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This article tries to address the common issues people are having with running World of Warcraft using Wine.

Problems that persist after you have explored and tried on all of these different hints and tips, are often related to graphics cards and drivers. Sometimes the graphics card is just not well enough supported in the driver, and other times a driver update or reinstall solves the problem.

World of Warcraft runs especially well on Nvidia video card hardware because Nvidia has well supported drivers for Linux. Intel cards are usually not very powerful, and will not run the game very well even though the drivers are well supported. As for ATI, they have been lagging far behind in making Linux drivers for their graphics cards, and therefor ATI user may experience that WoW will be unstable and give bad performance or even not run at all.

Remember that DirectX support in Wine is still in early development, but as an able alternative, WoW does also have full support for OpenGL, which in turn is fully supported in in most Unix-like operating systems, including Gentoo (and other Linux distros), and World of Warcraft is one of the best supported games by Wine at the moment.



Please be aware that people using AIGLX may experience low framerates.

As a test, one can do this:

Code: Low framerates using AIGLX
 /etc/init.d/gdm stop          # this will shutdown your X Server!
 startx `which wine` WoW.exe   # start X with World of Warcraft as "Desktop Manager"

Running AIGLX and another X Server running World of Warcraft will probably crash the box, so please don't try that or make sure you can ssh to the box. My personal experience is ~5-10 FPS with wow inside AIGLX, while 25-30 fps running on a "standalone X Server"

DLL files

If you have troubles running the installation or even the game itself, you may need to get a few .dll files from a windows installation or here:

 * msvcp60.dll (MD5: 6050bcc1b23f3df7a1876cbdcbac8232)
 * mfc42.dll (MD5: 7e4d1b552ee1dfa859ba9033b3670590)
 * riched20.dll (MD5: 878f0ebc1bef45694311f7d4f7fe3344)
 * riched32.dll (MD5: 804d815826fe00d6471c72d8299fcbb5)

and place them in /home/<username>/.wine/drive_c/windows/system32. You will, however, need a Windows license to use these files.

Note: Remember to change <username> to your personal computer login username


If you receive the error Unrecognized key "options". (AttributeParser::Parse) while trying to install after copying the files from the CD's onto your hard drive, copy the Installer.exe from Disk 1 into the directory you copied your files and re-run the Installer.

Adjust the sound buffer size

If you have problems with sound stuttering you may have to increase or decrease the sound buffer a bit. It's configured by changing the value of the SET SoundBufferSize line in wtf/ Anything from 50 to 250 may cure your problem. Bear in mind that excessive buffer size may create audio sync issues.

Mozilla ActiveX / Gecko rendering engine

When the patch program, or the World of Warcraft Launcher starts, it will ask you about installing Mozilla ActiveX. Select "Yes". In doing this you will download a trimmed down version of the Gecko rendering engine (Firefox, Mozilla) which will respond to ActiveX calls, this means anytime a program tries to use HTML for a display, or similar, it will show. The launcher's news section and the change log shown when applying a patch both use the rendering engine.

Desktop panels on top of World of Warcraft

You may have trouble with the desktop panels (gnome-panel in GNOME, and kicker in KDE) showing up above the World of Warcraft "window".

Two possible workarounds with gnome-panel are to either use the autohide option on the panel or the hide buttons, both of which you activate by right clicking the panel -> properties

If you are using Beryl or Compiz, then you should start the game in windowed mode and then use a keyboard shortcut to make it go to full screen.

In order to make the game run in windowed mode go to the Video menu "in game" (press Esc -> Video), and check the option Windowed mode and press Okay. Alternatively you can also either add -windowed to the command you use to start World of Warcraft, or add SET gxWindow "1" to the wtf/ config file. Then launch the game.

In Beryl you then press Ctrl+Alt+Enter to activate the full screen shortcut.

In Compiz you need to do the following first:

  1. Open CompizConfig Settings Manager
  2. Scroll down until you see the section titled Window Management.
  3. Enable the Extra WM Actions plugin
  4. Open the config dialogue & click the arrow next to General to display the various config options for the plugin
  5. Click on the space next to Toggle Fullscreen where it says disabled. It should now read "New Accelerator...", (without the quotes)
  6. Press the key combination you wish to use for toggling full screen mode. You may for example use Ctrl+Alt+Enter and exit the configuration utility

Now run the game, and use your hot-key combination to switch to full screen.

Reassign Control key

If you are using CONTROL in your switch workspace key combo, you may need to reassign it to avoid inteferance from World of Warcraft.

