Ubuntu: Improve GUI appearance of Wine applications


In many cases Windows programs run ok in Wine, but there is still the annoying problem of their appearance.

How to make things look better in Wine, especially fonts?


The solution below is to be considered in the context of the progress made by playonlinux - which now is very much able to provide out of the box, at least for the programs considered when this answer was first posted, like foobar2000, the needed tweaks for best GUI appearance of Wine applications.

If you don't like Playonlinux and only use Wine directly feel free to comment and/or edit this answer on Wine-only issues.

Considering GTK theming in Wine: see last part of this answer.

  • The most important improvement concerning fonts is to enable font smoothing - save script below as winefontssmoothing_en.sh and run in Terminal using command bash winefontssmoothing_en.sh:
#!/bin/sh  # Quick and dirty script for configuring wine font smoothing  #  # Author: Igor Tarasov <tarasov.igor@gmail.com>    WINE=${WINE:-wine}  WINEPREFIX=${WINEPREFIX:-$HOME/.wine}  DIALOG=whiptail    if [ ! -x "`which "$WINE"`" ]  then      echo "Wine was not found. Is it really installed? ($WINE)"      exit 1  fi    if [ ! -x "`which "$DIALOG"`" ]  then      DIALOG=dialog  fi    TMPFILE=`mktemp` || exit 1    $DIALOG --menu \      "Please select font smoothing mode for wine programs:" 13 51\      4\          1 "Smoothing disabled"\          2 "Grayscale smoothing"\          3 "Subpixel smoothing (ClearType) RGB"\          4 "Subpixel smoothing (ClearType) BGR" 2> $TMPFILE    STATUS=$?  ANSWER=`cat $TMPFILE`    if [ $STATUS != 0 ]  then       rm -f $TMPFILE      exit 1  fi    MODE=0 # 0 = disabled; 2 = enabled  TYPE=0 # 1 = regular;  2 = subpixel  ORIENTATION=1 # 0 = BGR; 1 = RGB    case $ANSWER in      1) # disable          ;;      2) # enable          MODE=2          TYPE=1          ;;      3) # enable cleartype rgb          MODE=2          TYPE=2          ;;      4) # enable cleartype bgr          MODE=2          TYPE=2          ORIENTATION=0          ;;      *)          rm -f $TMPFILE          echo Unexpected option: $ANSWER          exit 1          ;;  esac    echo "REGEDIT4    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop]  \"FontSmoothing\"=\"$MODE\"  \"FontSmoothingOrientation\"=dword:0000000$ORIENTATION  \"FontSmoothingType\"=dword:0000000$TYPE  \"FontSmoothingGamma\"=dword:00000578" > $TMPFILE    echo -n "Updating configuration... "    $WINE regedit $TMPFILE 2> /dev/null    rm -f $TMPFILE    echo ok  

select third option in terminal - with the arrows, then use tab key to select ok and 'enter'

enter image description here

(source here)

  • For a better system appearance install a windows msstyle file in winecfg (Wine/Configure Wine/Desktop Integration) like "Luna", or "Royale".

enter image description here

  • Increase the screen resolution in winecfg (Wine/Configure Wine/Graphics), which will make general details (including fonts) larger (if that's what you need: on my laptop appearance details of wine programs are too small by default)

enter image description here

But the images above are taken after enabling font smoothing. That is the most important action, as I was able to test. As I had to reinstall Wine at some point, I also had to restart all procedures here. Using all the other solutions (including installing all fonts as suggested in Shauna's answer - which is very advisable, and to be considered as a part of the solution to this question) -- with the exception of font smoothing, Foobar2000 looked like so:

enter image description here

After font smoothing:

enter image description here

Important: Changing settings in winecfg may reset font smoothing, so it is better to run that in the end, or re-enable it when fonts seem ugly.

Considering GTK theming in Wine

(mentioned by this more recent answer), the results may vary depending on the Linux desktop and the different applications. The GTK theming in Wine seems a matter of preference as it is debatable whether a GTK theme on a Windows program looks better than a Windows-theming.

Example for Foobar2000:

In Ubuntu:

enter image description here

In elementaryOS:

enter image description here

Not much improvement compared to msstyle Luna by default in Playonlinux:

enter image description here

In Playonlinux GTK theming seems absent even with the latest Wine-staging version available, as adding a Wine-staging version to a virtual drive in Playonlinux , the "Staging" tab appears in Wine configuration for that drive, but "Enable GTK Theming" is grayed-out.


Make sure to install the fonts:

winetricks allfonts  

Font issues are generally due to the program using TrueType fonts that don't come with Linux or Wine. Installing them via Winetricks (which comes with current versions of Wine), should solve your font problem.


First of all... This section helped me configure Wine to get the right appearance for Photoshop CS6.

Sometimes winetricks allfonts doesn't work very well. Occasionally you may receive errors on the SHA1 sum for some fonts if they are updated and not yet reflected in the winetricks script.

The current winetricks version in the repos for the Droid Font points to http://android.git.kernel.org which is currently down due to hackers so:

sudo gedit /usr/bin/winetricks  

Look for something like this:

load_droid()  {  # See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Droid_(font)  

And change DROID_URL around line 6867 to:


I also had to change the SHA1 sum for font "Droid Sans Fallback" located around line 6059 to:

do_droid DroidSansFallback.ttf     "Droid Sans Fallback"     2f8a266389a8e22f68f402b775731eec6b760334  

If you receive any other error find the offending "font-name" and calculate the new SHA1 and amend the value in winetricks:

cd ~/.cache/winetricks/font-folder  sha1sum font-name  sudo gedit /usr/bin/winetricks  

And change the value with new calculation!

This tip works with Elementary OS too. But you need to change gedit and use scratch-text-editor.


For a better system appearance install a windows msstyle file in winecfg (Wine/Configure Wine/Desktop Integration) like "Luna", or "Royale".

I don't have the reputation to comment the accepted answer, so I will put my comment here.

Another official msstyle file from MS servers.

Zune Theme from Microsoft.com

Just installed the .msi file and I was able to select 'Zune Style' from Wine Configuration dialog.


Wine-staging now has an option for GTK theming. To use it:

1. First, install wine-staging:

From https://wiki.winehq.org/Ubuntu:

  1. If your system is 64 bit, enable 32 bit architecture (if you haven't already):

    sudo dpkg --add-architecture i386  
  2. Add the repository:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:wine/wine-builds  
  3. Update the package list:

    sudo apt-get update  
  4. Then install:

    sudo apt-get install --install-recommends winehq-staging  

    If apt-get complains about missing dependencies, install them, then repeat the last two steps (update and install).

2. Enable GTK theming:

  1. Open winecfg
  2. Click the "Staging" tab
  3. Check "Enable GTK Theming"
  4. Click OK

3. Enable font smoothing:

Improve GUI appearance of Wine applications

Note:If u also have question or solution just comment us below or mail us on toontricks1994@gmail.com
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