Open Source Software vs. Commercial Software:
Migration from Windows to Linux
An IT Professional's Testimonial


Additional Software - WINE (the Windows Emulator)

Wine is one of the most interesting and maybe most complex things in Linux, it runs many Windows programs as if they were running on a Windows system. Best of all, it ties in with installed printers in Linux, and I also discovered that it even interfaces with scanners and cameras too (if they are installed in Linux first). To get up and running with Wine, all that is needed is to install the latest Wine packages from the Fedora FTP site (or use the "yum install wine" command to automatically get wine and all of its dependencies).

I found that I had to upgrade to the latest "xorg-x11-server" and "xorg-x11-utils" packages to resolve some GLX errors in Fedora 8. In Fedora 10 the default packages worked fine. Run the Wine config (Applications / Wine / Wine Configuration), use the OSS driver (this is more compatible I've read, plus I have a Creative AudioPCI sound card, or Ensoniq ES1371, which is documented to work better with OSS). You can also try using the Alsa driver which is also stable. Newer versions of Wine use Pulseaudio which is the newer audio subsystem. I am happy to report that I've had success getting Wine to work with Pulseaudio selected instead of OSS in newer PCs.

As I mentioned before, Wine is a very neat product in that it can bridge the gap between your old Windows software and your new Linux system. But, it requires some patience. Since Windows and Linux are vastly different environments, getting everything to run seamlessly is not always an easy task. Most applications will simply install and work. It seems that the older the Windows application you wish to install, the greater the chance of it working. Newer Windows applications have quite a few more dependencies, such as .NET Framework, DirectX, and a huge list of other Windows components. I am happy to report that applications that use DirectX have a high chance of working well. The developers of Wine have implemented DirectX into it so that many popular 3D games will run flawlessly. One thing to note about this is that I've had excellent results using Wine and DirectX with nVidia graphics cards. Other brands such as ATI do not have as much driver support in Linux and results vary quite a bit. Stick to nVidia and you won't be sorry, nVidia has contributed to its Linux driver making it a rock solid card. Any nVidia model card will pretty much work right out of the box. Many popular games such as Warcraft III, World of Warcraft, and many others work flawlessly in Wine and on Linux.

Below I have documented the programs that I installed in Wine and how I did it. Be sure to read the Wine HQ Application Database, which is a complete list of Windows applications and how to get them working. This site is regularly updated.


Installation of Macromedia Dreamweaver MX (in Wine)
I found that I needed to remove any mounted drives in Wine config, otherwise Dreamweaver will lock up at the splash screen.

... More coming soon! I decided to document other subjects but will add more of my notes to here in the future.

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