Devices in Containers on Windows

By default, Windows containers are given minimal access to host devices--just like Linux containers. There are certain workloads where it is beneficial--or even imperative--to access and communicate with host hardware devices. This guide covers which devices are supported in containers and how to get started.

Requirements

For this feature to work, your environment must meet the following requirements:

  • The container host must be running Windows Server 2019 or Windows 10, version 1809 or newer.
  • Your container base image version must be 1809 or later.
  • Your containers must be Windows containers running in process-isolated mode.
  • The container host must be running Docker Engine 19.03 or newer.

Run a Container with a Device

To start a container with a device, use the following command:

docker run --isolation=process --device="class/{interface class GUID}" mcr.microsoft.com/windows/servercore:1809

You must replace the {interface class guid} with an appropriate device interface class GUID, which can be found in the section below.

To start a container with multiple devices, use the following command and string together multiple --device arguments:

docker run --isolation=process --device="class/{interface class GUID}" --device="class/{interface class GUID}" mcr.microsoft.com/windows/servercore:1809

In Windows, all devices declare a list of interface classes that they implement. By passing this command to Docker, it will ensure that all devices which identify as implementing the requested class will be plumbed into the container.

This means you are not assigning the device away from host. Instead, the host is sharing it with the container. Likewise, because you are specifying a class GUID, all devices that implement that GUID will be shared with the container.

What Devices are Supported

The following devices (and their device interface class GUIDs) are supported today:

Device Type
Interface Class GUID
GPIO
916EF1CB-8426-468D-A6F7-9AE8076881B3
I2C Bus
A11EE3C6-8421-4202-A3E7-B91FF90188E4
COM Port
86E0D1E0-8089-11D0-9CE4-08003E301F73
SPI Bus
DCDE6AF9-6610-4285-828F-CAAF78C424CC
DirectX GPU Acceleration
See GPU acceleration docs

Important

Device support is driver-dependent. Attempting to pass class GUIDs not defined in the table above may result in undefined behavior.

Hyper-V-isolated Windows Container Support

Device assignment and device sharing for workloads in Hyper-V-isolated Windows containers is not currently supported.

Hyper-V-isolated Linux Container Support

Device assignment and device sharing for workloads in Hyper-V-isolated Linux containers is not currently supported.