Alternatives to Parallels Desktop for all platforms with any license



Show 8 less popular platforms
  • VirtualBox icon


    VirtualBox is a powerful x86 and AMD64/Intel64 virtualization product for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux BSD Solaris

    • Unlike Parallels, Virtualbox is free, open source and runs natively on Windows, Mac and Linux. What's not to like? JohnFastmanDec 2016 Disagree   Agree
  • Wine icon


    Wine is a free, open source application for running Windows software on operating systems that are normally not supported. With Wine, you can install and run these...

    Open Source Mac Linux BSD

  • VMware Workstation icon

    VMware Workstation

    Discover the true power and flexibility of your desktop or laptop computer with VMware Workstation. Reduce hardware costs by 50% or more by running multiple operating...

    Commercial Windows Linux

  • QEMU icon


    QEMU (short for "Quick EMUlator") is a free and open-source hosted hypervisor that performs hardware virtualization. QEMU is a hosted virtual machine...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux BSD

  • VMware Workstation Player icon

    VMware Workstation Player

    VMware Workstation Player builds on the industry leading foundation of Workstation Pro, and delivers a streamlined user interface for creating and running operating...

    Free Personal Windows Linux

  • VMware Fusion icon

    VMware Fusion

    Seamlessly run your favorite Windows applications and devices, on any Intel-based Mac. Built from the ground up for the Mac, VMware Fusion is the easiest way to switch...

    Commercial Mac

  • CrossOver icon


    CrossOver allows you to install many popular Windows applications and games on your Intel OS X Mac or Linux computer.

    Commercial Mac Linux

  • Portable Virtualbox icon

    Portable Virtualbox

    Portable-VirtualBox is a free and open source software tool that lets you run any operating system from a usb stick without separate installation. It unpacks and adjusts...

    Open Source Windows

  • virt-manager icon


    The virt-manager application is a desktop user interface for managing virtual machines through libvirt. It primarily targets KVM VMs, but also manages Xen and LXC (linux...

    Open Source Linux

  • Wineskin Winery icon

    Wineskin Winery

    Wineskin is a tool used to make ports of Windows software to Mac OS X. The ports are in the form of normal Mac application bundle wrappers. It works like a wrapper...

    Open Source Mac Wine

  • bochs icon


    Bochs is a highly portable open source IA-32 (x86) PC emulator written in C++, that runs on most popular platforms. It includes emulation of the Intel x86 CPU, common...

    Open Source Windows Linux AmigaOS MorphOS

  • Boxes icon


    A simple GNOME 3 application to access remote or virtual systems. It is based on a design from Jon McCann and Jakub Steiner.

    Open Source Linux

  • Know any more alternatives to Parallels Desktop?

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  • MobaLiveCD icon


    MobaLiveCD is a freeware that will run your Linux LiveCD on Windows thanks to the excellent emulator called "Qemu". MobaLiveCD allows you to test your LiveCD...

    Open Source Windows

  • Fig icon


    Fast, isolated development environments using Docker.

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux

    • Discontinued "Fig has been replaced by Docker Compose, and is now deprecated. The new documentation is on the Docker website."

Parallels Desktop Comments


Comment by User8860227
about Parallels Desktop · Sep 2013 ·

Make sure you have enough RAM before do virtualization!

And the Captain Obvious award is presented to.....


How to stop Parallels from asking you to register

Comment by OmgItsTheSmartGuy
about Parallels Desktop · Sep 2011 ·

I get a popup from Parallels Desktop asking me to register every time I reboot my computer, and it's annoying as hell. Here's how to disable it.


Coherence mode is awesome

about Parallels Desktop and VMware Fusion · ·

In case you don't know, "Coherence" mode is a feature in Parallel Desktops that simulates running Windows apps natively in OS X. Appearance-wise, it's sort of like Wine in Linux, except that it works with everything and it's a whole lot easier to configure.

I'll admit that I found Coherence mode to be rather trippy the first time I used it, but once you get used to seeing the Windows Task Manager pop up a few times over Finder, the whole thing is actually really, really cool.

P.S. I recommend turning off "Crystal Mode", which shares your Windows apps with your Mac while you're running Coherence Mode. That sounds nice, but it's not really well implemented. Basically, it just adds a couple (hundred) .exe files to your LaunchPad, so that it becomes impossible to find anything.

EDIT: In VMWare Fusion, this is called Unity Mode. It works about as well.

like Wine in Linux, except

except a hefty price tag


Worked great for me since version 4. Latest version 6 is ev ...

Comment by docandreore
about Parallels Desktop · Jun 2011 ·

Worked great for me since version 4. Latest version 6 is even faster and much better. I never tried Fusion, so I have no idea if it is any better than Parallels, but I did try VirtualBox and I could not even install Windows XP on that. Parallels all the way for me.


Parallels 5 completely freeze my MacBook! I'll move to vmwa ...

Comment by ShiroiSame
about Parallels Desktop · Jun 2011 ·

Parallels 5 completely freeze my MacBook! I'll move to vmware...