How to Fix the Windows Sandbox No Hypervisor Was Found Error

How to Fix the Windows Sandbox No Hypervisor Was Found Error
Windows Sandbox is a phenomenal addition to Windows 10, with a multitude of uses ranging from malware search to files, through the operating system settings in general. However, it is also subject to a series of problems. Some time ago, I discussed the different solutions to Internet connectivity issues that could affect Windows Sandbox.

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And today, I will discuss actions you can take if you get a "No hypervisor found" error message when you try to launch it.

The hypervisor is an essential component of the operating system required for running virtual machines. This error is generated when Windows Sandbox does not have access to it. I will therefore suggest below three solutions that you can easily use to get things moving in the right direction.

I recommend you start from the beginning and go down the list. The last patch helped me solve the problem when I faced it some time ago. That said, it is always best to start by eliminating some of the most plausible causes.

1. Check virtualization

Although Windows Sandbox is a disposable environment, it works just like any other virtual machine. This means that the hypervisor on which it is supposed to be running does not work if processor virtualization is disabled.

Processor virtualization is a hardware feature, but unless you use an outdated system, the processor most likely supports it. However, it must be activated and there is a simple way to know if it is.

Start by opening the task manager (right-click on the taskbar, and then click Task Manager). On the Performance tab, click CPU, and then check the status next to Virtualization. It should read as Enabled. If it is, skip to the next section.

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If virtualization is disabled, you must access your system's BIOS or UEFI to enable the feature. The problem here is that the whole procedure, although relatively simple, differs from one computer to the other.

If you have already enabled or disabled the feature, continue with it. If it does not, it's a good idea to refer to the motherboard model documentation for your computer for exact instructions. After you enable processor virtualization, try running Windows Sandbox.

In my case, I have to enter the BIOS at the start of the computer by pressing F2, go to the Advanced tab, and then enable the Intel Virtualization Technology option.

Note: To learn more about your system to help you find relevant documentation online, type "msinfo32" in the Start menu and click Open.

2. Enable Windows Features

If processor virtualization is enabled, then it would be strange to encounter the "No hypervisor found" error message. It is therefore wise to enable some operating system-based features that help virtual machines work properly.

To do this, open Windows Features (type features of Windows in the Start menu and click Open). Continue by checking the boxes next to the following features:

  • Virtual machine platform
  • Windows hypervisor platform
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Click OK to activate them. Restart your computer later, and check if the Windows Sandbox is running correctly without the resulting error message.

3. Add a BCD entry

The last thing to do is make sure that the hypervisor is set to run automatically when the computer starts. To do this, you must add an entry to the boot configuration data (BCD) of your computer using the command prompt.

Open a command console with elevated privileges (type cmd in the Start menu, and then click Run as administrator). Then, enter the following command in the command prompt console, and then press Enter:

 BCDEDIT /Set {current} hypervisorlaunchtype auto 
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Restart your computer. Again, launch an elevated command prompt console, type BCDEDIT in the console, then press Enter. In the list that appears, the status next to hypervisorlaunchtype should be set to Auto. This means that the hypervisor is configured successfully to run at startup.

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You are now ready to go. Launch Windows Sandbox. And voila! It should probably charge right away.

Sandbox yourself

The disposable nature of the Windows Sandbox makes it a fantastic tool for a myriad of uses. And it's always best to make sure it works, so you can trigger it at any time. And, hopefully, the above fixes have definitely eliminated this damn "No hypervisor was found" error.

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If the problem persists, try removing third-party virtual machines from your computer (such as VirtualBox or VMWare), and then check again. The hypervisors used by these platforms may cause conflicts with the one used by Windows Sandbox, and you must take this into account.

Then: Concerned about your privacy? Here are 5 Windows 10 privacy settings that you should change immediately.

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