How To Run Exe Files On Android Devices?

An exe file is a Windows executable file, and it is used to run programs on your computer. Android doesn’t recognize .exe files, as it’s a different operating system than Windows. If so, can you run exe files on an Android device?

It is possible to run exe files on your Android smartphone without rooting. There are many third-party tools available that allow you to execute exe files directly on your Android phone with certain limitations.

However, Android officially does not support Windows executable programs.


Using Cloud PC is the best way to open all exe files on Android. You can also use the Inno Setup Extractor or any DOS BOX app like DosBox Turbo but they support limited executable files. Another option would be to install Windows PC emulators on Android, such as Wine and ExaGear to execute exe files.

Method #1: Use ExaGear Emulator to Run Exe Files

ExaGear is an emulator that allows you to run Windows exe files directly on your Android phone without rooting. However, programs and games with high requirements may not be compatible, such as Microsoft Office.

But, you can install several Windows exe programs including VLC, NotePad++, Audacity, and more.

Just follow these simple steps to enjoy your favorite Windows programs on Android.

Step #1: Download ExaGear And ZArchiver Apps

ExaGear emulator is not officially available on the Google Play Store, however, you can follow this link to download the ZIP file of this app easily.

ZArchiver app is needed to extract the downloaded ZIP file. You can also use any other file extractor app, such as RAR for Android, WinZip, or Android’s built-in file manager.

Step #2: Unzip Exagear Windows Emulator

Once you have installed the ZArchiver, or any similar app, open it on your mobile app development phone.

Then, navigate to the Download folder to locate the downloaded ExaGear ZIP file.

Tap on the file and select Extract here.

Extract the ExaGear Emulator ZIP file

A new folder will be created to store the extracted files.

Step #3: Change the Files Path And Grant Permission

Now, open the extracted ExaGear folder which will have two items. Simply, copy the folder named “com.eltechs.ed”

Copy one ExaGear app folder

Then, go to Android > open OBB folder, and paste the copied folder here.

Paste the ExaGear copied folder in OBB Android directory

Make sure to copy the folder in exact same path.

Step #4: Install ExaGear PC Emulator on Android

Once the folder is copied, we can now install the ExaGear app. Open the extracted ExaGear folder again.

Tap on the ExaGear Gold APK file and install it.

Install ExaGear Emulator app on Android

You may need to enable unknown source installation from settings before installing this app as it’s unavailable on the Play Store.

Step #5: Install Windows Exe Files

Until now, the ExaGear app must be installed on your phone. Now, we’re ready to install our Windows exe file on it.

Launch this app > Tap three horizontal lines ☰ located at the top-left corner of the screen > Select Install New.

Tap on Install New

Swipe down and select Other app (not from the list) then, locate the exe file you want to install.

Select other app to install your own exe file

The installation process is the same as on a desktop PC.

If you face any error while installing the executable file, try downloading its lower version since it’s not able to install all heavy Windows software.

Step #6: Run The Installed Executable Program

Once the exe program installation process is completed, you can now run it on your Android device.

To do so, open the ExaGear app and you’ll find the installed exe files on the front.

Run installed Windows exe files on Android through ExaGear Emulator

Just tap on it and the application will launch.

This way, you can easily run your favorite Windows programs directly on an Android device.

Method #2: Use DOS BOX to Run Executable Programs

DOS BOX is an emulator that provides the facility to execute MS-DOS programs on Android phones. It can easily run DOS-based Windows apps on smartphones, such as Tetris Queen, a video game.

However, it does not support the latest executable Windows files. It can play games developed for Windows 2000 and earlier.

This method is specifically for advanced users who enjoy playing old 1999 games on their mobile devices.

Step #1: Download Windows Program Exe File

DOS BOX only supports the execution of Windows files that are compatible with the DOS platform.

You can enjoy a wide range of apps and DOS games that are compatible with Windows 2000 and earlier.

To do so, you need to download DOS-based exe files from the internet.

DOS Games is a popular platform where you can download a wide variety of classic DOS games to choose from.

Step #2: Extract the Executable File

After downloading your favorite .exe game, locate the Download folder using a file browser where its RAR file is stored.

Extract the ZIP file using ZArchiver or any Android’s built-in file manager.

Open the extracted folder then, locate its actual file with the .exe extension from the list of files.

Remember exe file and folder name

Make sure to remember the name of both the executable file and the corresponding folder, as we will require this information later.

Step #3: Install the DosBox Turbo App on Android

The paid version of DosBox Turbo is available on the Play Store, however, you can follow this link to download it for free.

Now, install this app on your Android phone like other apps.

There are many other DosBox apps available as well, such as Magic DosBox or AnDOSBox. You can use these apps as well but, I’ll use DosBox Turbo for the demonstration in this tutorial.

