Windows Sandbox an isolated, temporary, desktop environment where you can run untrusted software without the fear of lasting impact to your PC. Any software installed in Windows Sandbox stays only in the sandbox and cannot affect your host. Once Windows Sandbox is closed, all the software with all its files and state are permanently deleted. Here's how to enable it in Windows 10 Home.
Windows Sandbox has the following properties:
- Part of Windows – everything required for this feature ships with Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise. No need to download a VHD!
- Pristine – every time Windows Sandbox runs, it’s as clean as a brand-new installation of Windows
- Disposable – nothing persists on the device; everything is discarded after you close the application
- Secure – uses hardware-based virtualization for kernel isolation, which relies on the Microsoft’s hypervisor to run a separate kernel which isolates Windows Sandbox from the host
- Efficient – uses integrated kernel scheduler, smart memory management, and virtual GPU
Windows Sandbox has the following pre-requisites.
- Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise
- AMD64 architecture
- Virtualization capabilities enabled in BIOS
- At least 4GB of RAM (8GB recommended)
- At least 1 GB of free disk space (SSD recommended)
- At least 2 CPU cores (4 cores with hyperthreading recommended)
If you hardware meets the requirements, but you have Windows 10 Home instead, here is a quick hack you can use to get it working.
Note: If you have Controlled Folder Access turned on it may have prevent the script from creating the sandbox.txt file on the Desktop, that's one of the protected folders by default. Turn it off temporarily and try again.
To Enable Windows Sandbox in Windows 10 Home,
- Download the following ZIP archive: Download ZIP archive.
- Extract its contents to any folder. You can place the files directly to the Desktop.
- Unblock the files.
- Double click on the file Sandbox Installer.bat to activate the feature.
How does it work
The batch file has the following contents:
@echo off echo Checking for permissions >nul 2>&1 "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\cacls.exe" "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\config\system" echo Permission check result: %errorlevel% REM --> If error flag set, we do not have admin. if '%errorlevel%' NEQ '0' ( echo Requesting administrative privileges... goto UACPrompt ) else ( goto gotAdmin ) :UACPrompt echo Set UAC = CreateObject^("Shell.Application"^) > "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" echo UAC.ShellExecute "%~s0", "", "", "runas", 1 >> "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" echo Running created temporary "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" timeout /T 2 "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" exit /B :gotAdmin if exist "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" ( del "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" ) pushd "%CD%" CD /D "%~dp0" echo Batch was successfully started with admin privileges echo . cls Title Sandbox Installer pushd "%~dp0" dir /b %SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\*Containers*.mum >sandbox.txt for /f %%i in ('findstr /i . sandbox.txt 2^>nul') do dism /online /norestart /add-package:"%SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\%%i" del sandbox.txt Dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:Containers-DisposableClientVM /LimitAccess /ALL pause
It registers all the Sandbox packages in Windows 10 Home, and tries to activate the "Containers-DisposableClientVM" option feature using DISM. This optional feature represents Windows Sandbox.
- How to enable Windows Sandbox (and what is it)
- Windows Sandbox Introduces Simple Config Files in Windows 10