amd64 virtual machin on Apple M1 chip

I was using an Apple MacBook Pro with Intel chip for quite some years now. The last weeks I switched to a much faster M1 Max with arm64 architecture. Still very happy with this choice and for most applications this isn’t a problem. But some just won’t start even with Rosetta installed.

My first idea to fix this was to create a VM with amd64 architecture and my weapon of choice was VirtualBox on the old machine. But when I tried to install it I found out that VirtualBox doesn’t support M1 chips yet. After some research I stumbled upon UTM which is using Qemu and the best – it’s even free. On Linux qemu/kvm was my go to system anyway so I wanted to give it a try.

brew install qemu utm

After the installation I simply started the UTM app which is a very usable GUI for qemu – comparable to virt-manager. It allowed me to create a amd64 vm without any problems.

Attention: The amd64 vm on M1 silicon is quite slow!