SkiFree Rules! Thanks For The Nostalgic Times Wine! - Adventures in Switching to Linux

Friday, January 4, 2008

SkiFree Rules! Thanks For The Nostalgic Times Wine!

I was working on setting up Samba tonight so my wife could access content from my system (more on that later) and I stumbled across a little application shared in My Documents on her system (my old one). It was none other than SkiFree!!!!!

SkiFree was released way back in 1991 as part of the Windows Entertainment Pack. I don't even remember what ele was included in that because SkiFree was by far the BEST of the games. I think I have a floppy disk around here somewhere with the entertainment pack on it. Of course, finding a floppy drive to read the disk would take some work.

Anyway, SkiFree was released in the Windows 3.0 days. Windows 3.1 would not be released until early 1992. I remember playing this on the only Windows 3.0 system I ever used in my 8th grade yearbook class when I wasn't stuck laying out pages in PageMaker (3.1 had been released by this time but that was the only install of Windows 3.0 I ever saw/used).

I have also been playing with Wine (Wine Is Not and Emulator) a bit more lately too. (Yes, that is a recursive acronym just like GNU, bunch of nerds!) When I discovered ski.exe, I figured why not give it a go. And boy did it go. It turns out, SkiFree is a platinum rated application running on Wine. That is as good as it gets. I also found out that my old crappy SkiFree 1.0 is only compiled for 16bit Windows and the author fixed some bugs and recompiled it for 32bit systems in October 2005. Sweet!

So thank you Wine team for implmenting all those API calls from Windows 3.0 so that SkiFree could run. And for all of you out there who want to play it yourself, it is freeware now! Go download SkiFree from the author's site and read up on some history of the application and his licensing it to Microsoft for 100 shares of stock (I hope he hung on to them for a while).

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