Step #4: Change the Current Working Directory

Launch the DosBox Turbo app on your mobile. It looks like a command prompt then, tap on the Keyboard icon ⌨️.

Open DosBox Turbo and tap Keyboard icon

from the top menu to write commands.

Type cd {folder name}, where the exe file is placed, command and press Enter, located at the bottom-right corner of the Android keyboard.

Change directory in DosBox

Your directory will be changed. However, If the game folder is located elsewhere, enter the full path from the root folder after the cd command.

Step #5: Open Exe File With Keyboard

Now, type the name of the actual executable file without the .exe extension.

type exe file name in dosbox to run it

Your game will start running on your Android phone. You can use an Android or PC keyboard to control the game.

play exe game through keyboard

You may encounter errors when running exe files, which means that the executable file is not compatible with DOS.

These games have low resolution as they are designed for screens and devices with low resolution. It can’t run modern programs so, you have limited controls.

Method #3: Use Inno Setup Extractor to Open Exe Files

Inno Setup Extractor is an Android app that allows users to open .exe files on Android without using a PC. This powerful tool can extract many Windows executable files which you can then run directly on your Android device.

However, it can only open valid Inno configuration files, not random .exe files.

Note that, it’s just an exe file opener and cannot directly run .exe file format Windows software.

However, you can use any DOS BOX app to execute the extracted exe file extension program or game.
  1. Install the Inno Setup Extractor app from the Play Store.
  2. Launch the app on your Android.
  3. Tap Select to locate the exe program via File Explorer.
    Open exe file with Inno Setup Extractor app
  4. Then, choose the destination path by tapping on Select.
  5. Tap on the upload symbol to open the executable file.
  6. Once extracted, use DosBox to run these setup files.

Method #4: Use Cloud PC to Run All Windows Files

Cloud PC offers a seamless solution for running Windows .exe files on your Android device through the internet. It provides a virtual Windows environment where you can connect to a computer remotely, and install and run any program or game of your choice.

Windows 365 is the most widely used cloud PC service. It allows users to access a Windows PC anytime from any device, including Android, where you can install and run any computer software or game of your choice.

With this method, you can easily run .exe files on your Android without installing an emulator.

Step #1: Sign up for Windows 365 Free Trial

You can try Windows 365 Cloud PC, offered by Microsoft, free for 30 days with 2 vCPU, 8 GB RAM, and 128 GB storage.

For this, you need to sign up for a Windows 365 free trial and set up your account.

Try Windows 365 Cloud PC free trial

Just follow the on-screen instructions and your Cloud PC will be ready in no time.

You can cancel anytime if you don’t wish to continue during these 30 days. If you like any other Cloud PC service, you can also use that.

Step #2: Download Microsoft Remote Desktop For Android

Once you get access to your Virtual Windows environment (Cloud PC), you can access it anytime from any device, including Android tablets and iPhones.

For this, you need to install the Remote Desktop app from the Play Store on your Android device.

Install Remote Desktop app on Android

This app will allow you to access the PC remotely.

Step #3: Enter Credentials to Connect to a Cloud PC

Open your Windows 365 admin panel and navigate to the Download section. Click on Get Subscription URL and copy the workspace URL.

Copy Cloud PC Subscription URL

Open the Remote Desktop app on your mobile, and go to the Workspaces tab. Tap on the Plus + icon at the top right corner, and select Add Workspace.

add workspace in Remote Desktop app

Now, paste the copied workspace URL here, tap Next, then sign in to your Microsoft account.

Your workspace will be added.

Step #4: Download and Install an Exe File

Now, navigate to the Workspaces tab on the Remote Desktop app and tap on the newly added workspace to access your Cloud PC.

Start Workspace to start running exe files on Android

The Windows PC will start running on your Android device. Make sure your mobile is connected to high GHz Wi-Fi network for smooth Windows experience on Android.

After that, you can download your favorite .exe type of file from the internet.

Once downloaded, install it directly from your mobile phone.

Step #5: Run the Installed Executable Program on the Android

Once the executable file installation is finished, double-tap on its desktop shortcut to run and control it easily from your Android mobile.

Double-tap to open Windows program on phone

The software will launch instantly.

This is the most convenient method to run any Windows Exe programs and games from your phone without any restrictions.

You can control the software from your Android keyboard easily or attach an external computer keyboard to have full control.

Method #5: Use Wine PC Emulator For Exe Files

Wine is a powerful Windows emulator app that can run .exe files on the Android operating system. You can install Windows applications directly on your mobile. However, this app is not compatible with all Android phone processors.

You need to download its correct version based on your phone’s processor. This PC emulator is capable of executing many Windows programs.

The process for installing an executable file is the same as on Windows.

Step #1: Check Your Smartphone Processor Type

You need to know the architecture of your smartphone processor in order to download the exact version of the Wine app.