Changing video settings crash

If you try to configure WoW's video settings (Resolution, Vertex Shaders, Pixel Shaders etc.) while running in OpenGL mode, World of Warcraft may crash. The workaround is to configure WoW's video settings while running WoW in d3d mode, or by using a special addon.

The addon is found here [1], and you should extract the zipped folder in to /Interface/AddOns/ in your World of Warcraft directory. Then enable it under AddOns in the choose character screen. You probably need to tick the option, which says Load out of date AddOns, for it to work.

You use d3d mode by running World of Warcraft with this command in stead of your usual one: wine wow.exe -d3d or you can change this line in wtf/

SET gxApi "OpenGL"


SET gxApi "d3d"

run the game and change the settings, and then change the line back. If this causes the display to be inverted or otherwise corrupted, do not be concerned. The display will correct itself once you switch back to OpenGL. Running in d3d mode is simply so you can set WoW's video options.

Fullscreen glow

If World of Warcraft crashes on startup under OpenGL, but runs with d3d, try disabling 'fullscreen glow effects', in the video setting screen or by adding this line to wtf/

SET ffxGlow "0"

Nvidia driver error

For users with an Nvidia card who have upgraded to Wine 0.9.30 after installing, you may need to reinstall your nvidia-glx if you are crashing with the following error message when running World of Warcraft from the console:

Major opcode of failed request: 142 (GLX)
Minor opcode of failed request: 3 (X_GLXCreateContext)
Serial number of failed request: 14
Current serial number in output stream: 15

This can be fixed by installing nvidia-glx.

ATI enter game world crash

For users with an ATI video card: certain cards have trouble rendering games and video in opengl using current flgrx drivers which will cause your computer to hard locks when you attempt to enter a domain. This error will occur just after character creation/selection, as the game environment is loading, or possibly after a short period of play. In order to fix this error, add the following three lines of code to your xorg.conf file in the ATI device section:

Option "Capabilities" "0x00000800"
Option "UseFastTLS" "off"
Option "KernelModuleParm" "locked-userpages=0"

You edit the file by doing this command:

nano /etc/X11/xorg.conf

The section should look something similar to this after editing:

Section "Device"
  Identifier  "aticonfig-Device[0]"
  Driver      "fglrx"
  Option       "Capabilities" "0x00000800"
  Option       "UseFastTLS" "off"
  Option       "KernelModuleParm" "locked-userpages=0"

Corrupt panel icons

If you experience corrupt icons on your panel then you may need to set the SET UIFaster parameter in wtf/ Use it like this:

Set UIFaster "x"

Where x equals:

0 – This turns off all UI acceleration
1 – For Internal Use Only - DO NOT USE!
2 – Enables partial UI acceleration only.
3 – Enables all UI acceleration.


Set UIFaster "2"

The value 2 usually corrects this problem.

Crashes From Indoor to Outdoor

If World of Warcraft crashes each time your character moves from outdoors to indoors, even though the patch above was applied, then try disabling double buffering. Unchecking "Enable desktop double buffering" under the "Graphics" tab in winecfg. It has been reported that this solved the problem. -- This option is only for those with older versions of wine, the newest version has this feature removed.

Alternatively try using the Linux minimap add-on, possible compatibility issue with XGL.

Glitch every 3 to 5 seconds

If you see a noticeable graphical d every 3 to 5 seconds or so for this you need to edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf and add something like:

Option "UseFastTLS" "2"

to the Video card "Device" Section. This of course is normally a problem with the OSS (open source software) Drivers for ATi cards.

World of Warcraft hangs on exit

With certain versions of Wine you may experience that World of Warcraft hangs (unable to do anything) when you exit the game.

This bug does not exist in the newest version of Wine, 0.9.46

The bug was fixed in version 0.9.38, but because of a regression it re-emerged in version 0.9.44, and was fixed again in 0.9.46.

If for some reason the newest version of Wine does not work for you, then you can always fix the problem by downloading and installing a version of Wine between 0.9.38 and 0.9.43, which are still relatively new and play the game fine.

Other reports state that changing the sound driver configured in winecfg from OSS to ALSA or changing the windows version in winecfg fixes the problem.

There are a few workarounds for the problem if it persists. Just alt-tab out of the game and kill it with the process manager. Or if you launch WoW in a terminal you can kill it with Ctrl-C. For those who don't like to end World of Warcraft process so brutally, you may want to try this:

First write these two commands inside World of Warcraft


Sound stops working after alt-tabbing out

Since Wine version 0.9.42, if World of Warcraft loses focus (that is, if you Alt-Tab to another window) the sound will stop working. Also, some users have reported that World of Warcraft crashes or black-screens completely when World of Warcraft loses focus.

