Parallels Desktop for Mac is a hardware emulation virtualization software, using hypervisor technology that works by mapping the host computer's hardware resources directly to the virtual machine's resources. Each virtual machine thus operates identically to a standalone computer, with virtually all the resources of a physical computer. Start quickly with the most recent versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote and OneDrive —combining the familiarity of Office and the unique Mac features you love. Work online or offline, on your own or with others in real time—whatever works for what you’re doing. Start quickly with the most recent versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote and OneDrive —combining the familiarity of Office and the unique Mac features you love. Work online or offline, on your own or with others in real time—whatever works for what you’re doing. Thanks to the common VMware platform, VMs can also be easily transferred from the vSphere data center to the Mac desktop and then run in Fusion. Develop and Test for Any Platform Fusion makes it possible to build and test apps for nearly any cloud, platform or device. VirtualBox is a powerful x86 and AMD64/Intel64 virtualization product for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers, it is also the only professional solution that is freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 2.
We all know what a Virtual machine is. For those who do not let’s get the jest of it. Putting it most simply, “a virtual machine is an operating system that is installed on software, which imitates dedicated hardware.”
What actually happens here is that you are allowed to install an operating system without creating separate memory partitions on your memory. It simply gets installed in your current OS as a different operating system. All you need to do then is just power on the virtual machine, and you are ready to work on your new OS.
For instance, and most commonly followed pattern is that you can run a Linux distro on your Windows Operating System. Run MAC on your Windows computer and vice versa. There are many operating systems to choose from, some are lighter than others, some are based on Android too.
So let’s have a look at some popular and best virtual machines:
Platforms: Windows, OS X, Linux
Key features: Run multiple OS, resizable windows, support for Windows, Linux, MAC and other non-listed operating system using their image file (ISO, IMG etc).
Let’s start with Virtualbox since it’s the most hands-on of the bunch.
First, you start by installing it on your computer, but virtual machine software aren’t like other apps as the setup goes beyond just installing. Once you install, from there you have to create new virtual image setup and have to tweak a bunch of settings, for example, how much CPU core and video memory it gets from the total installed in your computer. The same goes for selecting the operating system image which you like to run in the settings and the same goes for sound and internet connection. Hopefully, if this is the first time and you are having a hard time, here is a step by step tutorial which will help you through the setup.
It is the most appropriate choice for beginners, a free and open source hypervisor developed by Oracle. It can load multiple guests operating systems on a single host operating system, even Mac OS. The best part of this kind of feature is that each guest can be started, paused and stopped independently. It can run the operating system in a breeze. The best of its features include its ability to run 64-bit guest’s virtualized application side by side with normal desktop applications. Although there is a limited support for 3D graphics acceleration.
The good news is that it’s open source and totally free, while the other VMware Fusion and Parallels (Virtual machine software) both requires that you purchase an annual license (which is yearly)to get future updates which pack more stability and improvements which sounds great but isn’t cheap on paper.
We want to let you know that you do not have to check other virtual machines if your requirements are very straightforward then the virtual box will be great for you, it can run almost all popular operating systems.
Related: Install and run macOS High Sierra on VirtualBox
VMware Workstation Player
Platforms: Windows, Linux
Virtual Platform For Mac Os
Key features: 64-bit software, Cortana support in Windows 10.
A division of Dell Technologies, “VMware Inc.”, initially released VMware in 1999. It will provide you a version which is free of cost for non-commercial use. It gives you a platform where you can set up two virtual machines on a single physical machine and use both of them at the same time without any hitch. One of the best features of this virtual machine is that you can save a snapshot at any point in time and then restore it later on at your own ease. This hosted hypervisor runs on x64 version of Linux and Windows operating systems. Another interesting feature is that of unity; you can create a seamless integration between the host operating system and the guest operating system just by hiding the virtual monitor.
Related: Install and run macOS High Sierra on VMware
Platforms: MAC OS X
Key features: Cortana support in Windows 10, OS X’s quick look feature.
Parallels Workstation is a commercial proprietary software released on November 08, 2011. Five years ago, the developer of server virtualization software and desktops, “Parallels Inc.”, came forward with their very first software product. The platform for this hypervisor is x85-compatible. Basically, this hypervisor enables both the virtual machines to work with their processors, their RAM, their Floppy drive and hard disk, as a physical computer contains. Unlike Hyper-V, it provides pass-through drivers for the parallel port and USB devices.
VMware vs Parallels! Difference is subtle
Platforms: Linux, MAC, Windows
Key features: 32-bit and 64-bit installer, Control via command line.
QEMU stands for Quick Emulator. It is basically an open source hosted hypervisor which is free of cost. It was developed by Peer Maydell for synchronizing with various operating systems such as Linux, Microsoft Windows, MAC operating system and some other UNIX platforms. It majorly performs hardware virtualization. QEMU is flexible to work with because guest operating systems don’t require patching to run inside it. A very different feature of this virtual machine is that it stores virtual disk images in a special format (qcow or qcow2). This only takes up the disk space in the guest operating system. It also has a VNC server that allows the user to access the screen of the guest Operating system.
