How to Unlock Hardware Virtualization in a Dell With an Intel Processor

Written by marie lowe
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Hardware virtualisation is a feature many Central Processing Unit (CPU) and controller chips that allow virtual machine software systems such as VMware Workstation, Microsoft Virtual PC and Oracle OpenBox to use the CPU directly, without passing through the host operating system and slowing the machine down. In addition to this, hardware virtualisation lets a virtual machine save the exact state of the CPU at the time of being paused or suspended by the user. The virtual machine software can then tell the CPU exactly what it was doing at the time of being paused, ensuring there is no loss of data. Although most Dell PCs released since Intel's introduction of its virtualisation technology in 2004 support virtualisation, Dell disables this feature by default and you will need to activate it in the system's BIOS before your operating system loads.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Restart your computer and press the "F12" key as soon as the BIOS loading text appears on your screen.

  2. 2

    Use the arrow keys to select "BIOS Setup" and then press "Enter."

  3. 3

    Use your mouse to press the "+" symbol to the left of "Virtualization Support."

  4. 4

    Select "Virtualization."

  5. 5

    Place a check mark next to "Enable Intel Virtualization Technology."

  6. 6

    Click the "Apply" button, then click "Exit."

  7. 7

    Restart your computer. Hardware Virtualization is now enabled.

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