Need to boot a VMWare Fusion guest OS from a physical USB drive? Don't want to cheat by simply moving the image from the USB to a disk image?
The limitation is the VMWare BIOS does not support boot from USB - so the simplest workaround is to leverage a great simple utility called Plop Bootmanager. It's a image you can boot via floppy (which VMWare does support) which allows you to boot from USB!
1) Get Plop Bootmanager from https://www.plop.at/en/bootmanagers.html
2) Ensure your guest machine has a floppy drive in its supported hardware, if not add it. Link the drive to the plpbt.img and ensure the drive is set to be connected to the guest OS
3) Boot the machine, you'll get the cool starfield boot menu after it boots from the floppy drive. If it doesn't work, use the startup device setting in VMWare to ensure the floppy is the boot device
4) Connect your USB drive, and in the VMWare interface connect the USB drive to the guest OS
5) In the guest machine, select USB from the menu.. and watch the magic!
6) Ensure you disconnect the floppy drive in the VMWare settings to avoid booting to it on next boot