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How to Setup World of Warcraft on Linux

I wanted to share with everyone a guide that I wrote for a friend a few weeks ago.  Hopefully it may be of some use to people.


Here is a quick guide to getting The World of Warcraft working in wine (By the way I am giving you this guide using primarily the command line ... sorry there are easier ways to do it from a GUI, but I am not familiar with them myself ... so I am giving you instructions that I know work because this is the way I do it)

Install lastest version of Wine:

Go to this link: and follow the instructions to install the latest version of wine. (Make sure to read the whole page there are two things you need to do, also it is all in a GUI so its pretty easy)

Setup Wine for World of Warcraft:

Next open a command terminal and type "winecfg" to start wine configuration screen. 
Change the version of windows on the main screen to "win2000" Click on the "Audio" tab at the top of the window to change wines sound settings.  An error message will pop up ... just click okay (It's wine saying that you haven't set up an audio device yet) Next make sure that ONLY "alsa" is checked marked and click the "okay" button to close the setup window.

There are two methods to proceed from this point.  The easy way is to copy an exsisting install of World of Warcraft from a windows partition, or install thru wine.

1st Method:

Here is the easy way (If you have maintained your WoW updates it is also the quickest when it comes time to update WoW) First navigate to your windows drive "Program Files" folder and copy and paste the "World of Warcraft" folder into the following directory: "/home/$USER/.wine/drive_c/Program Files" (Replace $USER with your user name)\

2nd Method:

Pop in the first install disk wait for an icon of it to appear on your desktop. Open a command terminal and type "cd /media/cdrom (ENTER)" to navigate to the CD. You can type "ls" to list the contents of the directory.  As long as you went to the right cd-drive (Assuming you have more than one) you should see the files on the cd listed. Next type "wine Setup.exe" to start WoW's installer. Go thru the normal install options and let it do it's thing. When it comes time to put in the next CD you need to do a special trick to get wine to release the drive. While keeping the first terminal open (DO NOT CLOSE IT OR YOU HAVE TO START OVER!!) open a second terminal. In the new terminal type "wine eject d:" to open the cd drive. Replace the disk with the next install disk. Before you click on okay in the WoW installer window make sure to Double click on the disk icon (Either on your desktop, or in the "Computer" option under the places menu) to load the replacement disk into the system. Once that is done you can continue on with the installation. Repeat the eject procedure for the remaining three disks. After the installer has completed, World of Warcraft has now been installed into the "/home/$USER/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/World of Warcraft" folder. ($USER being your user name)

Making It Easy to Run World of Warcraft:

Now all you have to do is create a launcher script to make starting WoW easier.  Execute the following command to create a new text file called "wow" in the "/usr/bin" folder and open it in a text editor:

sudo gedit /usr/bin/wow

Once the text editor is open type the following command (or copy and paste) into it:

env WINEPREFIX="/home/$USER/.wine" WINEDEBUG=-all wine "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Wow.exe" -opengl

(Don't worry about changing anything in the above command, when I wrote this I used wildcards to automatically tell the system were stuff is. Alternatively you can replace $USER with your user name and it will still work just fine. I wrote it this way so you can just copy paste it into the file) (Also this script assumes that you only have one user account on the system who intends to play WoW.  If you have more than one user setup on the system that also wants to play WoW you need to change some options which I will explain at the end of this guide)

Now click the save button and close the text editor.  All you have to do now to get World of Warcraft to be easy to start is make the new launcher script you just created executable.
Type the following command (This command just tells the system that this script can be executed):

sudo chmod +x /usr/bin/wow

Your done!  You can now start WoW by either typing "wow" into a terminal, or opening the "Run Dialog" by pressing Alt-F2 and typing "wow"or making a menu icon thru the menu editor and just clicking on it in the menu.

Special Setup Instructions For Systems That Have More than 1 User Account Which Will Run World of Warcraft:

The only change you will make to the above instructions is to setup permissions on your ".wine" folder and modify the start up script. To do this open your "Home" folder in the file manager.
Click the "View" tab at the top of the windows and check mark the box next to "Show Hidden Files" Scroll down until you see the ".wine" folder and right click on it.  Select "Properties" to open the folders properties menu. Click on the "Permissions" tab and change the "Access" for all sections to read:

Folder Access ===>> Create and Delete Files
File Access ===>> Read and Write

Now click on the "close" button to exit the editor.

Lastly you need to make an adjustment to the launcer script from above to point explicitly to the location where World of Warcraft is installed.

Edit the file with the same command from above:

sudo gedit /usr/bin/wow


env WINEPREFIX="/home/$USER/.wine" WINEDEBUG=-all wine "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Wow.exe" -opengl


env WINEPREFIX="/home/(YOUR USER NAME)/.wine" WINEDEBUG=-all wine "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Wow.exe" -opengl

Save the file and you are done.

Okay easy enuf.... lol sorry man I still tend to do most things from the command line, even though I know that there are easier ways to do it from a GUI. I would bet that you can find guides for a GUI method somewere by searching google.  I have just found over the years it is faster to just hammer it out the old fashioned way.


If anyone has any comments or suggestions feel free to let me know.






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