How To get and use EAW 1.28e version in Wine on Linux

This How To focuses on using the free EAW 1.28e Release version patch download by the EAW Community. Specifically How to set up and fly EAW in Wine on Linux. The original default game files are also needed for this to function.

EAW - European Air War - Game Brief

European Air War is a WWII combat flight simulator game for Windows. Released by MicroProse Games in 1998. In 1999 The EAW 1.2 patch version was released. EAW 1.2 is considered the default EAW version. The EAW Community has produced patches and Addons for EAW ever since.

EAW 1.2 default files needed

You do not necessarily need an EAW CD Disk to use EAW 1.28e but you do need the game files. The list of default files is on the right column of this page. Look over there

Install Wine

On Linux Mint 18 Mate I have installed Wine 1.6.2. EAW does work in it. Though there are newer versions 1.6.2 is the only Wine version presently in the Mint repository. You can try a later version if your Distro supports it.

Get the EAW files

Edit: 2018 -- Download EAW 128.e Full Version
Complete EAW 128.e Full Version installation as a .zip download there 465.14 MB
-md5sum b6b4142a85c10b2091201c7c9effd499
-sha1sum 8cd5d8ecb52c30b7a6eff4552abad9e7fdaa27cc
-sha256sum 5221dcce25221a5fac1278422525790204266c8abadaab0617de06dbba890191
--end hash sums--------------

This complete version contains ALL the needed EAW files.
It is complete with ETO, Sounds and Planes setup. All you need is download,unzip the folder and then run the eaw.exe once. That will create the eaw.ini file and set up your configuration such as joystick, graphics, etc. An example eaw.ini named example-joy-eaw.ini in the folder.

Text notes about the About the eaw128efv-2017-3-1-notes.txt

  1. This EAW1.28efullversion will be the only folder we will be using in this part of the How To. In EAW community vernacular it is commonly called the EAW folder. Later you can put the additional add-on files in it.

Bug - EAW error Can't find keylist.str or remapabl.str

eaw error -cant find keylist

This error occurs in all EAW versions using Wine on Linux. It does not occur on Windows OS. It seems to be caused by the needed files not being extracted quickly enough from the game - compressed data file - text_eng.cdf before the game loads.

You may be able to load the game without it happening sometimes but do not count on that. It is easily fixed. Thus do this fix step here. Consider it essential to have a working EAW folder.

Steps to fix - tested in English version only

  • Download the .zip below
  • md5sum 23ab362d0a88af4bd76bb1655cd8da5e
  • Extract the keylist.str and remapabl.str from the .zip to a folder
  • Rename the files to lowercase
  • Place the two files directly into your EAW1.28efullversion folder.
  • Bug fix.. Done!

Next Step: On to The Games

Place the EAW Folder in Wine

  • On Linux Mint 18 mate I navigate with Caja file browser to the hidden .wine folder. Select from Caja menu, View and checkmark Show Hidden Files. Or keyboard ctrl + H. The .wine folder normally installs into your /home/yourusername/ folder
  • Browse to /home/yourusername/.wine/drive_c/Program Files (x86) folder, if using 64-bit Linux and Wine. Or just the Program Files if not.
  • Place the EAW1.28efullversion folder there

Why this way?

There are other ways to be sure to place the EAW folder and launch EAW with Wine but this is the basic way I know. It avoids mix-ups since the eaw.exe expects to write an eaw.ini and eaw.ini settings and possibly the hof.dat or other files to its own EAW folder.

I found in testing when I launched EAW in Wine from the terminal it sometimes wrote to my user folder. That may also be adjusted by the Wine settings. Not yet quite read up on that but for now this method works.

Just note that if you overwrite Wine or possibly upgrading it may loose your EAW folder this way. So keep a backup outside of .wine folder.

Launching EAW with Wine

  • Browse to the eaw.exe located in the EAW folder you just made in .wine folder ex. /home/yourusername/.wine/drive_c/Program Files (x86)/EAW1.28efullversion/eaw.exe
  • Select the eaw.exe and right click. Select open with - Wine Windows Program Loader. That's it. EAW should launch and you should see the Main EAW menu screen.