The simplest way to make sound play while World of Warcraft doesn't have focus is to enabling the option Enable Sound in Background in the Sound Options menu.

Setting the game to run in Windowed Mode (and then simply making it full screen) also appears to fix this problem and there is little noticeable difference between this and actually being full screen.

There is also a post in the World of Warcraft appdb page, that gives a backwards diff patch that can be applied to the Wine source before compiling, that can fix the problem, but just commenting out the line in question - so that World of Warcraft never is even told that it has lost focus - works well too; you can then alt-tab between windows and back to World of Warcraft with zero delay, with World of Warcraft always running underneath, but this may break compatibility with other Wine apps and might not work with all windowmanagers, your mileage may vary.

To comment out the line, do the following:

Code: Code
/* Abey : 6-Oct-99. Check again if the focus out window is the
Foreground window, because in most cases the messages sent
above must have already changed the foreground window, in which
case we don't have to change the foreground window to 0 */
if (hwnd == GetForegroundWindow())
   TRACE( "lost focus, setting fg to 0\n" );
   SetForegroundWindow( GetDesktopWindow() );
Code: Code
if (hwnd == GetForegroundWindow())
   TRACE( "lost focus, setting fg to 0\n" );
/* SetForegroundWindow( GetDesktopWindow() ); */

No Sound or other unrelated issues

To fix sound, or possibly other problems, first try adding SET ffxDeath "0" SET ffxGlow "0" to "/home/<username>/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/World of Warcraft/WTF/", without the quotes, where <username> is you computer login name. Try to run World of Warcraft. If this doesn't work, remove the text, and type in winecfg into a terminal. Click add application. Select C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Wow.exe or where ever your Wow.exe file is. Highlight Wow.exe. Select "Windows 2000". Then go to the Graphics tab. Uncheck "Allow window manager to control the windows" and "Allow window manager to decorate the windows". Now go to the Audio tab. Check both ALSA and OSS. Be sure "Hardware Acceleration" is set to "Full", and that "Driver Emulation" is unchecked. Now go to the "Drives" tab. Press "Autodetect..." Now press "Apply" and then "Ok". Now start World of Warcraft. Exit at the log-in screen. Now type winecfg into a terminal again. Go to the "Graphics" tab. Recheck "Allow window manager to control the windows" and "Allow window manager to decorate the windows". Press "Apply", and then "Ok". It should now work perfectly. Try the graphics tweaks for added effect on performance!

Direct3D error in OpenGL mode

If you're getting stuck during login with a 'Downloading' prompt, exit the game and start from a terminal. Confirm that you receive this error:

"err:d3d:InitAdapters Failed to initialize gl caps for default adapter
err:wine_d3d:WineDirect3DCreate Direct3D9 is not available without opengl"

Edit your, removing the SET gxApi "OpenGL" line. Start the game up, login to the character selection screen. Then exit the game, add the line back in - and you should be fine. This error is apparently caused by Blizzard's Hardware Survey code tripping something in Wine. As Wine isn't supported by Blizzard, sending back data that isn't quite correct is probably OK by them.

Mouse Sidebuttons

To make the sidebuttons on your mouse work in World of Warcraft follow this link: [2]

Patch download source

If you are having difficulties downloading or installing a patch, you can try downloading the direct file from here: [3]

Installation errors

Not Enough Hard Drive Space error

If you experience this, you need to open regedit and change the following values:

(this isn't working for me at all.) NOTE: Upgrading to the latest version of wine fixed this problem for me - Aditya.

- Can be a permission problem. Changing ownership of my drive c: folder solved the issue.

World of Warcraft installer crashes after clicking Install button

To fix this problem you need to download following dll files and save them into your ~/.wine/drive_c/windows/system32 directory.

File: Needed DLLs

You then need to add riched20 and riched32 to the dll overide section on the Libraries tab in winecfg. Select native then builtin for each of these.

Blizzard Updater errors

Waiting for Files to Close Error

On occasion, once the patch has been downloaded, the updater itself will fail to start and instead flash a message which says "Waiting for files to close."

  1. Run winecfg
  2. Set the Windows version to NT 4.0.
  3. Close winecfg and run the updater.

After the updater is finished, switch the Windows version back to whatever you had previously in order to play.

