I have Parallels Desktop 6 (6.0.11994) installed and after an upgrade to Lion, whenever I start Parallels, I get these two messages:

Your virtual machine may run slow because virtualization is disabled on your Mac

Unable to load the Parallels driver. Restart your Mac and try again.

Then Parallels Virtual Machines window appears but neither of them can be started.
How do I fix this?

2 Answers 2


You don't have the Lion compatible version of Parallels installed! The current version is 6.0.12094.

Parallels About Screen

You can download the latest version from Parallel's download page or use Check for Updates... in Parallels Desktop menu.


There are several solutions to this problem.

The easiest, and permanent solution is to upgrade the Parallels to the latest build.
The upgrade is free for existing version 6 users.
The official KB article says:

Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac (build 12094 and higher) is compatible with Lion.

To upgrade, go to the download page or click Check for Updates... in Parallels Desktop menu:

Check for Updates...

If you don't yet want to upgrade, you can use a workaround below:

  1. Launch AppleScript Editor (it's in Utilities folder)
  2. Create a new file (File > New)
  3. Copy and paste this into the editor:

    do shell script "for x in prl_hypervisor prl_hid_hook prl_usb_connect prl_netbridge prl_vnic; do
    sudo kextutil -q \"/Library/Parallels/Parallels Service.app/Contents/Kexts/10.6/$x.kext\"
    done" with administrator privileges
    do shell script "open -a \"/Applications/Parallels Desktop.app\""

  4. Select File > Save, call it Parallels Desktop Launcher, put it in the Applications folder and set type to Application:

Parallels Desktop 6 Lion workaround

The new launcher will appear in your Applications folder and you will be able to use it to start Parallels. You will need to enter your password once before the start because the script needs administrative privileges.

Parallels Desktop 6 Lion launcher

Note that there are also other problems with Lion incompatibility in versions prior to 6.0.12094 and this only fixes startup. I also had a problem with Parallels virtual machine window being only briefly visible during Spaces transition, as if it were above all windows in the system. Apparently, I had Coherence mode set by default, and there seem to issues with it on the older versions. I fixed the problem by clicking the red Parallels icon in the menu bar and choosing Exit Coherence:

Exit Coherence

To fix the same issue with Parallels configuration window not appearing, I had to change Assign to from None to All Desktops.

Parallels configuration window is invisible fix

  • One question pops into my mind: why would one go this extremely complicated way over installing a free update that solves the issue? Is it the download size?
    – mwidmann
    Aug 4, 2011 at 11:00
  • 1
    @mwidmann: I edited the answer to reflect that the upgrade is free for the existing v6 users. Personally, I use 3G via my cell operator for the internet connection and I already exceeded the 2GB traffic limit so a temporary workaround helps a huge.
    – Dan
    Aug 4, 2011 at 11:18
  • 1
    Some people around do not want to register, and you can't get updates if you don't register. For me the procedure above solved the problem. Many thanks!
    – user9536
    Aug 8, 2011 at 10:06

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