QEMU vhost-user-input - Input emulation

This document describes the setup and usage of the Virtio input device. The Virtio input device is a paravirtualized device for input events.


The vhost-user-input device implementation was designed to work with a daemon polling on input devices and passes input events to the guest.

QEMU provides a backend implementation in contrib/vhost-user-input.

Linux kernel support

Virtio input requires a guest Linux kernel built with the CONFIG_VIRTIO_INPUT option.


The backend daemon should be started first:

host# vhost-user-input --socket-path=input.sock       \

The QEMU invocation needs to create a chardev socket to communicate with the backend daemon and access the VirtIO queues with the guest over the shared memory.

host# qemu-system                                                             \
    -chardev socket,path=/tmp/input.sock,id=mouse0                            \
    -device vhost-user-input-pci,chardev=mouse0                               \
    -m 4096                                                                   \
    -object memory-backend-file,id=mem,size=4G,mem-path=/dev/shm,share=on     \
    -numa node,memdev=mem                                                     \