The virtual hardware support is limited but supports a wide range of processors including ARM, MIPS and other (Virtual Box support only 32-bit and 64-bit CPU architecture).
Platforms: MAC OS X
Key features: Upto 5k iMAC monitor support natively (MAC)
VMware fusion was developed by VMware Inc. on June 22, 2017. It is a commercial proprietary software which was designed primarily for Macintosh computers. VMware was written in C, C++ and x86 Assembly. It is a hypervisor that allows Intel-based Macs to run an operating system such as Linux, Microsoft Windows, NetWare. This marked the entry of VMware in MAC based x86 virtualization. The latest version contains bug fixes and security updates.
It comes down that both free and paid version of Fusion provides the ability to run Windows from the Bootcamp partition as a guest operating instance so there will be no need to reboot your computer back and forth to switch from MAC to Windows (applies when your host computer is running on MAC OS). Although, Bootcamp is the free option to run Windows on MAC computers without any virtual machine software it needs to reboot your computer to take full advantage of hardware to gain better performance and stability. But the Fusion does have 5k native iMac display support as well as retina settings. You can use it’s unity mode to launch apps from MAC dock as if it’s native app.
Earlier it was known as VMware GSX Server which can say as Ground Storm X. It is a free though closed source software developed by VMware Inc. on October 26, 2009. VMware Server provides x86 compatible platform. The number of features is comparatively less than that of other software available for purchase, but still, it works well enough for the users. One of the notable features of VMware Server is that it can preserve as well as it can revert to a particular snapshot of each virtual machine within the same environment. Such virtual machines don’t even have a specific interface for cloning virtual machines.
get VM server
Hyper Viridian, formerly known as Windows Server Virtualization, is a component of Windows server and was released alongside Windows server 2008. Hyper V can create virtual machines on x84-64 systems running windows. The final version of this native hypervisor was released on June 26, 2008. Its best-known feature is that it can expose a particular virtual machine to one or more networks. Hyper-V comes with some limitations like it does not allows the host operating system’s optical drives to pass through the operating system of guest virtual machines.
Which Virtual machine software is best for you?
Virtual Machines have their sort of merits on computers. Firstly, you do not have to leave or remove the current one because virtual machines can experiment with the other operating system. Then you can always test the newest versions of the operating systems, such as Windows or Mac. Virtual Machines are user-friendly and work efficiently, as easy as opening a new application.
It is not time-consuming as you can avoid various switching and it becomes easy to format hard disks. They are entirely separate from your computer as they will not interfere or damage your software. Virtual Machines allows you to run one operating system surpassing another operating system. The experience of the user remains same on both the virtual machines. When you get a virtual machine on your operating system, it ultimately behaves like you have a separate computer.
- Parallels Workstation
Last updated on September 3rd, 2019 at 10:57 am
Here is the list of best Virtual Machine VM software for Mac. There is so many software available for every task but in the same way, it becomes hard to pick out one. Well, no worries we are here to provide you with the best and in-depth guide which we have listed after hours of research.
All the VM software which we have mentioned below are used by our team and on the basis of experience and combining with the other user’s reviews for software, we are arranging them from higher priority to lower.
Before going for the Virtual Machine software, let us try to make some definitions clear. If you are already known with them, you are welcome to skip and directly read our top VM software.
What is a
Every computer is specified for one Operating System but Virtual Machine (VM) is an application that enables you to run multiple OS on the same device. Suppose you are having Mac and by default it has macOS, but if you have to add Windows OS on your Mac then you need a Virtual Machine software.
The reason why users switching to Virtual Machine software is its ease of working and smooth operations. If choosing the
Are there free options for Virtual Machine?
Nothing great comes for free! Similar is the case for Virtual Machine too. Although there are many VM software which offers you a completely free license even for enterprise usage but going for paid is a
Alternatives to Virtual Machine
As you already know what exactly the Virtual Machine is. Basically you can add one more Operating System to existing one. The best alternative to VM software is using the other way without complete setup of OS. Suppose if you need to use only productivity apps, games that run on Windows then you can use the integrated software without going for the VM software. We have listed this on 5th place and if you are interested you can try if.
CrossOver from CodeWeavers gives you to access the Windows application on your Mac.
5 Best Virtual Machine Software for Mac
1. Parallels Desktop
If you are looking for the best solution then go for Parallels Desktop without any second thought. Definitely, a thumbs up to its great features and ease of usage. Good User Experience, super fast speed, quick in file transferring, and lot more it offers.
Parallels Desktop Overview
- Seamless: Without switching to the other or previous OS, you can directly operate the different OS on a single screen. In this way, you can easily transfer files with drag and drop option.