If you still encounter the issue of the patch saying "waiting for files to close" after you have changed the version, you can manually start the patch engine using wine by selecting the downloaded patch .exe file and executing it with wine. This way the WoW client never opens, therefore it won't give you the error.


wine ~/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/World of Warcraft/WoW-2.1.0-enUS-patch.exe PS this fix also works on 2.4

If you are experiencing the same problem while trying to install Burning Crusade expansion, try the following :

  1. Run winecfg
  2. Set the Windows version to Windows 2000.
  3. Close winecfg and try again.

Mozilla ActiveX / Gecko rendering engine

When the patch program, or the WoW Launcher starts, you will be asked to install Mozilla ActiveX. Select "Yes". This will download a trimmed down version of the Gecko rendering engine (Firefox, Mozilla) which will respond to ActiveX calls. Anytime a program tries to use HTML for a display, or similar, it will show. This will fix any errors that may appear when viewing the launcher's news section and the changelog shown when applying a patch.

Ingame errors

Launching Errors

WoW Doesn't Launch

If WoW doesn't start and you are running with opengl enabled (via -opengl or gxApi "opengl" in your file, add the following to your

SET movie "0"

Game freezes on login after patch

Remove the write permissions on the Survey.mpq file:

File: WDB/Survey.mpq
#chmod ugo-w ~/.wine/drive_c/Program\ Files/World\ Of\ Warcraft/Cache/Survey.mpq

Game freezes on login on Downloading echo

Blizzard is grabbing system info only works in D3D mode

Edit your wtf/ file and remove the following line: SET gxApi "opengl" Then let it load in d3d then you can put the switch back on.

ATI enter game world crash

For users with an ATI video card: certain cards have trouble rendering games and video in opengl using current flgrx drivers which will cause your computer to hard locks when you attempt to enter a domain. This error will occur just after character creation/selection, as the game environment is loading, or possibly after a short period of play. In order to fix this error, add the following lines of code to your xorg.conf file in the ATI device section:

Option "Capabilities" "0x00000800"
Option "UseFastTLS" "off"
Option "KernelModuleParm" "locked-userpages=0"

This is where you find the file:


The section should look something similar to this after editing:

Section "Device"
  Identifier  "aticonfig-Device[0]"
  Driver      "fglrx"
  Option       "Capabilities" "0x00000800"
  Option       "UseFastTLS" "off"
  Option       "KernelModuleParm" "locked-userpages=0"

This was found on

Video Errors

Video Errors: Troubleshooting

Before checking for a specific error, you are probably better off updating your video drivers to the newest version. Most of the time this will remedy your problem. Remember that unmasking the drivers are a must, as you will get the best performance benefit out of it.

For ATi Users: (Replacing ~arch with your CPU architecture (~x86, ~amd64, etc.))

echo "x11-drivers/ati-drivers ~arch" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords

For nVidia Users: (Replacing ~arch with your CPU architecture (~x86, ~amd64, etc.))

echo "x11-drivers/nvidia-drivers ~arch" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords

Poor Performance/Glitches

If you suffer from poor performance or in-game glitches, add the following lines to your

SET ffxDeath "0"
SET ffxGlow "0"
Note: Disabling ffxGlow (by setting it to "0") may enable antialiasing for some users.

GLXBadDrawable Bug

If a GLXBadDrawable error appears while starting WoW, you might be using an old driver. Consider unmasking and re-emerging your video drivers.

If you are absolutely sure you have correct drivers or if the WoW has worked fine before, then ensure you have the following in your wtf/

SET gxMultisample "1"

Unable to start up 3D acceleration

If you get an error when WoW starts that says "Unable to start up 3d acceleration", make sure your X server and WoW are displaying the same amount of colors. This can be done by forcing WoW to run in 24bpp mode, or by letting X run in 16bpp mode.

Note that if neither of these options work, you should consider upgrading to a newer video driver (especially if your video driver is not unmasked).

Force WoW to run in 24bpp

Add the following lines to your To run wine WoW.exe -opengl and get the "unable to start up 3d acceleration" you have to either tell WoW to run in 24bpp mode or let X run in 16bpp mode.

To force wow in 24bpp mode add this to your

SET gxColorBits "24"
SET gxDepthBits "24"
X Server in 16bpp
Note: You must have root access to edit your xorg.conf

To change your X server to use 16bpp, edit your /etc/X11/xorg.conf and navigate to the "Screen" section. There should be a line like:

 DefaultDepth  24

And under SubSection "Display":

 Depth 24

It may be simplest to open the file and just search for "DefaultDepth" and "Depth" changing the values to 24. This fix is what finally fixed WoW for me.

OpenGL won't start - "dual-TMU support error"

Note: This is likely a version-specific bug for the nVidia drivers.

If you have a very recent nVidia card or similar, you may get an error that says "Please install a 3D accelerator card with dual-TMU support."

You will need the latest beta drivers 100.14.xx (at the time of this edit), in order to start X. 100.14.09 drivers worked fine for me with WoW however 100.14.11 exhibited this error message.

