Testing Windows 11 under Parallels 18 on MacBook Air M2

I recently purchased a new MacBook Air M2 with 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. The last Air I had the pleasure of using was back in 2011/2012. I loved the form factor even back then, but with Apple’s new M1 and M2 series CPUs, this is an entirely new experience for me.

I own a few Apple devices (i.e. iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, etc.) but my daily driver has been a Windows laptop or Windows PC because most of my clients (practically all of them) use Windows and Windows PCs for their jobs. I read all the reviews and watched all the videos on the hot take issues of the M2 Air, but I was sure it was the right laptop for me to get back into the Apple computing ecosystem.

After getting the new Air setup, one of the first things I did was install Parallels v18 because I wanted to test the ARM version of Windows on the M2 CPU. Microsoft doesn’t support running the ARM version of Windows natively on the M1 or M2 CPUs, but as I discovered, it works really freaking great under virtualization! I’m not a huge fan of Parallels, having had some real negative experiences of running Windows 10 under Parallels on an Intel Mac in the past, but this time I was totally surprised…possibly even shocked at how performative it was under virtualization on the M2.

Here’s a quick video that I took to share with my son and now I’m sharing it with you.

Windows 11 ARM running on MacBook Air M2 under Parallels version 18
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