CrossOver Review: The ‘Premium Wine’ to Run Windows Software on LinuxRead more" />CrossOver Review: The ‘Premium Wine’ to Run Windows Software on LinuxRead more" />

CrossOver Review: The ‘Premium Wine’ to Run Windows Software on Linux

CrossOver allows you to run Windows software on Linux, macOS, and ChromeOS.

It is not an emulator program. Instead, it provides a compatibility layer on top of your host operating system to make it possible to run Windows software.

In other words, it adds components that windows software needs to run on any supported OS.

But how well does it work? Can you run all Windows software using it? Is it a viable solution for you to ditch Windows for good?

Here, I shall share my experience with using CrossOver on Linux and sharing my experience with it.

Things to Know Before Using CrossOver Compatibility Tool

While CrossOver makes it easy to run Windows software on platforms like Linux, macOS, and ChromeOS, there are a few pointers to be aware of:

  • Not every Windows software will work using CrossOver.
  • CrossOver is not a free and open-source solution.
  • CrossOver uses primarily open-source components with a few proprietary elements.
  • Spending for a CrossOver license indirectly funds Wine and Steam’s Proton development.
  • CrossOver is also considered a paid edition of Wine, with some differences/improvements.

You can also watch its amusing official video to know more about it:

Related Read: Beginner’s guide to using Wine to run Windows programs on Linux

Getting Started With CrossOver

As I mentioned above, CrossOver (affiliate link) is a paid tool that needs a license to work.

However, you can download it for free with a 14-day trial period. You can use all of its features without any restrictions. The app stops working after the trial, but the configuration/installed software remains.

So, if you like CrossOver during the trial, you can purchase a license to continue using it.

Note that you must share an email address and a name to initiate the download. Furthermore, you need to create an account to proceed to purchase it.

Using CrossOver on Linux (One-Click Process)

Once you install CrossOver on Linux, you launch it to find something like this (depending on the version you try, the user interface could be a bit different):

If you are looking to run a game, you might want to refer to our gaming guide for tools specialized for the task. Are you looking to install Epic Games? We have a dedicated guide on installing Epic Games on Linux.

You can search from within the application or use the compatibility database to find/review the applications listed.

When you select a listed application, it displays things it requires or explains the process to get it installed:

For some tools like Microsoft Office, you must have the official installer to set it up. Considering you have a valid license or an Office 365 subscription, downloading the installer should not be an issue. You can refer to Microsoft’s support article to know how to get it.

In addition to the above usage, CrossOver also allows you to try installing applications that aren’t listed.

For that, you need to add a bottle for it manually (configure the Wine environment you want it to work with) and use the setup file to install it.

official documentation to install an unlisted application. Some unlisted applications may or may not work, so it is always a hit-and-trial process.

Is CrossOver Worth Purchasing?

CrossOver allows you to use its product for a one-time fee ($24), including a year of software updates.

It gets a little cheaper with discounts like Black Friday or Cyber Monday sales.

You can use the program as long as you want with a license. However, for an upgrade, you must renew the license (usually at a lower price than what you originally paid for the first year).

It does not force you into a subscription, which is a good thing. If you rely on CrossOver for many things (probably professional work), you can get the “Lifetime” license of the tool and do not need to renew it.

It is worth noting that you indirectly contribute to the development of Wine and Proton with your purchase. So, getting a CrossOver license to run Windows software sounds like a good deal. In fact, that was the main reason why I purchased CrossOver a few months ago.

That being said, CrossOver is not perfect. With every update, they regularly add support for newer applications. So, always check its compatibility database before deciding to purchase it.

If you don’t mind paying

Use Windows Software on Linux with Crossover

Thousands of Windows games and programs to run on your favorite Linux distro.

Supported Windows apps will run at native speed, play games at full fps all while maintaining the Linux OS integration. Simply magic!

Your purchase supports WINE development as well.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

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