Running Oolite-Windows

From Elite Wiki


The Windows port of Oolite is built from the same source as the Mac OS X and Linux versions, and has all the features of those versions.

All OXPs should be compatible with the Windows port.


Note that this page is referenced as 'Building' from however this page does not contain any build information.

Check out instead.

Getting and installing the compiled game

The latest recommended release, 1.90 can be downloaded from

To install, run the installer that you have just downloaded.

The game has been tested on Windows Vista SP2, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10. This game uses OpenGL, and you are advised to run the latest 3D graphics drivers from your 3D card manufacturer.

It will not run on the DOS-extender versions of Windows such as Windows 95, 98 or ME.

For Windows XP, the last version compatible with the OS is 1.84.

Important note for Vista users!


DATA LOSS and OXP MALFUNCTION can appear if you install an early version of Oolite (1.65 - 1.72.x) on Vista. Oolite 1.73 and later releases have corrected this issue by using a different default installation directory, instead of one inside program files, as before.

Do This

When asked by the installer, change the Oolite install directory to a different location, one outside C:\Program Files\, like

  • C:\Oolite\
  • C:\Games\Oolite\


Don't Do This

It is STRONGLY recommended NOT to use the folder C:\Program Files\Oolite\ or any path including the following:

  •  %ProgramFiles%
  •  %ProgramData%
  •  %SystemRoot%

Vista rearranges some files outside the Oolite folder structure without visible alias/redirects, which completely hides all saved games and causes some OXP add-ons to malfunction. This is because Vista virtualizes files in those locations for legacy processes. You can read more about this problem on this Oolite forum thread. The Microsoft explanation is here: [1].

Recovering Your Commanders Saved Under Vista

If you have already installed Oolite on a Vista machine and wish to move your saved games to a new and safer file location:

  • Examine location C:\Users\[username]\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\Oolite\\oolite-saves\


  • Use Windows Explorer to search for the string " *.oolite-save " with the Windows search option "include system and hidden files" checked (turned on).

For example, the default commander, if saved, might be found in this path: C:\Users\[username]\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\Oolite\\oolite-saves\Jameson.oolite-save

Running the game

Find the Oolite icon in the Start -> Programs menu and click on it. Alternatively double click the Oolite program icon on the desktop. Note that the following key combination will get you out of 'graphics related trouble':

Shift-Escape: Quit Oolite immediately

If your game seems to have unreasonably low fps performance (check this in-game by hitting SHIFT-F) it is strongly recommended you visit your graphic cards' suppliers website and download and install the latest drivers.

Installing OXPs

You will need to find where the folder is placed: versions 1.65 to 1.72.x should default to C:\Program Files\Oolite, later versions default install is C:\Oolite, to avoid clashes with Vista's virtual folders feature(see above). Create an AddOns folder beside the folder. Put OXPs in here. NB: most OXPs zip files contain a folder with a README file and the actual OXP directory (somename.oxp) as a sub-folder - in this case, it's best to unzip the OXP somewhere else and then copy the unpacked .oxp folder into AddOns.

Filming your game

You can record video of the game with the Windows Gamebar shortcut keys. <Windows>+<Alt>+R starts the recording, the same combination stops it. The video gets saved in C:\Users\<YourUserName>\Videos\Captures, with a filename like 'Oolite v1.89 - Jul 23 2020 2020-07-29 19-35-26.mp4'.

Notes for amd64 users

64-bit builds of Oolite for Windows are available and the development environment used defaults to 64-bit executables generation. They are the recommended ones for 64-bit OSes. However, the 32-bit version should run on 64-bit Windows without issues as well.

Building from Source