Select EAW, Right Click, Open With, Wine Windows Program Loader

The next screen you see should be the EAW Main Menu

Error: You need an EAW CD

If you get this error - You need the EAW 1.2 default files
eaw folder merge pic
This error means you do not have the complete EAW 1.2 default files in the folder. Or it cannot find them. You may be in the wrong folder! Did you forget something? Double check your files.

You need the default EAW 1.2 game files put in the folder first. Then the EAW 1.28e files, which replaces some of those files. The error message is generated by EAW 1.28e to 1.28c series eaw.exe versions.

Unfixed bugs in the Game code and Menus

Some EAW functions do not work as parts of the original EAW code began in the early 1990's. Thus some functions are unfixed in later EAW code or are abandoned as they simply are not useful. Two of these items are listed below.

Warning Do not use View Films or View Planes features!

From the EAW Main menu do Not select the View Films or View Planes. These are broken in the revised EAW code and scheduled to be unlinked from the interface. They will freeze in Wine and Linux. Possibly forcing you to hard shutdown which could result in an unstable filesystem crash!

While the going into the initial part these Menus may not immediately cause a freeze and you can view for example the planes cards, selecting the view planes from within that menu is when the freeze occurs. Similarly the newsreels. You are advised not to use these Menus since an inadvertent mouse click can put you in those functions.

Use keyboard - ESC - escape key - to exit any EAW Menu.

Also if you use the EAW addon Small Movies replacement file which is an empty movies.cdf you can save use of about 300 MB disk space in your EAW folder.

If you are really, really curious about the films you would have to extract the files from the game .cdfs and use Bink or another software to convert and view the films as they are made for old windows Smacker video.

The View Planes uses an old 3d function that also is broken. If you wish to view planes simply go into the game itself.

Setting up Joystick, Keyboard, EAW settings and eaw.ini

At first launch without a preexisting eaw.ini file, the game should detect your graphics, keyboard and joystick if one is present. The game configures the Remappable keys section with settings for the keyboard or joystick commands you will use in the simulation.

Plug in and set up your joystick in Linux first. To make sure I had the software installed two prgrams in Linux Mint 18 Mate named: joystick and jstest-gtk.
jstest-gtk is an easy gui program that you can test and callibrate your joystick.
Open jstest-gtk from Mint Mate menu

I can see my Logitech Extreme 3D joystick is detected. Selecting properties to get to settings.

You can calibrate from there.
You don't need change the map keys in there normally for EAW.

Use the EAW Configure menu to remap EAW keys

Other resources for the eaw.ini settings from the European Air War Help Site - EAWHS by MarkEAW are EAWHS - Joystick and Remappable Keys and the exhaustive Inside The eaw.ini

Joystick Remappable keys section

You will want to set your joystick in the Remappable Keys section of the eaw.ini. Or within the Game Configure screens. The keys for the eaw.ini are


The POV hat would typically be mapped to the cockpit snapviews

or as I do, map it to a Front view with this setting
FRONT VIEW=POV_hat_Forward
and I map the SNAPVIEW FRONT to something else
SNAPVIEW UP=Joystick_Btn_11
above is one of my settings
and below

EAW Keyboard layout and EAW

The EAWHS has Quick References downloads for keyboards. I provide two resized images below. Click to open larger images.
EAW key layout sheet
and EAW keyboard reference card

Setting up a Single Mission

From the EAW Main Menu select Single Mission.

Picking a plane

On the next screen. Choose British Spitfire IX for a test.
Next set the Single Mission parameters.

Flying a Single Mission

Instant action gives just that. You'll enter the game immediately in flight and engaging.
Choose Fly to launch the mission. Use alt + p to pause or unpause the game. Use ESC - Escape key or q key and Y, Yes to end the mission and return to the game screen. You can abort the mission at any time.

The mission will be saved as the default for that aircraft for next time.

