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Semi-Official Fork, located at

Issue/bug tracker:

Mailing list: - just email to subscribe. See for archives and for more information.



NOTE: This library sees little change not because it is dead, but because it is effectively "complete". That being said, if you think there are changes that it could use, and are willing to step up to assist with maintenance, please file an issue.


Wiiuse is a library written in C that connects with several Nintendo Wii remotes. Supports motion sensing, IR tracking, nunchuk, classic controller, Balance Board, and the Guitar Hero 3 controller. Single threaded and nonblocking makes a light weight and clean API.

Distributed under the GPL 3+.

This is a friendly fork, prompted by apparent non-maintained status of upstream project but proliferation of ad-hoc forks without project infrastructure. Balance board support has been merged from TU-Delft cross-referenced with other similar implementations in embedded forks of WiiUse in other applications. Additional community contributions have since been merged. Hopefully GitHub will help the community maintain this project more seamlessly now.

Patches and improvements are greatly appreciated - the easiest way to submit them is to fork the repository on GitHub and make the changes, then submit a pull request. The "fork and edit this file" button on the web interface should make this even simpler.


Mostly-absentee (but delegating!) Fork Maintainer: Ryan Pavlik or

Original Author: Michael Laforest < para > < thepara (--AT--) g m a i l [--DOT--] com >

Additional Contributors:


This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see


This project is intended for developers who wish to include support for the Nintendo Wii remote with their third party application.

Supported Hardware

Official Nintendo controllers:

  • Wiimotes:

    • Gen 1.0 - Original Wiimote without Motion Plus (Bluetooth name: RVL-CNT-01)
    • Gen 1.5 - Same as gen 1 but has integrated Motion Plus (Bluetooth name: RVL-CNT-01)
    • Gen 2.0 - New Wiimote (since about 2011), has integrated Motion Plus and different firmware (Bluetooth name: RVL-CNT-01-TR)
  • Wii Balance Board (Bluetooth name: RVL-WBC-01)

  • Expansions:

    • Nunchuk
    • Classic controller
    • Guitar controller
    • Motion Plus dongle (for the gen 1 Wiimote)

Clones and 3rdparty devices

3rdparty controllers (wiimotes, nunchuks etc.) may or may not work - some manufacturers take major liberties with the protocols so it is impossible to guarantee functionality. However, most will probably just work.

Platforms and Dependencies

Wiiuse currently operates on Linux, Windows and Mac. You will need:

For Linux

  • The kernel must support Bluetooth
  • The BlueZ Bluetooth drivers must be installed
  • If compiling, you'll need the BlueZ dev files (Debian/Ubuntu package libbluetooth-dev)

For Windows

  • Bluetooth driver (tested with Microsoft's stack with Windows XP SP2 thru Windows 10)

For Mac

  • Mac OS X 10.2 or newer (to have the Mac OS X Bluetooth protocol stack)

For all platforms

  • If compiling, CMake is needed to generate a makefile/project


You need SDL and OpenGL installed to compile the (optional) SDL example.

Linux & Mac

mkdir build
cd build


cmake-gui ..
make [target]

If target is omitted then everything is compiled.

Where target can be any of the following:

  • wiiuse - Compiles
  • wiiuseexample - Compiles wiiuse-example
  • wiiuseexample-sdl - Compiles wiiuse-sdl
  • doc - Generates doxygen-based API documentation in HTML and PDF format in docs-generated

For a system-wide install, become root (or run with sudo) and:

make install
  • is installed to CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX/lib
  • wiiuse-example and wiiuse-sdl are installed to CMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX/bin


The CMake GUI can be used to generate a Visual Studio solution.

You may need to install the Windows SDK (in recent versions) or DDK (driver development kit - for old Windows SDK only) to compile wiiuse.

With Visual Studio Community 2017, this is very easy to build now: if you have chosen to install the "desktop C++" tools, you'll automatically have what you need.

Using the Library

To use the library in your own program you must first compile wiiuse as a module. Include include/wiiuse.h in any file that uses wiiuse.

For Linux you must link ( -lwiiuse ). For Windows you must link wiiuse.lib. When your program runs it will need wiiuse.dll.

Known Issues

On Windows using more than one wiimote (usually more than two wiimotes) may cause significant latency.

If you are going to use Motion+, make sure to call wiiuse_poll or wiiuse_update in a loop for some 10-15 seconds before enabling it. Ideally you should be checking the status of any expansion (nunchuk) you may have connected as well. Otherwise the extra expansion may not initialize correctly - the initialization and calibration takes some time.

Mac OS X

Wiiuse can only connect to a device if it is in discoverable mode. Enable discoverable mode by pressing the button on the inside of the battery cover.

Wiiuse may not be able to connect to the device if it has been paired to the operating system. Unpair it by opening Bluetooth Preferences (Apple > System Preferences > Bluetooth), selecting the device (e.g., "Nintendo RVL-CNT-01"), and pressing the X next to the device (alternatively: right-click and select "Remove"). It is not enough to simply disconnect it.

Enable discoverable mode and try again.

Acknowledgements by Michael Laforest (Original Author)

This site and their users have contributed an immense amount of information about the wiimote and its technical details. I could not have written this program without the vast amounts of reverse engineered information that was researched by them.


Of course Nintendo for designing and manufacturing the Wii and Wii remote.


Easy and intuitive Bluetooth stack for Linux.

Thanks to Brent for letting me borrow his Guitar Hero 3 controller.

Known Forks/Derivative Versions

The last "old upstream" version of WiiUse was 0.12. A number of projects forked or embedded that version or earlier, making their own improvements. A (probably incomplete) list follows, split between those whose improvements are completed integrated into this new mainline version, and those whose improvements have not yet been ported/merged into this version. An eventual goal is to integrate all appropriate improvements (under the GPL 3+) back into this mainline community-maintained "master fork" - contributions are greatly appreciated.

Forks that have been fully integrated

Forks not yet fully integrated

Other Links

Original project (0.12 and earlier):