Parallels on M1 and Windows...questions

Parallels 18 is posting that more than 200,000 Windows apps on a Mac, including Office for Windows are working.

My question is:

Is this running x86 based windows?
If yes, has anyone tried this with XoJo apps targeted to Windows?

I have Parallels 17 on my Intel Based Mac. If I can run most of my windows stuff including XoJo apps targeted to Windows, I’d buy Parallels 18 for my M1 Mac mini.

Any helpful feedback would be great.

From their website: Resources & System Requirements | Parallels Desktop 19 for Mac

Supported Guest Operating Systems (Mac with Apple M1 chip):

Only ARM versions of operating systems are supported.

I only have Parallels 17 for my M1 MBP, but I don’t think this has changed for Parallels 18:

The VM has to run an ARM based version of Windows. In my case I have used both the Win10 ARM available to “Insiders” (but is not officially available for consumer purchase) and Win 11 ARM.

That said, once those are running, THEY can run x86 based apps. All of my Xojo compiled apps for Windows run fine in either VM. Compiled either for 32-bit Windows or 64-bit Windows.

The Xojo IDE itself will not run – it complains it must run on x86 architecture. However, the remote debugger stub runs, letting me run the IDE under macOS and “remote debug” to Windows on the same machine.

So to your original question: apps which target Windows and are compiled via Xojo as 32-bit or 64-bit Windows do seem to work fine for me. But in addition to Parallels, you will need an ARM based version of Windows to create the VM. I got mine free from Microsoft by joining the Insiders club after getting my first M1 mac.

Also note that Xojo2022R2 added support for building ARM64 applications for Windows (see their Roadmap ).


That’s what I’ve been thinking…but the wording makes me wonder if 200,000+ windows apps have been created for ARM versions of Windows. I’d like to install Parallels on the M1, but not if I’m limited to only ARM OSs.

Are you sure about that? I thought the Windows 11 ARM version could emulate Intel EXEs, but only x64 (64 bit) and not x86 (32 bit).

But I was using an earlier beta (of both Parallels, and Windows 11 ARM)

Well, it seems to do so. I have mostly compiled for 64 bit, but have an admittedly simple 32-bit *.exe which I last compiled in 2019 using Real Basic to create a stand-alone *.exe with no other support files needed. And it loads and runs fine. But is simplistic. (I was intentionally aiming here for a small distributable with no support files required.)

The C:\ drive has three folders related to holding installed apps:

  • Program Files
  • Program Files (Arm)
  • Program Files (x86)

Actually, looking in Program Files (x86) I do have other projects I compiled with Xojo for 32-bit Windows.

So yes, it does appear to handle both 32 bit and 64 bit builds for me, even with Parallels 17.

Microsoft says that most Windows apps run under Windows ARM. No need to create Windows ARM version.

Also parallels marketing never said 200,000+ using Windows ARM just Windows.

Edit: I mean, the windows app does not need to by ARM to be part of the 200,000. If your client use Windows ARM you should try to deliver an ARM application.

Working is not same as Makes sense or practical or good experience.

You get all right experience on native Windows Arm apps thats it.

yes it works extraordinary well.
I was able to launch and use an app made for borland database engine and win98 back in the days
it could work till win xp on a parallel intel mac. but the customer wanted to upgrade
we tried an m1 mbp with parallel 17 and windows 11 arm on it
the app was working ! user interface is completely outdated but it works !
the customer is using it for some months now and no complain.

there is an x86 emulator in win11 arm just like rosetta on macos that permits this.

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I have tested Xojo for Windows v2015 (so far) under Crossover, and it runs there without complaining about x86/ARM.
My windows code also compiles and debugs as I would expect.

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