Difference between revisions of "Wine"

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* [http://linuxgamingtoday.wordpress.com/2008/02/16/quick-tips-to-speed-up-your-gaming-in-wine/ Advanced configuring your gfx card and OpenGL settings on wine; Speed up wine]
* [http://linuxgamingtoday.wordpress.com/2008/02/16/quick-tips-to-speed-up-your-gaming-in-wine/ Advanced configuring your gfx card and OpenGL settings on wine; Speed up wine]
* [http://wiki.gotux.net/code:perl:fileinfo FileInfo] - Find Win32 PE/COFF headers in EXE/DLL/OCX files under linux/unix environment.
* [http://wiki.gotux.net/code:perl:fileinfo FileInfo] - Find Win32 PE/COFF headers in EXE/DLL/OCX files under linux/unix environment.
* [https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/Wine Gentoo's Wine Wiki Page]

Revision as of 22:34, 6 January 2014

Related articles

Wine is a compatibility layer capable of running Microsoft Windows applications on Unix-like operating systems. Programs running in Wine act as native programs would, without the performance/memory penalties of an emulator. See the official project home and wiki pages for longer introduction.


Warning: If you can access a file or resource with your user account, programs running in Wine can too. Wine prefixes are not sandboxes. Consider using virtualization if security is important.

Wine can be installed with the package wine, available in the official repositories. If you are running a 64-bit system, you will need to enable the Multilib repository first.

You may also want to install wine_gecko and wine-mono for applications that need support for Internet Explorer and .NET, respectively. These packages are not strictly required as Wine will download the relevant files as needed. However, having the files downloaded in advance allows you to work off-line and makes it so Wine does not download the files for each WINEPREFIX needing them.

Architectural differences

Wine by default is 32-bit, as is the i686 Arch package. As such, it is unable to execute any 64-bit Windows applications.

The x86_64 Arch package, however, is built with --enable-win64. This activates the Wine version of WoW64.

  • In Windows, this complicated subsystem allows the user to use 32-bit and 64-bit Windows programs concurrently and even in the same directory.
  • In Wine, the user will have to make separate directories/prefixes. See Wine64 for specific information on this.

If you run into problems with winetricks or programs with a 64-bit environment, try creating a new 32-bit WINEPREFIX. See below: #Using WINEARCH. Using the x86_64 Wine package with WINEARCH=win32 should have the same behaviour as using the i686 Wine package.


Configuring Wine is typically accomplished using:

  • winecfg is a GUI configuration tool for Wine. You can run it from a console window with: $ winecfg, or $ WINEPREFIX=~/.some_prefix winecfg.
  • control.exe is Wine's implementation of Windows' Control Panel which can be accessed with: $ wine control
  • regedit is Wine's registry editing tool. If winecfg and the Control Panel were not enough, see WineHQ's article on Useful Registry Keys


By default, Wine stores its configuration files and installed Windows programs in ~/.wine. This directory is commonly called a "Wine prefix" or "Wine bottle" It is created/updated automatically whenever you run a Windows program or one of Wine's bundled programs such as winecfg. The prefix directory also contains a tree which your Windows programs will see as C: (the C-drive).

You can override the location Wine uses for a prefix with the WINEPREFIX environment variable. This is useful if you want to use separate configurations for different Windows programs. The first time a program is run with a new Wine prefix, Wine will automatically create a directory with a bare C-drive and registry.

For example, if you run one program with $ env WINEPREFIX=~/.win-a wine program-a.exe, and another with $ env WINEPREFIX=~/.win-b wine program-b.exe, the two programs will each have a separate C-drive and separate registries.

Note: Wine prefixes are not sandboxes! Programs running under Wine can still access the rest of the system! (for example, Z: is mapped to /, regardless of the Wine prefix.)

To create a default prefix without running a Windows program or other GUI tool you can use:

$ env WINEPREFIX=~/.customprefix wineboot -u


If you have a 64-bit system, Wine will start an 64-bit environment by default. You can change this behavior using the WINEARCH environment variable. Rename your ~/.wine directory and create a new wine environment by running $ WINEARCH=win32 winecfg. This will get you a 32-bit wine environment. Not setting WINEARCH will get you a 64-bit one.

You can combine this with WINEPREFIX to make a separate win32 and win64 environment:

$ WINEARCH=win32 WINEPREFIX=~/win32 winecfg 
$ WINEPREFIX=~/win64 winecfg
Note: During prefix creation, the 64-bit version of wine treats all folders as 64-bit prefixes and will not create a 32-bit in any existing folder. To create a 32-bit prefix you have to let wine create the folder specified in WINEPREFIX.

You can also use WINEARCH in combination with other Wine programs, such as winetricks (using Steam as an example):

env WINEARCH=win32 WINEPREFIX=~/.local/share/wineprefixes/steam winetricks steam
Tip: You can make variables like WINEPREFIX or WINEARCH persistent by using ~/.bashrc.