Seasonal Terrains

The ETO Addon has four Seasonal Terrains lasting three months each. Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring.

Setting the month from the Game Configuration screen menu controls the Seasonal Terrain.
The same screen also has selection to set the Planes folder.


use CTRL + g in-game to show framerates

End Mission

Use ESC - Escape key or q key and Y to end the mission.


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ETO Settings

Bugs and Errors

Troubleshooting - General

EAW 1.2 Default file list

Here is the full list for EAW default files should you need it:

------------- begin eaw 1.2 disk default files --------------------

Music - folder and all the background music .bgm files in it:

----- eaw 1.2 disk default files in the CD root ----------


------------- end 1.2 eaw default files --------------------

Troubleshooting checks

  • Always double check check your eaw.ini settings
  • Check if your video card in Linux works with other d3d games.
  • Set your Desktop resolution to at least 1024 x 768 and Wine and eaw.ini to 1024 x 768 to use EAW 1.28e or later as the game 2d menus use 1024 x 768. As opposed to 1.28c or older versions that used 800 x 600 or less. In game 3d you can use a higher resolution setting if your Display device supports it. However at settings above 1280 x 1024 you really will not get practical benefits in combat or views. The recommended setting is 1024 x 768.
  • Check your EAW.ini and your EAW configurations and files first. If you using any 3rd party EAW versions they vary a lot. Some files versions with add-ons or scenarios could be incorrect or are buggy. Check their instructions carefully and their forum.
  • Check your system is not running some jobs when you fly EAW in Wine.
  • Make sure you reboot prior to running the game.
  • Set or remove stuff you do not need from starting up in order to not have a lot of CPU and memory use while you are gaming.
  • Check your Desktop Window manager settings and try to limit or turn off the window compositor.
    Check your Distro help pages or forums first as some Distros Desktops you do not want to disable or remove the compositor as it may break the desktop. In Mint 18 Mate I simply turn off most effects but not disable it.
  • Reduce any add-ons when trying to run EAW . Campaign scenarios, exotic EAW versions, flight controllers, monitors, cockpits, or anything with complexities should be removed. That is a good way to limit the possible causes. You can always use add-ons after you get the basic game working.
    Sadly most people over the years never listen to this advice. This alone has caused more support issues than anything that was actually wrong with the game itself!
  • In many cases I have found it is either the EAW files or user configuration errors that make most problems.
  • Check the Wine settings you are using.

Fixing generic - file not found errors

Try changing in the EAW Game Configuration menu the graphics terrain details settings. In some cases with old campaigns, scenarios or different terrains or addons the different needed versions of the files for all view detail levels are missing. Changing the settings can often resolve these errors.

Sometimes a file is missing from a download like campaigns, etc. or in the wrong EAW folder. If you have a copy of the file you can try placing it in the root of the EAW folder. Occasional a file is actually within a game .cdf archive and not extracting fast enough. You can extract the files using a program called CDFRW.exe for Windows. Or ask at the EAW forums.

Other Possible error messages and fixes

At first launch EAW the game creates an eaw.ini file if you do not already have one in your EAW folder. If an eaw.ini is found already present in the folder it will use the settings in that file. You can edit the eaw.ini outside the game to configure your settings. Or configure the settings within the game Menu interfaces. Settings changes will be saved to the eaw.ini.

If you are using an eaw.ini prior to launching the game it is possible you could have the wrong settings in there for your graphics. Check those settings prior to first launch if using an eaw.ini you preconfigured. You should for your Display device settings, DisplayDevice=1 or 2. This will be most always be the case in Wine unless you are specifically set up in Wine to use a glide wrapper. Which I have Not installed nor do I present in this How To.

Black screen if setting Device=0

I did try that setting Device=0 and simply got a back screen that I somehow got out of using TAB and alt or ctl?. You do not want that. So make sure it is not set to 0.

Black screen if setting Device=2 or other

Also if you get an error like gmAlloc0 That is an EAW error. Your eaw.ini needs to be set for your Primary monitor. Change your eaw.ini setting to DisplayDevice=1 or possibly =2.