- Easy Setup: The best thing is Parallels Desktop automatically detects what you require. If you are going to download Windows then it automatically pop-up the Windows download option and save your time.
- Lightning-fast: Most of the VMs are heavy and slow down the Mac speed but Parallels Desktop is lightning-fast and runs everything without slowing down your Mac speed.
- Choose your view: Use Coherence Mode for working Windows applications without actually opening Windows OS or set the complete screen of your Mac to the Windows screen. Choose whatever suits you.
Parallels Desktop Discount Offers
(Coupon Code automatically update the price at checkout page)
Plans from Parallels Desktop
Parallels Desktop is available in the different licenses. You can use Parallels Desktop for Mac, Pro, or Business License with different supported languages. Our reader gets a special discount on the
2. VMware Fusion
VMware Fusion is another top choice when we look for the best VM software for Mac. You can easily run Windows on your Mac and other hundreds of OS with more productivity, better security, and Agile. VMware Fusion allows users to run multiple apps across the OS without shutting any individual OS.
For Business users, VMware provides a powerful and secure desktop with better access to the
VMware Fusion Overview
- Powerful graphics: Normally 2D graphics are well shown on all VM but when we see for 3D graphics, many VM software can not be up to the expectations. VMware has powerful graphics for 3D so that you can easily work on designing platforms such as AutoCAD, Solid Works.
- Unity View Mode: With this mode, you can easily run any Windows apps directly from the Dock even if you have minimized the Windows OS.
- Third-party software integration: VMware provides you with an API with which you can integrate with other apps on the same platform.
- Secure VM encryption: VMware provides you with secure VM encryption. This is best in class security for all the data, apps you are working with.
VMware Fusion Discount Offers
(Coupon Code automatically update the price at checkout page)
Plans from VMware Fusion
VMware Fusion and VMware Fusion Pro are the two plans that come under the
Don’t miss the special offer that VMware offers to our readers. You can get the best price for VMware Fusion.
VirtualBox from Oracle is another powerful tool in Virtual Machine category. It is well defined for home as well as enterprise-level users. It is free software which is compatible with your Mac.
We found VirtualBox little outdated but if you are looking for a freeware then definitely you must try this. Let us have a quick check on the features it offers.
Oracle VM VirtualBox Overview
- iSCSI support: With this, you can directly connect with iSCSI storage server without going through the host system.
- Multiprocessing hardware support: Oracle VM VirtualBox can present up to 32 virtual CPUs to each virtual machine.
- Remote machine display: With an extension, you can have access to any running Virtual Machine.
Plans from Oracle VM VirtualBox
Oracle VM VirtualBox provides you with a completely free version for both home and enterprise usage.
QEMU is another free Virtual Machine software that runs on macOS to provide you Windows Operating System. At a first look, QEMU is looking like an advanced, lightweight, easy setup option. It has decent emulation speed as it uses dynamic translation.
- Full system emulation: This gives you full access to run Windows and its associated applications on your Mac.
- User mode emulation: Choose the mode what looks good for you.
- Virtualization: Run KVM and Xen virtual machines with near
Plans from QEMU
QEMU is a free VM software so you can use it on your Mac for completely free. Just hit the Download option and follow instructions to install it on your Mac.
CrossOver is an application you can use it on your Mac to run every application you run with Windows OS. It exactly not a Virtual Machine but a convenient way to run applications on Mac. You can easily integrate the Windows applications with macOS in order to use apps right from the dock. CrossOver lets you run all productive software, utility programs, and games all in one application on your Mac.
If your only purpose is to use Windows applications on Mac then this is the best recommendation.
- Run Windows software without rebooting: You do not require any rebooting, just install CrossOver and directly start using Windows applications on Mac. Now there is no issue of transferring files from one platform to another
- One-click installation: This is easy to install and instantly you can CrossOver. Once you have clicked the INSTALL button, rest everything can be taken care by CrossOver itself.
- Superfast speed: Run every application as its native speed. You won’t loose and speed of the applications you are using on Mac and this helps in providing the best gaming experience.
- Seamless integration: While using CrossOver you do not require to transfer files from one file storage to others so everything is available in one place and you have seamless integration with other applications.
CrossOver Discount Offers
(Coupon Code automatically update the price at checkout page)
Plans from CrossOver
These are the top 5 Best Virtual Machine Software for Mac. You can choose according to your requirement. Many of the above offer you a free trial version so you can try them for free before buying.
I hope you find the best one for you out of the above listed Best VM Software for Mac. As per our experience of usage, we definitely recommend you to go for either Parallels Desktop or VMware. On our result, we found both of them are amazing software to work with and nothing goes wrong while using them.
Windows Virtual Pc For Mac
And here is the quick deal for our readers only, you can save up to 20% on both Parallels Desktop and VMware Fusion on this promotional season.
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Virtual Platform For Mac Computers
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