How can I emulate the Raspberry Pi on Windows?

Related: Emulation on a Linux PC

  • Meta discussion: meta.raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/122/35
    – Alex L
    Commented Jun 15, 2012 at 12:02
  • Cygwin must be used to run QEMU in Windows. I don't know any other way.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 15, 2012 at 12:30
  • @Jivings There's a(n unofficial) precompiled version - lassauge.free.fr/qemu
    – Alex L
    Commented Jun 15, 2012 at 12:50
  • 1
    @ACarter It's not. Because Alex wants to emulate the ARM architecture, just just the OS.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 20, 2012 at 21:21
  • 2
    I'm still disappointed with the quality of the answers here; they are either prone to link rot or don't explain what is going on. Commented Jul 27, 2012 at 15:58

4 Answers 4


I found a rare gem of a tutorial while trying to find updates for the RISC OS distribution for the RPi. It goes in-depth on how to emulate the RPi in Windows using QEMU. The tutorial is also generous enough to provide a link to the Win32 binary for QEMU. I plan on following this tutorial myself when I find the time.

  • 3
    Could you please expand your answer to protect against link rot? Cheers!
    – Alex L
    Commented Sep 16, 2012 at 12:03
  • 1
    Of course! I'll have it done soon. Commented Sep 16, 2012 at 18:53
  • 1
    @Jivings I've been attacked by life which has made my schedule quite busy. It's still on my list of things to do, though! I'd normally do it at work, but I got a new job that's much more time-consuming. Commented Sep 25, 2012 at 20:03
  • 1
    Well, it's been 15 months... Commented Sep 3, 2013 at 13:09
  • 1
    @ThatBrazilianGuy I know; I'm a terrible person. It's still on my list, though, along with a couple things for AskDifferent. Commented Sep 10, 2013 at 22:19

There is a very nice Raspberry Pi forum posting about “Emulating Raspberry Pi in Windows the easy way”. Somebody already did all the work to make Raspberry Pi emulation in Windows as simple as possible. The instructions are:

  1. download a zip from SourceForge

  2. Unzip the file when it finishes downloading.

  3. Inside the folder you should find a run.bat file which will do all the magic for you.

The zip file is literally Raspberry Pi in a zip. It contains QEMU along with the Wheezy squeeze, and the batch file that you run to start the emulation contains the exact command to start QEMU as an ARM CPU running Wheezy. This is the epitome of KISS.

It should be noted that others have downloaded and checked the files for viruses, and that the emulation has been confirmed on several versions of Windows. I can confirm the emulation works in Windows 7 Ultimate.

Bear in mind that the default keyboard layout is English GB. If you are using an English US keyboard then there'll be some problems with the | character, to fix it you need to run the configure keyboard option at the raspi-config tool at first boot up.

  • 1
    I can also confirm that this way works also in Windows 10. Commented Jan 13, 2017 at 8:22

You can emulate the RPi in VirtualBox with relative ease.

Here is a thread with instructions. It's rather straightforward to get this up and running.

EDIT: You need to get Scratchbox and QEMU working with this as VirtualBox doens't emulate ARM out the box.

Here are further instructions. (Same link, from web.archive.org)

  • The problem with this is that it wont be ARM architecture.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 11:39
  • 2
    No, you need to use a instruction set emulator, such as QEMU.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 11:42
  • 1
    Nice, you have my upvote now.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 12:03
  • 4
    If the links die, this answer will be rather useless. Could you summarise the content?
    – Alex L
    Commented Jun 27, 2012 at 5:30
  • 2
    link to instructions are dead :(
    – Piotr Kula
    Commented Feb 19, 2015 at 21:35

You could easily try my Raspberry Pi simulator included with sensor, command line and file editor at iotify.io. Check out our documentation at https://docs.iotify.io/ to get started with the different projects OS and make yourself familiar with Raspberry Pi working environment.

Screenshot of Raspberry Pi simulator

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