Graphics drivers

For most games, Wine requires high performance accelerated graphics drivers. This likely means using proprietary NVIDIA or AMD Catalyst drivers, although the open source ATI driver is increasingly become proficient for use with Wine. Intel drivers should mostly work as well as they are going to out of the box.

See Gaming On Wine: The Good & Bad Graphics Drivers for more details.

A good sign that your drivers are inadequate or not properly configured is when Wine reports the following in your terminal window:

Direct rendering is disabled, most likely your OpenGL drivers have not been installed correctly

For x86-64 systems, additional multilib packages are required. Please install the one that is listed in the Multilib Package column in the table in Xorg#Driver installation.

Note: You might need to restart X after having installed the correct library.


By default sound issues may arise when running Wine applications. Ensure only one sound device is selected in winecfg. Currently, the Alsa driver is the most supported.

If you want to use Alsa driver in Wine, and are using x86_64, you'll need to install the lib32-alsa-lib. If you are also using PulseAudio, you will need to install lib32-libpulse.

If you want to use OSS driver in Wine, you will need to install the lib32-alsa-oss package. The OSS driver in the kernel will not suffice.

If winecfg still fails to detect the audio driver (Selected driver: (none)), configure it via the registry.

Games that use advanced sound systems may require installations of lib32-openal.

MIDI support

MIDI was a quite popular system for video games music in the 90. If you are trying out old games, it is not uncommon that the music will not play out of the box. Wine has excellent MIDI support. However you first need to make it work on your host system. See the wiki page for more details. Last but not least you need to make sure Wine will use the correct MIDI output. See the Wine Wiki for a detailed setup.

Other libraries

  • Some applications (e.g. Office 2003/2007) require the MSXML library to parse HTML or XML, in such cases you need to install lib32-libxml2.
  • Some applications that require encryption support may require lib32-gnutls.


If Wine applications are not showing easily readable fonts, you may not have Microsoft's Truetype fonts installed. See MS Fonts. If this does not help, try running winetricks allfonts.

After running such programs, kill all wine servers and run winecfg. Fonts should be legible now.

If the fonts look somehow smeared, import the following text file into the Wine registry with regedit:

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Wine\X11 Driver]

Desktop launcher menus

When installing Windows programs with Wine, should result in the appropriate menu/desktop icons being created. For example, if the installation program (e.g. setup.exe) would normally add an icon to your Desktop or "Start Menu" on Windows, then Wine should create corresponding freedesktop.org style .desktop files for launching your programs with Wine.

Tip: If menu items were not created while installing software or have been lost, winemenubuilder may be of some use.

Creating menu entries for Wine utilities

By default, installation of Wine does not create desktop menus/icons for the software which comes with Wine (e.g. for winecfg, winebrowser, etc). These instructions will add entries for these applications.

First, install a Windows program using Wine to create the base menu. After the base menu is created, you can create the following files in ~/.local/share/applications/wine/:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Browse C: Drive
Comment=Browse your virtual C: drive
Exec=wine winebrowser c:
[Desktop Entry]
Name=Uninstall Wine Software
Comment=Uninstall Windows applications for Wine
Exec=wine uninstaller
[Desktop Entry]
Name=Configure Wine
Comment=Change application-specific and general Wine options

And create the following file in ~/.config/menus/applications-merged/:

<!DOCTYPE Menu PUBLIC "-//freedesktop//DTD Menu 1.0//EN"

If these settings produce a ugly/non-existent icon, it means that there are no icons for these launchers in the icon set that you have enabled. You should replace the icon settings with the explicit location of the icon that you want. Clicking the icon in the launcher's properties menu will have the same effect. A great icon set that supports these shortcuts is GNOME-colors.

Removing menu entries

Menu entries created by Wine are located in ~/.local/share/applications/wine/Programs/. Remove the program's .desktop entry to remove the application from the menu.

KDE 4 menu fix

The Wine menu items may appear in "Lost & Found" instead of the Wine menu in KDE 4. This is because kde-applications.menu is missing the MergeDir option.

Edit /etc/xdg/menus/kde-applications.menu

At the end of the file add <MergeDir>applications-merged</MergeDir> after <DefaultMergeDirs/>, it should look like this:


Alternatively you can create a symlink to a folder that KDE does see:

$ ln -s ~/.config/menus/applications-merged ~/.config/menus/kde-applications-merged

This has the added bonus that an update to KDE won't change it, but is per user instead of system wide.

Running Windows applications

Warning: Do not run or install Wine applications as root! See Running Wine as root for the official statement.

