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Here's how to open exe files on your Android phone

This is perfect if you want to run old programs and games.
October 8, 2022

You would be wrong if you thought exe files only work on Windows machines. If you own an Android smartphone or tablet, you can run at least some of them. The bad news is that you cannot directly download and install an exe file on the Android OS. The good news is that you can get an exe file opener for Android, along with an exe run app.

You may be asking why you would even want to run an exe file on Android. The biggest reason is playing older Windows games that have not yet been ported to the Android OS. Using an emulator can also solve that issue, and it might even be a more straightforward solution, but running exe files on Android might still be a worthy project to some.

Many apps will open exe files on Android. Remember that not all exe files will run on Android, even with these special apps. If you were thinking about running Doom Eternal, that will not happen. However, if you want to run the 1993 Windows version of Doom, these exe file openers for Android could be the perfect solution.


You can open exe files on Android using Inno Setup Extractor or any DOS BOX app like aFreeBox.


Editor’s note: Android doesn’t officially support exe files. You will likely encounter roadblocks such as bugs, compatibility issues, etc. Do this at your own risk, and make sure you know what you’re doing before tinkering with your phone.

Open with Inno Setup Extractor

Inno Setup Extractor - run exe on android

Inno Setup Extractor is perhaps the most straightforward exe file opener to use. After you download your desired exe on your Android phone, download and install Inno Setup Extractor from the Google Play Store, use a file browser to locate the exe file, and open that file with the app. Inno Setup Extractor will then extract the exe on your Android phone, and you can check out those files afterward.

Run exe files on Android with a DOS BOX app

AFreeBox - exe file opener on Android

You are likely aware of DOS BOX applications if you have any experience running older programs on more recent operating systems. They allow programs made for the old MS-DOS system to work on Windows via emulation. The good news is that there are also DOS BOX apps for Android.

One of the easiest to use is AFreeBox. If you have installed this app on your Android phone, you might be able to open some exe files. To do that, place the exe file you want to use in a new folder on your device and name it (any name is OK, just make it easy to remember). Then run AFreeBox and type “cd\folder name” into the command line. Once inside that folder, type in the name of the exe file in the command line. If the program is compatible with the AFreeBox app, the exe file should run on your Android product.


Exe files aren’t supported by the Android operating system. That said, there are some ways to unpack and use exe files using certain Android apps.

Android apps that can open exe files can’t really open all exe files. Don’t expect to run video or photo editors, or high-end games. Some older games and apps will work, though.

Exe is a format used by Windows alone. It is not compatible with the Android operating system.

If you want to play Windows games using an Android smartphone or tablet, there are now better ways to do it. You can game on the cloud using services like Nvidia GeForce Now, Xbox Cloud Gaming, or even Shadow Tech. You might also want to check out our list of the best gaming PCs and laptops, just in case you want to avoid all of this and get Windows hardware.