Running Internet Explorer under Wine

Langford, Michael Langford at
Fri Oct 17 08:43:47 CDT 2003

So far, I haven't managed to get it to run, but I have managed to get IE to install...  Still working on that though.  Thanks for the help!

To respond in (not-so) short, I work for a major international non-profit.  Our website logs more than 150,000 total visits (User Sessions,not hits... Hits are in the millions... Unique sessions is on the order of 80,000).  The average browsers accessing this site, and the other sites we have, though they are much smaller in traffic volume, are 85-89% Internet Explorer and the rest is pretty much Mozilla, either Netscape 6 or Mozilla.  Other, non-bot, browsers make up less than 1% of our traffic.  That's still a very large number of people using non-IE systems, (1% 0f 150K is still 1500).  I'm not saying one should ignore and never not use Mozilla or Windows or IE... I mean.. hello?  This is a Wine mailing list, I'm Linux user, I'm certainly not in the MCSE camp.

The bottom line is, I'm not developing sites for the technologically savvy at this job, so whatever is the default on the vast majority of our user's systems is what gets used.  It's no surprise that if you run a site that focuses on Open Source stuff, that site will ALWAYS have a disproportionately low number of IE and Windows users relative to the norm, this is hardly uncommon knowledge.

The only restriction we have is based on DOM, not browser.  Using Gary Keith's Browscap.ini ( file, one can accurately filter the content being served based on user-agent.

This means I can detect to the highest degree possible, what each user's browser and OS is (and much more, but that's all that matters really).  The goal is to then have different CSS, JS and HTML based on what that browser can actually do, and not send them anything else.  If someone come in on Lynx (hey, could happen!!), then they see a text only version, if someone come in with IE 3, they also get the text only version (heh, kidding!).

I haven't gotten there yet...  I don't have a budget or any help around here right now, so it's all I can do to keep the hamsters running in the server box.  See, I'm the sole DBA, Web Apps developer, CMS admin, html developer and graphics designer for a site with a couple thousand pages and a user base of 80K users and an organization of around 12,000 folks worldwide... It's keeps me busy.  At least it's a non-profit, so every line of code I write to enhance our online presence and draw means more donation money to help do things like demineing Angola or providing HIV-AIDS assistance in Nigeria, or building clean water supply systems in Peru or Afghanistan.  Makes it worth it at the end of the day.


-----Original Message-----
From: deedee [mailto:deedee at]
Sent: Thursday, October 16, 2003 3:02 PM
To: wine-users at
Cc: Webmaster at
Subject: Re: Running Internet Explorer under Wine

On Wednesday 15 October 2003 02:00 pm, Webmaster at wrote:
> First off, I should let you know that I'm new to Wine...  On a fresh
> copy of RedHat 9, I installed the most recent version of Wine (from
> source) and it seems to be working fine.  However, one of the biggest
> reasons I put Wine on this machine was so I can run a copy of
> Internet Explorer under Linux. However, I haven't been able to locate
> a full network install of IE6, and their setup program complains
> about needing a Window OS...  (the nerve!!).
> Does anyone have any suggestions?  Has anyone been able to run IE
> under Wine?  If so, how?  I'd prefer IE6, since that's the latest,
> but 5.5 would be ok too.

Like someone else, I found that another application automatically 
installed IE5 when it installed.

I have no problems running IE5.5 using Wine on a Mandrake Linux 9.1 
installation. However, I don't use it for actually surfing. I only look 
at web pages that I create on it.

> By the way, before anyone starts...  I know about the various Open
> Source browsers and all that, I prefer Mozilla.  But, I have to be
> able to test web application under IE, and I'd REALLY prefer not to
> bother with a MS system if I can help it.  Regardless of whether we
> like MS products or not, they have 90% of the desktop market and
> browser market,

While 90% of the computers sold for the desktop market have MS-Windows 
already installed on them, have you checked the traffic on the web 
sites that you're concerned with? I think you might find that the 
number of people actually using IE may be less than that figure -- 
unless you're restricting the site to only IE visitors.

I have a number of sites, none of which restrict browser usage, and only 
one of them focuses on Linux issues. The others have nothing to do with 
computers or Linux.

On my busiest site which gets thousands of hits per day, the percentage 
of IE visitors never exceeds 81% and is frequently lower than that 

On the site that focuses on Linux issues, IE visitors never exceed 55% 
per day and are frequently lower than that figure.

In addition, Opera will mask itself as IE. I've been noticing a steady 
increase of Opera users not masking themselves as IE on all my sites, 
which suggests that the number of Opera users masking themselves in 
order to get on sites that only talk to IE is also increasing. That 
means that the number of IE visitors is probably less than the traffic 
data indicates.

> so if you are professionally building a web
> applications or sites or any other thing that uses a web browser and
> is going to be publicly accessible, you're fooling yourself (and
> being a rather poor software designer) if you let your *nix pride
> keep you from testing on IE.

The latest browsers are all using HTML 4.0 and that includes IE6. So if 
you are excluding other browsers, you are using features that are only 
included with MS-Windows like ActiveX. Since IE has started trying to 
conform better to the general standards, I've not noticed much of a 
difference between how most things look on IE versus other browsers.

There is a big difference, however, if you're using IE5 because it has a 
lot of idiosyncrasies that never conformed to general HTML standards.

> (The preceding paragraph is in response the some of the worthless
> responses I saw in the archives regarding any question about using IE
> under Wine... I didn't find any actual answers, just replies about
> changing User-Agents and snipes about IE users...  It's not a
> question of user agent, it a question of stuff not working in IE.  If
> it doesn't work in IE and you want the world to see it...  Then that
> mean your world is less than 10% of the internet-going population of
> the world...)

If you're doing something that is not working in IE, is it working in 
any of the browsers? Most of the other browsers don't do anything that 
is unique, unlike IE with ActiveX. Usually if it's working in Mozilla, 
it's also working in IE. It's MS that produces the restrictive software 
by using functions that only ship with their browser. The other 
browsers use functions and plugins that are universally available, even 
to IE users.

> If IE can't run under Wine... I guess I'll have to use VMWare and
> install Windows... *shudders*

Depending on what exactly you are trying to get it to do, you may have 
to go that route anyway. Wine has not yet implemented all the dlls that 
come with MS-Windows. CodeWeavers' Crossover Office Suite has the best 
record for running MS-produced software.


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