How to Install PlayOnMac

In this article, we will examine how to set up PlayOnMac software to run Windows compatible applications or games in macOS Monterey operating system on an Apple Mac computer.

How to Install PlayOnMac

How to Use PlayOnMac to Run Windows Compatible Apps or Games on Mac/macOS

Microsoft Windows is by far the most preferred operating system for gamers. Gamers using Linux and macOS systems have fewer game catalogs. Generally, playing big and up-to-date games is more efficient on Windows systems, but this may not be the case for gamers with a Mac computer.

Another way to play big and up-to-date games more efficiently on macOS systems or to use Windows-compatible programs is to install Windows 10 or Windows 11 next to your existing system with Boot Camp software. You can also use VMware Fusion software instead of Boot Camp and create solutions by installing Windows on a virtual machine.

You cannot normally run a Windows program (.exe) on Mac computers because the file extension of the programs that will usually be installed on macOS operating systems is .dmg. Therefore, if you want to find a solution quickly other than the methods we mentioned, you can use PlayOnMac.

PlayOnMac is a free program from Apple that lets you run Windows-compatible programs on iMac or MacBook computers. If you intend to use paid software, you can choose the Wine-based CrossOver software.

How to Download and Install PlayOnMac

After you run PlayOnMac on your Mac computer, you can install and run any Windows-compatible program you want by selecting supported software from the program’s interface and using the manual installation method.

You can find the list of office, multimedia, game, graphics, internet, or development programs supported by PlayOnMac software here.

   Step 1

To download the PlayOnMac software to your macOS system, click this link and visit the official website. After viewing the website, click the Download button in the upper right corner.

PlayOnMac Download

   Step 2

If you are using macOS 10.15 or macOS 11+, click the download button at the top and confirm the download in the warning window that opens.

Allow Download

   Step 3

After downloading the PlayOnMac_4.4.3.dmg file to your computer, click Downloads on the Dock and run the dmg file.

Running the DMG File

   Step 4

Drag and drop PlayOnMac software to Applications.

Copying PlayOnMac App to Apps

   Step 5

Wait while PlayOnMac is copying to Applications.

Copying Software to Applications

   Step 6

After the copying process is completed, open the PlayOnMac program.

Running the Program

   Step 7

Since you downloaded PlayOnMac from the Internet, a warning window will appear on your macOS system. Click the Open button as you have downloaded the application from a secure source and then you can approve sending information such as your computer’s graphics card model and OS version to contribute to the development of the program.

Confirming App Permission

   Step 8

After installing PlayOnMac on your Mac, you can check the version of the program from the About section.

PlayOnMac 4.4.3

How to Install a Windows Program with an Exe Extension

After installing PlayOnMac, you can now install a Windows program with the exe file extension on your Mac.

   Step 1

After running the program, click Install a program from the Actions panel.

Install a Program

   Step 2

Click the Install a non-listed program option on the program installation screen, which includes various categories. Also, using this interface, you can find and install the programs supported by the program from the search section.

Install a Program Not Listed

   Step 3

Click Next in the information window informing you that you should leave the installation directory as default before starting the program installation.

Reading Installation Descriptions

   Step 4

Click Next in the information window informing you that PlayOnMac is not related to WineHQ and you should not submit any bug reports.

PlayOnMac is not related to WineHQ

   Step 5

Continue by clicking Next in the Manual Installation window.

Manual Installation

   Step 6

If you have installed a program before, you need to continue by selecting Edit or update an existing application to make changes to the existing application. If you are installing a program for the first time, select Install a program in a new virtual drive and click Next.

Install a program in a new virtual drive

   Step 7

Type a name without spaces for the virtual drive of the program you will install and click Next.

Typing the Application Name

   Step 8

If there is a setting you want to configure or components you want to install before installation, you can do it from the options listed in this window. Click Next again to continue installing the Windows program as you do not need to make any changes.

Selecting the Components You Want to Install Before Installation

   Step 9

Select the type of virtual drive you want to create according to the architecture of the program you will install and continue.

32 bits windows installation

   Step 10

Wait while the virtual drive with 32-bit architecture is being created.

Updating Wine Configuration

   Step 11

For example, to install Notepad++, download the program from this page to your computer. Then, click the Browse button to select the setup file of the Notepad++ application.

Selecting the Exe File

   Step 12

Select the setup file of the Notepad program you downloaded to the Downloads location and click Open.

Choosing Notepad++

   Step 13

After selecting the setup file, click Next to start the installation of the program.

