If you are running Windows 11 Pro or higher, a neat feature that you can enable is the virtualization (or Hyper-V on Windows). Virtualization allows you to create and use Virtual machines from the host operating system.
A virtual machine (VM) acts like any normal computer, with its own virtual RAM, disk space, network connection, and much more. Allows you to install a full version of a different operating system than the one running on the host machine. Each VM runs in its own isolated space on the host computer’s disk drive. This means that you can run multiple virtual machines on the same hardware if you need to.
Virtualization allows you to create environments in which you can test new programs and services. Virtual machines are very popular in business environments, but you can also use them at home. Hyper-V is Windows’ built-in tool that allows you to do this without installing third-party software.
If you want to use Hyper-V and enable virtualization in Windows 11, this is what you will need to do.
Before enabling virtualization in Windows 11
If you decide to enable virtualization in Windows 11, there are a few things to check first. These include:
- Check CPU compatibility with SLAT: Your PC will need a 64-bit CPU that supports the Second-level address translation (also known as SLAT technology). Modern 64-bit processors from Intel or AMD should support SLAT by default.
- Enable virtualization in BIOS / UEFI: You will have to enable virtualization technology in the BIOS / UEFI setup menu of your PC. The steps to do this vary, so check the manufacturer’s manual or the support site. However, for most users, you will have to press F2, F10, or another function key while your PC is starting up. Seeks “System configuration“,”Virtual technology”Or something similar and turn on these settings if they aren’t already.
- Windows 11 Pro or higher installed: The version home Windows 11 does not support the necessary Hyper-V Manager. To get the feature, you can upgrade from Windows 11 Home to Pro. If you cannot enable Hyper-V, you will have to use an alternative method of creating virtual machines, such as VirtualBox.
How to enable Hyper-V in Windows 11
Hyper-V is the built-in tool for creating and using virtual machines in Windows 11. You do not need any additional software to create a virtual machine, but Hyper-V is usually not enabled by default. To use virtualization with Hyper-V, you will need to enable it.
To activate Hyper-V Manager, you will first need to open the dialog box Run. You can do it quickly by pressing the key Windows + R on your keyboard.
In the dialog Run, scribe optionalupdates.exe and click To accept.
In the Features window Windows, you can enable or disable certain Windows features, including Hyper-V. To do this, make sure that all relevant options for Hyper-V are enabled, and then click To accept.
A progress bar will appear while Windows installs the files required for this feature. When completed, it will be necessary reboot the system.
Open Hyper-V Manager
Once your PC restarts, you can start using the Hyper-V Manager. This tool allows you to create and manage your virtual machines.
To start Hyper-V Manager, press Beginning and write hyper-v manager in the search bar. When it appears as the best result, press Execute as an administrator on the right.
If you’ve used Hyper-V on Windows 10, Hyper-V Manager shouldn’t seem too unfamiliar to you. Nothing has changed apart from some rounded corners.
Using Hyper-V Manager, you can start creating new virtual machines running Windows, Linux, or another operating system. As in Windows 10, you can create new virtual machines in Hyper-V Manager using the Wizard New virtual machines.
You can create multiple virtual machines, each with a specific purpose, as long as you have disk space. For example, you might decide to use Hyper-V to test the new builds of Windows 11 Insider to see the new Windows 11 features in action.
Remember that when you create a VM, it uses the resources of your host machine. You don’t want to allocate too much RAM or storage space to a VM, especially if your PC has limited hardware resources.
Using virtualization in Windows 11
If you decide to enable virtualization in Windows 11, you can run multiple operating systems at the same time. The good thing about using the Hyper-V built into Windows 11 is that you don’t need to install third-party software like VirtualBox or VMWare.
However, make sure you are running Windows 11 Pro on a PC with enough system resources to support it. If you try to run two (or more) operating systems at the same time, expect your PC to slow down considerably. Hyper-V is just one of the old-school Windows features and utilities you’ll see in Windows 11, including the classic Control Panel and Task Manager.