Wine, Lutris and Protón prefix folders, and other questions

Hi friends.

I have several questions about the Wine, Lutris and Protón folders and prefixes.

If I install multiple games/programs with wine or wine-staging by right clicking on installer.exe and “use with wine”, will a prefix be created for each game/program?

(If yes/no, where would the route of that global prefix or those individual Wine prefixes be found?)

Also, would it be recommended to use a global prefix where to install all the games/programs to make things easier, or is an individual one better?

(And how would I make these settings for Wine?)

Normally I use Lutris with a global prefix called “windows” (if I don’t do this, it will create 1 prefix for each game/program), and install the install.exe (the install.exe installs the necessary C++ and Directx). Then I add the launcher.exe to my Steam library and run it with proton-ge-9.2, and everything works perfectly.

(Although when using proton-ge, Steam/Proton creates another random prefix named like “5676786786474” in the Steam folder, but it’s not problematic)

I still have to try Heroic Launcher when I have time, I’m told it works very well.

Any advice is welcome, thanks in advance friends!

This is better for games as for the rest I will continue to read…

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I would reccommend this for games as most games aren’t updated too often and are made to work with certain versions of things that are installed)

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This would be because Lutris use either the systems version of wine wheras steam uses proton and I’m just guessing as I have never tried launching games from other places through it is creating a new prefix for it

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Read this, it should answer most of your questions…

+ there is that important thing to know, not added to guide yet:


These guides are pretty great, I used them when I first installed my system


They need some polishing and updates lately…i’m fixing it slowly when i have time :upside_down_face:

Still the core of it is timeless.


Thank you very much to both!

I see, thank you. Then I’ll let Lutris create a new prefix for each game (Lutris usually creates the prefix in the same folder where I install the game, if I remember correctly).

But I have a question. In which path is it best to install the games when the installer.exe asks me to choose the game path?

I mean, is it better to install it on Z:/... (Z:/Games for example), which is where the main Linux installation is?

Or better in C:/..., which is a fake directory and is actually the Wine folder?

I ask this out of ignorance. Because I don’t know if I can get better performance if the installation is located in the C:/ folder of Wine, or something like that, since Lutris uses Wine (these are questions that my mind asks xD).

Or should I even install it on my internal hard drive SSD #2 and #3? (I just formatted all my hard drives from ntfs to ext4, since when I used Windows, I needed these hard drives to install large games).

Thank you very much for your guide friend, it’s really great!

In your guide you recommend that I install the games in C:/Games, when the installer asks me which path to install it in.

This will install the game installer.exe in the Wine directory, right? Since C:/ is Wine, and Z:/ is the main Linux directory (if I’m not mistaken).

Is this done for any special reason, because it makes the game work correctly by being inside the Wine directory or something like that?

I read on several sites that it also installs on Z:/Games or external hard drives, but now I’m not sure which is the correct and recommended way.

I have 2 hard drives that I just formatted from ntfs to ext4. There are games that are too big, and they only fit on my internal hard drives SSD #2 and #3 (EOS, with Wine and Lutris, are installed on SSD #1).

So, it is not advisable to install games outside of C:/, for example on my SSD #2 or #3?

Sorry friend, many questions and a lot of text!

About this. You mean if I go “yay”, and Lutris updates while I have several game prefixes created?

If this happens, simply deleting the prefixes (saving the save game first), and creating a new prefix, the prefix should be created with the new version of Lutris, correct?


Yes, as well as contained in signle WINEPREFIX which you can make portable.

It’s all written in my guide, you can create WINEPREFIX wherever you want and move it whenever you want as well as install anything you want inside it.
For example on another drive and symlik this wineprefix to your preferred directory of where it should be scanned by something like Lutris (somewhere at your home for example).

No, not yay.
I mean when you’re using portable WINEPREFIXES or decide to change it’s version via Lutris, it doesn’t matter really.

That’s overkill, you don’t have to


Thanks very much friend. Although I forgot to say that all those questions I asked, I was referring to Lutris, not Wine (it was my fault, sorry, I forgot to mention it!).

That is, in what path to install the games when I start the installer.exe from Lutris (because first I start the installer.exe, and then change the path to launcher.exe, from Lutris). By mistake I read your Wine guide, instead of the Lutris one below.

Now I’m reading your Lutris guide and everything is perfect, but I couldn’t find where you recommend installing the games from Lutris (I guess it will be different from Wine).

I know you put this this in your guide:

I think I’ve been doing it wrong all this time. For example, I want to install Dark Souls:

I open Lutris, add the path of /Downloads/Dark Souls/darksouls-INSTALLER.exe to the library. I launch the installer and it asks me in which path I want to install it (and the doubt I have is in this step, I don’t know where I should install it):

C:/Games/Dark Souls
Z:/Games/Dark Souls

(I can’t remember which one I chose right now)

I choose the path, the installation starts and the installer installs c++ and directx, and the installation finishes.

After completing (or during) the installation, Lutris creates the prefix at:

or in
/Games/Dark Souls/dark-souls-PREFIX

(I don’t remember because I don’t have any games installed right now)

So now I go to the Lutris library and change the path to:

/Downloads/Dark Souls/dark-souls-INSTALLER.exe
/Games/Dark Souls/darksouks-LAUNCHER.exe

And I think this is my second mistake (and my second doubt), since according to your guide, I think I should choose a darksouks-LAUNCHER.exe that is duplicated within the PREFIX, something like:

/Games/dark-souls-PREFIX/Dark Souls/drive_c/Games/Dark Souls/Bin64/darksouls-LAUNCHER.exe

(or something like that, right?)

So I’ve been using the wrong launcher, I think.

