|This article is about the current version of DF.|
As of v0.43.05, the three downloads linked on the main page are 64-bit versions of DF for Windows, macOS, and Linux. "All versions" links to a page with additional choices, including 32-bit builds for all platforms, "small" builds for Windows (which lack sound files), and "legacy" builds for Windows. Generally, the SDL builds for Windows should be preferred, although the Legacy builds may be necessary on some older computers.
 Third-Party Packages
There are several packages which bundle the game with several utilities and graphics sets, usually configurable with an included launcher. These are listed on the Lazy Newb Pack page.
The Dwarf Fortress community often creates custom graphics sets, tilesets and color schemes. They're like graphical mods that make DF look prettier or just different. A lot of people pack the game folder with the tileset installed and everything already set up, so all you have to do is extract and play. Among the most popular of these are Ironhand's Graphics Set and Phoebus' Graphic Set. Most notable graphics sets are included in the packs mentioned above.
- Also see: System requirements
There is no installer for the game. Simply extract the archive file to a folder somewhere and run the game from within the folder by opening "Dwarf Fortress.exe".
Make sure to actually extract the archive; do not just open the archive and run the game from the window that appears. If you do this then it may appear to work, but your save game data will get discarded. This is the cause of many "my saved games keep getting deleted" complaints. The game also needs to be able to write to its own folder, so do not install it in C:\Program Files if you are running Windows Vista or later.
If you have an error stating that MSVCP140.dll is missing, it can be obtained by downloading Visual C++ Redistributable for Visual Studio 2015. When prompted choose the x86 version.
The Mac version is not a single application bundle, but like the Windows version it consists of a folder containing the application along with data files and there is no installer. The entire folder can be dragged into the Applications folder or placed elsewhere. As with the Windows version, the game must be able to write to its own folder.
To start the game execute the launch script "df". Launching "dwarfort.exe" by itself will not work (since the "df" script sets up environment variables pointing to DF's libraries).
- Download SDL_ttf 2.0.11 and replace the file libs/SDL_ttf.framework with the one from the downloaded folder.
On OS X 10.11 and above, for the 32-bit version of DF only, you will need to update the SDL library:
- Download SDL 1.2.15 and replace the file libs/SDL.framework with the one from the downloaded folder
As of 0.43.05, both 64-bit and 32-bit compiled editions are available for Dwarf Fortress. For older versions you can run the 32-bit compiled edition with a 64-bit system, provided that you have the (32-bit) shared libraries available that the program needs. Note that users of 32-bit systems have to click the All Versions button on the Dwarf Fortress download page in order to get the 32-bit edition.
Dwarf Fortress for Linux is meant to be run from a terminal (command-line) interface, and so the instructions here will assume you know how to login and get to a command prompt. At least in the default mode, however, Dwarf Fortress is an X client (graphical desktop) program, so you should be in a terminal inside an X session before starting the game. Dwarf Fortress will create a new X window outside of the terminal window, so don't worry about the size of the terminal.
- Downloading: Either download it from the Dwarf Fortress Homepage, or from the terminal call (replacing "XX_YY" with the numbers in the most current Dwarf Fortress file version, found on the site):
- Unpacking: Dwarf Fortress is shipped as a (bzip2) compressed tar archive. It will extract into a new directory called df_linux. So, cd to wherever you want the game to be unpacked, and then run
tar xjf /path/to/df_XX_YY_linux.tar.bz2(where df_XX_YY_linux.tar.bz2 is the filename). Then
cd df_linuxto change into the new directory, and run
./dfto execute the Dwarf Fortress wrapper script.
tar xjvf ./df_XX_YY_linux.tar.bz2 may be needed in some cases.)
When you installed Linux, you chose one of a 32-bit or 64-bit architectures. The programs on your system will then be compiled either for the 32-bit (i386, x86) arch, or the 64-bit (amd64, x86_64) arch. If you've forgotten which one you have, you can check by running the command
uname -m in a terminal. A result of
i686 would indicate a 64-bit or a 32-bit system respectively.
All that's needed now is to install the required dependencies. If you are getting errors about missing SDL_image libraries (etc.) then you simply need to install them. Use your distribution's package manager for this -- details will be extremely distribution-specific. You don't need the development versions of the packages with the headers (although that won't hurt) -- you just need the runtime versions, with the actual shared libraries. Specific installation commands for some popular distributions are listed below.
