How to run a Windows VM on Mac Silicon

Modified on Sun, 17 Mar 2024 at 01:55 PM

  1. Get your ARM version of Windows 11
    1. Sign up for the Windows Insider Program: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windowsinsider/
    2. Download Windows 11 ARM64: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windowsinsiderpreviewARM64
  2. Find the VHDX (Hyper-V VM Hard Disk Drive) in your downloads folder
  3. Download VMWare Fusion (if using a different hypervisor then steps may vary slightly but similar idea)
    1. Register for a personal/student VMWare Fusion license: https://customerconnect.vmware.com/en/evalcenter?p=fusion-player-personal-13
      1. Download VMWare Fusion
      2. Install VMWare Fusion (this will require administrative privileges)
  4. Convert the VHDX to VMDK (Virtual Machine Disk)
    1. Install Homebrew
      1. Open Terminal
      2. If your user doesn't have local admin rights then enter 'login' into the terminal and then enter the login details for a local administrator
      3. Install Homebrew by entering this into your terminal: /bin/bash -c "$(curl fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/HEAD/install.sh)"
    2. Install QEMU
      1. Enter 'brew install qemu' into the terminal
      2. Use qemu to convert the file
        1. Get the file path of the VHDX file by right clicking on the file in Finder and holding the alt key, this will give you the option to copy as pathname
        2. Enter this into your terminal: qemu-img convert /filepath/of/current/file.vhdx -O vmdk /filepath/of/new/file.vmdk -p
          • -O defines the output file format
          • -P shows the progress bar
  5. In VMWare Fusion, add a new virtual machine with that file as the existing hard drive and follow the steps to create the VM
  6. If you are met with not being able to connect to the internet and need to so you can setup the Windows machine, press Shift + F10 (you may need to hold the function key) to open CMD and enter 'OOBE\BYPASSNRO' and Windows will restart without the need for an internet connection. When met with the network page again, you will now have an option for 'I do not have internet'
  7. Once the VM is created and you are on the Windows Desktop, select 'Virtual Machine' in the menu bar and select either 'Install VMWare Tools' or 'Reinstall VMWare Tools' - this is the drivers for the VM

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