Running Internet Explorer 6 and 7 in Wine
Recently I ran into Brian Behlendorf (from Apache) at a conference on medical record systems. Brian was there demoing a new open source protocol for medical record systems to securely send eachother patient records (NHIN Direct). Combined, we were the only two who weren’t doctors, vendors, bureaucrats, or hotel staff at the conference.
I introduced myself, and Brian quickly recognized that I could probably help him with a Wine problem. He needed to run Internet Explorer 6 for the most benevolent reason of all: to prove to a client it didn’t work and that they shouldn’t bother trying to support it.
Internet Explorer in Wine
The good news is these days it’s very simple on the terminal. On Ubuntu:
- Add the Wine Team PPA:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-wine/ppa
- Install the wine1.2 and winetricks packages:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install wine1.2 winetricks
- Run winetricks:
winetricks ie6 or winetricks ie7
- Run IE:
Using the WINEPREFIX environment variable:
Note that, just like in Windows, you cannot have both ie6 and ie7 at the same time, at least not in the same virtual C: drive. Fortunately, it is easy to set up multiple wine folders (“prefixes”) for your version of IE to run. We do this with the WINEPREFIX environment variable.
WINEPREFIX=~/.wine-ie6 winetricks ie6 to install ie6 into its own virtual C: drive
WINEPREFIX=~/.wine-ie7 winetricks ie7 to install ie7 into its own virtual C: drive
WINEPREFIX=~/.wine-ie6 wine iexplore to run ie6
WINEPREFIX=~/.wine-ie7 wine iexplore to run ie7
As an aside, Internet Explorer 8 doesn’t currently work in Wine, however once it does there will also be a winetricks ie8 for you to test with.