Since Dwarf Fortress 0.43.05 is now compiled for both architectures, running natively shouldn't be an issue. However if you're wanting to run an older version of Dwarf Fortress on a 64-bit system, things get a bit trickier. Since older DF is only a 32-bit application, it will need 32-bit versions of the shared libraries. Some Linux distributions provide these in one or more packages that you can download. For example, in Debian, you'll need to enable the 32bit architecture in your package manager and install the relevant 32-bit libraries like libSDL. If your distribution does not include these, then you may have to supply them manually.
./libs/Dwarf_Fortress: error while loading shared libraries: libSDL-1.2.so.0: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory
indicates you are missing one or more libraries.
In Ubuntu 16 you can solve it with the command:
$ sudo apt-get install libsdl1.2debian libsdl-image1.2 libSDL-ttf2.0-0
If you're trying to run a version of Dwarf Fortress older than 0.43.05, you'll need to install the 32bit versions of the libraries. You can do this like:
$ sudo dpkg --add-architecture i386 $ sudo apt-get update $ sudo apt-get install libsdl-image1.2:i386 libsdl-ttf2.0-0:i386 libgtk2.0-0:i386 libglu1-mesa:i386 libopenal1:i386
Otherwise, it's just a simple
$ sudo apt-get install libsdl-image1.2 libsdl-ttf2.0-0 libgtk2.0-0 libglu1-mesa libopenal1
In Linux Mint 18 you might come across the error:
./libs/Dwarf_Fortress: error while loading shared libraries: libSDL_ttf-2.0.so.0: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory
Download and install the missing library with:
$ sudo apt-get install libSDL-ttf2.0-0
Nice and easy:
$ sudo apt-get install libsdl-image1.2 libsdl-ttf2.0-0 libgtk2.0-0 libglu1-mesa libopenal1
$ sudo dnf install SDL SDL_image SDL_ttf gtk2-devel openal-soft alsa-lib alsa-plugins-pulseaudio mesa-dri-drivers
On 64-bit Fedora installations you can install 32-bit libraries by appending ".i686" to the package name:
$ sudo dnf install SDL.i686 SDL_image.i686 SDL_ttf.i686 gtk2-devel.i686 openal-soft.i686 alsa-lib.i686 alsa-plugins-pulseaudio.i686 mesa-dri-drivers.i686
Fedora installs all 32-bit libraries to /usr/lib and 64-bit libraries to /usr/lib64 (with /lib and /lib64 being links to these two directories), so if you need to install stuff manually, look in there.
You can also use this RPM repository, which contains Dwarf Fortress as packaged similarly to the way it is done for Arch Linux (see below). You can enable that repository and install Dwarf Fortress on Fedora by running the following commands:
$ sudo wget -P /etc/yum.repos.d/ https://www.acm.jhu.edu/~bjr/fedora/dwarffortress/dwarffortress.repo $ sudo dnf install dwarffortress
This should automatically pull in all required dependencies. At which point, running the command "dwarffortress" should launch DF.
 Arch Linux
Although Dwarf Fortress may be installed using the method above (with some modifications), it is available through pacman (Arch Linux's package management system), in the [community], for 32-bit, and the [multilib], for 64-bit, repositories. These packages are updated as Dwarf fortress is updated, and handle required dependencies.
All of the following commands must be run as root
First, download and install Dwarf Fortress with pacman
pacman -S dwarffortress
Any required dependencies will be installed, too.
Next you need to add the user(s) that will be playing the game to the games group
gpasswd -a [users] games
Any users you added to the games group must now be logged out, if they were logged in
Now Dwarf Fortress should be playable by typing:
As any user in the games group. Any edits to game files must be done in the '.dwarffortress' directory in the user's home directory, not /opt/dwarffortress.
Installing Dwarf Fortress on 64-bit installs of Arch Linux is the same as installing it on 32-bit systems, with the exception of the [multilib] repository needing to be enabled prior to install.
These commands also must be run as root.