Starting the Installation of the Windows Program

   Step 14

When the Notepad++ setup wizard opens, select the language to be installed and click OK.

Choosing the Language to Install

   Step 15

Continue by clicking Next in the Notepad++ v8 setup wizard.

Welcome to Notepad++ Installation

   Step 16

After reading the license agreement of the Notepad program, click the I Agree button.

Accepting the License Agreement

   Step 17

Leave the installation location as default and click Next.

Choosing the Installation Location

   Step 18

If there are any settings you want to change in the Select components window, correct them and continue.

Selecting Components

   Step 19

After making the necessary settings, click the Install button to start the installation.

Creating a Shortcut on the Desktop

   Step 20

After installing Notepad++, run it.

Opening Notepad++

   Step 21

After checking that the Notepad++ software is running smoothly on your macOS computer, select “?” from the tool menu. You can check the version of the program.

Checking the Version of the Program

   Step 22

After closing the note-taking software, click Cancel to load the command line developer tools later.

Command Line Developer Tools

   Step 23

To make a shortcut, select a file for PlayOnMac from the listed files and click Next.

Creating a Shortcut for the Program

   Step 24

Type the name of the program for the shortcut and click Next.

Typing a Shortcut Name

   Step 25

A new shortcut has been created for the Notepad software, but it may not work on current versions of macOS. If you try to open the program using the shortcut you created, it will not work.

Shortcut Error

   Step 26

Click Run to open the program you installed on PlayOnMac.

Running Notepad on PlayOnMac

   Step 27

After checking that Notepad++ is running smoothly on your Mac, close it.

Closing Notepad Application

How to Create a Manual Shortcut

PlayOnMac works fine on most macOS versions, but it may cause shortcut errors in some versions. Therefore, if the shortcuts you have created are not working, you may need to make a manual shortcut.

   Step 1

Right-click on the program you installed in the PlayOnMac interface, and then click Open the application’s directory.

Opening the Application Folder

   Step 2

Right-click on Notepad++.exe and click Make Alias to create a manual shortcut.

Manual Shortcut Creation

   Step 3

After creating the shortcut, drag and drop it to the desktop and try to open the program again.

Drag and Drop New Shortcut to Desktop

How to Install XQuartz

You need to install the XQuartz application required to run a Windows application on your Mac.

   Step 1

After double-clicking on the shortcut you created manually, you will see that XQuartz must be installed while the Notepad application is trying to open. You have to do this manually as XQuartz is not downloaded automatically in this window.

Waiting XQuartz to be installed

   Step 2

To download XQuartz for macOS, visit the official website from this link and click the XQuartz-2.8.1.dmg file in the Download section of the homepage and start the download process.

XQuartz Download

   Step 3

After downloading the XQuartz.dmg file, open it and double-click the XQuartz.pkg file again in the opened folder. Allow the program to run in the warning window you encounter while starting the installation.

Run the Software

   Step 4

Click Continue to proceed with the installation steps.

Starting the Required Steps to Install the Program

   Step 5

After checking that the software to be installed in the Readme window is the X11 windowing system, click Continue again.

Reading Important Information

   Step 6

After accepting the license agreement of XQuartz software, click Continue and then Agree.

Confirming the License Agreement

   Step 7

Click the Install button to continue installing on the macOS disk.

Starting XQuartz Installation

   Step 8

To confirm the installation, type your macOS user password and click Install Software.

Typing the macOS Password

   Step 9

After installing XQuartz, click Log Out and then confirm the deletion of the dmg file.

Move Installer File to Trash After Installation Complete

   Step 10

Click the notepad.exe alias on your macOS desktop and open the program.

Opening Notepad Application with Shortcut

   Step 11

With the Notepad shortcut, you can now run the program without any problems.

Examining the Shortcut to Work Smoothly

How to Uninstall a Windows Program

With PlayOnMac, you can easily remove an app you installed from your Mac.

   Step 1

Select the program you installed from the software list and click the Remove button.

Uninstalling an App Installed with PlayOnMac

   Step 2

When PlayOnMac Uninstaller opens, click Next to remove the program you selected from your system.

PlayOnMac Uninstaller

   Step 3

Click Yes to delete the Notepad virtual drive.

Confirming to Delete Virtual Drive

   Step 4

After Notepad++ has been successfully removed from your system, click Next.

Application Removed Successfully

   Step 5

You can see that the Notepad application is no longer available in the PlayOnMac interface.

Checking if the App Is Not Listed


Installing Old Versions

macOS Mojave
macOS High Sierra


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