Integrating Support for NI-VirtualBench in Newest Versions of LabVIEW

Updated Oct 23, 2023



  • LabVIEW


  • NI-VirtualBench Application and Driver

I am using the latest version of LabVIEW, and am trying to open a VI that was created with a previous version of LabVIEW and contains NI-VirtualBench elements. It asks me to point to all used VirtualBench Sub-VIs manually every time I open one of my VIs. Sometimes it even greys some options out and gives me a Broken Run Arrow. How do I get the VI to work?

In general, new LabVIEW releases tend to come out several months before the corresponding NI-VirtualBench release. If these versions are mismatched, the most recent released version of Virtual Bench will not support the newer LabVIEW version. There is a temporary workaround to include the NI-VirtualBench driver into LabVIEW until the more current version is released. This should not have compatibility issues with the latest version of LabVIEW, however this is not guaranteed.

As an example, follow these steps to add the VirtualBench 18.0 VIs into the LabVIEW 2019 library:
  1. Download NI VirtualBench Software
  2. Install or re-install NI-VirtualBench 18.0 and select Custom installation, then select LabVIEW 2018 Support to be installed.
  3. Navigate to C:\Program Files (x86)\National Instruments\LabVIEW 2018\vi.lib\, or the corresponding folder of your installation.
  4. Copy the VirtualBench sub-folder into C:\Program Files (x86)\National Instruments\LabVIEW 2019\vi.lib\
  5. (Re-)Start LabVIEW 2019
  6. Optional: To be able to compile such a VI, follow the instructions in Add NI-VirtualBench 17 Functions to LabVIEW 2018 .
Note: This workaround is only relevant for the base version of the LabVIEW release, not the SP1 version.

Additional Information

Note: The above steps are not needed when you install a version of NI-VirtualBench along with a version of LabVIEW it supports, e.g. NI-VirtualBench 16.x with LabVIEW 2016, NI-VirtualBench 17.x with LabVIEW 2017 etc.