To enable the [multilib] repository run:
And delete the pound symbol(#) in front of these three lines (Make sure the top one says #[multilib] NOT #[multilib-testing]
#[multilib] #SigLevel = PackageRequired #Include = /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist
So that they look like this
[multilib] SigLevel = PackageRequired Include = /etc/pacman.d/mirrorlist
Save the file by typing
 Sound and Graphics
After that you can continue the install as detailed in the 32-bit section. Required 32-bit dependencies will automatically be installed, however you may have to install more dependencies, depending on what sound support you use, and your graphics card
If you use alsa sound, install lib32-alsa-lib with:
pacman -S lib32-alsa-lib
If use use pulse sound install lib32-libpulse with:
pacman -S lib32-libpulse
You will also need to install a 32-bit graphics driver. Install the driver from multilib that corresponds to your driver/device on this chart. For example, if you have xf86-video-nouveau installed, you would run:
pacman -S lib32-mesa-libgl
If you don't know what driver/device you're currently using run:
Find the line that starts with "VGA compatible controller." Your driver will be listed under "kernel driver in use", like so:
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: NVIDIA Corporation GK106M [GeForce GTX 765M] (rev a1) Subsystem: ASUSTeK Computer Inc. Device 119d Kernel driver in use: nvidia Kernel modules: nouveau, nvidia
If you are using/wish to use the AMD catalyst drivers, please note that they are no longer available within the main arch repositories. You will have to install them from the AUR. See here for more information.
If you have Nvidia graphics, you may also want to install lib32-nvidia-utils with:
pacman -S lib32-nvidia-utils
 CentOS 7
Dwarf Fortress is now 64-bit, so simply run:
sudo yum install SDL SDL_image SDL_ttf openal
cd df_linux curl -L http://pastebin.com/raw/jX4Wf062 > df mkdir c_libs mv libs/libgcc_s.so.1 libs/libstdc++.so.6 c_libs/ chmod a+x df
Then run it!
There is a a Dwarf Fortress ebuild in the main Gentoo's portage tree compatible with the new multilib support.
# emerge -av games-roguelike/dwarf-fortress
Downloading the windows version and running it with Wine works fine (platinum on 1.7.47 as of .4x.xx, which means the program runs flawlessly without any initial user configuration). This also avoids any issues with 32-bit versus 64-bit mode.
If you get errors, it is likely that others will have had the same problem; Try searching the bay12games forum with the error message.
After installing, DF will run, but will complain that it cannot find the OpenAL library and cannot play sounds, even when OpenAL (i386) has been installed. This is due to a bug/feature in which there is no link from the name of the library that DF is looking for ("libopenal.so") to its implementation ("libopenal.so.1" - technically another link). To fix this, simply provide the necessary links in DF's own libs directory:
$ cd df_linux/libs $ ln -s /usr/lib/i386-linux-gnu/libopenal.so.1 ./libopenal.so $ ln -s /usr/lib/i386-linux-gnu/libsndfile.so.1 ./libsndfile.so
Since every new version of Dwarf Fortress unpacks in a directory named df_linux you have to manage upgrades yourself - or use the Linux Updater Script. As on all systems, you should not unpack a new version of DF on top of an old version's directory -- this will cause things to break, usually in subtle and mysterious ways. Instead, you should either delete or rename the old df_linux directory first, before extracting the new version.
 Manually installing 32-bit libraries
If you do need to manually install the libraries, then the first step is to figure out where you will be putting them. Check to see where your other 32-bit libraries are already installed; for example, on Debian, some are in /lib32 and others are in /usr/lib32. Since libSDL is in /usr/lib32 on a Debian system, that's where we'll want to put libSDL_image and libSDL_ttf. On other distributions, the path could be different.
The second step is to get the 32-bit libraries. You can typically do this by downloading them directly from your distribution's 32-bit package repository. Again using Debian as our example, we can perform a search at http://packages.debian.org/ for files containing the word libSDL_image for the Intel x86 architecture. This takes us to a results page from which we can proceed to the libsdl-image1.2 package page with a list of download links arranged by architecture. Grab the i386 package from here, and repeat this for the libSDL_ttf package, and whatever other library you are missing. Store these package files somewhere convenient.
The third step is to extract the libraries from the packages and get them in the proper location. You probably won't be able simply to install the packages using your package manager, because they are for the wrong architecture. Instead, you'll probably have to extract them by hand. The steps for doing this are distribution-specific, so when in doubt consult your distribution's help resources. Here are the steps for a .deb package.
- cd into some temporary working directory such as /tmp
- Extract the files from the .deb archive, which is in ar(1) format:
tar x /path/to/libsdl-image1.2*_i386.deb
- This creates three files: debian-binary, control.tar.gz and data.tar.gz. We only care about data.tar.gz.
- Extract data.tar.gz:
tar xzf data.tar.gz
- This creates a subdirectory named usr with various files inside it. We only care about usr/lib/libSDL_image-1.2.so.0.8.2 (or whatever precise version yours has).
