6 Best Windows Emulators for Mac To Use In 2024

Summary: If you are eager to run that popular Windows app on your MacBook, then you should definitely consider taking the help of a Windows Emulator App. In this article, we’ll review some of the Best PC Emulator Software (2024) to simulate a Windows environment on your macOS.

Most Windows users wish to replace their Operating System with a macOS one. But they are not alone, sometimes even Mac users wish to experience certain Windows software & programs on their machine. If you are sick of limitations to toggle between Windows & Mac as needed, try using Top Notch Windows Emulator Tools For Mac (2024).

What is a Windows emulator and why is it necessary?

A Windows emulator is a software that allows a computer to run on a non-Windows operating system, such as macOS or Linux. Essentially, the emulator creates a virtual environment that simulates the Windows OS & Settings, so that the non-Windows computer can run those OS-specific apps as if it was a Windows PC. Cool, right?

Windows emulators work by translating the commands and processes used by Windows software into a language that can be understood by the host operating system. People use Windows emulators for all sorts of things, like work, gaming, and running specialized software for trying & testing.

There are a bunch of different emulators out there, free and paid, each with its own quirks and features.

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6 Best Windows Emulator For Mac (2024)

To start running Windows on Mac, these are the best options you can consider using:

1. Boot Camp

Well, Boot Camp comes pre-installed with all Macs and it is a reliable tool that assists users to experience Windows Operating System on macOS. It even presents an excellent ‘dual-boot’ mode that lets users install both Windows and Mac on two different partitions. As soon as you switch on your Mac, you’ll be asked whether you would like to enter in Windows or macOS. Moreover, it is worthy to mention the fact, the Boot Camp is compatible with Intel machines only. To know more about the utility at Apple Support Page!


  • Customizable Touch Bar for adding Windows-specific features.
  • Improved Graphics Performance for gaming and graphics-intensive apps.
  • Windows Precision Touchpad Support for a better touchpad experience on Macs.
  • Improved Audio Driver for better audio quality and compatibility with Windows apps.


  • Built in for Mac working on Intel 
  • Access Windows games on Mac.
  • Setup and usage is easy.


  • Not available for latest Mac models.

NOTE: With Apple’s transition to the M1 processor in 2020, the company decided to not develop Boot Camp for the M-series Macs. Currently, it is compatible with Intel machines only!

Price: Free

Try Boot Camp Today!

Boot camp

Why Should You Use Boot Camp? = Comes pre-installed on your Mac, you don’t need to install any additional tools on your machine to run Windows OS.

2. Virtual Box

Virtual Box is an open-source and free Windows emulator available for both home and enterprise users. In fact, it can be operated not only on Mac but it does support a variety of other operating systems like Linux, Windows, etc. It ensures that you can run Windows programs or the entire operating system just like any other app without making significant alterations in the configuration of the system. Just ensure, while you are downloading this best Windows Emulator, you have at least 8 GB of free disk space.


  • Supports nested virtualization on Intel processors.
  • Has improved CPU, memory, disk access, and graphics performance.
  • Has better 3D acceleration and multi-monitor support.
  • Supports IPv6, PXE boot, and jumbo frames.


  • Easily runs Windows games & apps.
  • Free for Home users & students.
  • Does not require a reboot.


  • Lacks advanced features.

Price: Free for Home Users, $50/User for Perpetual User License & $1000/Socket for Perpetual Socket License.

Try Virtual Box Today!

Virtual Box

Why Should You Use Virtual Box? = It’s an open-source tool, which means it is free to use for individuals

3. Parallels Desktop

Well, Parallels Desktop is one of the most popular and best Windows emulators for Mac available today. It allows you to run multiple guest operating systems such as Windows, Chrome OS, DOS, Ubuntu, Debian, Leopard, macOS X, and Debian. Additionally, it includes handy file archiving features and drives cleanup tools to provide a seamless experience while running Windows programs on Mac.


  • Allows users to launch Windows apps from the dock.
  • Comes with a Travel Mode to extend the battery life.
  • Allows users to view the overall resource usage.
  • Supports One-Click tuning.


  • Fast speed.
  • Does not require rebooting Mac.
  • Launch apps using Taskbar.


  • Not available for all macOS versions.

Price: $74.99 for Standard Edition (Suitable for Home & Students), $89.99 for Pro Edition (Suitable for Developers, Testers & Power Users), $112.49 for Business Edition (For Teams & IT Deployments).

Try Parallels Desktop Today!

Parallels Desktop

Why Should You Use Parallels Desktop? = It works at a fast rate and you don’t need to reboot to implement the changes.

