Skip to main content

You can finally run Windows 11 natively on an Apple silicon Mac

Apple and Microsoft may be eternal rivals, but that doesn’t mean they never work together. Yet Microsoft has never officially supported the idea of running Windows 11 on an Apple silicon Mac, leaving the practice in something of a gray area — until now.

Installing Windows on a Mac has been pretty straightforward over the years, but the introduction of Apple silicon chips in Apple’s Macs complicated matters a little. Sure, there were ways to do it, but without Microsoft’s official approval, they required workarounds.

The Parallels Desktop Mac app showing Windows running on a MacBook Pro.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Now, though, Microsoft has posted a support page explaining how you can pair up its own software with Apple hardware. Specifically, the guide gives the green light for Windows 11 to be run either using a Windows 365 Cloud PC or in a virtual machine like the Parallels Desktop app.

Previously, Microsoft had required computers to have a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) in order to run Windows, which not all Macs have. Parallels solved this by creating a virtual TPM, but that’s no longer necessary. Instead, you can just run Parallels as normal and it will run Windows 11 without a hitch.

Years ago, this wouldn’t really have been a problem, as a Mac user could just fire up the Boot Camp app and get their computer to load into Windows. Boot Camp doesn’t work with Apple silicon Macs, though, leaving people to find alternative solutions.

The MacBook Pro on a wooden table.
Digital Trends

One of those solutions was Parallels. This app runs Windows inside its own container on the Mac desktop, which bypasses the need to separately boot into Microsoft’s operating system.

Microsoft’s support page appears to be aimed at business users, as it suggests running Parallels Desktop alongside a copy of Windows 11 Pro or Windows 11 Enterprise. That’s unsurprising, as a major use case of virtualization software is for businesses that have a fleet of computers and need to test software on a different operating system.

Whether you’re a business user or simply want to run Windows 11 on your Mac without relying on any workarounds, this shift from Microsoft will likely be a welcome one. It just goes to show that Apple and Microsoft can play nice together when they want to.

Editors' Recommendations

Alex Blake
In ancient times, people like Alex would have been shunned for their nerdy ways and strange opinions on cheese. Today, he…
Intel chips held back the 15-inch MacBook Air, Apple says
Apple's 15-inch MacBook Air placed on a desk.

Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Air is a surprisingly good laptop, and its positive reception might make you wonder why Apple didn’t launch it sooner. Well, we just got the answer from Apple itself, and it turns out the fault apparently lies with Intel.

That interesting tidbit was revealed by Laura Metz, Director of Product Marketing at Apple, and Thomas Tan from Apple’s enterprise product marketing team. Speaking to Inc, the pair explained that Apple silicon was the driving force in creating the 15-inch MacBook Air.

Read more
iMac 27-inch: Everything we know about Apple’s larger, more powerful iMac
Apple iMac Pro News

When Apple killed off the iMac Pro and then completely removed the 27-inch iMac from its online store, we thought that was the end of the road for the larger all-in-one computer. Right now, Apple only sells one size of iMac: the smaller 24-inch version. But what about that gaping hole in the iMac lineup previously occupied by the 27-inch model?

It could be that Apple decides to leave this device dead and buried and instead hopes that the Mac Studio and Studio Display scratch that itch -- that's certainly what sources at 9to5Mac have contended. But there are tantalizing clues that Apple is considering offering a larger iMac with a greater level of performance than the 24-inch iMac. Regardless of whether this is branded an iMac Pro or an iMac, here's everything we know about the next high-end all-in-one from Apple.
Price and release date

Read more
Apple will now let you repair more Macs and iPhones yourself
A person repairing a MacBook using Apple's self-service repair kit.

Apple has been running a self-service repair program that lets you fix up your devices yourself since April 2022, but it’s always been a little bit hobbled. Now, though, Apple has expanded the program to include some of the latest devices available in what could be a boost to the right-to-repair movement.

Starting today, the program will include the M2 13-inch MacBook Air and the M2 13-inch MacBook Pro, as well as the entire iPhone 14 lineup. That means if you want to repair one of these products, Apple will provide you with official parts, tools and instructions to help you do it. Previously, you couldn’t do this yourself with Apple-approved parts, despite the devices being available for many months.

Read more