Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Tuesday, November 23, 2021 at 12:03

This tutorial explains how to install Microsoft Windows applications on Trisquel operating sistem. This workaround uses a popular program called Wine, that is, a technology that allows GNU/Linux system to run a lot of W32 executable programs. With Wine, we technically can run both categories, libre software and proprietary software, however in this tutorial we only give examples using libre software. We will install and run W32 version of Gimp, Inkscape, and Super Tux Kart. Enjoy!

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Basic Knowledge

  • By "Windows programs" here we mean computer software in binary executable form created to run on Microsoft Windows.
  • Basically a lot of (if not all) Windows programs can run with Wine on GNU/Linux system, except for some which are new or have specific issues.
  • To run an EXE program, click to run with Wine, then it runs. 
  • To run an MSI installer, we cannot click to run it, but instead use a command line.



Excluding purely proprietary software purposes, there are many benefits of running Windows programs with Wine as the following:

  • Help you develop a version of free software for Windows users without having Windows, if you are a developer.
  • Help you test a version of free software, if you are a software tester or community contributor. 
  • Help you run a free software that is not available for GNU/Linux (yet), if you need to do so.
  • Help you educate others to explain the importance and benefits of free software over proprietary software, if you are a teacher.
  • Help you run an older version of software whose the developer has gone or passed away, if you are an organization.
  • Run Windows programs without buying Windows or accepting its license or suffering its viruses.

Step 1. Install Wine

Run the following command line in your Terminal:

$ sudo apt-get install wine-stable 

Step 2. Run EXE Program with WINE

1. Find the location where you store Windows installers or program files. 

2. Right-click an EXE file. 

3. Open with Wine Windows Loader.

4. The program runs. Continue to next step.

If you don't find the open with option, select Open With Other Application > Open With dialog will open > click Use custom command > type 'wine' without quotes in the text box > Open > the program runs.

Step 3. Run MSI Program with WINE

1. Locate where you store MSI program files.

2. Open Terminal with the address in that location.

3. Run the following command line by changing [file.msi] to the actual file name like, for example, inkscape-1.2.3.msi or scilab-3.2.1.msi.

$ wine msiexec /i [file.msi]

4. Program installer runs. 

5. Finish the program installation. Continue to next section.

Step 4. Run Installed Program

Open start menu > Wine > Programs > click one program > the program runs.  


Step 5. Cleanup and Uninstallation

Do this step only if you need to do so. 

1. Visit your desktop by minimizing all active windows. 

2. You might see many unnecessary files you might not want. 

3. Select unnecessary files, for example, those with .lnk filename extension.

4. Delete.

5. To uninstall a program, go to start menu > Wine > Programs > click "Uninstall this program" or "Remove this program" or similar things > finish the uninstallation process > you uninstalled that program.

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.