How to Run Windows on Mac – Parallels Desktop Overview

Just Released!

Run Windows on Mac

Parallels Desktop 15 for Mac

  • Optimized for the latest Windows 10 updates and macOS Catalina (10.15)
  • Play PC games and run demanding graphics software
  • Work with Windows-based accounting and trading software
  • Run all your favorite Windows software on your Mac, MacBook, or iMac!

Over 7 Million Users and Praised by Experts

“Of all the ways to run Windows on a Mac, Parallels Desktop is my favorite because it just works. It's fast, it's reliable, and there's no need to futz about with confusing setting or convoluted setup processes.”
– Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, ZDNet
“Unlike Apple’s Boot Camp, Parallels lets you run both operating systems at the same time.”
– Larry Magid, Forbes
”Parallels Desktop is the easiest, fastest, and most tightly integrated app for running Windows apps or the Windows desktop in Apple OS X.”
–Edward Mendelson, PCMag.com
“It’s always been astonishing that it’s faster to start up a Parallels PC than a real one. On my MacBook Air, I’m up and running in Windows six seconds after I double-click the Parallels icon.”
– David Pogue, Yahoo Tech
“The latest version of Parallels, the popular Windows virtualization tool for Mac OS X, almost feels like its trolling Apple.”
– Engadget
“The software has been iterating over a decade and now makes Windows feel like part of the macOS. You can also virtualize Linux, Android, and just about anything that runs on Intel chips including another instance of macOS—great for testing macOS Betas!”
–9to5Mac

Fast, Powerful, and Easy

Whether you need to run Windows programs that don’t have Mac versions, or you're making the switch from PC to Mac and need to transfer your data, Parallels Desktop has you covered.

Seamless

Use Windows side by side with macOS® (no restarting required) on your MacBook®, MacBook Pro®, iMac®, iMac Pro®, Mac mini®, or Mac Pro®. Share files and folders, copy and paste images and text and drag and drop files between Mac and Windows applications.

Easy Setup

Parallels Desktop automatically detects what you need to get started so you're up and going within minutes. If you need Windows, you’ll be prompted to download and install Windows 10 or choose your existing Windows, Linux, Ubuntu, or Boot Camp® installation.

Lightning Fast

Graphic and resource-hungry Windows applications run effortlessly without slowing down your Mac. Run the most demanding applications such as Adobe® Photoshop®, Visual Studio®, or SketchUp®.

Choose Your View

Make Windows invisible while still using its applications in Coherence mode. If you’re new to Mac, you can set Windows to occupy your entire screen, so it looks just like it would if you were using a Windows PC.

See Parallels Desktop in Action

See some of the most popular features in Parallels Desktop 15.

What’s New in Version 15

Up to Date

Up to Date

Optimized for the latest Windows 10 updates and macOS Catalina (10.15).

Ultimate Flexibility

Ultimate Flexibility

Works with OS X, Windows 10, 8.1, and 7, Linux and Unix, and macOS Server. No more having to choose between PC or Mac.

Touch Bar

Touch Bar

Add Windows applications to Touch Bar for instant access and customization.

Connect Devices

Connect Devices

USB, USB-C, Thunderbolt and FireWire devices connect with Windows. Pair your Bluetooth® devices—including stylus pen and printer—to work with both Windows and macOS.

Retina Display Support

Retina® Display Support

Smart resizing and independent screen resolutions for separate displays.

One-Click Tuning

One-Click Tuning

Select productivity, games, design, software testing, or development, and Parallels Desktop will optimize your VM settings and performance for you.

Instant Access

Instant Access

Launch and access Windows applications right from the Mac Dock.

Save Disk Space

Save Disk Space

Get the most out of your Mac with automatic Disk Space optimization.

Office 365 Integration

Office 365 Integration

Allows Word, Excel, or PowerPoint documents in Safari to open in their native Windows Office app.

Works with Boot Camp

Works with Boot Camp

Reuse your existing Boot Camp installation. Converting a virtual machine from Boot Camp is easy, just follow our installation assistant at startup.

Volume License Key

Volume License Key

Unified volume license key, centralized license management, and advanced security features are available in Parallels Desktop Business Edition.

Travel Mode

Travel Mode

Extend battery life while away from a power source.

