Support considerations for Apple Silicon (M1) Macs

Note that Apple Silicon (“M1”) Macs can only run macOS Big Sur, so any application that is unsupported on Big Sur is also unsupported on Apple Silicon. See that list in addition to these specific caveats.

M1 DEP builds work
Izzy stack (munki, Managed Software Center, izzy-client) all work
VPN is supported and works
CrashPlan is supported and works
Anti-Malware is supported and works
Major application suites work:
Adobe Acrobat
Adobe Creative Cloud suite (hand-installed only at this time)
Box Drive
Box Drive is not supported on M1 systems; Box is being phased out at U-M and we encourage you to move to Dropbox.
Google Drive


Adobe titles - including Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat - are not able to be distributed through Managed Software Center due to bugs in Adobe’s installers. Instead, we deploy the Creative Cloud desktop app and users can then use it to install the Creative Cloud apps they use.

We expect that most JVM-based apps will have similarly bad performance. That includes MATLAB and SPSS.

Homebrew (brew install) has released an M1-compatible version that installs in /opt/homebrew instead. You can have both the x86-emulated and M1-native versions installed at the same time with some PATH tricks.

Box Drive does not work at all. Google Drive (v47 or later) and Dropbox (v109.4.517 or later) seem to work.

Some HP Printers (mostly older single-user MFPs that used kernel extensions to support scanning over USB) are missing drivers. Many home printers may work through AirPrint, however AirPrint will not work with campus printers.


JetBrains IDEs (IntelliJ, RubyMine, PyCharm, etc) are now available for Apple Silicon - RubyMine seems to work well.

Windows and other OSes

Desktop Virtualization (Parallels, VMware, VirtualBox)

It is not possible to run Windows under Parallels, VMware, or VirtualBox on Apple Silicon systems. Linux may work in the near future.

We have seen the demos of running Windows either under qemu and ACVM. The University does not - as far as we can tell - have a valid license to run Windows RT on Apple hardware. Additionally, these methods are not supportable and should not be relied on for business.

While Parallels and VMware have committed to supporting Apple Silicon, since Apple Silicon uses the ARM instruction set and not Intel x86/x64, you would need to obtain Windows RT, an ARM-specific version of Windows. At this time, Microsoft does not provide Windows RT except to hardware manufacturers. We presume there will be some changes in this space, but it is too early to tell. It’s also not clear if a Windows RT-for-Apple-Silicon would include Intel x86 emulation, meaning that it may not be possible to run old Windows software in such an virtualization environment.

It is also possible that Microsoft will dust off VirtualPC, which is an Intel x86 emulator. If you recall running VirtualPC in the PowerPC days, you remember it was brutally slow. Another option might be qemu. Regardless, emulation is far slower and far buggier than virtualization.

Linux, however, has long been available for ARM (specifically 64-bit ARM: ARMv8, arm64, aarch64); RedHat, Fedora, and Ubuntu all have ARM-native versions. We believe these will work fine. The same caveats about x86 binaries apply: you would need to obtain ARM-specific versions of any binaries, or suffer through some kind of emulation in Linux.

Bootcamp (dual-booting to Windows)

Apple Silicon Macs do not support dual-booting into Windows (Bootcamp); it is unlikely that they ever will.

Developer Virtualization (Docker)

Docker has a version for Apple Silicon. However: the same caveats about Linux desktop virtualization hold: you will need to be using ARM-specific binaries/containers. Not all containers are available for all architectures. While Docker Desktop can run x86 containers under qemu, we’ve not had a great experience with it - containers crash easily and often under emulation.

It’s not know how portable the Apple Silicon instruction set is to e.g. AWS Graviton2 - there may be issues when pushing a Docker image built on an Apple Silicon Mac to other ARMv8 processors.

Security and Anti-Malware Tools

Current versions of Crowdstrike have been certified for Big Sur (including on the M1 macs). Sentinel One for Med Campus M1 macs will be replaced with Crowdstrike; Michigan Medicine is fully transitioning to CrowdStrike later this year. The license for ESET expired on Jan 31, 2021 – and has been removed from all computers in izzy.