If you want to run multiple operating systems on your computer simultaneously, then you need virtual machine software. It emulates space for installing additional operating systems on your device.
For example, you can use virtual machines to run macOS on a regular computer if you are a Windows user. The primary operating system is called host, whereas the one you are running on VM is referred to as a guest.
It is clear from the above description what virtual machines are and their primary purpose. So now, let’s take a look at the different VMs available in the online market. You will find lots of options to choose from, some paid and others are free to use. We have made a list of the Best Virtual Machine Software You can use on Windows Computer.
List of Best Virtual Machine Software to Use in 2021
- VMware Fusion
- Oracle VM VirtualBox
- Parallel Desktop
- Virtual Box
- Boot Camp
- Citrix Hypervisor
- Red Hat Virtualization
VMware Workstation is one of the oldest virtual machine software that you can use. It has a powerful interface with a wide range of functionalities. The virtual machine supports Direct X 10 and Open GL 3.3 in it. Moreover, its modern networking system helps you administer a wide range of virtual networks for virtual machines.
You will get two variants of virtual machines in VMware. The free one has almost all functionalities to work with, like supporting more than 200 guest operating systems, 4K display support, etc. But you may not get some advanced features like complex networking and commercial use in the basic version.
Free and Paid
Compatibility: Linux, Windows 10
2. VMware Fusion
If you are a Mac user and want a virtual machine software to use, VMware fusion will help you. It is developed by the developers of the VMware Workstation and has almost similar features to it. Additionally, you will get some unique functions for MacBooks like 5K iMac displays, mix retina configuration, etc.
VMware Fusion also comes in two types: Fusion basic and Fusion pro, like the windows variant. The pro version has slightly more advanced features than the free one.
Free and Paid
Compatibility: macOS, OS 10.13 and above
3. Oracle VM VirtualBox
Oracle VM VirtualBox is a completely free project that you can use for both personal and office use. It is open-source software that you can use for adding additional operating systems to old computer systems. The VM is famous for its vast compatibility with different devices. In addition, it is also compatible with older hardware configurations.
Oracle VM VirtualBox is used by almost 1 Million registered users and a very active developing community behind it. That means you will get regular updates and fixes for your virtual machine.
Compatibility: Linux, macOS 10.13 and above
4. Parallels Desktop
The Parallels Desktop virtual machine is a virtual machine that MacBook users can use to run windows and MacOS together. Some of its basic features that you will get are notification from emulated operating systems, transferring files between macOS and Windows, dedicated cloud storage space, and lots more.
You will get three variations of parallel desktop virtual machines available to use. Among these three, the basic edition is for beginners using virtual machines for the first time, and the other two versions are for professional users.
Compatibility: macOS X, macOS 10.12.6 and above
QEMU is a free virtual machine that you can use for Linux operating system. The software is developed by open-source developers and has a high-performance graph. In addition, its wide range of hardware support makes it unique from others VMs. You can use USB and peripheral emulation as networking sources in it.
Most of the users often pair KVM virtual machines with QEMU to get high performance. But the only sad thing is that QEMU Only supports Linux to emulate and has a bit complicated user interface that may be hard to use by a beginner.
Compatibility: Linux, macOS, Windows 32 and 64 bits
6. Virtual Box
Our next inclusion is an easy-to-use and low-specified virtual machine that can be used in almost all kinds of operating systems. Moreover, the developers have made it a free-to-use software for users. It comes with tons of amazing features like 3D virtualization, multi-screen resolution, X86 virtualization hypervisor, etc.
Many users face a common problem of transferring files between the host and the guest platforms in VMs. But VirtualBox has made this option easy to use. So if you are looking for a free virtual machine, VirtualBox will be a perfect option for you.
Compatibility: Linux, Windows 8, and above
7. Boot Camp
Boot camp is another software dedicated to Apple users who want to run Windows on their computer system. While most of the MacBooks come with pre-installed Bootcamp software in their systems, but those who don’t have it can also install it easily.
The virtual machine will give you almost all supports that you need to run two operating systems parallelly. Moreover, you will get notifications from Windows when you are using macOS.
8. Citrix Hypervisor
The Citrix Hypervisor is one of the oldest known virtual machine software in two versions for beginners and professionals. While the beginner’s version is free to use, the professional can we purchased or subscribed for it.
The hypervisor also has a well-developed GPU that helps get a good visual effect in the cloned operating system. Moreover, it has powerful capacity planning tools, virtual machines project management, and other advanced features.
Compatibility: Windows 8 and above
HyperV is one of the best virtualization software for Windows 10. It comes in a feature-packed format with advanced features like extensible virtual switch dynamic memory, the ability to create checkpoints, and others. The most striking feature of HyperV is the ability to control it remotely using PowerShell.
The Virtual Machine generally works on the X 86 to 64 system. However, the only drawback of the system is that you can’t run it on the home version of Windows 10, which makes it a professional software to use.
Compatibility: Windows 8 and 10 Professional
10. Red Hat Virtualization
Our last inclusion is Red Hat virtualization that works based on the KVM hypervisor. It uses the SPICE protocol and Virtual Desktop Server Manager servers and is mainly recommended for professional enterprises. It has a high-efficiency rate that enables the user to carry on huge workloads.
You can use more than one virtual machine with Red Hat Virtualization in your computer system. Moreover, it has a stable foundation for cloud storage and a compact interface.
Compatibility: Windows and macOS