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Frequently Asked Questions

My game just crashed!

We're sorry to hear that. Please have a look at the crash logs to collect the basic information we need to help you. Depending on your operating system, this will be in a different location:

  • Windows: %USERPROFILE%\Documents\OpenRA\Logs\ or OpenRA\Support\Logs\ (portable installation)
  • Mac OSX: ~/Library/Application Support/OpenRA/Logs/
  • Linux: ~/.openra/Logs/

Before you post this information on the forum or IRC, please read the first line of the exception.log and check the common issues below. If you have a problem that is not mentioned here, please let us know at bugs.openra.net.

If the exception mentions an out of sync error, please also post syncreport.log, which you will find in the same directory and get everyone else who was playing the game to post it, too. The sync log is only useful if we have multiple players submit their log. You can use, for example, diffchecker.com to find and post the trait that caused the desync exception.

Exception of type System.Reflection.ReflectionTypeLoadException

You need to install the .NET Framework version 4.5 or above.

Pinwheel of death when starting on OS X for the first time

This is caused by mono insisting on reindexing all the fonts on your system. Let it run for as long as it needs (it usually takes between 1 and 5 minutes), and OpenRA will then start. Just give it a bit of time.

No suitable renderers were found.

No Valid Techniques.

Unsupported GPU.

Unable to find an entry point named 'glGenBuffers' in DLL 'opengl32.dll'.

These errors occur if the game cannot start OpenGL. This could occur for a number of reasons, depending on your operating system and graphics card

  • Update your graphics card driver to a recent version. In particular, the Intel drivers that are bundled with Windows ("Vendor: Microsoft Corporation") do not include any OpenGL support. See your graphics card manufacturer website to download the latest drivers.
  • You have an old graphics card that doesn't support OpenGL 2.0 via its drivers and chipset. Although OpenRA may look like an old game, we make use of modern hardware capabilities. Have a look at the minimum hardware requirements page.

If you are sure that none of the above issues apply, create a forum thread or see us on the IRC.

Unable to load DLL - System.DllNotFoundException

Download the external dependencies and extract them into the main OpenRA folder.

DllNotFoundException: Unable to load DLL 'freetype6.dll'

You need to have the Visual C++ 2010 redistributable installed.

Unable to find a version of the runtime to run this application.

Fatal error: OpenRA.exe is not a valid Win32 application.

You will need to install the .NET Framework on Windows. See our Windows XP guide if you are still running it.

Nobody can join my online game!

For others to join your game, you must forward a port in your router for them to connect to. By default, OpenRA uses TCP port 1234. You can test this on sites like canyouseeme.org yourself.

This can be be configured in the Create Server dialog. If you have a router that supports Universal Plug and Play, go to Settings - Advanced and tick the Enable Network Discovery (UPnP) checkbox. Restart the game and tick the Automatic port forwarding checkbox in the Create Server dialog.

Please keep in mind that you also need to allow connections in your software firewall.

I can't see any available servers!

The OpenRA Master Server might be down. Check the master.openra.net uptime monitoring. You can report problems at its bug tracker.

Can the server and clients be running different versions?

No. While there are currently no checks in place for this except comparing version strings, it is advised that you only run identical versions of the game when playing multi-player games. While the network protocol may not change, differences in unit behavior between versions can cause desynchronization between clients.

My FPS is way too low!

OpenRA is a work in progress, and we are doing our best to improve performance.

Some hints on what you can do:

  • On Linux spawn a separate XServer to launch OpenRA in.
  • If you are running KDE press SHIFT+ALT+F12 to temporarily turn off composition effects.
  • Upgrade to Mono 3.0 on Linux/Mac and start with mono-sgen OpenRA.Game.exe or mono --gc=sgen OpenRA.Game.exe to use the new and improved garbage collector.

Still not getting better? To help us fix this, we will need some information from you.

  • Enable the performance graph (from the Main Menu → Settings → Debug → Show Performance Information) and note your average Tick and Render times in a game.
  • Your perf.log from the logs directory above.
  • Your computer specs (CPU and Graphics card are most important).

Please create a new bug report with the above information.

Where do bugs go?

Please report yours to issue tracker with the following crucial details:

  • What you were doing when something broke?
  • What you expected to happen?
  • What actually happened?
  • If it's a crash, the contents of exception.log.

My Logs files and Replays are suddenly missing!

Recently, updates to cleaning tools, such as "CCleaner", have additions which can cleanup your OpenRA Support folders. They may delete your replays and log files! If you have one of these tools, look for "OpenRA*" in your cleaning tool's settings and uncheck it!

In CCleaner you can find it under:

  • Cleaner -> Applications -> Games -> OpenRA*

When will you release the next version?

See Branches and Releases for more information about the release process. Also, check the bug tracker for milestones that block the next release.

How can I help?

Get involved! There are a few ways you can do this.

  • Fork the repository and start hacking. Fix that issue that's been annoying you. Have a look at Compiling to get started.
  • Add feature requests to our bug-tracker and place bounties on them if you want someone else to work on it.
  • Join the community: The forums as well as IRC chat are a great place for future mod discussions and game-play ideas.

Do I need the original RA/C&C game installed?

No. OpenRA is completely standalone. When you run the game for the first time, it will download a copy of the game's files that it needs to run, or it will extract the game's files from the CD.

Is that legal?

OpenRA is a clean-room implementation of the original Westwood engine based on reverse engineering the game-files without any disassembling, DLL injections or binary patches of the original executables. This is a completely Free/Libre and Open Source real-time strategy engine whose default mods depend on the original game files.

Since Electronic Arts have released both C&C and RA as freeware, we mirror stripped-down versions of the game's assets separately. This saves EA bandwidth by mitigating hosting to our sponsor's servers and further reduces the bandwidth required by packaging only the ~15MB of files that we need to run the game, instead of making everyone download the 700MB game ISO CD image. These game assets are not covered by OpenRA's GNU General Public License. We assume the files are available for individual use and may not be put for commercial gain.

This is not true to the original!

You are right. This is, in fact, intended. OpenRA is not a clone. We have introduced many features found in modern RTS games. These changes include:

  • Careful rebalance of the factions and units
  • Modular MiniYAML game logic parser instead of simple INI rules
  • Modern right-click mouse controls, with classic mouse as an option
  • Fog of War hides enemy units
  • Spectator mode and replays for e-Sport events
  • Support for mods and mini-games
  • Tabbed build palette which allows queuing
  • New effects: e.g. tank husks and aircraft trails
  • Lua scripting instead of hard-coded mission triggers
  • A non-cheating AI that is still challenging
  • Integration of a content delivery platform for custom maps.

If you want the true legacy experience, visit our friends at Play Red Alert 1 Online and Command & Conquer Gold: Project 1.06. They use the Open Source CnCNet - Command & Conquer Online Service for matches and chatting via the internet.

There is also D2k+, a website dedicated to Dune 2000 modding and reverse engineering. Without their help the d2k mod in OpenRA would not be possible. They also offer patches and tutorials on how to play the original on modern computers.