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Install and run Spotify using Wine

Spotify is a fantastic service that provides free and legal music streaming to your computer. There are thousands of tracks to choose from and you can listen to your favourite music or discover new music you have not heard before.

You can browse the music or enter your favourite artist into the search box and list all the tracks that are available. They can be sorted according to various criteria, you can see how popular they are with other Spotify users, and set them playing, turn up the volume on the speakers to 11 and sit back and listen. It's brilliant.

It's free because the software includes the occassional advert, but that's just something you have to put up with.

Get Wine

Unfortunately, there isn't a version of Spotify for linux and there is only a Windows version and a Mac version. However, there is a way of getting the Windows version of Spotify to run in linux.

Wine is an amazing program that enables you to run lots of Windows software in linux. It's not an emulator or virtual machine or anything like that (Wine stands for Wine Is Not an Emulator). Instead it very cleverly provides all the functions that Windows programs expect when running in Windows.

Wine audio configurationYour first task in getting Spotify to run in linux is to install Wine. In Ubuntu you would go to the Synaptic Package Manager, enter Wine into the search box, then select it for installation.

You can do a similar sort of thing in other versions of linux, or even open a Terminal window and enter sudo aptitude install wine or sudo apt-get install wine or something similar.

After installing Wine, find it on the menu and run the Configure Wine tool. Type winecfg into the Terminal window if you prefer. Select the Audio tab and use the Test Sound button to make sure the audio is working.

(The first time you do this the audio system will be set up, which takes a few seconds.) Use full hardware acceleration, 44100 sample rate and no driver emulation.

Install Spotify

Go to the Spotify website and follow the download link. Ignore the notice that there isn't a linux version and download the Windows version and save it to your home folder. Open a Terminal window in your home folder and enter wine "Spotify Installer.exe". The software will be installed. In Ubuntu it is added to the Applications menu in the Other group and also two desktop icons are created. Double clicking the menu item or the Spotify.desktop icon will run Spotify.

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