Linux Howto: Miss Your Windows Application? Try WINE

For anyone who is keen to migrate to Linux platform, but can’t live without Windows application, then Wine can be a great solution for you.

What is WINE?

WINE stands for Wine Is Not Emulator. Here is what it is about:

“Think of Wine as a compatibility layer for running Windows programs. Wine does not require Microsoft Windows, as it is a completely free alternative implementation of the Windows API consisting of 100% non-Microsoft code, however Wine can optionally use native Windows DLLs if they are available. Wine provides both a development toolkit for porting Windows source code to Unix as well as a program loader, allowing many unmodified Windows programs to run on x86-based Unixes, including Linux, FreeBSD, Mac OS X, and Solaris.”


Still don’t understand? What it simply means is that with Wine, you can basically install and run your Windows applications (though not all of them) on your Linux platform. All the supported applications are documented at the Wine Application Database (AppDB). At this moment, there are 8237 Windows applications in the AppDB verified to run under Wine, and it includes some of the popular software such as Adobe Photoshop, Dreamweaver 8, World of Warcraft, Starcraft and Microsoft Office 2000.

wine1 wine2 (Click the screenshot to enlarge) Sources from WineHQ

To install Windows application, you must first install Wine on your Linux platform.

To install Wine under Ubuntu Gutsy, open up your terminal,

wget -q http://wine.budgetdedicated.com/apt/387EE263.gpg -O- | sudo apt-key add -

sudo wget http://wine.budgetdedicated.com/apt/sources.list.d/gutsy.list -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/winehq.list

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install wine

Once installed, you need to configure the Wine “C:” drive to link to an easily accessible folder. First create a “Drive C” folder in your home folder. In your terminal, type

winecfg

In the window that popped up, click on the “Drives” tab. Click on the letter C:, then follow by the “Browse” button. Navigate to your “Drive C” folder and press “OK”. Once done, press the “OK” again to close the window.

wine config

Now you are ready to install your Windows application. Here I will install my favorite text editor – PsPad with Wine

In your terminal, type

winefile

or go to System -> Preference -> WineFile. In the window that appears, navigate to the folder with your installer file.

wine file

Double click on the installer file.

wine installation screenshot1

Follow the instruction and install the application the way you did in Windows

wine installation screenshot2

wine installation screenshot3

After installation, open the winefile again and navigate to your “C:” Drive Program file folder. Under your application folder, double click on the .exe file to execute the application.

wine program

Done!

Here are some useful resources on Wine

http://winehq.org/
http://frankscorner.org/