Installing the wrong version may cause the app to become unresponsive.

Install the Droid Hardware Info app from the Play Store then, open it. Navigate to the System tab and check the CPU architecture of your Android device.

Check CPU Architecture for Wine app version

Step #2: Download the Wine App on Android

Follow this link and download the latest Wine app version according to your smartphone processor.

You’ll find the same app version with various processor types, such as ARM and x86. So, select accordingly.

Download correct Wine app version

Step #3: Enable Unknown Sources to Install the app

As the Wine Emulator app is not available on the Play Store, you must enable unknown sources from the Android settings to install the downloaded app.

To do this:

  1. Open Settings on your Android device.
  2. Scroll down and tap on Apps or App Management.
  3. Select Special App Access.
  4. Allow Google Chrome as a trusted installation source.

Settings can differ across various phone models. So, you may need to do a bit of digging to find the right settings.

Once enabled, install the Wine app on your phone.

Step #4: Install Exe File on the Wine app

Now, launch the Wine app. It provides a real Windows-like experience.

If you’re stuck on the black screen or the interface that says “Setting up Windows environment,” it means there could be an app version issue or incompatibility with your phone hardware.

Once successfully opened, tap on the Start button then, select Run.

Tap Start then Run

Tap Browse to locate the exe file you want to install.

Tap Browse to select Windows program

Select the executable program and tap Open.

Locate exe file to install it on Android

Then, tap OK to initiate the installation process.

Simply, follow the on-screen instructions to install the Windows-based software. However, you can’t install complex software.

Step #5: Execute the Installed Windows Program

Once the installation process is complete, a shortcut for the software will be automatically generated on the desktop of the Wine emulator.

Just double-tap on it to run the executable file on your Android phone.

double-tap to open installed exe file on Android through Wine app

Alternatively, you can tap on Start > Programs then, select your installed Windows program to execute it.

Method #6: Use Remote Desktop Method

Remote Desktop is a reliable and unique technique to run executable files directly from your Android phone. By remotely connecting to your Windows computer, you can access all your PC programs directly on your mobile device.

To use it, you need your own computer connected to the Internet.

Simply put, you won’t directly install exe files on your phone. Instead, you can enjoy software and games installed on your computer/laptop via an Android tablet or phone.
  1. Install TeamView on both Android and Windows devices.
  2. Launch the TeamViewer Remote Control app on your Android device.
  3. Enter the Partner ID, mentioned on the TeamViewer Window then, tap Remote Control.
  4. You can now access your Windows PC easily.
  5. Now, install and open the exe programs from your smartphone.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does My Phone Have To Be Rooted For Installing Exe Files?

Rooting your Android device is not a prerequisite for running exe files as long as you are using a reliable third-party emulator like ExaGear or Wine. These apps are capable of opening Windows executable files without the need to root your mobile phone.

How Can I Unpack an Exe File on Android?

Inno Setup Extractor Android app provides the facility to unpack Windows executable files. Simply download it from the Play Store and load an exe file. If the file is a valid executable program, it will begin to extract it.

Is It Possible to Convert the Exe file To Android APK?

EXE to APK Converter Tool is designed to convert the Windows exe files to an Android APK file. Simply install this lightweight software on your PC, load a valid executable file, and this tool will start converting it into an Android app. Exe and APK are two different types of files.

Is It Safe To Execute Exe Files On My Phone?

While it is possible to directly run executable (exe) files on your mobile device, it is important to note that not all apps are safe for Android devices. Windows OS provides more security features than Android, so running exe files on your device might cause malware and other security risks.

Why is it Not Possible to Run EXE Files Natively on Android?

Android and Windows are two different operating systems, and they use different software components. Executable files also come with their own set of requirements, which the Android OS lacks. As a result, it is not possible to directly open an exe file on your Android device without any emulator.

What are the Limitations of running EXE files on Android?

Compatibility is the main hurdle when running executable files on mobile phones. Even if you are able to open a specific executable file on Android, it may not work properly. Also, executing exe files can lead to several security issues due to the lack of Windows OS’ native security features.


The ability to run executable files, a common file format, on Android devices may come in handy at times, but it is important to consider the security risks associated with it.

If you do decide to execute an exe file on your Android device, make sure that you are using a trusted application. The tools and methods described in this tutorial can help you achieve this goal easily.

Of course, a better way of enjoying all Windows executable (exe) files would involve creating a suitable environment that runs the Windows operating system.

I hope you found this guide helpful. If so, share it with others so they can benefit from it too.

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Muhammad Bilal
Muhammad Bilal

I'm Muhammad Bilal, founder of Tech Axen. Being a tech enthusiast, I enjoy sharing tech tips and tricks with others to assist them with their issues. For this purpose, I feed this blog with articles that provide useful information on technology.

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