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Doug Nebeker ("Doug")
We develop a technical desktop application which currently only runs on Windows based systems. Our customers are technical and mostly business based.
Porting our application to something like QT in order to build native win/linux/osx versions would be a considerable effort and we would prefer to avoid this and focus on other features.
Our native Windows application works on Linux/OSX when run via Wine on those platforms. It is feature compatible (nothing breaks) compared with running natively on Windows and the only difference is some small GUI issues (mostly to do with look and feel).
Does anybody have experience offering a commercial application on linux/osx that relies on Wine to run?
I think there is a stigma about doing this, but the only downside I can see is:
1. User must jump through a few steps to get it running. Probably not an issue if they are technical.
2. The look of Windows applications running on Linux/OSX via Wine is not native to that platform. If your application does its own skinning this can be overcome.
3. Any potential stability issues introduced by Wine, although it can be noted that Wine has commercial support and is actively developed.
Ask your customers.
Put up a demo for evaluation; include a link to request purchase. If you get enough feedback do it.
My guess is that it won't be as popular as a native build because there are two things to go wrong and I guess the UI will look quite ugly.
If this is a $15 utility then I wouldn't see it as worth it; for a medium size application then you could get away with it.
Your customers are better informed than me so ask them.
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