Mac users with M1 chips powering their sleek hardware but still hankering to run Windows apps on it take note: software compatibility layer Wine, which is definitely not an emulator, has made this possible in a recent update.
Wine 6.0.1 is a maintenance release, but the ability to run 64 bit Windows apps on MacOS Big Sur for M1 Macs (along with more than 60 other bugfixes) is a bit of a big deal, as it doesn’t support Boot Camp, and none of the big virtualization apps has managed to get X86 Windows running yet (opens in new tab), only the Insider Preview version (opens in new tab) of the ARM port.
Given that just about all major apps run on M1/Big Sur anyway, thanks to speedy re-compilations for the M1’s ARM architecture or Apple’s Rosetta 2 translation tech, there are only a few reasons why you might want to do this, but if you’ve got a Windows-only app that’s absolutely mission critical, there’s now a way to get it working on your shiny new Macbook Pro (opens in new tab).
Or at least, it will work if it’s in the Wine team’s database of compatible applications, (opens in new tab) which is well worth checking out before you bet the farm on a combination of cutting-edge technology and old XP apps kept alive when they should have been replaced years ago. The top ten of Wine supported software is dominated by classic games from the past 20 years, with World of Warcraft taking the top spot.