There are many virtualization software using which we can easily run one operating system inside another operating system. The operating system being run inside a virtual environment is called the guest operating system and the operating system inside which the virtualization software is running is called the host operating system.
There are three popular virtualization software – VirtualBox, Qemu and VMware Workstation Player. Using any of these you can run Windows 10 on a Mac computer. But if you have a Mac with Apple M1 processor then you should go for ACVM – an open-source tool that launches Qemu in order to launch ARM64 guest operating system on macOS. When you are using ACVM, you do not have to worry about any configurations or settings. All you have to do is launch ACVM and drag-n-drop the disc image on its window.
If you want to run Windows 10 using ACVM on macOS then follow these steps:
- Download ACVM from https://github.com/KhaosT/ACVM and launch it.
- Download Windows 10 for ARM64 from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windowsinsiderpreviewARM64. For this you must be a member of Windows Insider program. The reason why we need ARM version of Windows is because new Macs come with Apple M1 processor which supports only ARM instructions set.
- Extract and drop the VHDX file on the ACVM window.
- You will seen a Qemu window where Windows 10 will start.
As you can see ACVM made running Windows 10 inside macOS very easy. It uses Qemu and comes with a copy of Qemu inside the package so that you do not have to install it yourself. You can terminate the virtual environment either by shutdown down Windows or by closing the Qemu window. You can also click on the Stop button in the ACVM window.
If you do not experience a fast responding Windows 10 on your Mac, then you should increase the RAM for the guest OS in ACVM settings. By default it is only 4GB, you can increase it to 6 to 8 GB for a really fast Windows 10 instance running inside Qemu.