5 Best Free Virtual Machine Software for Windows 10 & 11 in 2023

Virtual machines provide a powerful solution for running multiple operating systems on a single computer. Whether you’re a home user or a professional, having access to reliable and free virtual machine software can greatly enhance your computing experience. In this article, we will explore five of the best free virtual machine software options for Windows 10 and 11, highlighting their features and benefits.

1. VMware Workstation Player

VMware Workstation Player - Best Free Virtual Machine Software

VMware Workstation Player is a highly regarded virtual machine software that offers a free version for personal use. It provides a user-friendly interface and comes with a range of features that make it a top choice for virtualization enthusiasts. Some key features of VMware Workstation Player include:

GPU Virtualization: This feature enables the virtual machine to utilize the computer’s graphics processing unit, resulting in enhanced graphics performance.
Easy Setup: VMware Workstation Player is straightforward to install and configure, making it accessible to users of all skill levels.
Snapshot Support: The software allows you to take snapshots of your virtual machines, enabling you to save and restore specific states or configurations.
Please note that while the free version of VMware Workstation Player offers a comprehensive set of features, there are some advanced functionalities that are available only in the paid version, such as running multiple virtual machines simultaneously.

2. VirtualBox

Oracle VirtualBox

VirtualBox is an open-source virtual machine software that has gained popularity for its versatility and cross-platform compatibility. It supports a wide range of operating systems, making it an ideal choice for users who require flexibility. Here are some notable features of VirtualBox:

USB Pass-Through: VirtualBox allows you to connect USB devices to your virtual machines, enabling seamless integration with peripherals.
Snapshot and Clone: The software offers snapshot and clone functionalities, allowing you to create backups or duplicate virtual machines with ease.
Virtual Networking: VirtualBox provides various networking options, allowing you to configure network connections for your virtual machines.
Despite its slightly dated user interface, VirtualBox remains a solid choice for individuals and organizations looking for a reliable and free virtual machine solution.

3. Hyper-V

Microsoft Hyper-V

Hyper-V is a native virtualization platform developed by Microsoft and is built directly into Windows 10 and 11. It provides a convenient option for users who prefer to work with an integrated virtualization solution. Here are some key features of Hyper-V:

Integration with Windows: Since Hyper-V is integrated into Windows, there is no need to install additional software. It is available on Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise editions as well as Windows 11 Pro and Enterprise editions.
Linux Support: Hyper-V offers robust support for running Linux virtual machines, making it an attractive choice for users working with Linux-based systems.
Hardware Acceleration: Hyper-V leverages hardware virtualization capabilities to enhance the performance and efficiency of virtual machines.
Please note that Hyper-V may not offer the same level of advanced features as some other virtual machine software options. However, for users seeking a basic yet reliable virtualization solution, Hyper-V is a viable choice.



QEMU is an open-source virtual machine emulator that provides the flexibility to run various operating systems on Windows 10 and 11. While QEMU is primarily a command-line tool, several graphical frontends are available that simplify its usage. Here are some notable features of QEMU:

Processor Emulation: QEMU can emulate various processor architectures, allowing you to run operating systems specifically designed for different hardware platforms.
Snapshot Support: QEMU enables you to take snapshots of your virtual machines, providing a convenient way to save and restore different states of your system.
Live Migration: The software supports live migration, allowing you to move running virtual machines between different host systems without interrupting their operation.
QEMU’s versatility and extensive hardware support make it a popular choice among advanced users and developers.

5. KVM


Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) is a virtualization infrastructure for the Linux kernel that allows you to run virtual machines on Windows 10 and 11 using hardware virtualization extensions. While setting up KVM on Windows requires additional configuration steps, it offers powerful virtualization capabilities. Here are some key features of KVM:

High Performance: KVM leverages hardware virtualization extensions, such as Intel VT-x and AMD-V, to deliver near-native performance for virtual machines.
Secure Isolation: KVM provides strong isolation between virtual machines, ensuring that each VM operates independently and securely.
Linux Compatibility: Since KVM is an integral part of the Linux kernel, it offers excellent compatibility with Linux-based operating systems.
While KVM may require more technical expertise to set up compared to other options, it provides a robust and efficient virtualization solution for Windows users seeking Linux compatibility.

Final Verdict

The availability of free virtual machine software empowers users to explore and utilize different operating systems and software environments without incurring additional costs. The five options discussed in this article, namely VMware Workstation Player, VirtualBox, Hyper-V, QEMU, and KVM, offer varying degrees of features, compatibility, and ease of use. Consider your specific requirements and preferences to choose the best virtual machine software that suits your needs. Harness the power of virtualization to expand your computing capabilities and enhance your productivity.