How to run Photoshop CS 6 on Linux with Wine

In this article, we will consider installing Adobe Photoshop on Linux with Wine, since Adobe Photoshop does not officially support Linux.

While I used Linux for many years, I attempted to replace Adobe Photoshop with GIMP to edit images. On Linux, there are plenty of Adobe Photoshop alternatives softwares like GIMP, Kinsta, Paint.NET… However, I’m not found any programs that compatibility with Adobe Photoshop files. That’s why I have tried many approaches to running Adobe Photoshop on Linux operating systems.

I recommend you use Adobe Photoshop Portable version because it was build-in all the components to run as standalone apps on any environment. If you’re trying to install it, you will facing with many issues during the install process before make it runable. At the moment, I tested several version of Photoshop on Linux then realize one of the most running well versions is CS 6, so we will consider running it for the best result, but others versions may be runable on the same principle.
How to run Photoshop CS 6 on Linux with Wine
How to run Photoshop CS 6 on Linux with Wine

As you known, you can run Photoshop on Linux via two different methods: using a virtual machine or using Wine. Virtual Machine will probably be the most reliable method, but that requires a powerful machine and isn’t really using Linux; it’s using Windows, inside Linux. Wine is easier method, especialy with many helper like PlayOnLinux, CrossOver, Lutris, Proton, Q4Wine, winetricks…

How to run Photoshop on Linux with Wine

By far the easiest way to install Photoshop CS6 100% working on Linux is using Wine helper but you haven’t best program for all Linux distros. PlayOnLinux method worked on Linux Mint, but I don’t know why that didn’t work on Manjaro… So let’s get started with Wine, from this, you are going to config Wine helper correctly to run Photoshop on your Linux system.

Wine Settings

  • Windows 7.
  • Version 3.2.0.

Wine Settings
The first step we must take is to install the wine and winetricks tools. We can do it through the software manager of our system or via terminal. I’m using Arch Linux, here is my command to install them, you can do the same with your distro’s pakage manager: (don’t forget to enabled multilib repository to install required lib32 files that Wine needs)

$ sudo pacman -S wine winetricks

Secondly, you need config Wine to version 3.2 then be sure to select Windows 7 and not Windows XP, it’s very important because most of Adobe Photoshop version is running well with this configuration than others.

Required DLL and components:

  • adobeair
  • atmlib
  • corefonts
  • fontsmooth-rgb
  • gdiplus
  • gecko
  • msxml3
  • msxml6
  • tahoma2
  • vcrun2005
  • vcrun2008
  • vcrun2010

Using winetricks to get install dependencies for Photoshop CS6

$ winetricks adobeair atmlib corefonts fontsmooth-rgb gdiplus gecko msxml3 msxml6 tahoma2 vcrun2005 vcrun2008 vcrun2010

I tested all the requirement dlls and libraries to make sure Photoshop CS 6 is runable on dozen laptops and PCs. Note that the list of above components reported to work by different people at the WineHQ site varies but for certain you need atmlib and gdiplus.
There may font rendering issues related to the gdiplus library that was mentioned in some email. It can be fixed by change *gdiplus from Native (Windows) to Builtin (Wine) in the Libraries tab of Wine Configuration.

Things TO-DO after run Adobe Photoshop CS Portable

Now, Adobe Photoshop CS Portable is runable on Linux. What I tried, and can confirm works:

  • Level adjustments
  • Image or canvas scaling
  • Paint brushes
  • Canvas zooming – with minor annoying glitch –
  • Selection tools
  • Blur tools
  • Layers
  • A few of the transformation tools
  • Other features…

But there some features aren’t working or need some tweaks to allow it’s running flawlessly.

  • Uncheck Show Tool Tips in Edit > Preferences > Interface, I don’t know why but when hover mouse pointer on any objects, a sticky tool tips will display overrider all the apps on the screen. It looks very uncomfortable.
  • Mini Bridge sẽ không dùng được trên các bản Portable, but I’m just use Photoshop to edit my images and never use it, so it’s not a big problem.
  • Turn off Use Graphic ProcessorI recommend uncheck Use Graphic Processor checkbox in Edit > Preferences > Performance because with my experiences, Wine haven’t ability to manage graphics cards as well as Windows. So any features which depend on graphic card power may are the cause of problems: movement is lagging, crashing, pointer is freezing, liquify tool’s dialog is not appeared… But, after turn off Use Graphic Processor, some advanced features of Photoshop aren’t working, example: Adaptive Wide Angle, Oil Paint and 3D layer …
  • Wine is almost incompatible with the pressure sensitivity feature of the Wacom drawing board, so it will not work in Photoshop running through Wine. Personally, when I try it, I can sometimes do it. So the advice for you guys or drawing with Wacom is better if you switch to Krita.
  • Uncheck all box of Extension Panels that located at Edit > Preferences > Plug-ins to avoid any conflict with 3rd plugins.
  • To include all the font of your system, feel free to symlink them in to drive_c/windows/Fonts then restart Photoshop.

Using the above guides, you should be able to run Photoshop in your Linux. If you have any issues or what to share your thoughts on this. Please let me know in the comment section below.

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