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Chris HoffmanEditor-in-Chief

Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief that How-To Geek. He"s created about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for 2 years. Chris has written for The new York Times, to be interviewed as a an innovation expert ~ above TV stations choose Miami"s NBC 6, and also had his work covered through news outlets favor the BBC. Because 2011, Chris has actually written over 2,000 short articles that have actually been read virtually one exchange rate times---and that"s just here at How-To Geek. Review more...

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UpdatedJul 3, 2017, 11:55 am EDT| 4 min read
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Modern CPUs incorporate hardware virtualization functions that help accelerate digital machines produced in VirtualBox, VMware, Hyper-V, and other apps. But those attributes aren’t always allowed by default.

Virtual devices are exorbitant things. With virtualization apps, you deserve to run an entire virtual computer system in a window on your existing system. In ~ that virtual machine, you have the right to run different operating systems, test apps in a sandbox environment, and experiment with features without worry. In order come work, those virtual machine apps need hardware acceleration features constructed into modern-day CPUs. Because that Intel CPUs, this means Intel VT-x hardware acceleration. For AMD CPUs, it means AMD-V hardware acceleration.

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At some point, you might encounter error messages in her VM apps prefer the following:

VT-x/AMD-V hardware acceleration is not accessible on your systemThis organize supports Intel VT-x, yet Intel VT-x is disabledThe processor on this computer is no compatible through Hyper-V

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These errors deserve to pop up because that a couple of different reasons. The first is that the hardware acceleration feature may be disabled. On systems through an Intel CPU, the Intel VT-x feature can it is in disabled via a BIOS or UEFI firmware setting. In fact, it’s frequently disabled by default on new computers. On equipment with one AMD CPU, this won’t be a problem. The AMD-V function is constantly enabled, so there’s no BIOS or UEFI setup to change.

The other reason this errors can pop increase is if you’re make the efforts to use a virtualization app like VMWare or VirtualBox as soon as you already have Microsoft’s Hyper-V installed. Hyper-V takes over those hardware acceleration features and other virtualization apps won’t it is in able to access them.


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So, let’s take a look at just how to settle these issues.


Try Uninstalling Hyper-V

If you have Hyper-V installed, it gets greedy and also won’t let other virtualization apps access hardware acceleration features. This more often happens v Intel VT-x hardware, yet can additionally happen v AMD-V top top occasion. If this is the case, you’ll see an error article in your virtualization app to the effect that Intel VT-x (or AMD-V) is unavailable, also though that is allowed on your computer.

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To settle this problem, you just need to uninstall Hyper-V. Hyper-V is an optional home windows feature, therefore uninstalling it is a small different than uninstalling a continual app. Head to manage Panel > Uninstall a Program. In the “Programs and also Features” window, click “Turn Windows functions on or off.”

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In the “Windows Features” window, clear the “Hyper-V” checkbox and also then click “OK.”

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When windows is excellent uninstalling Hyper-V, you’ll have to restart her PC and also then you can try using VirtualBox or VMware again.

Turn Intel VT-x ~ above in your BIOS or UEFI Firmware

If you have an Intel CPU and uninstalling Hyper-V didn’t deal with your problem—or your virtualization application reported that Intel VT-x was disabled—you’ll require to access your computer’s BIOS or UEFI settings. Computers made prior to the relax of windows 8 probably use BIOS. Pcs made after windows 8 came out might use UEFI instead, and also the likelihood of making use of UEFI grow the more contemporary the PC.

On a BIOS-based system, you’ll access BIOS setups by restarting your PC and pressing the appropriate an essential right once it an initial boots. The crucial you press depends on her PC’s manufacturer, however it’s often the “Delete” or “F2” key. You additionally will most most likely see a message throughout startup that claims something choose “Press Key to accessibility setup.” If friend can’t number out the right an essential to acquire into your BIOS settings, simply perform a internet search because that something like “computer model_number accessibility BIOS.”

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RELATED: What You need to Know around Using UEFI rather of the BIOS

On a UEFI-based computer, girlfriend can’t necessarily just press a crucial while the computer is booting. Instead, you’ll need to follow this instructions to access the UEFI firmware settings from the Windows progressed startup options. Organize down the Shift vital as girlfriend click Restart in windows to reboot right to the menu.

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Whether her PC offers BIOS or UEFI, as soon as you’re in the settings menu, friend can begin looking approximately for an option labeled something choose “Intel VT-x,” “Intel Virtualization Technology,” “Virtualization Extensions,” “Vanderpool,” or miscellaneous similar.


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Often, you’ll uncover the choice under a “Processor” submenu. The submenu may be located somewhere under a “Chipset,” “Northbridge,” “Advanced Chipset Control,” or “Advanced CPU Configuration” menu.

Enable the option and then choose “Save and Exit” or the equivalent feature to save your setups changes and reboot your PC.


After the pc restarts, you can try making use of VirtualBox or VMware again.

What to do If you Don’t see the Intel VT-x alternative in BIOS or UEFI

Unfortunately, some laptop manufacturers and motherboard manufacturers don’t include an alternative in your BIOS or UEFI setups for allowing Intel VT-x. If friend don’t see the option, try performing a net search because that the model variety of your laptop—or your motherboard, if it’s a desktop computer PC—and “enable Intel VT-x”.

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In some cases, manufacturers may later release a BIOS or UEFI firmware upgrade that includes this option. Updating your BIOS or UEFI firmware might help—if you’re lucky.

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And, remember—if you have actually an larger CPU, it might not assistance the Intel VT-x or AMD-V hardware virtualization attributes at all.