You Can Now Run VirtualBox on Apple Silicon (M1 / M2)

Oct 22, 2022 - 10 Comments

VirtualBox on Apple Silicon Macs

Mac VirtualBox users will be happy to know that VirtualBox now runs natively on Apple Silicon ARM processors, including the M1 and M2.

VirtualBox is virtualization software that allows you to run other operating systems in containers on your Mac directly from the application, for example you can run Linux or Windows directly within VirtualBox, and without having to use dual-booting or anything else. It does this by virtualizing hardware (that you can adjust to allocate RAM, storage capacity, etc), so the operating system itself doesn’t know that it’s not running on actual hardware.

While technically in beta, anyone can get access to the developer preview beta ARM build of VirtualBox through the VirtualBox website. As usual, VirtualBox is completely free to download and to use.

There are many other options available for virtualization, including the free UTM app which allows you to easily run Windows 11 on an Apple Silicon Mac for example, but there’s also paid solutions including VMWare and Parallels.

VirtualBox for Apple Silicon Macs

If the topic of virtualization interests you, check out some more of our posts on the subject.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Mac OS, News

10 Comments

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  1. Pat K says:

    Having some trouble using it. I get error that CPU is unsupported. How are you guys getting around this?

    • Karan says:

      Just go to Settings->System and there tap on the acceleration tab.
      Now choose your paravirtualization interface as “Hyper V”. That will fix it. However, My ubuntu is running very slow so I don’t know the solution for that.

  2. Alec McNamara says:

    Installed WindowsXP SP3, runs fine, a little slow but no crashes.

    • Pat K says:

      I’ve tried to install Centos but it keeps telling me the CPU (m1) is unsupported. Are you doing anything special to get around this? Thanks

  3. Tadeusz says:

    Unfortunately, the link to M1/M2 on the VirtualBox page is broken

  4. Charles says:

    Looks like they’ve pulled the link. The page now shows as not found.

  5. WmCB says:

    The link to the Arm beta is often bad, just go to the directory to find it: https://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/7.0.2/

  6. Eric F says:

    Hi… I might be way off base, but the link to the Developer Preview at https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads is bad. Looking at the file listing at https://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/7.0.2, the correct link is: https://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/7.0.2/VirtualBox-7.0.2_BETA4-154219-macOSArm64.dmg

    The link on the wiki Downloads page is https://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/7.0.2/VirtualBox-7.0.2-154219-macOSArm64.dmg

    Am I correct? Hope this helps.

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