Options for using Windows 11 with Mac computers with Apple M1, M2, and M3 chips


  • Staff
Windows 11 runs best on a PC designed for Windows. When such an option is not available, here are two different ways to use Windows with Mac.

Windows 11 and Windows 365 Cloud PCs​

You can securely stream your full, personalized Windows 11 experience to many devices, including Mac computers built with M-series processors, on a Cloud PC through our Windows 365 service. Windows 365 is a software-as-a-service solution for organizations of all sizes, offered on a per-user, per-month basis. There are a variety of pricing options and Cloud PC configurations available based on performance needs.

Windows 365 supports nested virtualization for testing, running emulators, ensuring full application compatibility, and more. Learn more about setting up virtualization-based workloads with Windows 365.

Windows 11 and Parallels Desktop​

Parallels® Desktop version 18 and 19 are authorized solutions for running Arm® versions of Windows 11 Pro and Windows 11 Enterprise in a virtual environment on its platform on Apple M1, M2, and M3 computers.

The Arm version of Windows 11 has limitations that can impact your ability to use various types of hardware, games, and apps, including those that rely on DirectX 12, a suite of multimedia technologies frequently used in Windows games and other apps. For more information, please see the FAQ in this article.

Experiences that depend on an additional layer of virtualization (nested virtualization) are not supported, including:
32-bit Arm apps available from the Store in Windows are not supported by Mac computers with M1, M2, and M3 chips. 32-bit Arm apps are in the process of being deprecated for all Arm versions of Windows. The preferred customer experience is to run 64-bit Arm apps, but customers can also use apps in x64 or x86 emulation on Mac M1, M2, and M3 computers.

Note: You will need to acquire a separate license for Windows 11 Pro if you do not already have one. A unique license is required for each instance of Windows 11 Pro that you are running, either on a hardware or in a virtual machine. You can buy a license through the Download option from the Microsoft store or purchase one through retail. Windows 11 Pro product keys are platform agnostic (x64 vs Arm). To use Windows 11 Enterprise with this solution, you will first need to acquire the Windows 11 Pro license and then can upgrade to Windows 11 Enterprise through a volume licensing agreement (contact your IT admin for more information).
Apple, Apple M1, Apple M2, and Apple M3 and Mac are trademarks of Apple Inc.

Parallels is a registered trademark of Parallels International GmbH.

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