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CodeWeavers gets Windows apps running on Apple Silicon

Windows games running on Apple Silicon

The developers of CrossOver have announced that their latest version can run both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows applications on the new Apple Silicon M1 Macs.

As other virtualization companies work to transition to Apple Silicon M1, CodeWeavers has announced that their CrossOver software can already run Windows games and apps. The company says that there is more work to do but it is functioning under Apple's Rosetta 2.

As well as tweeting the announcement, CodeWeaver's Jeremy White has written a blog that briefly describes what they've tried out so far. "We also installed the beta version of Big Sur 11.1, because we know it has some critical fixes to Rosetta [2]," he wrote.

"After we did that, we were able to fire up CrossOver and install and run a wide range of Windows applications," continued White. "I can't tell you how cool that is; there is so much emulation going on under the covers. Imagine — a 32-bit Windows Intel binary, running in a 32-to-64 bridge in Wine/CrossOver on top of macOS, on an ARM CPU that is emulating x86 — and it works!"

White does note that, "it isn't perfect." For one example, he mentioned that "Team Fortress 2 showed some lag" and said, "I think we've got some work to do on that front."

Following the announcement on Twitter, CodeWeavers said that it is compiling a list of Windows apps that work. They also answered a question about older version of Internet Explorer, saying "big nope on old version of IE."

Of the other major companies producing Windows software solutions, Parallels has said that it is "excited to see" the benefits of Apple Silicon M1. It has yet to announce a date when its software will be updated to run on it, but the company has made "tremendous progress."

CrossOver differs from Parallels and other virtualization solutions in that it does not require an entire Windows install to run. It isn't yet clear how this may simplify or complicate the issues for virtualization or emulation that not having an Intel chip in the Mac induces.