Windows 11 running on M1 Macs isn't a 'supported scenario,' according to Microsoft

Parallels Desktop 17 Macbook Pro 4
Parallels Desktop 17 Macbook Pro 4 (Image credit: Parallels)

What you need to know

  • Windows 11 running on Apple M1 chips is not a "supported scenario," according to a Microsoft spokesperson.
  • People will probably still be able to run Windows 11 on Apple M1 chips with Parallels Desktop, but Microsoft won't have to fix any issues that appear.
  • There's debate on how much of a concern this clarification from Microsoft is.

Windows 11 running on Apple's M1 devices is not a "supported scenario," according to a Microsoft statement to The Register. The clarification from the tech giant has caused a stir around the web, though there's disagreement regarding how much concern this statement should cause.

As noted by XDA, Microsoft never promised support for Windows 11 running on Apple M1 devices. Additionally, just because Microsoft doesn't officially support Windows 11 on Apple M1 chips doesn't mean it won't work. It means that if a person runs into an issue, Microsoft isn't required to help.

Up to this point, Parallels has been able to run Windows 11 and Windows 10 on M1 hardware by utilizing Insider builds of Windows. Recently, Parallels 17 ran into issues on M1 Macs. The piece of software showed hardware a compatibility error when running a Dev Channel Insider build of Windows 11. Parallels has since released version 17.0.1, which fixes the issue.

The recent hardware compatibility error and subsequent patch illustrate what could happen in the future with Parallels on M1 hardware. Issues that occur will have to be fixed by Parallels rather than Microsoft. That's to be expected but could theoretically be an issue if a problem is particularly complex or is caused by something that Parallels can't fix.

Parallels has not responded to inquiries from several outlets at this time regarding its long-term plans.

Parallels Desktop 17 was announced in August 2021 with support for Windows 11. At its launch, the program promised significant speed and performance improvements compared to its predecessor. The software was optimized to run Windows 11 on Macs with Intel or Apple M1 chips, causing excitement among many users. Windows 11 will launch on October 5, 2021, so we'll likely have a clearer image of the situation with Parallels within a few weeks.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at