back to article Windows comes to Apple M1 silicon as Parallels delivers native desktop hypervisor

Two new Windows-on-Arm options have come into view. The easy option is a new version of Parallels desktop, the company’s desktop hypervisor for macOS. Version 16.5. released Wednesday, is now offered in a native version for Apple’s own M1 silicon. Parallels says the new offering is for Windows 10 ARM Insider Preview and “the …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Grumble.. grumble..

    .. he who provides x86 emulation in m1 gets what little money I have.

    1. Andre Carneiro

      Re: Grumble.. grumble..

      I rather suspect you’ll be keeping that money for quite a while...

    2. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: Grumble.. grumble..

      QEMU possibly?

      That would certainly be my first port of call if I was looking for that.

      1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: Grumble.. grumble..

        VMWare, Parallels tend to be faster than QEMU and provide better integration with the host OS.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Grumble.. grumble..

      Me too :-(

      Though it's getting on a bit, I do like my Mac, and I do almost no development directly on my laptop these days - it's all RDP to clients' systems. Unfortunately many of them insist on Windows-only remote access solutions - a couple are even IE only! - so I end up booted into Windows too much of the time to risk an M1 mac at the moment. Guess I need to find a way to test the ARM version of Windows with the VPN clients, then this might be an option.

      1. SleepGuy

        Re: Grumble.. grumble..

        Same, I needed to keep Windows on-hand when I switched to an M1 Mac. I loaded up my old Linux Box (Intel NUC) with Windows, stuck it on my shelf and RDP into it. Granted, I have a triple-monitor setup, so I end up just keeping the RDP open on my 3rd screen.

    4. ThomH

      Re: Grumble.. grumble..

      The Windows Insider ARM build of Windows 10 that Parallels is advertising support for includes an x86-64 emulator for application code. So in theory you get all of the OS-level stuff running natively on the M1 (modulo virtualisation of the other hardware) and then x86 emulation only for the actual applications — and you get Microsoft's emulation for Windows applications rather than Apple's, which is likely to be better-supported for that task.

      So the Parallels release mentioned in the story isn't necessarily a bad choice for running regular old Windows applications on an M1 Mac.

      That said, I think I'm going to wait for VMWare. When I last tried Parallels — which was likely more than a decade ago, so apply a pinch of salt — it was heavily invested in the idea of a shared desktop running multiple flavours of application, to the extent of secreting various hidden folders around my Mac full of application stubs so that the Finder would have something to connect file associations to, e.g. so that I could double click a .docx on my desktop and have that cause Parallels to load and launch the Windows Microsoft Office and then open that file in it.

      That's something that some people will be a huge fan of, but I want my virtual machines isolated and with a minimal footprint on my Mac. VMWare seems to do a better job of that.

  2. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    Oracle has not said if its VirtualBox desktop hypervisor will target the M1, but a port is considered very unlikely due to technical issues

    I read that thread. I don't think it's "technical issues" I think it's people getting confused what hypervisors do & do not do and hence what they can expect.

    1. Jason Hindle

      I understand VirtualBox is heavily tied to Intel and is very unlikely to be ported. So probably a good idea not to hold your breath....

  3. trevorde Silver badge

    More software!

    Brilliant - Windows on ARM has loads more software than macOS!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More software!

      And you don't need a "developer" license to sign your own compiled executables to distribute them on another M1 laptop.

  4. Jason Hindle

    Just gave it a spin - it works

    Nothing elaborate - just installed it and downloaded Ubuntu from the VM gallery. Bearing in mind this is base level M1 MacBook Air, boot time and performance of Ubuntu is pretty impressive.

  5. Captain Obvious

    So let me get this straight

    They only allow for Windows ARM versions to run on Parallels and not x86 so not much ARM WIndows software to run then...

    1. ThomH

      Re: So let me get this straight

      The Windows ARM version runs x86 software.

      I can't say how well.

      1. DS999 Silver badge

        Re: So let me get this straight

        Not as well as Apple's Rosetta runs x86 Mac apps, since Windows using JIT translation, but should work just fine unless you have must-run Windows x86 apps that are pigs even on a high end x86 PC.

  6. Crypto Monad Silver badge

    Hypervisor framework

    "UTM" is a GUI wrapper that lets you use this for free:

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