This article is about using VARA FM and/or VARA HF on a linux laptop—or computer.

Quick and dirty

 1$ sudo apt-get install wine-stable winetricks exe-thumbnailer
 3$ export WINEPREFIX=/home/dominic/.wine-winlink
 4$ export WINEARCH=win32
 6$ winetricks winxp
 7$ winetricks sound=alsa
 9$ winetricks -q dotnet35sp1
10$ winetricks vb6run
11$ winetricks vcrun2015
13## now, as an update when my already working winlink express installation
14## failed, i had to install also the following dotnet applications with winetricks
15$ winetricks -q dotnet40
16$ winetricks -q dotnet46
18## Optional, if you want backups
19$ tar -cJf wine-backup_$(date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M-%S)_initial-setup.tar.xz .wine-winlink
21$ wine Downloads/Winlink_Express_install.exe
23## Optional, if you want backups after you installed Winlink
24$ tar -cJf wine-backup_$(date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M-%S)_winlink-installed.tar.xz .wine-winlink
26$ wine Downloads/VARA\ setup\ \(Run\ as\ Administrator\).exe
27$ wine Downloads/VARA\ FM\ setup\ \(Run\ as\ Administrator\).exe
29## Optional, if you want backups, after you installed Winlink and VARA
30$ tar -cJf wine-backup_$(date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M-%S)_vara-installed.tar.xz .wine-winlink

If your VARA window is empty after it gets started from Winlink, just minimize it and restore it and you should see it’s content again.


This article is practically based on the instructions found over at

The following files have been re-uploaded on my website to create a duplicate resource for download, but primarily to prevent them from going offline in the case the resource goes down for whatever reason.

I do not claim them to be my creation, I just want them to be online on a place that I find again.

Visit the website above if you want to know more details about Winlink on Linux.

Thanks to Steven K6ETA for his excellent explanations on his website, so I could narrow this down to the quick copy-and-paste-box above.