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Windows GOG games and Ubuntu

Posted March 11, 2013 By weetabix

I don’t know about you, but I love playing old DOS games… Especially ones like Masters of Orion 2. Usually, they are relatively easy to use. It goes something like:

  • Install DosBox or go to GOG (Thats short for “Good old games!”)
  • Get a game, or download the installer.
  • Run it in windows (or install it with wine or CrossOver in Linux), or the game is installed inside DosBox (a DOS emulator) and boom, instant funtime.


If you want to network a few of these games together, you usually all need a windows machine so the DosBox networking works… When you install the GOG Windows DosBox under wine in Linux however, the networking is being emulated twice, and tends to fail.


Well, I figured out an easy solution, though it can be a bit heavy on disk space if you aren’t already using wine.


1. On your box, install DosBox and wine. (You can use the DosBox PPA like I do, or the Ubuntu repo)


2. Run the GOG installer via wine (I do this mostly for the benefit of not having to “install” the files by hand.)


3. After installation, browse your application menu and select wine => Browse C: Drive
Navigate to the game’s folder (usually something like ~/.wine/dosdevices/c:/ )


4. Locate your appropriate SERVER or CLIENT conf file (for Masters of Orion 2, the config file is dosboxMOO2_server.conf)
Open it up (we want to make a couple changes to help troubleshoot issues. Windows and Linux DosBox are almost, but not quite, the same.)
Change fullscreen=true to fullscreen=false so we can see the warnings scroll up in the terminal.


5. Now, in the terminal in that game folder, do:


dosbox -conf dosboxGAME_server.conf (replace with the appropriate name)


6. Now observe the error messages on the terminal (the game will probably start just fine.)
The changes should be pretty obvious in the errors. You might want to change:


machine=vga to machine=svga_s3
output=ddraw|direct3d to output=surface|overlay|opengl  (“surface” wont allow you to resize or rescale.)


7. Make sure your IPXNET STARTSERVER command uses a port above 1024 to avoid the privileged port denial issue.


8. Return fullscreen=false to fullscreen=true to enjoy that awesome fullscreen gaming.


As a final note, the DosBox .conf files have a ton of options


Happy Gaming!



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