices, medical monitoring equipment, and specialized laboratory equipment.
Engineers who are developing these serial devices or applications that interact with them require the ability to test and debug their products before releasing them to the public. This can be problematic with current computers as there may not be serial ports available on the machine. Serial port emulation might be just the answer you are looking for if you in this kind of situation.
Where and how are virtual serial ports used?
Virtual serial ports can be useful in a number of situations. Let’s take a look at a few of them.
Sharing a serial monitoring device - If you have a serial monitoring device in an industrial production facility it may be transmitting data that is used as input for a number of different applications. Creating virtual serial ports from a single port lets all of your applications receive their data at the same time.
Accessing serial devices from newer model computers - Most computers sold today do not have serial ports, but by creating a virtual serial port on your machine you can access serial data over a network. This allows you to extend the life of your legacy, serial-based devices.
Accessing multiple serial devices - Network attached serial devices can be assigned virtual ports that can then be merged into a single virtual port that can be used by your application.
These are just a few ways that virtual ports can be used. If you work with serial devices or applications a serial port emulator like Virtual Serial Port Driver can be an essential component of your software toolbox.
Virtual Serial Port Driver
Version 9.0.567 (5th Aug, 2017) Release notes