Check if Virtualization is Enabled in Windows 10

Virtualization technologies are offered by both the AMD and Intel processors for the desktop or notebook computers. AMD calls their virtualization technology AMD-V, while Intel calls it Intel VT-x. At this time, only some of the cheapest processors do not support these technologies. If you have virtualization enabled for your PC, then you can use hardware assisted virtualization for running a secondary operating system inside the host operating system in complete isolation while sharing the hardware resources. For example, you can run Mac OS inside Windows 10 using VirtualBox if virtualization is enabled for your PC.

Virtualization is also used by some of the security software to isolate the suspicious files and prevent them from harming your computer. For example, Avast antivirus uses hardware assisted virtualization to run suspicious application inside a sandbox to prevent any infection.

In order for these applications to use the virtualization technology, you have to enable it in the system BIOS (mostly in the older computers). In the new computers that use EFI instead of older BIOS, VT-x or AMD-V can be enabled from within Windows by an application desiring to use it. Usually in the BIOS or EFI, you have to find the Virtualization Technology option and set it to Enabled, save the settings and reboot.

Check Virtualization in Windows 10

Once it is enabled in the BIOS/EFI and you have booted into Windows, you  can easily check the virtualization status using the Windows Task Manager. You have to launch Task Manager using the hotkey Ctrl+Shift+Esc. In the Task Manager, switch to the Performance tab and you would be able to view the Virtualization status under the CPU category.

Check Virtualization in Windows 10

There are also some third party tools available for checking whether virtualization is enabled or not, but they are not really necessary as Windows Task Manager is enough to indicate the virtualization status. However, if you are running Windows 7, Vista, or XP, then Microsoft offers an extra tool to detect if hardware assisted virtualization is enabled or not. You can download it from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=592.

If you are a programmer, then you can easily find out the virtualization status using the following C code:

#include <windows.h>
#include <stdio.h>

int main(){
	if(IsProcessorFeaturePresent(PF_VIRT_FIRMWARE_ENABLED)){
		printf("Virtualization is present.\n");
	}else{
		printf("Virtualization not present.\n");
	}
	return 0;
}

This code can be compiled using any latest C compiler like GCC, MSVC or Pelles.

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