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WowStack: a container-based Vanilla WoW environment

Running Vanilla Wow can be quite the drag if compiling and maintaining a moving Open Source project is not your forté.

Now things are easier. This provides a containerized environment for running a full environment supporting Vanilla WoW, and allows enjoying a long-gone game of World of Warcraft using client 1.12.x (in your prefered locale).

We now have a FAQ up, answering some of the questions we received.


Meanwhile we are on Discord, so come chat with us.

Like our work and want to show appreciation? Give the repository a star, visit our Patreon and become an supporter. 😍

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Since this is all prebuilt and updated by us, all you have to worry about is having Docker and Docker Compose installed.

Feel free to use Docker for Mac OS, Docker for Windows or Docker for Linux, all work the same.

  • A Docker CE/EE runtime, version 18.02 or newer
  • Docker Compose, version 1.24.0 or newer


cp .env.dist .env   # Cutomize these settings to your liking or leave as-is
docker-compose pull # Doing this seperate will reduce initial start time

The above will retrieve the WowStack containers for map data, the authentication server, and the game world server. To support this, we will also pull a MariaDB container to house the game content during runtime.

As with any composed Docker environment, running the Vanilla WoW environment is simple:

docker-compose up -d

When shutting down the containers, we recommend to also prune any created volumes, as this avoids issues with importing the base data into MariaDB:

docker-compose down
docker volume prune -f

Extracting Vanilla WoW client data manually

Take note to a few things here:

  • -v $HOME/Applications/World\ of\ Warcraft:/opt/wowstack/data is passed on to supply the container with the Vanilla World of Warcraft game installation. Pass in the base directory, e.g. C:/World\ of\ Warcraft or $HOME/WoW-enGB
  • -v `pwd`/data/wowstack:/opt/wowstack/share is passed in as output directory for generated files. This directory is then mounted to the world server.
$ docker run \
    --name wow_map_generation \
    -v $HOME/Applications/World\ of\ Warcraft:/opt/wowstack/data \
    -v `pwd`/data/wowstack:/opt/wowstack/share \
    -d wowstack/map-tools:latest

This process might take a few hours to complete. Setting WOWSTACK_FORCE_REBUILD to yes will trigger regeneration of all data even if there already are files from previous runs.

Docker images

All Docker images are available on the Docker Hub, and updated frequently.

Since this is a work in progress project, we highly recommend to frequently run docker-compose pull before running the containers (at least weekly).


A dockerized Vanilla WoW environment





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