Macs powered by Apple silicon, such as the M1 MacBook Pro, can run both iOS apps and Mac apps, but they can also run x86-64 software that's been built to work on Intel architecture, thanks to something called Rosetta 2.

mac mini macbook pro macbook air m1
Rosetta 2 is the translation layer that enables a Mac with Apple silicon to use apps built for an Intel-based Mac. The first time you launch an app that requires it, an alert will appear asking permission for Rosetta to be installed. After that, the translation layer works in the background whenever you use an app built only for Mac computers with an Intel processor, and automatically translates the app for use with Apple silicon the first time the app is run.

When developers update their apps to run natively on Apple silicon, they use something called a Universal binary. Originally, Universal apps referred to executable files that run natively on both PowerPC or Intel Macs. At WWDC 2020 in June, however, Apple announced Universal 2, which allows apps to run on both Intel-based Macs and Apple silicon Macs.

If an app has yet to be updated to Universal 2, an M1-powered Mac will still run it, but it will do so by converting the Intel x86-64 code using Rosetta 2 emulation software. But what if you want to run the Intel version rather than the Apple silicon version? You may want to do this if the Apple silicon version of the app is missing a particular feature, or if you're using an app with third-party plug-ins or extensions that haven't been updated to support Apple silicon yet.

In such cases, you can use the following steps to force a Universal app to run the Rosetta version instead.

  1. First, if the app you want to run in Rosetta is running, save your work and quit it.
  2. Next, open a Finder window, navigate to the Applications folder on your Mac, and locate the app in question.
    finder

  3. Right-click (or Ctrl-click) the app's icon and select Get Info from the contextual dropdown menu.
    finder

  4. Click the checkbox next to "Open using Rosetta."
    Get Info

  5. Close the Info window, then re-launch the app.

From hereon in, your Mac will run the Intel version of the app using the Rosetta translation layer. To stop using Rosetta at any time, simply repeat the steps above and uncheck the box next to "Open using Rosetta."

Related Stories

Twitter Feature

How to Create Your Own GIFs in the Twitter iOS App

Wednesday March 23, 2022 7:19 pm PDT by
Twitter has updated its iOS app with a new in-app camera feature that lets users create their own animated GIFs for posting to the social media platform. The following steps show you how it's done. In Twitter, hit the big blue plus button to start composing a tweet. Tap the picture icon in the compose window, just above the virtual keyboard. Tap the camera icon. Make sure GIF is selected ...
facetime grid view

How to Reduce Background Noise in FaceTime on Mac

Thursday February 17, 2022 3:18 pm PST by
In macOS Monterey, Apple has made its FaceTime video calling platform more appealing with several new features that aim to make it a viable alternative to rival video conferencing apps. One of the new audio features is Voice Isolation mode for your microphone, which separates your voice from any distracting background noise that might be on the call. The feature uses machine learning to...
close ipad apps

How to Close or Force Quit iPad Apps

Wednesday January 19, 2022 5:24 pm PST by
Apple designed its iPadOS software so that you don't have to close an app when you're not using it, since most apps that are not active remain in a suspended state and don't use up any resources or eat up battery. However, if an iPad app becomes unresponsive, you may need to force quit the app and restart it to get it to work properly again. Here's how you can do that on both older and...
sys prefs displays

How to Use Universal Control and Sidecar Simultaneously in macOS 12.3

Tuesday March 15, 2022 5:06 am PDT by
With the release of macOS 12.3, Macs provide support for two separate features called Sidecar and Universal Control that allow Macs and iPads to be used together, but in different ways. This article explains the difference between them and shows you how to use both features in concert, provided your setup allows for it. Keep reading to learn more. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for ...
Universal Control Colored Feature

How to Use Universal Control Across Macs and iPads

Monday February 7, 2022 1:04 pm PST by
As of iPadOS 15.4 and macOS Monterey 12.3, Apple has introduced support for Universal Control, the long-awaited feature that's designed to allow multiple Macs and iPads to be controlled with a single mouse and keyboard. Thanks to Universal Control, you can use the same cursor and keyboard on any nearby Mac or ‌iPad‌ that's signed into your iCloud account. So, for example, if you have a...
Universal Control Colored Feature

How to Adjust or Disable Universal Control on Mac

Tuesday March 15, 2022 7:26 am PDT by
As of iPadOS 15.4 and macOS Monterey 12.3, Apple has introduced support for Universal Control, the long-awaited feature that's designed to allow multiple Macs and iPads to be controlled with a single mouse and keyboard. Thanks to ‌Universal Control‌, you can use the same cursor and keyboard on any nearby Mac or ‌iPad‌ that's signed into your iCloud account. So, for example, if you...
apple studio display blue

