How to start an original Google Android image in Parallels Desktop?

If I just try to create a new virtual machine from the img from Factory Images for Nexus Devices (e. g. for Pixel C), it tells me: „Unable to detect operating system“:

Unable to detect OS

And if I continue selecting Android manually, it tells me: „No boot device is available“:

No boot device

How to install this image as a virtual machine in Parallels?

Or how to find the right Google Android image which is possible to install in Parallels?

I'd like to use an official Android image from Google without a risk the image will contain any Adware etc.


That's not really how this works. The Android device images are not bootable images or installers or something. They contain a packed copy of the Android OS specifically built for the targeted device as well as all required hardware drivers. No virtualisation software will find any bootable code in such a firmware file.

Also most VMMs (including Parallels) virtualise x86/x64 processors, while almost all Android devies use an ARM processor. You could try an x86 port like Android-x86 or Remix OS.

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  • Got it. Do you know how to setup a resolution for rMBP 2880x1800? If I set UVESA_MODE=2880x1800, it fails. If I set vga= some codes work, but the resolution si to small. I struggle to find a param to run Android at 2880x1800 or at least as close to this resolution as possible. Thanks – myneur Mar 12 '16 at 0:54
  • Even choosing 2880x1800x32 as an option offered by vga=ask parameter fails the installation. – myneur Mar 12 '16 at 1:55
  • OK. 2560x1600x16 works. The 2880x1800x32 crashes for some reasons. Thank you anyway for your guidance about the Android image. I'll try to find how to run it on a native resolution. – myneur Mar 12 '16 at 12:21

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