4. Wine

If you are some who operates on older versions of Mac but wishes to experience the newest versions of Windows applications, Wine is the ultimate solution for you. Although, you’ll be able to enjoy only one or two Windows programs consecutively while using the Windows emulator. Apart from this, it is also important to note that Wine doesn’t support running the entire Windows OS on your Mac as a virtual machine. Similar to Virtual Box, Wine Windows emulator for Mac is available for free of cost and can be downloaded without spending a single penny.


  • Open-source and free emulator with no licensing costs.
  • Capable of running Windows apps on Unix-like OS, including Linux, macOS & BSD.
  • Supports a broad range of Windows apps, including Microsoft Office & Adobe Photoshop.
  • Receives regular updates and bug fixes for improved performance & compatibility.


  • Lightweight software.
  • Freeware.
  • Updated timely.


  • Learning curve.

Price: Free

Try Wine Windows Emulator Today!



Why Should You Use Wine Windows Emulator? = If you are looking for a tool that only runs Windows apps.

5. CrossOver

CrossOver, designed & developed by CodeWeavers is a paid Windows emulator for Mac. It’s an open-source application and doesn’t support running a virtual machine on your Mac. In addition to this, users don’t need to get a Windows license to operate seamlessly. Using CrossOver, you can effortlessly run numerous Windows apps alongside Mac applications without rebooting your device. The Windows emulator offers a free trial so that you can utilize the program before purchasing.


  • Fixed the memory issues on Ventura.
  • Hassle-free installation, setup & usage process.
  • Stable and reliable performance with smooth macOS integration.
  • Improved compatibility for running Windows apps on Linux & Chrome OS.


  • Runs without Windows license.
  • Good user interface.
  • Supports a number of apps and games.


  • Limited features in the free version.

Price: Free Trial, Starts at $59.95

Try CrossOver Today!



Why Should You Use CrossOver? = Supports running a variety of popular Windows applications and games without any hiccups.

6. VMWare Fusion

Our list of Best Windows Emulators for Mac is concluded by VMWare Fusion. Unlike most of the software mentioned here, VMWare Fusion allows users to run Windows in full-screen so that your Mac feels like a PC. It even allows you to run individual Windows software parallel to Mac apps so that you can make the most out of your machine. This Windows emulator works quite similarly to Parallels Desktop, the only difference is – – Parallels is authorized on each Mac premise while Fusion on the other hand is authorized per client.


  • New Guest OS support – Windows 11, Windows Server 2022, RHEL 9,
  • Now supports running Arm virtual machines on Apple Silicon Macs.
  • Choose between security (Full) and performance (Fast) options for encryption.
  • Improved Graphics Support OpenGL 4.3 for Windows & Linux on Intel Macs as well as in Linux arm64 virtual machines on Apple Silicon Macs.


  • Supports Touch Bar functionality.
  • Mac apps can run in the background.
  • Easily access Mac and Windows together.


  • Can make your Mac slow.

Price: $79.99 for the Standard version, $119.99 for the Pro version

Try VMWare Fusion Today!

VMWare Fusion


Why Should You Use VMWare Fusion? = Because you get the ability to run more types of operating systems other than Windows.

If you are eager to learn about the Best Virtualization Software for Windows, click here!

Frequently Asked Questions: Best Windows Emulators For Mac (2024)

Q1. When To Use An Emulator?

Well, emulators are often used by developers & product testers to check how a specific software interacts with underlying hardware or a blend of hardware & software. Users who wish to know whether a firmware update will result in problems for your programs should use an Emulator to find that.

Q2. Is It Safe To Use Emulators?

Emulator solutions are generally quite safe. However, you need to be vigilant about the source of downloading the emulator. If you consider installing the program from reputed and trustworthy sources, your device is cent percent safe!

Q3. What Emulators Work On Mac?

There are a variety of options available when it comes to choosing the Best Mac Emulator Software - - Microsoft Virtual PC for Mac, XBOX 360 Emulator for Mac, DosBox, OpenEmu, and so on.

Q4.What Does a PC Emulator Offer for macOS?

PC Emulation Software allows users to simulate a Windows environment on their macOS. The application comprehensively addresses the original hardware/software environment (this includes access to your OS & installed apps) and recreates it on your current machine.

Wrapping Up Our List Of Best Windows Emulator Software For Mac (2024)

Emulation is a process of simulating another kind of device on your current machine. The technique is more cost-effective as compared to virtualization and holds the potential to reproduce the behavior of the same hardware on your computer. With that being said, all the aforementioned PC Emulators will help you handle most Windows apps on your Mac with ease. I would personally recommend Virtual Box as it has the latest AMD and Intel hardware support, allowing you to have fast execution times.

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