How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware on Windows

Install macOS Catalina on VMware

In this article, I am going to show you how to install macOS Catalina on VMware on Windows. So, Apple announced its latest and greatest operating systems in WWDC 2019. If you want to give macOS Catalina a try, then you’re in the right place.

macOS Catalina is Currently in Beta, and obviously, it’s baggy. When a new release/version comes out then depending on how many vital fixes it has, I may update the VMDK file linked below. So without wasting any more time, let’s jump into it.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

  1. Download the prerequisites
  2. Install the Prerequisites
  3. Extract macOS Catalina VMDK File
  4. Unlock VMware to Allow macOS Catalina
  5. Create a New Virtual Machine
  6. Edit the Virtual Machine
  7. Edit macOS Catalina VMX File
  8. Start macOS Catalina Virtual Machine
  9. Install VMware Tools (Optional)

Step 1: Download the Prerequisites

Before you begin, you should download some files, and you may also download & install some applications, which are required later on in this guide. But if you have done any of the followings already, then you may skip it. Here is the list:

Step 2: Install the Prerequisites

Now install the following applications, and if you already have it by any chance then you’re welcome to Skip but make sure then it works properly, and it’s compatible.

  • Install WinRar, 7zip or any other .rar extractor of your choice
  • Install VMware Workstation 12/14/15 or VMware Player 7/12/14/15
How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Install WinRAR

Step 3: Extract macOS Catalina VMDK File

Locate the downloaded macOS Catalina Beta.rar then right-click on it and select Extract Here. You should end up with a .vmdk file.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Extract macOS Catalina Beta.rar


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

macOS Catalina Beta VMDK

Step 4: Unlock VMware to Allow macOS Catalina

You should have downloaded macOS Unlocker by DrDonk from GitHub or the direct link above. So now extract the macOS Unlocker V3.0 for VMware Workstation. Right-click on win-install.cmd and select Run as Administrator.

Note: You may always uninstall the previous version of the Unlocker before using a new release. Failure to do this could render VMware unusable. – David Parsons

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Run win-install.cmd As Administrator


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Unlocker 3.0.2 for VMware Workstation

Step 5: Create a New Virtual Machine

#1. Open VMware and click on Create a New Virtual Machine (Ctrl+N) then select Typical (Recommended) and click Next.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Create a New Virtual Machine


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select Typical (recommended)

#2. Now select I will install the operating system later and click Next. Choose Apple Mac OS X from operating system list then select macOS 10.14/15 from version and click Next.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select Install the Operating System Later


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select macOS 10.14/15

#3. Name the virtual machine as you prefer like macOS Catalina Beta. Click Browse then choose a location to save virtual machine files and click Next, or you may let it as default.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Name and Save the Virtual Machine

#4. Don’t Specify the disk space just select Store virtual disk as a single file and click Next. On Ready to Create Virtual Machine, Click Finish.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Specify Disk Capacity


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Create macOS Virtual Machine

Step 6: Edit the Virtual Machine

#1. Click on Edit Virtual Machine Settings.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Edit macOS Catalina Beta Virtual Machine Settings

#2. Increase the Memory from 2 GB to 4 GB or higher for better performance.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Increase RAM

#3. Select Processor menu then increase the CPU processor core from 2 cores to or Higher cores for better performance.

Note: If you don’t have enough resources then you may not increase the Memory and Processor since the minimum requirement is 2 GB Memory and 2 Cores of Processor.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

#4. Select Hard Disk from device section and Remove it.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Remove Hard Disk

#5. Click Add button at the bottom of Virtual Machine window. Select Hard Disk from the Hardware section and click Next.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Add Hard Disk

#6. Select SATA as disk type and click Next.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select SATA Disk Type

#7. Select the Use an existing virtual disk and click Next.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select Existing Virtual Disk

#8. Now, browse for macOS Catalina VMKD file. Select macOS Catalina VMKD File and click Open.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select macOS Catalina Beta VMDK

#9. After selecting the macOS Catalina VMDK then click Finish.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Select the macOS VMDK

#10. Now click on Options tab then from Guest operating system section select Microsoft Windows and make sure Windows 10 x64 is selected in the Version drop-down. Finally, click OK to save all the changes that you made to the virtual machine settings.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Change the Guest OS Type

Step 7: Edit macOS Catalina VMX File

#1. Navigate to the virtual machine folder which you select in step #5 of this guide. If you didn’t specify a new location, then the default location is in Document > Virtual Machine. Right-click on macOS Catalina Beta.vmx then open it via Notepad or any third-party text editor of your choice.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Open macOS Catalina VMX with NotePad

#2. Scroll down to the bottom of texts and add this code: smc.version = “0” then click on File tab then click Save.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Save the VMX File

Step 8: Start macOS Catalina Virtual Machine

#1. Open VMware and on the macOS Catalina VM window Click Power on this Virtual Machine.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Power on the macOS Catalina VM

#2. Now, you for macOS Catalina to boot up and complete the installation itself without you touching anything. It will take roughly 15 minutes depending on your system, be patient.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Booting macOS Catalina beta


How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Installing macOS Catalina Beta

#3. Once the installation is complete, it should restart itself. After it restarts then Shutdown the VM by click on Right-clicking on the virtual machine tab > Power > Shut Down Guest.

Shutdown the macOS Catalina VM

Shutdown the VM

#4. Again you need to edit the Virtual Machine. So click Edit virtual machine settings or Right-click on the Virtual Machine tab then Select Settings.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Edit VM Settings

#5. Now click on Options tab then from Guest operating system section select Microsoft Windows and make sure Windows 10 x64 is selected in the Version drop-down. Finally, Click OK to save changes.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

Change the Guest operating system back to macOS

#6. Click Power on this virtual machine. Then the VM should boot into macOS at this point.

How to Install macOS Catalina on VMware

power on the macOS Catalina VM

Complete Basic macOS Account Settings

  1. Select your Country and click Continue.
  2. On the Data & Privacy page, click Continue.
  3. Select Don’t transfer any information now and click Continue.
  4. Click on Set Up Later then Skip
  5. Click Agree to the Terms and Conditions.
  6. Fill out the Full name, Account name, Password, and Hint then click Continue.
  7. Click on Continue on the Express Set Up page.
  8. On the Analytics, click Continue.
  9. On-Screen Time, click Continue.
  10. Select any appearance theme and click Continue
  11. Finally, wait a little while for macOS to finish setting up then it should boot into the macOS Catalina Desktop.
Install macOS Catalina on VMware
macOS Catalina Beta Installed

Step 9: Install VMware Tools (Optional)

So now you should have noticed that the resolution of macOS Catalina can’t be changed and it’s not working as smoothly as you expected. To fix macOS Catalina Resolution on VMware or Make it more responsive, you need to install something called VMware Tools. It’s quite easy and straightforward to work with any system. So to do that we have created a comprehensive guide. Please click the link below and follow the guide Step by step.

See this guide: How to install VMware Tools on macOS Catalina 

I am the CEO of wikigain.com and a network instructor. Here is my online pictorial notebook. I would like to write and share my experience through this website for computer enthusiasts, how to guides and technology geeks.

3 Comments

  1. Michael Reply

    I was anxious to test this out and take a peek, but when I try to attach the harddrive, I get an incompatibility error. I was using V.14, so I upgraded it to V.15 but still get the error. Any thoughts?

    Error:
    The selected virtual disk is incompatible with this Workstation 14.x virtual machine. Adding this disk would make this virtual machine incompatible with older VMware products.

    Interesting, the same error is obtained whether using v.14 or v.15….. It won’t allow the drive to be saved.

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