Tuesday, June 22, 2010

An introduction to CrossOver Office and Games for FreeBSD

What exactly is CrossOver FreeBSD?

CrossOver for FreeBSD is a commercial variant of Wine released by CodeWeavers with (currently) limited support for many of today's most popular office application and games. CrossOver Office and Games for FreeBSD is tested for performance and stability with many of todays most popular games such as Guild Wars, Eve Online, and Steam games like Half-Life 2 and Portal. As well as many of todays most popular Office application such as Microsoft Office 97 to 2007, Quicken, Quickbooks, Photoshop, Internet Explorer and many other not mentioned applications.

Minimum system requirements

FreeBSD :
  • An x86 based FreeBSD distribution based on glibc 2.3 or greater
  • Perl 5 or greater
  • IJG JPEG library (libjpeg)
  • python >= 2.4
  • gtk2 >= 2.10
  • python-gtk2 >= 2.10
  • It is also recommended that you have a web browser installed.
  • 100MB of available disk space (plus space for the Windows applications)
  • 128MB of RAM
Currently Unsupported builds of CrossOver FreeBSD

Currently the only way to get CrossOver Office or Games for FreeBSD is to first purchase a Linux licence of CrossOver. After your purchase you can then go to "My Downloads" (Your Downloads) and then select the "Unsupported Downloads" tab and then select the CrossOver FreeBSD tab. At this time you can download both CrossOver Office and Games 8.0 and the new 9.0 release from CodeWeavers.

The Demo version of CrossOver

When you download CrossOver FreeBSD from the Unsupported section it will be a seven day demo. The demo version of CrossOver has all the functions and features of the full version. Any Windows software that works on a full version will also run in the demo version, and vice versa. The important limitation of the demo version is that bottles can only be used for 7 days. This means that any Windows packages that you install using the demo version will cease to work 7 days after their installation. When a demo installation is unlocked, all existing bottles and applications are unlocked as well. To unlock a demo, you must have a support account with CodeWeavers. You can purchase CrossOver licenses and support contracts from the vendor that provided you with your demo or directly from the CodeWeavers store. During purchase you will be asked to provide an email address and password. This address and password will be used to unlock your demo install. (Your Linux purchase will unlock the FreeBSD demo)

Games :

Games in CrossOver Games for FreeBSD:

  • World of Warcraft
  • EVE Online
  • Guild Wars
  • Prey
  • Steam Games, including:
    • Half-Life 2
    • Team Fortress 2
    • Counter-Strike
    • Counter-Strike: Source
    • Civilization IV
    • Peggle Extreme
    • Call of Duty 2
    • Max Payne 2
    • Grand Theft Auto 2
  • and more...

Office :

Applications in CrossOver Office for FreeBSD:
  • Microsoft Office 2007, 2003, XP, 2000 and 97
    • Microsoft Word
    • Microsoft Excel
    • Microsoft PowerPoint
    • Microsoft Outlook
    • Microsoft Access *1
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 & 7
  • Microsoft Project
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Lotus Notes 5.0 and 6.5.1
  • Quicken
  • FrameMaker
  • Various Web Browser Plugins
    • QuickTime
    • Shockwave Director
    • Windows Media Player 6.4 & 9.0
  • and more...

*1 - Microsoft Access supported in Office 2000 only.

Many applications and games that are not on the above list will still work just fine. For a list of such applications, visit the CodeWeavers CrossOver Compatibility Center. At the compatibility center you can search for games, read about other users' experiences, and post tips and hints for other users.

Cost and Support of CrossOver FreeBSD

If your a current owner of CrossOver Office you will receive a complimentary copy of CrossOver Games. If by chance you don't currently own a copy of CrossOver Office you can purchase the stand alone Games product for only $39.95 with your purchase you will receive *limited support* through their support ticket system at this time, you can join in the discussions that take place at the C4 compatibility center, join a mailing list, vote for your favorite applications and games, and much more.

A purchase also goes toward helping support a full time Wine hacker! the folks at CodeWeavers have over the years given back well over 98% of all the code modifications that went into CrossOver to the Wine project. It also a good idea if you purchase CrossOver for FreeBSD to VOTE for FreeBSD in the Compatibility center.

CrossOver FreeBSD Screenshots

CrossOver FreeBSD Gnome menu entries

When you select "Install Windows Software" from the menu the CX GUI will start.

If you select install software the installation process will begin.

After you select the bottle you want to install your application or game into the install process will start.

After the install has finished your application or game will be placed in the CX Manage Bottles UI window.

In Manage Bottles you will see "Advanced Settings" tab. From this tab you can create Archives of your installed bottles, perform backups and more.

In the Manage Bottles UI you can run commands in a bottle, view installed applications and games and view the control panel settings.

To register your copy of CrossOver FreeBSD select the "Register and unlock this demo" from the system menu. You will need to enter your email address and password and the register tool will conect to the CrossOver store and proceed with the registration.

To run a Windows command select "Run a Windows Command" from the system menu. Select a bottle and then run a Windows command from that bottle. With CX Office and Games 9.0 and onward you can now easily create log files and use debug channels from the Run Command UI.

To terminate a Windows application select "Terminate Windows Application" from the system menu.

To uninstall CrossOver Office or Games select "Uninstall" from the system menu. You can choose to leave all of your previously configured bottles intact if you wish to do so.

To run a Windows Application or Game from the system menu simply navigate to the menu entry and choose the installed Application or Game. Or if your a advanced user you can run any application or game from your terminal. See the IE 7 screenshot below.

CrossOver FreeBSD running on PC-BSD 8 screenshots... :)

If you sign up as a Advocte you can get nightly development builds of CX FreeBSD and test newly implimented features and bug fixes!

Here is a screenshot of IE 7 running on FreeBSD 8 with CrossOver FreeBSD.

CrossOver Office and Games also runs on Solaris 10 and OpenSolaris! In my next post I will be doing a introduction to CrossOver Office and Games for Solaris.

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