If you encounter other errors at this point, write the error message down.

Bug - garbled Single Mission target selection screen and garbled Career Campaign Briefing maps

If you do not get errors like this then you can skip this section

Bug - garbled single mission target selection screen
Bug - garbled Career campaign briefing zoomed map

You may on some systems encounter this bug. It is due to an EAW programming bug that affects the menu window backpage rendering in some cases. It usually depends on your graphics card driver or settings whether or not you will have this inconvenient bug.

Work arounds - Possible bug fixes

Using a different Wine version may fix it.

Setting your Display settings to 1024 x 768 or larger can sometimes fix it. With some video drivers that have programmable software or settings or even using Wine you may be able to turn Vertical sync off for the application which can solve the issue sometimes. Or adjust the backpage rendering of d2d direct draw.

Other possible fix - using the Wine fake Windows registry

There was a registry fix for some video cards. It involves using a registry key setting called NoAdjustedPitch. It may work in Wine. Consult the European Air War (EAW) Help Site or Sandbaggers EAW Tally-Ho or the SimHQ European Air War forum

Work around - replace the in-game map file with a free special blank background pic provided by EAWonLinux

  • Download the
    .zip md5sum fb0d22bcc2a981fda59195b02ed95633
  • Unzip and rename the file lowercase to europe1.pic and drop it in your EAW folder. The other Europe1.pcx file is just a .pcx copy of the file made prior to converting the file for the game. Provided for your own reference or uses.
  • Single Mission target selection screen after the applied fix
    fixed single mission ts screen
    Not pretty but it works. Note: use mouse click in screen and hold to move map around to select other targets. Use esc escape on keyboard to exit this screen or any other screen in EAW
  • Career campaign briefing zoomed map after the fixfix-careerbriefingzoomed.png
    Not a great fix but at least you can see objectives clearly.
    Note the initial non-zoomed screen - not shown - is not fixed by this method.
  • After applying the fix the game in-flight map will be affected. Since using it you will simply have a blank background using the in-game map feature. Keyboard shortcut alt + m. But no real map graphic to navigate from. Base and plane icons and waypoints show though, so there is some reference points.

The only reason to use this fix is if you have the bug single mission target selection screen from the Mission Settings menu in the Hangar. Also in Pilot Career aka Campaign Mode for the Mission Briefing zoom-in map. If you do not use these and prefer the real map you do not need the fix.

If you need to use it to select targets but want the regular map in the game you could always put the file in, select the mission target, save or fly the game and exit. EAW saves the last mission settings. Then exit EAW. Remove the file. Launch EAW again and since the Single Mission target is already set up, you do not need to use the target selection screen. Just either load your save or just directly go into Fly the Mission and your in-game map - alt + m - will be shown as usual.

EAW 1.29 versions or later should not have this bug. Since the programming was changed for the map. EAW versions later than 1.28e that use a custom drawn map also may not have this depending on the coding and your settings. Some can use alternate maps or world sizes. Check the forum if any doubts about the EAW version you are using.

EAW and security.

EAW and other old DirectX games like it are not secure by themselves in online play. If you are planning to fly EAW online it is best you use a known good gaming service like Gameranger, or other tunnel service for end to end VPN Lan. Secure your OS and and have other security measures in place. If you fly directly from EAW over TCP-IP over the internet, well.. You have been Warned!

Adding the ETO Theatre Addon to EAW 1.28e - Planes and Sounds

Extract the and to the EAW folder.

Open EAW

Then Configure game. Set the Planes folder from cdf to 1.

Now the main menu image should look like this

Choose Single Mission

Select Plane Spitfire 1a

Select Set-up Mission

Select Mission parameter and OK

Select Fly!

Next you should see a fuel dual fueling screen or loading game. It can take a MS minute. Then fuel dial goes to full. The game loads. You should next be in the cockpit.

Flying the Battle of Britain..
Good Luck!


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