Microsoft releases x64 app emulation in preview for Windows 10 on ARM

Microsoft releases x64 app emulation in preview for Windows 10 on ARM

Microsoft has announced that x64 binary emulation is now available in preview for Windows 10 on ARM PCs. If you’re part of the Windows Insider Program, you can download and install the new update.

Microsoft first teased the arrival of x64 app emulation back in September. The addition of x64 app emulation for Windows on ARM should go a considerable way toward closing the app gap problem. Right now, Windows on ARM devices can run native 32-bit ARM and 64-bit ARM apps, but they can only emulate x86-32 apps.

“In this preview, you can install x64 apps from the Microsoft Store or from any other location of your choosing,” Microsoft said. “You can try key x64-only productivity apps like Autodesk Sketchbook, as well as games like Rocket League. Other apps, like Chrome, which run today on ARM64 as 32-bit apps, can run as 64-bit using the new x64 emulation capability.”

According to Microsoft, the new update is still in development, so there’s a possibility you may run into issues. “Some of the apps you try running in emulation may not work initially,” the company said. If you do run into issues, Microsoft said users can share feedback about their experience, which will help shape the final release.

Microsoft said for the best experience, Samsung Galaxy Book S, Lenovo Flex 5G, and Surface Pro X owners are encouraged to install a preview version of the Qualcomm Adreno graphics driver. Microsoft also said users will need to install a preview version of the ARM64 C+ + redistributable; Microsoft won’t require these steps in future Insider Preview builds.

With x64 app emulation now closer to a stable release, consumers might be more inclined to check out Microsoft’s refreshed Surface Pro X, which features the company’s SQ2 processor based on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2. If you’re not part of the Windows Insider Program, you can join here.

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Brandon Russell
Brandon Russell

Brandon's love of technology can be traced back to his childhood, when he would obsessively watch Back to the Future. Since then he's followed the industry and its many innovations, from handheld consoles to powerful smartphones. He's still waiting on a hoverboard.