Sorry, we, users who come from Windows, have this IQ to understand things :sweat: plus my English is really bad :fearful: sorry!

It’s great idea to read it all, Wine portion is as important to understand the idea.
In fact i recommend to do it all manually (i gave simple script examples to understand the process and not trust Lutris scripts or depend on it…Personally i use it simply as game launcher.

I’m using PlayOnLinux directory (now it’s pointless because Lutris doesn’t auto-link to it anymore so i need to rewrite that part when i’ll got more time, but still basic idea doesn’t change):

It’s just an example of structure:

├── wine
│   ├── linux-amd64
│   └── linux-x86
└── wineprefix

Example of created portable WINEPREFIX (think of it as if it was a PC or VM with separate Windows installed in it - all that you want to do there should stay inside, hence use C: and not Z: which is your Linux root, not great idea):


Therefore in your example what i offer you should end up with is:

~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/Dark_Souls/drive_c/Games/Dark Souls

What that allows you:
Have an ability to copy / move / change / backup such WINEPREFIX Windows installation(s) whenever you want in the future, and use it with any Wine version in the future, if you need so.

Hopefully that makes sense, it’s all there with simple scripts example so anyone would understand it.

I’ve written that guide couple of years afters switching to Linux, so don’t worry, you’ll learn if you want! :joy:

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Thank you very much friend!

One more doubt. In your guide you say this:

I want to install a game, for example Dark souls Remastered. Dark Souls may use a x64-bit launcher, or perhaps a x32-bit one

But my EOS is x64 (if I’m not mistaken). So, should I choose a prefix based on the bits of the game, or the operating system?

I’m using Lutris to create the prefix, and I can choose between x32, x64 or Auto (default).

When I used Windows 10, I could play x32 and x64 games, but I guess the Lutris prefix doesn’t work like that, which is why I have that doubt.

  • Your OS ix x64
  • Your WINEPREFIX will be created based on first WINE ENGINE you will create it with
  • Most of your games are very likely x32, only newest games may use x64 and it’s rare
  • If you still want to use Lutris and it’s scripts - then just leave it on auto

In 2024 you should always use x64 wine engine, which will create x64 wineprefix.
It shouldl work perfectly fine with any game regardless if it’s x32 or x64, just like in Windoze!

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I got it, it works! And besides, mentally I already understand how it works.

Although I am using Lutris and Heroic and it is a little different from how you do it (I think you do it through the terminal using the main .WINE), because for me it is easier to create the prefixes from these programs.

When I open the installer.exe from these programs, they ask me where to install the game, and I choose C:/. But that C:/ is not the one for .WINE (my mistake there), it is the one that creates Lutris or Heroic wherever you want.

I had it in Z:/Games, which is the HOME of EOS. And I installed the games on an external hard drive, the prefix and the game were on two different hard drives, that’s why it didn’t work!

Now I understood that you have to move the prefix to that external hard drive if you want to install the game on another hard drive, and when the installer asks you, you install it on C:/, which is not the C:/ of .WINE, it is the C:/ of the prefix.

In my case in:


With Heroic it would be the same route but with DarkSoulsHeroicPrefix

Also a curious thing. If you try to do it with the Steam prefix, you cannot choose the location of the prefix, and it will always be this:

/home/mylinux/.steam/steam/steamapps/compatdata/7368475455/pfx/drive_c/Program Files (x86)/Dark Douls

It would be great to make non-steam games work only with Steam, but I can’t get them to work, not even with Proton-ge 9.2. I couldn’t move the Steam prefix to my SSD #2 anyway…

But of course, there is still something I don’t understand. When you install the game in C:/, the prefix is created during the installation - But what if I have a game that does not need installation and there is only the launcher.exe?

In that case I think I should create a prefix by simply opening an .exe from Lutris, and closing it, and the prefix will be created. Yes, that makes sense!

This is great friend, it only took me 4 months for my two neurons to try to understand all this! Well, all this would not have been possible without all your help, so, again, thank you very much friends!!! :smiley:

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You can choose places for your games storage

Settings → Storage → Add drive

You can also make it default


There’s ongoing work on that for lazy people, not ready.

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Omg, that option was really hidden, I completely forgot to look in Settings, thanks!

Wow, this really interests me friend, thanks for sharing it!

Is it another launcher like Lutris and Heroic, but that includes all the libraries, c++, directx, along with proton-GE, and everything necessary to launch all kinds of games?

And it’s being created by “GloriousEggroll”, is he the person who created proton-GE?

And it can’t be installed or anything for now, right? I haven’t heard anything about this, so it must be new. I hope they finish it soon!

Is this the most important project to install games on Linux? If you know of another one, please let me know! :smiley:

It just seems strange to me that Lutris and Heroic haven’t put something in place to put libraries in the prefix, and stuff like that. Installing the libraries by hand or using protontricks or winetricks is extra work. Also, I don’t like having multiple programs installed (this way I will have fewer packages).

I think I’ve read that proton by valve was created to avoid having to download those libraries because they are already included in proton, but it still tells me “runtine c++ is missing”, so it doesn’t work 100% with games added to the steam library.

EDIT: Oh, I read the links, and they say it will be added to the Lutris and Heroic launchers, etc, so it should also be compatible with Steam.

That Lutris and Heroic are really great! But, I have half of my games on Steam, so I could just use Steam for both Steam and Non-Steam games.

I have added the 2 hard drives, but the prefix is still being created on hard drive #1.

Is it mandatory to mark “make default” on hard drive 2 so that the prefixes are created on it?

Because I think that the prefix will always be created where Steam is installed since the proton library is there.

But when installing games it does let me choose between the 3 hard drives.

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