UWP: how to run such Windows applications on Linux

UWP version of WhatsApp on Linux under WINE

Although in Linux we have applications to do everything, not all of them are available for our operating system. And they may be needed, or else it would not exist WINE. WineHQ software allows us to run Windows apps on other operating systems, but how are we going to run those that are only in the Microsoft Store? In fact, are apps compatible UWP with Linux? Well, let's say that a bit like the other more common.

And it is that UWP applications (Microsoft Universal Platform) can only be downloaded from the official Microsoft store. In addition, its extension is .appx, so everything indicates that it is all more complicated ... but no. The most difficult thing is knowing what can be done and how. And that is exactly what we are going to do here: explain how to run applications from Microsoft's universal platform in Linux, or rather in WINE, since this should also work in other operating systems.

Download and use UWP apps on Linux

The process is very simple:

  1. The first thing we need is the app file or package. To do this, what we have to do is go to the Microsoft store from a web browser and look for the app to install. In this example we will use WhatsApp, whose link you have here!.
  2. We have to paste that link on a page like store.rg-adguard.netWhat this page does is provide us with the download links for the packages.
  3. From the links that it offers us, we have to choose the one of our architecture, in my case the x64.
  4. Depending on the browser we use, we may have to right click on the link, "save link as" and tell it where to download. This is so because Chrome detects that there are security problems, so you also have to go to the downloads section and say that we want to keep the file.
  5. With the package already downloaded, the next step is to unzip it. The .appx files are actually a .zip, so we can open it with the terminal (unzip -d output_folder) or with applications like the KDE Ark.
  6. Now that we have it unzipped we have to look for its .exe. In the case of WhatsApp it is inside the "app" folder, but there are other cases in which it is in another path. Look for that .exe.
  7. Finally, we go to the terminal and write "wine / path / to / exe", without the quotes and where we will have to put the path to our .exe file.
  8. As an optional step, we can create a .desktop file (more or less so) so that the app appears in our start menu.

And that would be all. If supported, like WhatsApp, the app will open without further ado. If you need something extra, WINE may install a plug-in, like Mono.

Let's not get too excited

Because yes, it can work, but WhatsApp has been the third application that I have tried because the other two have failed me. It is also understandable, because one was iTunes, which has a lot of fabric to cut, and the other was Amazon Prime, and the terminal says that it has problems with hardware acceleration and does not even open. So we could say that We can use normal applications, but the more complex ones cannot. In any case, this is one more option, and articles like this are worth it just to help one of our readers.


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