The .EXE file extension is associated with executables, or program files, that are native to Windows. Despite the fact that macOS and Windows use different file types for applications, there are times when you might need to run .EXE files on your Mac.
Contrary to popular belief, running Windows .EXE files on a Mac is not impossible. Thanks to applications like WineBottler and Parallels Desktop, you can easily run .EXE files on your Mac. In this article, we’ll walk you through the process of doing just that.
Method 1: Using WineBottler
WineBottler is a software that effectively bridges the gap between Windows and macOS. It tweaks the .EXE files into behaving like native Mac apps. Here’s how to do it.
Step 1: Download WineBottler from the official website. There are two versions available: Stable and Development. For most users, the Stable version will suffice.
Step 2: Open the downloaded .dmg file and move Wine and WineBottler apps to the Applications folder in Finder.
Step 3: Launch WineBottler. You will see a list of predefined prefixes in the “On My Mac” tab.
Step 4: Click the “Install” button next to your desired application. If your application is not listed, click the “Advanced” tab and choose the .EXE file you want to run.
Step 5: Click “Install.” The application will start, and you can run your .EXE file on your Mac.
Method 2: Using Parallels Desktop
Parallels Desktop is a virtual machine that allows you to run Windows on your Mac, and subsequently run .EXE files. Note that you will need a copy of Windows to use Parallels Desktop.
Step 1: Download Parallels Desktop from the official website and install it.
Step 2: Launch Parallels Desktop and click “File” > “New.” Select “Install Windows or another OS from a DVD or image file,” then follow the prompts to install Windows.
Step 3: Once Windows is installed, you can use the Windows interface within Parallels Desktop just like you would on a PC. You can then run .EXE files normally.
Running .EXE files on Mac doesn’t have to be a complicated process. With tools like WineBottler and Parallels Desktop, it’s easier than ever to access Windows applications on macOS. Whether for work or play, these methods allow you to get the most out of your Mac.