Author Topic: Installing FreeSpace Open on Linux/Mac OS X  (Read 20538 times)

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Offline Jeff Vader

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Installing FreeSpace Open on Linux/Mac OS X
This thread has been deprecated -- please see the New Linux or the New OS X versions

These installation methods are specifically for Linux and Mac OS X. If you're a Windows user, please see the other installation methods:
- Turley's Turney's Turrey's Turkey's Trey's Turey's FreeSpace Open Installer (the Java version should work also on Linux and Mac)
- Manual installation

Before doing anything else; If you do not have a copy of FreeSpace 2 yet, buy one from Good Old Games.

A big hand to Joif for writing these Linux instructions. They are written for Ubuntu/Debian, but there shouldn't be any drastic differences between other distros.

Before installing FS2 Open it is necessary to install the original FreeSpace 2. If you don't own FS2 yet, you can buy it from Good Old Games. Install FS2 preferrably to a folder called "FreeSpace2". It is possible to install FS2 on a Windows machine and then copy the "FreeSpace2" directory to Ubuntu. Alternatively, FS2 can be installed on Ubuntu using Wine:

To install Wine, use Synaptic or open a terminal and type:
$ sudo apt-get install wine

If you have a CD version of FS2, insert the first cd, open it, right click on "Setup.exe" icon and select "Open with Wine". If you bought FS2 from GOG, do the same with the .exe you downloaded. Follow the procedure like in Windows and install FS2 in the default directory (C:/Games/FreeSpace2).
Now go in (it is a hidden in directory in the home, press ctrl+H) and copy the FreeSpace2 directory in your home directory or wherever you prefer (after that remember to unistall FS2 from wine to free space! )

Now I assume that the main directory of FS2 is /home/USER/FreeSpace2 .

Currently the recommended FSO build is FS2 Open 3.6.12. Download the Inferno package for Linux from the release thread.
Extract the package and copy the two files (fs2_open_3_6_12r_INF and fs2_open_3_6_12d_INF) in the FS2 directory (/home/USER/FreeSpace2).

After that, go to your home directory, press CTRL-H to reveal all hidden items. if there is a folder named ".fs2_open", enter it. If there isn't, create it. Then create a new text file in that folder. Name it "fs2_open.ini". Paste the following lines into it:
Code: [Select]
VideocardFs2open=OGL -(1024x768)x32 bit

Change the "1024x768" part to the resolution you want to use. Using your monitor's native resolution is always recommended.

Now we need a launcher. I prefer YAL, but wxLauncher is also being developed.
Go to: and download the last version.
Extract the archive, install the requirements and compile as indicated in the README:
$ sudo apt-get install build-essential libopenal-dev libqt4-dev libsdl1.2-dev
Enter in the extracted yal directory and compile:
$ ./
If there were no errors, we now have a "bin" directory in the yal directory. Go into it and copy "fs2_launcher" to the FS2 main directory.

**for Ubuntu/Debian 64 bit**
The YAL launcher needs some 32-bit libraries.
1- from repository, install the package "ia32-libs"
2- The faster way to get the libraries is to install "getlibs".
Go here:
download the file "getlibs-all.deb" and install it.
3- After that, get the needed libraries:
$ sudo getlibs -p  libvorbis0a libvorbisfile3 libtheora0 libopenal1 libogg0

You can make a shortcut to "fs2_launcher" on the desktop and use it to launch the game.

For serious graphical improvements, download the MediaVPs.
Download the MediaVPs from the 3.6.12 MediaVPs release thread and extract them to your \freespace2\ directory. You should end up with a subdirectory called \mediavps_3612\ and it should contain the following files:
MV_Advanced.vp (for high-end machines)
MV_AnimGlows.vp (for reasonably powerful machines)
MV_Assets.3612.vp (a patch for the file above: remember to get both!)
MV_Effects.3612.vp (a patch for the file above: remember to get both!)
MV_Root.3612.vp (a patch for the file above: remember to get both!)

FSU-MVP.bmp (a bitmap image for Launchers)
mod.ini (an .ini file enabling Launchers to show the bitmap)
readme.txt (take a guess)

Now configure the launcher:
Execute "fs2_launcher", go to the MOD tab and click "Select MOD". From there select the "mediavps_3612" folder and click ok.
Go to the "Features" tab to activate the specific features FSO offers.

The recommended settings are:

==> Graphics List:

   Enable Specular
   Enable Glowmaps
   Enable Environment Maps
   Apply Lighting to Missiles
   Enable Normal Maps
   Enable 3D Shockwaves (Personal preference; switches shockwaves from always facing the camera to spawning with random orientations)
   Enable post processing (Personal preference; some people like bloom, some don't)

==> Gameplay List:

   Enable 3D Warp
   Enable Flash on Warp (Personal preference; toggles a simple flare effect that flashes when a subspace vortex opens and closes)
   Use models for ship selection
   Use models for weapon selection

==> In the "Custom Flags field" copy & paste (Without the quotes):
   "-ambient_factor 35 -ogl_spec 20 -spec_exp 15 -spec_point 1.2 -spec_static 1.5 -spec_tube 1.5 -bloom_intensity 75"
    (These flags adjust the lighting values; since every monitor (and player) is different, it is advised that you experiment with the values to find the lighting conditions that feel right for you. More information about the flags in the Command-Line Reference article on the FreeSpace Wiki.)

Press RUN!
If you encounter problems with the screen resolution, edit the file ~/.fs2_open/fs2_open.ini (it is a hidden folder in you home, press ctrl+H)and manually enter the screen resolution you prefer.

Further reading for Linux users.

Method #1
1. Find a Windows machine.
2. Install FreeSpace Open on the Windows machine according to these instructions.
3. Copy the entire \freespace2\ folder to your Mac machine with a DVD/USB stick/external HDD/etc.
4. Get FSO 3.6.12 for Mac OS X from the release thread (get the Inferno version). There are also some kinds of Mac Launchers available from the 3.6.12 release thread.

Method #2
1. Install FS2 on your Mac using WINE or some other "emulator".
2. Install FreeSpace Open over your FS2 installation according to these instructions.
3. Get FSO 3.6.12 for MAC OS X from the release thread (get the Inferno version). There are also some kinds of Mac Launchers available from the 3.6.12 release thread, and wxLauncher is currently in progress.

Comments? Suggestions? Criticism? Send a personal message to The E. Because I really don't care, nor do I have time right now.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2012, 06:27:38 pm by Zacam »
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