How to Install DH on a Mac (Tutorial)

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If you ask a question, please ask it here so others can see it and also send me a Private Message, since I don't peruse the Tech Support forum.

Why waste your money on a vastly overpriced Virtual Programming port (if they ever make one)? Do you really need to waste your hard drive space on a BootCamp partition to run Windows? Nope. This tutorial will show you how to install Darkest Hour on your Mac via a Wineskin wrapper, without any Windows software. So, without any further-ado:

Things You Will Need

1) The Darkest Hour installer as well as patch 1.2 and it's Hotfix (the latter two of which are optional).
2) The program Wineskin, available HERE
3) Any DH mods you want.
4) If you don't have a program to "unrar" files, I recommend UnRarX

Unfortunately, the Gamersgate .exe installer for Darkest Hour will not work on Mac since it will be unable to connect to the internet, so you must either download the installer via the Gamersgate .exe on a Windows computer and copy it onto the Mac, or acquire it via elsewhere.

Once you have everything, install Wineskin Winery and open it. You'll see a menu that looks like this:

ScreenShot2011-12-14at113655AM.png



Now, click on the "+" sign and at the top scroll section, select WS8Wine1.3.32 (newer versions don't seem to like DH) and hit "Download and Install", than "OK". It'll take a little while to download.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at113902AM.png



You'll be taken back to the main menu for Wineskin. From here, click Create New Blank Wrapper. Call it Darkest Hour out of simplicity, and for the sake of this tutorial. It'll take a little while to install (also let it install Wine Gecko when it asks, it's an essential file-set).

ScreenShot2011-12-14at114143AM.png



Once the wrapper is installed, you need to manually navigate to it. It's located in /Users/YOUR NAME/Applications/Wineskin, so navigate there (you CAN NOT simply navigate there through the Application menu).

ScreenShot2011-12-14at114833AM.png



Now, we finally get to install Darkest Hour! Open the Wineskin folder (I recommend making a shortcut to this location, as you will need to access it often), and you will finally find your Darkest Hour.app file. Right-click it and hit "Show Package Contents". There will be three files, a shortcut to your fake C drive, the Contents of the fake C drive, and a Wineskin.app file. From now on, when I mention "Wineskin.app", it is referring to this file. Open this Wineskin app. You will see four options in the menu of this app, click on "Install Windows Software", navigate it to your Darkest Hour installer, and hit "Choose".

ScreenShot2011-12-14at120045PM.png



Go through the installation, choosing all the default options, but when it asks to install DirectX and other Windows software, DO NOT LET IT and simply hit cancel. We'll get to that next. When the install finishes, Wineskin will ask you which file to use to launch the game. I'd choose "Darkest Hour Launcher.exe", but you can change this to anything you'd like in the future in the Advanced option under the Wine app we used to install the game.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at122433PM.png



Now, we can install the 1.2 Patch and it's Hotfix. Go back to "Install Windows Software", but this time select the 1.2 Patch and let it install.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at122654PM.png



To install the Hotfix, use the C drive shortcut I mentioned earlier, then go to /Games/Darkest Hour/Config/ and paste the Messages.csv from the Config folder included in the Hotfix. Then, navigate to /Games/Darkest Hour/Mods/Darkest Hour Full/Config and paste the Messages.csv file included in the Mods folder of the Hotfix.
Unfortunately, due to the nature of the OS, you can not simply copy/paste in the folder, as when you overwrite it will not include files that were already present at that location.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at13141PM.png



For your mods, if they use an .exe (such as "Francesco's Models Mod" or "1914"), they can be installed at this point via the "Install Windows Software" function. Just be sure to point the installer to the correct folder.
If the mod is just a folder that you "unrar" (which is a majority of the case), you can simply copy/paste the folder into the /Games/Darkest Hour/Mods folder in our fake C drive.

Next, we need to install the Windows .dll's. Navigate back to the Wineskin.app, open it, then hit "Advanced". At the top, hit "Tools", then click on Winetricks. When Winetricks opens, type in "dotnet20" in the navigation bar (without quotes) and install the .dll file, using all the default options. Next, search "vcrun2010" and install this .dll. This may take a while, as the application has to acquire the .dll from the internet. In the event that an error occurs during the installation, or it just pauses, simply hit the cancel button at the bottom and try again (this sometimes happens during the 2010 .dll, but not often).

ScreenShot2011-12-14at123656PM.png



Now, all that's left to do is configure how we want the game to launch. Go back and open the Wineskin.app again, but this time select "Set Screen Options". Change "Automatic" to "Override", "Fullscreen" to "Rootless", and deselect "Decorate Windows". If you experience scrolling issues (it all depends on how your computer's resolution is in comparison to DH), changing "Normal Windows" to "Virtual Desktop" will fix this, but you will be unable to play Full-Screened.