How to Check and Update Your Apple Studio Display's Firmware

Tuesday March 22, 2022 10:37 am PDT by
Computer monitors and displays don't typically receive firmware updates, but Apple's 27-inch 5K Studio Display isn't typical. That's because it contains its own dedicated A13 processor (the same chip Apple used in the iPhone 11) and runs a full version of iOS, which powers the audio output and deals with webcam processing. The inclusion of a dedicated computer processor means Apple can issue ...
Peek Performance Feature

How to Watch the 'Peek Performance' Apple Event on Tuesday, March 8

Monday March 7, 2022 1:57 am PST by
Apple is planning to hold its first media event of 2022 on Tuesday, March 8, at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time through a live stream. The event is expected to see the unveiling of a new iPhone SE, iPad Air, and at least one new Mac. We could also hear news related to the company's services and perhaps learn the release dates on iOS and iPadOS 15.4, alongside macOS Monterey 12.3, which introduces...

Popular Stories

RIP iPod Feature

RIP iPod: A Look Back at Apple's Iconic Music Player Over the Years

Friday May 13, 2022 2:25 pm PDT by
Apple earlier this week announced the discontinuation of the iPod touch, and because it was the last iPod still available for purchase, its sunsetting effectively marks the end of the entire iPod lineup. To send the iPod on its way, we thought it would be fun to take a look back at some of the most notable iPod releases over the last 21 years. Original iPod (2001) Introduced in October...
iOS 16 mock for article

Gurman: iOS 16 to Include New Ways of System Interaction and 'Fresh Apple Apps'

Sunday May 15, 2022 6:14 am PDT by
iOS 16 will include new ways of interacting with the system and some "fresh Apple apps," Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has said, offering some more detail on what Apple has in store for the upcoming release of iOS and iPadOS set to be announced in a few weeks at WWDC. In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter, Gurman wrote that while iOS 16 is not likely to introduce a major face-lift to...
maxresdefault

Unbox Therapy Shares Hands-On Look at iPhone 14 Pro Max Replica

Monday May 16, 2022 4:40 am PDT by
YouTuber Unbox Therapy has shared a hands-on look at the iPhone 14 Pro Max using what he claims is a one-to-one replica created by third-party case makers with access to detailed schematics and dimensions for Apple's new upcoming flagship smartphone. As with the iPhone 13 Pro lineup, in 2022, we are expecting a 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro and a 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max, but this time the Pro...
iOS 15

Apple Releases iOS 15.5 and iPadOS 15.5 With Wallet and Podcast Updates

Monday May 16, 2022 10:00 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS 15.5 and iPadOS 15.5, the fifth major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 15 operating systems that were initially released in September 2021. iOS and iPadOS 15.5 come a little over two months after the launch of iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4. The iOS 15.5 and iPadOS 15.5 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in...
14 16 inch 2021 mbps back to back feature orange

Five Things You Still Can't Do With a MacBook Pro

Wednesday May 11, 2022 11:16 am PDT by
It's been over 200 days since Apple debuted its redesigned MacBook Pro lineup. Offered in 14-inch and 16-inch display sizes, the new-look MacBooks wowed Apple fans and creative pros alike with their powerful custom Apple silicon, mini-LED screen, and multiple connectivity options. But there are still some things you can't do with a MacBook Pro. Here are five features some Mac users are still...
apple mac ipad watch trade in

Apple Launches Limited-Time Bonus Trade-In Credit for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch in Many Countries

Wednesday May 11, 2022 5:14 am PDT by
Apple has launched a special limited-time offer for iPhone, Apple Watch, Mac, and iPad trade-in that offers customers additional credit when trading in their only device for a new one. The offer is being run in several countries including the US, UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, China, India, and France. In the UK, Apple is offering up to £50 of extra trade-in credit...
airpodsprodesign

Kuo: AirPods, MagSafe Battery Pack, and Other Apple Accessories Also to Switch to USB-C in Future

Sunday May 15, 2022 5:59 am PDT by
Earlier this week, well-known Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed that Apple plans to release at least one iPhone 15 model with a USB-C port in 2023. Now, in a follow-up tweet, he has claimed that accessories like AirPods, the MagSafe Battery Pack, and the Magic Keyboard/Mouse/Trackpad trio would also switch to USB-C in the "foreseeable future." Both the iPhone and all of the aforementioned...