To run a windows application:

$ wine <path to exe>

To install using an MSI installer, use the included msiexec utility:

$ msiexec installername.msi

Tips and tricks

Tip: In addition to the links provided in the beginning of the article the following may be of interest:

Changing the language

Some programs may not offer a language selection, they will guess the desired language upon the sytem locales. Wine will transfer the current environment (including the locales) to the application, so it should work out of the box. If you want to force a program to run in a specific locale (which is fully generated on your system), you can call Wine with the following setting:

LC_ALL=xx_XX.encoding wine /my/program

For instance

LC_ALL=it_IT.UTF-8 wine /my/program

Installing Microsoft Office 2010

Note: Microsoft Office 2013 does not run at all.

Microsoft Office 2010 works without any problems (tested with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2010, Wine 1.5.27 and 1.7.5). Activation over Internet also works.

Start by installing wine-mono, wine_gecko, samba, and lib32-libxml2.

Proceed with launching the installer:

$ export WINEPREFIX=.wine # any path to a writable folder on your home directory will do
$ export WINEARCH="win32"
$ wine /path/to/office_cd/setup.exe

You could also put the above exports into your .bashrc.

Once installation completes, open Word or Excel to activate over the Internet. Once activated, close the application. Then run winecfg, and set riched20 (under libraries) to (native,builtin). This will enable Powerpoint to work.

For additional info, see the WineHQ article.

Note: If the activation over internet doesn't work and you want to activate by phone, be sure riched20 is set to (native,builtin) in order to see the drop-down list of countries.
Note: playonlinux provides custom installer scripts that make the installation of Office 2003, 2007 and 2010 an ease. You just have to provide the setup.exe or ISO and the installer will guide you seamlessly through the installation procedure. You do not have to deal with the underlying Wine at all.

Proper mounting of optical media images

Some applications will check for the optical media to be in drive. They may check for data only, in which case it might be enough to configure the corresponding path as being a CD-ROM drive in winecfg. However, other applications will look for a media name and/or a serial number, in which case the image has to be mounted with these special properties.

Some virtual drive tools do not handle these metadata, like fuse-based virtual drives (Acetoneiso for instance). CDEmu will handle it correctly.

Burning optical media

To burn CDs or DVDs, you will need to load the sg kernel module.

OpenGL modes

Many games have an OpenGL mode which may perform better than their default DirectX mode. While the steps to enable OpenGL rendering is application specific, many games accept the -opengl parameter.

$ wine /path/to/3d_game.exe -opengl

You should of course refer to your application's documentation and Wine's AppDB for such application specific information.

Using Wine as an interpreter for Win16/Win32 binaries

It is also possible to tell the kernel to use wine as an interpreter for all Win16/Win32 binaries:

echo ':DOSWin:M::MZ::/usr/bin/wine:' > /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc/register

To make the setting permanent, create a /etc/binfmt.d/wine.conf file with the following content:

# Start WINE on Windows executables

systemd automatically mounts the /proc/sys/fs/binfmt_misc filesystem using proc-sys-fs-binfmt_misc.mount (and automount) and runs the systemd-binfmt.service to load your settings.

Try it out by running a Windows program:

chmod +x exefile.exe

If all went well, exefile.exe should run.


Often you may need to run .exes to patch game files, for example a widescreen mod for an old game, and running the .exe normally through wine might yield nothing happening. In this case, you can open a terminal and run the following command:

$ wineconsole cmd

Then navigate to the directory and run the .exe file from there.


Winetricks is a script to allow one to install base requirements needed to run Windows programs. Installable components include DirectX 9.x, MSXML (required by Microsoft Office 2007 and Internet Explorer), Visual Runtime libraries and many more.

You can install winetricks via pacman or use the winetricks-svnAUR package available in the AUR. Then run it with:

$ winetricks

Third-party interfaces

These have their own sites, and are not supported in the Wine forums.


CrossOver Has its own wiki page.


PlayOnLinux is a graphical Windows and DOS program manager. It contains scripts to assist the configuration and running of programs, it can manage multiple Wine versions and even use a specific version for each executable (eg. because of regressions). If you need to know which Wine version works best for a certain game, try the Wine Application Database. You can find the playonlinux package in community.


PyWinery is a graphical and simple wine-prefix manager which allows you to launch apps and manage configuration of separate prefixes, also have a button to open winetricks in the same prefix, to open prefix dir, winecfg, application uninstaller and wineDOS. You can install PyWinery from AUR. It is especially useful for having differents settings like DirectX games, office, programming, etc, and choose which prefix to use before you open an application or file.

It's recommended using winetricks by default to open .exe files, so you can choose between any wine configuration you have.


Q4Wine is a graphical wine-prefix manager which allows you to manage configuration of prefixes. Notably it allows exporting QT themes into the wine configuration so that they can integrate nicely. You can find the q4wine package in multilib.

See also