[Wine] *How good is Wine?

David Gerard dgerard at gmail.com
Mon Jan 5 08:46:08 CST 2009

2009/1/5 GaryHeart <wineforum-user at winehq.org>:

> So I ask this group. How far along is wine? Does it match on Par 100% with Windows XP, as far as the API is concerned. My bigger question is, what is the Fidelity/Accuracy of the API against wine? My concern is, if there is allot of divergence, then it would seem like a waste of time to teach kids and adults to program on Wine, if there are shortcuts, or custom API calls.... where such knowledge could not be really applicable for them in the general computer industry yet.
> Please let me know. I would like to spend more time on this, and contribute to this group and product however I can, financially and otherwise. I hope to understand what is going on in this brilliant movement here with Wine. Thanks! :D

Although it's had an official 1.0, Wine is still in my experience
very-good-beta quality.

You cannot yet presume a given app will work. However, in my
experience, I'm more surprised when an app doesn't work than when it

The more recent and larger an app is, the less likely it is to work,
to some degree. Chrome, Safari, Office 2003/2007 are good examples.
Anything relying on .NET 2.0 or later is frequently problematic - .NET
2.0 installs somewhat, but quite a lot of it still doesn't work

The way Wine development works is typically *not* to implement a
complete API per the MSDN documentation in one hit - rather, it's
first implemented as stubs (it claims to have a function but doesn't
actually), then whatever bits are used by real-world apps are
implemented as needed. This means Wine does *not* implement everything
Windows XP supplies, but it does implement most of what is actually
used by real-world applications, which is considerably less - and
holes are filled in as we go.

So the answer is:

1. Pick your applications.
2. Test them all in Wine, check they do what they need to. (When they
don't, file bugs. If a bug exists, read it to see what the difficulty
3. If Linux equivalents exist, use them instead!

- d.

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