Parallels Toolbox

Bonus!
Parallels® Toolbox

Over 30 one-touch tools—clean your drive, take screenshots, download a video, and more—all with just a single click.

Remote Access

Bonus!
Remote Access

Remote access to your Mac from any iOS device, Android device, or browser with Parallels Access®.

24/7 Support

Premium 24/7 phone, email, and social support after activation.

Up to Date

Optimized for macOS Catalina (10.15), including support for Sidecar, plus Windows 10 future updates. Parallels Desktop continues to stay up to date so you can keep working without interruption—even when a new macOS, Windows or Linux release pops up.

Graphics

DirectX 11 support with the help of Apple Metal*. Now you can run graphic-intensive applications and games such as Autodesk 3ds Max 2020, Lumion, ArcGIS Pro, Master Series, FIFA 19, Age of Empires, Fallout 4 and more!

Integration

Save time with the new drag and drop feature that allows you to insert images directly into Windows applications from macOS screenshot previews, Safari and Photos. Plus, email a file right from the Finder context menu via your Windows email client in two clicks.

Connect More

Now you can connect devices to Window wirelessly via Bluetooth, including Logitech Craft keyboard, IRISPen, Android phone and many others.

Apple Sidecar

Use Apple Pencil in your favorite Windows applications with added tilt and eraser support. Extend your Windows applications on iPad as a second display with Sidecar plus Touch Bar options.

Linux

A wide variety of Linux distributions are supported in virtual machines. New in Parallels Desktop 15: Bluetooth, DRM support and more.

*macOS Mojave is required; macOS Catalina is recommended for the best performance.

  • Share Mac applications with Windows
  • Automatic resolution change
  • Single cloud storage space between Mac and Windows
  • Drag and drop files between Mac and Windows
  • Copy and paste files or text between Mac and Windows
  • Launch Windows applications right from the Dock
  • Move your PC to Mac in a few easy steps
  • Assign any USB devices to your Mac or Windows
  • Retina display support for Windows
  • Volume control synchronization
  • Open any site in Microsoft Explorer right from Safari® browser
  • Apply macOS Parental Control to Windows applications
  • Windows alerts in Mac Notification Center
  • Mac dictation inside Windows applications
  • See the number of unread emails in the Dock
  • “Reveal in Windows Explorer” in macOS files menu
  • Virtual machine encryption
  • Linked clones for VMs*
  • Vagrant provider*
  • 32 vCPUs and 128 GB vRAM*
  • Nested virtualization for Linux*
  • Drag and drop files in macOS guests
  • Real-time virtual disk optimization
  • Create VM from VHD and VMDK disks*
  • Drag and drop to create VM
  • Disk Space Wizard optimizes your disk space
  • Shared folders and printers for Linux VMs
  • Windows applications in Launchpad
  • Power Nap in Windows
  • Use Force Touch to look up definitions
  • New virtual machine wizard
  • Mission Control support
  • Presentation Wizard prevents most projector issues
  • Drop files onto Outlook to create a new message
  • Multi-language keyboard sync
  • Picture-in-Picture view
  • Share Bluetooth between Mac and Windows
  • macOS guest support
  • Spaces functionality for Windows applications
  • Mission Control exposes your Windows applications
  • DirectX support
  • Thunderbolt support
  • Licensing portal*
  • Firewire support
  • USB-C and USB 3.0 support
  • Work without risk with Snapshots
  • Safeguard your VM with encryption
  • 2 GB video memory support
  • Finder tabs work with Windows applications
  • AVX512 instruction set support
  • Mojave support
  • Disk usage optimizations
  • Report disk space left on Mac
  • Express installation of Windows 10
  • Native Mojave screenshots
  • Auto allocation of video memory
  • “Free Up Disk Space” wizard
  • Free OS downloads
  • Coherence for external displays
  • Continuity camera support
  • Touch Bar support
  • Shared smart card reader
  • Multi-monitor support
  • 4K shared camera support
  • CPU usage indicator
  • Mojave Quick Look support
  • Pressure sensitivity support
  • Resource usage monitor
  • OpenGL support
  • Offer to import Boot Camp
  • Auto-detect games keyboard
  • And many more…

*Available with Parallels Desktop Pro Edition and Business Edition subscriptions

Frequently Asked Questions

Run Windows On Mac

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