How To Program For Windows On A Mac

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  1. How To Program For Windows On A Mac Laptop
  2. How To Program For Windows On A Mac Computer
  3. How To Run Windows Program On A Mac
  4. Installing Windows On A Mac
  5. Install Windows Programs On Mac

Your Mac will restart and load back into Windows. You’ll want to make sure your copy of Windows 10 is up to date. Step 1: Click the Start button, followed by the Gear icon located on the start. Windows programs will still not run natively on the Mac OS, but software like Apple Boot Camp and Parallels Desktop for Mac allow you to run Windows on an Intel-based Mac. This enables you to install and run Windows programs on your Mac, through the Windows interface.

  • Aug 31, 2020 The best ways to run Windows 10 on a Mac Two business-class virtualization tools, macOS’s own Windows partition feature, and two hobbyist-oriented tools give you plenty of options to have your.
  • If you have a Windows disc and license handy—especially Windows 7—it makes Microsoft's operating system feel like it was made to fit inside a Mac. G/O Media may get a commission Try it before.

Mac vs Windows. Windows vs Mac. Why choose if you can get the best of both worlds by dual booting? Install Windows on Mac so you can jump back and forth from one operating system to another on the same computer.

By now, the practice is well-established and Windows can work on Mac well. In this article, we’ll have a deep look at installing Windows on Mac. Don’t worry, we’ll have your back the whole way through!

Boot Camp for Mac vs virtualization software

If you want to install Windows on your Mac, you have two options. You can either use Mac Boot Camp, a native feature of the macOS operating system, or you can use a third party virtualization program. Both methods have their own pros and cons, so let’s dive in.

Boot Camp is built into the operating system of all Macs. If you go to your Applications > Utilities folder, you’ll see the Boot Camp Assistant app. It makes the separate partition on your hard drive for installing and running Windows. Once Windows is installed in Boot Camp, every time you turn on your Mac, you will be asked to choose the operating system you want to run. This means that in order to switch from macOS to Windows, you need to reboot your computer.


  • built into your operating system
  • easy to use — Boot Camp Assistant guides you through the installation process
  • puts less strain on your Mac’s memory and processing power
  • completely free (not Windows of course)
  • easy to update


  • you need to reboot your computer to switch between the systems
  • transferring data between operating systems isn’t easy

Virtualization programs are third-party applications that allow to install a separate operating system on one machine. They run like any other app on your Mac, so you can see the entire Windows desktop within a window on your computer.

How To Program For Windows On A Mac

Among the most popular virtualization programs are VirtualBox, Parallels, and VMware. Each one has its peculiarities, but we’ll try to sum up what they have in common.


  • you can run both operating systems at the same time
  • easy file integration between systems


  • you need at least 8 GB of RAM for Mac to run smoothly
  • virtualization apps are not cheap
  • updates are not free
How To Program For Windows On A Mac

Depending on your specific needs, you can choose the option that works best for you. But we suggest using Boot Camp. It’s a free native feature of your operating system, running directly on your hardware. Therefore, it will be faster than any other method. And below, you’ll find all information on how to run Boot Camp on your Mac.

How to use Boot Camp: Preparing your Mac

1. Check the system requirements

Some versions of Windows require a certain processor and more hard drive space than the others. Therefore, you have to check the documentation that came with your copy of Windows to learn what you need.

You also need to make sure that your Mac is compatible with the version of Windows you want to install. For instance, Windows 10 is supported on these models:

  • MacBook (2015 and later)
  • MacBook Pro (2012 and later)
  • MacBook Air (2012 and later)
  • iMac (2012 and later)
  • Mac Mini (2012 and later)
How To Program For Windows On A Mac

2. Clean up your hard drive

How To Program For Windows On A Mac Laptop

You need to have at least 55 GB of free disk space on your startup drive for installing Windows on a Mac. And if you don’t feel like spending the next several hours cleaning your Mac manually, you can use a powerful utility CleanMyMac X to find and remove all the junk from your startup disk.

CleanMyMac has everything to finish the 3-hour task of cleaning your hard drive in less than 5 minutes. It will scan every inch of your system and remove gigabytes of junk in two clicks. By the way, CleanMyMac finds about 75 GB of junk on average — more than enough for a smooth Windows installation.

Here’s how to clean your Mac with CleanMyMac X:

  1. Download CleanMyMac here.
  2. Run the app and click Scan.
  3. Click Run.

That’s it! Gigabytes of junk are gone from your computer forever.

3. Back up your Mac

Finally, you should also perform a backup of your Mac in case something goes wrong. Although, it happens very rarely, it’s always better to back up your important data. There are a few methods of backing up your Mac, so choose the most convenient one for you.

