With the release of the update of Windows 10 May 2019, various functions have been added to Windows 10. One of the more interesting was a new application known as Windows Sandbox.
Windows Sandbox is an integrated element and is primarily designed to allow you to run untrusted and sketchy apps, separate from the rest of the operating system.
Enabling the function and running a full virtual version of Windows within your existing installation takes only a few steps. It's not about buying or processing additional software, so here's more about how you can enable and use it on your own laptop or desktop.
Step 1: Check your PC for support for virtualization
One of the requirements for using Windows Sandbox is to check the support of your PC for virtualization. With this technology, your PC can use its computing power to separate hardware from software. It is usually a setting available in the BIOS as Enable virtualization support.
On our Dell XPS 15, we checked this option by pressing F2 choosing Virtualization, and then clicking Enable Intel Virtualization Technology and press OK.
You can find more information about enabling virtualization on your device by referring to the support documents available from your PC manufacturer.
Step 2: Check or upgrade your Windows 10 version
As mentioned earlier, Windows Sandbox is only available for Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise. If you use Windows 10 Home, which comes with most new PCs, you cannot use Windows Sandbox.
You can check your Windows version by going to the start menu and typing About .
Then choose About your PC in the search results list. This should open Windows 10 settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen and check Windows specifications under .
If you see Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, you are ready to go. If this is not the case, you can upgrade your version of Windows by visiting the Microsoft Store app on Windows 10 and entering a search for Windows 10 Pro . A typical upgrade license costs $ 100.
In addition to Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, you must also ensure that your PC has an AMD64 architecture and at least 4 GB of RAM and 1 GB of free space. These are the recommended Microsoft settings for Windows Sandbox.
Step 3: Go to the classic Windows Control Panel
Windows Sandbox is not enabled by default in the Windows 10 May 2019 update. You must enable this manually with the classic Windows 7-style control panel.
To do this, search for Control Panel in the start menu or search box. Then click on the Control Panel in the list of results.
Then type in the search bar at the top right of the Control Panel window: Enable or disable Windows functions. You should then see a top result appear under Program and functions. Click on that option.
Step 4: Find Windows Sandbox in the list of Windows functions
Finally in the window that appears, you want to go all the way to the at the bottom of the list. Next to Windows Sandbox click the check mark and then click OK.
Windows 10 downloads the required files for the Sandbox function and you must then restart your PC for the changes to take effect.
When you restart, you will get a similar screen when you install Windows 10 security updates. It should not take much longer than two or three minutes.
Step 5: Launch Windows Sandbox
After restarting, you can start Windows Sandbox from the Start menu. It should appear at the very bottom of your app list, but make sure you select Run as administrator when you click it. You can also search for it by typing and starting Windows Sandbox in the Start menu.
After you have started, the Windows Sandbox logo appears on your screen in a rectangular box. This is a loading screen, so don't worry. After a few seconds you should see another window appear with the familiar Windows desktop and taskbar. This is your new virtual Windows 10 Sandbox – and a place to test your apps.
Step 6: Transfer files and other sketchy software
After Windows Sandbox is started, you can install an installation program for the software that you want to test , transfer between your physical PC and your sandbox. To do this, find the file that you want to transfer. Then right click on it and select Copy.
Now return to the Windows Sandbox window. Right-click on the desktop space and select Paste.
You can then double-click the installation file and run it in Windows Sandbox, just like on your PC. Please note that you cannot drag and drop files between your physical PC and the Sandbox. However, you can use Microsoft Edge to download any file for testing, just as you would on your normal PC.
Step 7: Close, navigate in the Sandbox and other tips and tricks
You can simply navigate through Windows Sandbox like you would a standard PC, but you can also make it in full screen, making it on your main machine seems. You can press the Ctrl + Alt + Break keys on your keyboard to switch the Sandbox to full screen mode.
Moreover, you no longer have to switch off the Sandbox when you are finished. Simply exit Full Screen mode and press the X button as you would with a normal app to close the session. You get a warning that all your settings and everything being installed will be deleted – just like a Sandbox is designed to do this.