Virtualbox on ARM-based Macs

Discussions related to using VirtualBox on Mac OS X hosts.

Virtualbox on ARM-based Macs

Postby scottgus1 » 29. Nov 2020, 04:56

Apple is making Macs with ARM-based CPUs, and the question has been raised if Virtualbox will run on these Macs.

Virtualbox is an x86 computer hardware simulator. Virtualbox uses and is tuned to x86 CPU instructions, and runs in the x86 environment.

Virtualbox is not an emulator, so it cannot translate ARM instructions to an x86 computer, nor x86 instructions to an ARM computer. Virtualbox is not officially compiled for ARM.

Regrettably this means that Virtualbox in its present form will not run on the ARM-based Macs.

The Virtualbox developers do not reveal their plans for future releases of Virtualbox, so we on the forum do not and cannot know if Virtualbox will ever support the ARM-based Macs in the future.

If Virtualbox ever does get translated to ARM it is highly likely that it will only be able to run VMs with ARM operating systems, not x86 operating systems like Windows, Linux, or OSX10/Big Sur & descendants.
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