You can make automatic backups with Time Machine — software that comes with your Mac. It backs up all data, so you can recover individual files or your entire system from your backups. You may also store files in iCloud and access them whenever you need. iCloud comes with 5 GB of free storage but you can upgrade it any time. If you have an external storage device, you can copy some files and folders on it.

How to get a windows program to run on a mac

We do recommend you to back up your Mac before installing Windows as it minimizes the chance of losing important data.

How to Install Windows with Boot Camp

Here’s how to install Boot Camp. The installation can be a little time consuming, but it is by no means difficult. Check out the details below.

Step 1: Get a Windows disk image

First of all, you need to get the Windows disk image (ISO file) from the Microsoft website. Here’s how to download it:

  1. Visit the Windows 10 disk image download website.
  2. Go to the Select edition menu and choose Windows 10.
  3. Click Confirm.
  4. Choose the language of installation and click Confirm.
  5. Click 64-bit Download and then click Save.

The ISO file now will be downloaded to your Mac.

Step 2: Open Boot Camp Assistant

Boot Camp Assistant guides you through installing Windows on your Mac. You just have to follow the onscreen instructions. To launch the Boot Camp Assistant, go to Applications > Utilities folder. Click continue and Boot Camp for Mac will automatically locate the ISO file on your system.

Step 3: Create a partition for Windows

When you are done with the Assistant, your Mac restarts to the Windows installer. When you are asked where you want to install Windows, choose the BOOTCAMP partition and click Format.

*Note that this step is only required if you’re using a flash drive or optical drive to install Windows. In other cases, the right partition will be selected and formatted for you automatically.

Step 4: Install Windows

To finish the installation, you have to follow the onscreen instructions. Take a long breath — the next 12 steps may seem like climbing Everest, but it’s much easier than you think. Here’s how to install Windows on a Mac:

  1. Choose your ISO file and click the Install button.
  2. Type your Password and click OK. You will see the Windows Setup screen.
  3. Select your language.
  4. Click Install Now.
  5. Type your product key if you have it. Otherwise, click 'I don’t have a product key'.
  6. Select Windows 10 Pro or Windows Home and then click Next.
  7. Click Drive 0 Partition X: BOOTCAMP.
  8. Click Next. Windows 10 will be installed.
  9. When the Setup screen appears, click either Use Express Settings or Customize Your Installation. We recommend you to choose the Customize button and disable most, if not all of the switches.
  10. Then you’ll be asked to create an account. Type a username. You can also add a password if you want.
  11. Click Next.
  12. Choose whether you want to use the Cortana personal assistant or not. You can disable it by clicking Not Now button.

Windows will boot fully so you can use it normally.

On the Welcome to Boot Camp Installer box, click Next and accept the terms in the license agreement. Then click Install to proceed. When the installer completes, click Finish to reboot your machine.

Step 5: Restart your Mac

By default, your Mac will still boot to macOS. To access Windows, you have to turn your Mac off and then turn it on while holding the Option (Alt) key. You will be asked from which drive you’d like to boot.

Note that while in Windows, the Mac’s Command key functions as the Windows key, while the Option key functions as the Alt key. If you have a Touch Bar, you’ll see a complete set of buttons, similar to the Control Strip in macOS.

How to remove Windows from your Mac

If for some reasons you don’t need Windows anymore, you can permanently remove it from your Mac. Follow these steps:

  1. Boot into macOS, launch Boot Camp Assistant and click Continue.
  2. The Assistant will show the existing Windows partition. Select it.
  3. Click Restore when you see the Restore Disk to a Single Volume option.

The Boot Camp Assistant will automatically remove Windows from your Mac.

Warning: All data, including software and files, stored on the Windows partition will be deleted, so make the backup copies first.

That may seem like a lot of steps, but it doesn’t take all that long to install Windows on a Mac. Now you can enjoy two operating systems and switch between them right when you need. Cheers!

It’s no doubt that macOS has a great and thriving ecosystem. It’s often the perfect laptop for photographers, video editors, programmers, administrators, and many other fields. Unfortunately, there’s just some software that’s only available on Windows that would make some people’s lives over on Mac so much easier. Sometimes you need to be able to open up an Excel sheet and write down some numbers, or there are other times where Microsoft Word has to be used for a project. Suffice to say, there are programs that are exclusive to Windows that many Mac users need to are envious to use.

The good news is is that there’re plenty of ways to get Windows software working on macOS. Here’s how you can get those programs running your Mac in no time.

How To Program For Windows On A Mac

Running Windows on a Mac Using Boot Camp

Apple recognizes that there’s some reasons why people have to use Windows, and there’s just no way around that. So, they’ve come up with a pretty neat solution for those who need access to that type of software: Boot Camp. Boot Camp is a way that you can install Windows alongside macOS. The process is called dual-booting. You can only use one operating system at a time, but you’ll be able to pick and choose which operating system you need to use based on your needs.