ScreenShot2011-12-14at124242PM.png



If everything went correctly, you are now ready to launch the game! Now, you can open (not "Search the Contents Of") our Darkest Hour.app (I find it easiest to just search Darkest Hour in Spotlight) and the Darkest Hour Launcher will pop-up. I strongly recommend changing your Dock Preferences to Automatically Hide and be Positioned on the Right when you play DH, as when you scroll down during gameplay the Dock will often get in the way.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at10712PM-1.png



Select your mod and Resolution (I recommend the smallest Resolution the launcher allows, at least on a Macbook, as I find the larger ones can sometimes mess with the mouse scrolling, and some users report issues on higher resolutions. Experiment to see what works for you) and disable the Intro. Hit launch, and you're good to go! Congrats! Note that every time you launch the game via the Launcher, an error will pop up, such as a dotNet issue, as the Wineskin gets confused about the Launcher closing, but just hit Continue or O.K.. The game will run fine.
Sound can sometimes get muted if you switch between apps, but it will come back eventually.

ScreenShot2011-12-14at13849PM.png


ScreenShot2011-12-14at14621PM.png



This tutorial was made on the Lion OS, version 10.7.2. Good luck!
The above method can also be applied to almost any other Paradox game, more-or-less, as long as you know what the required .dll's are. The website WineHQ has many good suggestions on specific games.
 
Last edited:

Straczynski

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Nice tutorial. :)
Tried this last night on OS 10.5.2 Tiger. Had an error message while installing vcrun2010, but I found the DLLs on Google. No problem there, it seems. When I went on to run DH, I can't get past the menus: whenever I tried to start a new scenario or open a save, the game crashed...

Any ideas? Are you sure vcrun2010 and dotnet20 are the only system files I need to install? Hey, I really would like to dump VirtualBox from my Mac. :D
 

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Nice tutorial. :)
Tried this last night on OS 10.5.2 Tiger. Had an error message while installing vcrun2010, but I found the DLLs on Google. No problem there, it seems. When I went on to run DH, I can't get past the menus: whenever I tried to start a new scenario or open a save, the game crashed...

Any ideas? Are you sure vcrun2010 and dotnet20 are the only system files I need to install? Hey, I really would like to dump VirtualBox from my Mac. :D

Yes, I did a quick install to confirm it, those are the only system files you will need.
However, since you installed vcrun2010 manually, I strongly suggest trying to get it to run through WineTricks (yes, there is a difference). Also, make sure d3dx9.dll is installed (search for it in WineTricks). This .dll is automatically installed when you install vcrun2010.
I'm not sure why the vcrun2010 installer seems to give issues, but I always find if you retry installing it, it always works (seems like the issue comes from after it downloads, but the second time the installer already has it downloaded so the error is avoided).

If the above doesn't work, I believe something went wrong in your overall installation, as it should be working. What mod are you trying to run?
 
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Straczynski

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Thanks for the tips there. :) So I tried another clean reinstall, new wrapper and all. First I ran Winetricks and installed the system files. No problemes with Dotnet20, but still getting a crash with vcrun2010. This is the error message I get:
wineskin_bug_1.jpg


So I googled the individual dlls from the vcrun2010 pack (msvcr100.dll, mfc100.dll and msvcp100.dll) and threw them into windows/system and windows/system32. Then, I searched Winetricks for this d3dx9 you mentioned - it installed normally. After that I went according to your tutorial: installed DH, then the patch, then mods (KR, in this case). Finally I set the screen configs to the specs you mentioned.

Open DH, same problem: menus working, but crashing as soon as I try to actually enter the game. Before I quitted this, however, I tried changing the screen resolution in the DH Launcher to a lower value. It worked. :D

kr-on-mac.jpg

Kaiserreich on a Mac. Isn't it beautiful? :)

However, one thing is still preventing me from getting rid of Virtualbox... Playing in fullscreen. If I select 1680x1050 (my Mac's max resolution) on the DH Launcher, the game will, as before, crash at launching a new scenario (so maybe this was my problem after all...?). Changing the display mode on the Wineskin configs from rootless to fullscreen should be enough, but then the game will STILL crash if I select 1680x1050. I can play fullscreen by changing both the Wineskin configs and the game launcher to a slightly lower resolution (either 1344x840 or 1280x800), but then everything looks... Well... Less than ideal. ;) This is weird, since I can play in that resolution on Virtualbox, so that's a Wine thing, probably.

So, again, thanks for the tutorial... But until I have this fullscreen thing fixed, I'll keep with Virtualbox.

EDIT: No idea how or why, but I fiddled on the screen configs one last time, set it 1680x1050, launched the game at the same resolution and... It worked. No idea why, as I have used the same setting earlier... So, time to stop messing the configs and actually play, now. :)
 
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T.j. Arnold

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Well, I did say in the tutorial to change the Resolution to the smallest possible. ;)
Though, I didn't realize it would be a necessity for some users.
Glad you got it working! Still, I find it odd that you had an error in the vcrun2010 installer itself, never encountered that on the various laptops I've installed games on (though, they all have been on OS Lion, and never Tiger).

And, yes, for Darkest Hour you will be unable to play in Full Screen mode, but you can for every other Paradox game (I have EU III, Vicky II, and HoI III all working full screen).

