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Old 21st July 2008
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ninjatux ninjatux is offline
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Default Your Thoughts on WINE (Codeweaver products incl.)

Yesterday, I went on Codeweavers' website, the company that employs many WINE developers and facilitates its development. They offer several commercial versions of WINE for Linux and Mac. One of their products is Crossover Games. I bought the version for Mac OS X. They have an experimental build for PC-BSD that runs on FreeBSD, but it won't do me any good if the radeonhd driver doesn't support accelerated 3d.

I spent nearly all of yesterday testing the three games I play on Windows Vista, which are Team Fortress 2, Day of Defeat: Source, and Counter-Strike: Source. Out of these three, Counter-Strike: Source ran the best with good graphics quality. Day of Defeat: Source had equally good graphics quality, but occasionally crashed on the first click. Team Fortress 2 was disgusting. All settings for higher quality textures did not work. You basically could run it with the bare minimum. Being fed up with this, I cleaned up my system and kep Vista for gaming. The only good thing that came out of this is the one year of free updates from Codeweavers. So, if in the next 364 days, the Crossover Games product gets better, I will have access to it. Until then, Windows stays.

Going through all of this made me question WINE's goals. Is it really wise to continue the course? At least in the case of Codeweavers, I think they should really abandon their product lines and move toward a wrapper approach. An open source implementation of the Windows API is a very noble cause, but that's just the problem. Maintaining compatibility with hundreds of applications in the same version while adding compatibility for more and more features is too difficult, especially when you're working from scratch. I guess I'd like to see at least Codeweavers distribute specific installers for each application that bundles a version of WINE with patches that guarantees compatibility only with that application. They can sell each for $5 I don't know. Or WINE could allow you to maintain multiple copies of WINE and provide patchs sets for compatibility for specific applications.

Maybe I'm being naive here, but I don't think the current course that WINE and Codeweavers are taking is going to get us any farther than we have in terms of application availability and compatibility. I understand it's a work-in-progress, but a lot of the lower lever work has been done.

What are your thoughts on WINE?
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