Rollback if you get this and wait for more stable Wine/WoW/NVidia combination.

-- This problem has appeared on the Intel 910GMA chipset. The 910GMA doesn't have Hardware T&L support, so you get the same message with Windows. The chip isn't capable of running WoW.

-- 10-28-2007 : NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GS - I had this problem so I launched WoW from a terminal. It couldn't read /dev/nvidia0 and /dev/nvidiactl . Perms were rw-rw-- , owner:group =root:video and i was in the video group but I still couldn't access the device so I chmod 777 /dev/nvid* and the game started fine after.

Crashing on Video Option change

After setting the Video Options within WoW, the game may crash after pressing the OK button and the changes are lost. There are three methods around this:

AddOn: ApplyToForehead

An AddOn has been created to remedy this problem. Go to and download the AddOn. Then copy the AddOn (the entire ApplyToForehead folder) to your AddOns folder (by default, this can be found at ~/.wine/drive_c/Program\ Files/World\ Of\ Warcraft/Interface/AddOns/.

Note: You will probably need to tick the "Load out of date AddOns" option in WoW for it to work.
Switching to Direct3D mode

Start the game using Direct3D, "wine WoW.exe", and make your changes. Exit the game and run with "wine WoW.exe -opengl".

Note: If you added gxApi "opengl" to your file, removing the -opengl switch when starting WoW will not force it to run in Direct3D mode. You will have to remove the gxApi entry from your file as well.
Manual Edit of

If you are trying to change just the resolution of the game and it crashes, you can set the value of "SET gxRESOLUTION" in your to the desired width x length.

Graphical glitches

Perform this registry tweak but enter GL_ARB_vertex_buffer_object;GL_ARB_vertex_program in the last step.

Add the following to your

SET M2UsePixelShaders "1"
SET M2UseShaders "0
SET UIFaster "2"

Sound Errors

Poor Sound Performance

If you suffer from poor sound performance (stuttering, clicking, or no sound at all), add the following lines to your

SET SoundBufferSize "70"

If it still comes out choppy try:

SET SoundBufferSize "150"

This is a millisecond delay count. You're free to play with it to get it just right, but be sure to not set it too high or you will notice delays between action on the screen and sound actually occuring.

Some people recommend setting the sound system wine uses to OSS, instead of ALSA, because they feel wine's OSS drivers work much better than their ALSA drivers. This is done using the winecfg program. Just run that, change to the Audio tab, and change the sound system.

If you are having difficulties getting OSS to work, try:

Code: ~/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/World of Warcraft/WTF/
SET SoundOutputSystem "1"

1 is for OSS, 2 for ALSA and -1 for the default autodetect.

SET SoundOutputSystem "1"
SET SoundBufferSize "150"
Note: You can try different values for SoundBufferSize. Note that if the number is too high, there will be audio sync issues.

Stuttering Sound - Unplayable

If wine is using OSS emulation via the ALSA OSSEmulation modules (snd-pcm-oss, snd-mixer-oss, and snd-seq-oss); but the sound seems to stutter and the game is slowed down to a crawl, you migt be able to fix it by using the other method of ALSA OSSEmulation: the aoss script. When starting the game, add aoss:

Code: aoss wine "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\WoW.exe"

More information can be found on the ALSA Wiki's AOSS web page [4]

Exiting Errors

Configuration Loss on Exit

There seems to be a possibility of configuration loss while exiting WoW with the Exit WoW button of the in-game escape menu (/quit can also have the same effect). The Support forum recommends you log off first. Return to the Character Selection screen and then exit WoW by returning to the Login screen and then Quit. Also, make sure the user you are logged in with has write access to the file.

Alternate solution

Check your World of Warcraft installation directory for a sub-folder called WTF. If it exists, there is a possibility that your settings are being saved inside that directory, however, the game is looking for in the root installation directory. To fix this problem, open a terminal window, cd into the installation directory and run the following commands.

Code: ~/.wine/drive_c/Program\ Files/World\ of\ Warcraft
 rm                          # this is to remove any manually created config file
 ln -s WTF/        # this creates a symlink in the installation directory that's pointing to 
                                          the config file in the WTF subfolder

Freeze on Exit

With some versions of Wine the game freezes on exit, forcing the user to kill the process. This problem seems to come and go, disappearing in one release only to return in a later version. There is currently no remedy for this minor annoyance except to wait for the next Wine update. This does not happen in 0.9.46.

Another way to exit is to do a gradual exit. Logout, then back out to the log-in screen and exit.

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Last modified: Tue, 23 Sep 2008 19:29:00 +0000 Hits: 5,116