For some reason, this game will only run with the virtual desktop on a Mac system, I have no idea why it refuses to run otherwise.
 
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So, I did one final messing with the screen configs. :)
The one thing that was still annoying me here was that I couldn't properly scroll the game screen using these configs. I mean, I could scroll the map by moving the cursor to the top, left or right of the screen, but couldn't move the map down. That was due to the MacOS Menu occupying the top of my 1680x1050 screen, but Winesking still drawing a 1680x1050 virtual desktop. The menu occupies the first 20 pixels or so, then Wineskin draws the other 1050 below it. Due to this, I couldn't ever reach the very bottom of the window, since it's... Well... Outsite of the screen.

The Wineskin screen options gives me the choice to use "normal windows" instead of a virtual desktop. So I changed it...
winsk1.jpg


Then the Game Launcher gave me a new screen option: 1680x1028. Yep, it's counting out the extra 22 pixels of the menu. :)
winsk2.jpg


That's it. I have a pseudo-fullscreen now. :D It's just like the Windows version of the game, except for the Apple menu bar on top and the dock on the bottom showing up everytime I scroll the mouse down, but that's it. It's good enough for me and I really think it's good enough for everyone else who happens to have the same issue I had. :)
 

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If you have some problems with proper resolution not being detected, you can probably edit settings.cfg file in the game folder manually to the proper value.
 

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Ahh yes, you can't force it to show it in the launcher, if go that way, you have to run the game through "Darkest Hour.exe".
 

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@Straczynski

Do you have issues scrolling down during gameplay? It's the reason I avoided going full-screen for the tutorial.
If not, I will edit it to include your input.
 

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Thank you very much for this helpful tutorial.

However, every time I edit a game setting or start a game, DH crashes. I have not yet been lucky enough to see beyond the game menu. I've tried various combinations of windowed and rootless settings with different resolutions, to the same effect.

Can anybody offer any guidance on this? Or am I doing something silly?
 

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Thank you very much for this helpful tutorial.

However, every time I edit a game setting or start a game, DH crashes. I have not yet been lucky enough to see beyond the game menu. I've tried various combinations of windowed and rootless settings with different resolutions, to the same effect.

Can anybody offer any guidance on this? Or am I doing something silly?

What type of Mac are you using, including the Graphics card and processor? You may simply just be unable to run it. I've used the exact instructions above on at least 30 new iMacs and MacBook Pros without any issues at all (I run the Paradox club at my university).

Also, make sure you are installing the Windows .dll's. The DotNet20.dll is in charge of the Launcher, which is where your issue is deriving. Also, try running the game without the launcher, using the other .exe file. If it fails to run at all, you screwed up in installation somewhere.
 

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What type of Mac are you using, including the Graphics card and processor? You may simply just be unable to run it.

I'm using a MacBook Pro with OSX 10.6.8, Intel HD Graphics 3000 and 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5.


Also, make sure you are installing the Windows .dll's. The DotNet20.dll is in charge of the Launcher, which is where your issue is deriving. Also, try running the game without the launcher, using the other .exe file. If it fails to run at all, you screwed up in installation somewhere.

I reinstalled the various .dll files and noticed that the d3dx9.dll did not install properly; I searched for this separately as you advised Straczynski and made sure that it was installed. I have since tried both the DHLauncher and the DH .exe files, and still have the same problem.

I feel a right goose, but a goose who is very thankful for your help.
 

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When you try to run the game via the non-Launcher .exe, how far do you get before the game crashes?
 

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To the same point as I do with the Launcher.exe; that is, until I click "Start." :wacko:

So, instant crash? Remember, the Launcher will say it "crashes" every time you click "Start", even though it is running fine. (For myself, the game starts to load a few seconds after it says that it "crashed")

Did you install any Mods, yet?
 

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I guess he means DH crashes on the game menu.... That is, as soon as he attempts to start a scenario. Is that right?
I've noticed that the game acts a bit temperamental sometimes and will refuse to start a scenario for whatever reason. :p But restarting the launcher and trying to open one of the standard mods (DH Full or DH Light) on the smallest possible screen size is just enough to solve the issue. Then you quit the game, open up the launcher again and select any mod and resolution, and everything runs fine. I've come across this issue just once or twice, though.

Also, some mods may have particular issues with Wineskin. Kaiserreich, for instance, would crash as I started the scenario, until I deleted its splashscreen (mod/kaiserreich/gfx/load_1024.bmp). But now it runs just like it would run under Windows.
 

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I guess he means DH crashes on the game menu.... That is, as soon as he attempts to start a scenario. Is that right?

Yes, that is correct. And it less-frequently crashes when I alter a game setting - for example, changing difficulty or aggressiveness. I haven't installed any mods, but have tried to run both full and lite versions of DH with the same result.

Perhaps the most practical question would be: how can I check that the .dll files have installed correctly? I have looked in the system and system32 folders and it was this eyeball check that showed me that the d3dx9.dll had not installed with vcrun2010. Is there another place or another way to check?