- Move the shared library into place:
sudo mv usr/lib/libSDL_image-1.2.so.* /usr/lib32/
- Create a symlink to it:
cd /usr/lib32 sudo ln -s libSDL_image-1.2.so.0.* libSDL_image-1.2.so.0 cd -
Repeat this for libSDL_ttf and whatever other libraries are required.
NOTE: If you get the error that libsndfile.so is not found, you must use the following:
cd to the correct directory, then use ln as shown above.
 "Not found: /data/art/mouse.png" and similar errors
 Fix 1: Preload zlib
Due to incompatibilities between DF's included zlib and newer versions of zlib, libpng can fail on newer systems. A solution is to add this line to the beginning of
/your/path/df_linux/dfhack if you use DFHack):
Note that this path can vary - be sure that it is referring to a 32-bit zlib.
 Fix 2: Use bmp instead
Another solution (if preloading zlib doesn't work) is to force DF to use the BMP versions of image files. You must first edit the /data/init/init.txt file and change all occurrences of "png" to "bmp". This should solve all the error messages except for one: "Not found: data/art/mouse.png" since there is no setting in the init files to change it. The workaround for this is to edit the Dwarf_Fortress file found in the /your/path/df_linux/libs folder which contains the setting for the mouse cursor. If you don't know how to do that, you can try this:
- cd to the /df_linux/libs folder
- open Dwarf_Fortress in vi or any other editor of your choise:
- This opens the file for editing (text mode). If you are not familiar with vi, it would be a good idea to follow these steps exactly and not press any other keys since they all activate specific commands. If you do press a key though, you can press the ESC key a few times to cancel the command.
- With vi open, write the following string and press Enter:
- This will search for all the strings that contain the word "mouse" and place the cursor on the first match. Pressing the n key will cycle through all the matches.
- Press the n key until the cursor moves to the desired string, which is "data/art/mouse.png". If you accidentally move past the string, you can cycle back through the matched strings using the N key (shift + n).
- Once you find the right string, you will have to move the cursor over the "p" in "[..]/mouse.png". You do that by pressing the l key which will move the cursor to the right. There is also the h key to move the cursor to the left, in case you move past it.
- With the cursor in the right position press the following key sequence:
- This will replace the .png extension with the .bmp one which solves the problem of the missing /data/art/mouse.png error.
- All there is left to do is to save the modifications to the file and quit vi. For that, press the ESC key once or twice and then press the following key sequence after which you press Enter:
- This saves the changes and quits 'vi'
Now the game should work properly. Have fun!
Although there is no official version ported to FreeBSD, Dwarf Fortress can nevertheless be run using either Wine or FreeBSD's compatibility with Linux. However, attempting to run the Linux version out of the blue will result in an error about missing library files. Such files must be downloaded from special linux-compatible packages or ports; using your preferred installation method, install the following:
sudo pkg install linux-c6-gtk2 linux-c6-sdl linux-c6-sdl_image linux-c6-sdl_ttf linux-c6-libGLU \ linux-c6-openal-soft linux-c6-libsndfile linux-c6-alsa-plugins-oss
If you don't have the linux-c6 ports available in your system, you can still run Dwarf Fortress (albeit without sound) using the following packages:
sudo pkg install linux-f10-alsa-lib linux-f10-atk linux-f10-cairo linux-f10-expat linux-f10-fontconfig \ linux-f10-gtk2 linux-f10-jpeg linux-f10-pango linux-f10-png linux-f10-sdl linux-f10-sdl_image linux-f10-tiff \ linux-f10-xorg-libs linux-sdl_ttf linux_base-f10 linux_dri linux-f10-libGLU
linux_dri might be optional if you have the NVIDIA driver. Note that due to the lack of a linux-f10-libsndfile port, the sound will not work. Requests are being made to port it, as well as a DF port itself.
After you install the required packages, copy (or symlink) DF's own library files to the linux-compatible directory:
cd dwarf_fortress_directory sudo cp libs/lib* /compat/linux/usr/lib/
cd dwarf_fortress_directory sudo ln -s libs/lib* /compat/linux/usr/lib/
You can then run df normally. Although it will likely display a bunch of warnings and errors about fonts, it should work.
If you want to avoid polluting your linux-compatible directory, you can always just set LD_LIBRARY_PATH when running df:
Fortunately the documentation on this wiki is very detailed and extensive. You may want to start out with:
Then move on to: