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Darwine 1.0

Darwine 1.0

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Darwine Editor's Review

Darwine is a Mac OS X port for the *NIX implementation of the Windows API, which was originally called WINE.

WINE is a recursive acronym, which means WINE Is Not an Emulator. This is true, because WINE doesn't emulate an x86 CPU and it doesn't run Windows software into a virtual machine. It does however, provide a Windows API over the *NIX family of operating systems and the X window server.

The application comes with some Windows applications. This program is recommended just for testing, because it's still under active development and the number of the programs that are supported isn't great.

In fact, just a few programs run without any trouble under Darwine, because it can't install Windows software properly. The problems start right at the installation wizard. I tried installing wizards like Nullsoft Install System, Install Shield, or Inno setup and it failed to install programs that use these installation programs. It also fails to launch most applications that are not distributed within an installation program.

Darwine is useless, when it comes to recognizing the libraries required to work well. For example, it required the freetype library greater than or equal to 2.0.5. I have compiled and installed the latest version of that library 2.1.10, and it didn't recognize it.

Pluses: it can run Windows software without having Windows installed, it has a nice task panel, which can be used to force an application to terminate. It's a free alternative to the commercial product that is also based on WINE, CrossOver.

Drawbacks / flaws: the list of the applications that is currently supported by Darwine is quite thin. I didn't manage to run Windows programs that work flawless under Linux+WINE. Compiling WINE from its sources in order to run it under Mac OS X might be a better solution now.

In conclusion: if you would like to use this program for testing reasons, then you can go ahead, but don't expect too much from Darwine.

version reviewed: 0.9.12

Darwine Publisher's Description

The Darwine project intends to port and develop WINE as well as other supporting tools that will allow Darwin and Mac OS X users to run Windows Applications, and to provide a Win32 API compatibility at application source code level.

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