Maybe you’re a gamer, but rely on Apple exclusive applications for your day job in video editing. Being a gamer, you know just how awful macOS is for gaming. By dual-booting, you can do your video editing by day, shut off your Mac at the end of the day, and then boot into Windows for some evening or late night gaming. That’s just one example on how this can work.

Of course, dual-booting isn’t for everyone. Sometimes you might need to run a macOS application alongside a Windows application. Unfortunately, you can’t do this natively with macOS, or even through dual-booting. Like we said, dual-booting only allows you to work with one operating system at a time, so for something like running application alongside each other, you will need to use a virtual machine.

How To Program For Windows On A Mac Computer

Using a Virtual Machine to Run Windows on a Mac

Virtual machines software is something you can install on macOS, which will let you run a “virtual” operating system — the virtual part isn’t necessarily important here: all you need to know is that a virtual machine allows you to run another operating system in another window on macOS. You can choose to run various versions of Windows, Linux distributions, and you can even get macOS working on it.

Before we get started, it’s worth noting that a virtual machine can take up a considerable amount of your computer’s system resources. You need to allocate disk space and memory to these virtual machines. As far as memory goes, you should allocate at least 4-6GB to a virtual machine, with the latter being the most preferable. Anything lower, and your virtual machine is going to run at a crawl, often taking minutes to even respond to an action. With that in mind, your primary system should have around 16GB of RAM or memory for optimal performance. You can use a virtual machine with less, but again, you’ll take a huge performance hit.

We recommend using VirtualBox for Mac. This is a free piece of virtual machine software that you can download from Oracle. You can download it for free here.

Once downloaded run the installer. Launch the program, and you should see something like this.

  1. To create a Windows 10 virtual machine, hit the New button near the top of the screen.
  2. In the pop-up, give your Virtual Machine a name. You can call it whatever you want. Under the Type drop down, select Microsoft Windows. And then, under the Version drop down, select Windows 10 (64-bit).
  3. Next, we need to allocate RAM to our virtual machine, set it to 4096 MB (4 GB) and hit Next. VirtualBox will recommend 2GB, but you’re going to experience some horrible performance at that. Windows 10 should run fine at 4GB, but if you want speed and snappy performance, anywhere between 6- and 8GB is optimal.
  4. Now, within the screen for creating our virtual hard disk, select the option that says Create a virtual hard disk now.
  5. Now, select the hard disk file type, the default option VDI (Virtual Disk Image) will work for most people.
  6. Then, select the storage type and click Next. We recommend choosing the Fixedsize option, as it will run the virtual machine faster, but Dynamically Allocated will also work if you’re limited on disk space.
  7. Next, we’ll need to select the save location as well as the disk size and then click Create. We recommend giving it at least 40GB of space — Microsoft recommends 20GB for 64-bit Windows 10, but you always need more than their minimum recommended specifications for additional apps and files.
  8. Congratulations, you’ve created the virtual machine! Now all you need to do is install Windows on it. You’ll need to create an ISO image for Windows 10, and then under the System option in VirtualBox, you’ll need to change the Boot Order to Optical first. Select Optical, and then make sure it sits above Hard Disk. Press OK.

How To Run Windows Program On A Mac

Now, you’re ready to start your Virtual Machine! Select it in Virtual Box and press the Start button with the green arrow. Your Virtual Machine will launch and take you through the steps of installing Windows 10, and once finished, you can install your Windows 10 programs as normal.

Using Remote Desktop to Operate Windows on a Mac

Installing Windows On A Mac

The final way to use Windows programs on Mac is through a remote desktop. It’s a lot less involved than creating a Virtual Machine, but will require you to have a spare Windows machine, whether at work or at home.

You’ll need to use remote desktop software on your Mac and PC. You can use something like TeamViewer, though it usually requires a license as well as someone to give you a PIN code for accessing your PC. You can follow the steps here to set all that up, though make sure to install the software on your Mac instead of your phone.

Install Windows Programs On Mac

It’s worth noting that, if you’re trying to decide on what remote desktop software to use, GoToMyPC is probably the best here. It’s designed for personal use, so it won’t require you to always have that PIN code for access. It’ll cost you around $20 per month, depending on your type of usage, although corporate usage costs more. Get started with GoToMyPC here.


As you can see, using Windows applications while on macOS is a complicated, long, and arduous task. If you’re looking for efficiency and time, the best way is to either dual-boot Windows 10 with Boot Camp or have a secondary Windows 10 PC available for use.

How do you use Windows apps while on macOS? Be sure to let us know in the comments section below!