Looking for a specialized tool to search, watch and download online videos from French tv stations and especially from arte tv, Captvty seems one of the most powerful, the main advantage being that it is able to display all the available titles. But this is a Windows program, and the different methods to install it under Wine seemed obscure and contradictory to me.

The idea behind this question is for me to find, test and post here the steps needed to make this program work under Wine in 16.04.

  • Better than using Wine... install Virtualbox, then Windows, then Captvty. – heynnema Nov 12 '16 at 16:53
  • In my experience, Wine is not very reliable, and really doesn't run many/most Windows programs reliably. And just look at all the steps you posted to be able to run captvty!! Virtualbox and dual-booting are more reliable. Just curious, what cpu/memory configuration is in your HP? – heynnema Nov 12 '16 at 17:55
  • @heynnema - by the way, editing my answer I see there are not so many steps after all; really necessary are only these: (re)install wine from ppa and set it for 32x, (re)install winetricks from github, download a file, run in terminal a last one-line command. – user47206 Nov 14 '16 at 7:48
  • Glad that you found a possibly better solution. re: virtualbox... I found that if you set it to use 2 CPUs, and 2048 RAM, it really works well. ps: with 4G RAM, how much swap do you have set up? – heynnema Apr 26 '17 at 12:37
  • I understand. I only articulated the VB settings so that if you use VB for anything else, you could optimize the settings. You didn't say how much swap you have set up. – heynnema Apr 26 '17 at 12:50


As the initial Wine-only solution was rather complicated (see below) I have found a Playonlinux solution that I posted on U&L.


(without Playonlinux)

  • To be sure, remove the previous Wine installation from Synaptic.
rm -rf ~/.wine
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-wine/ppa -y && sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install wine1.8
export WINEARCH=win32

At this point winetricks is needed. You can install it with sudo apt-get install winetricks but that version is subject to a possible error described here.

  • To avoid that error the solution is (after removing winetricks if already installed) to use the github link:
sudo apt-get remove winetricks 
wget  https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Winetricks/winetricks/master/src/winetricks
chmod +x winetricks

Then move winetricks file from ~/ to /usr/bin by copy/paste in root file manager or

sudo mv winetricks /usr/bin/
  • Then, the Microsoft XML Parser file is needed. Download it and put it in ~/.cache/winetricks/msxml3 (create folder if it's not there).

    Run the command:

winetricks vcrun2010 dotnet40 gdiplus comctl32 ie8

(If, as indicated in the source link posted at the end, the command is run before installing msxml3, you will be prompted in terminal to download it as indicated above.)

Do not approve updates and such from Windows.

  • Download, unpack the Captvty package on your home partition and execute captvty.exe ('open with' - Wine), it should work now.

The program has an option to watch the videos without downloading them using internal or external players. The internal player is flashplayer for Windows. To get that and be able to whatch the videos in this way:

Go to http://get.adobe.com/en/flashplayer/otherversions/

Download the Windows 7, Internet Explorer version, in ~/ then

 wine install_flash_player_ax.exe

The internal flash player works fine and seems totally preferable to external players, because the Linux native video players cannot be used (only Windows players in Wine).

(The latter can only theoretically be used in the same way, on the condition that Wine supports them, and then added through Captvty options. The only one that (kind of) worked when testing was the portable mpv for Windows, but compared to the 'internal' flash player there is a long/huge (5 minutes!) lag between the moment the command to start the video is made and the moment the video starts playing: otherwise it works fine... when it does... but it's not worth the effort: to watch the video use the other methods presented in this answer to get the video url and play it in a native video player.)

To search & launch Captvty (from Dash in Unity, krun in KDE, Synapse, etc) and see it among other Internet applications in menu launchers, create a .desktop file like so:

Using gedit:

gedit ~/.local/share/applications/captvty-wine.desktop

and paste this, changing the path to the .exe file for Exec= line:

[Desktop Entry]
Exec=bash -c 'wine /path/to/the/program/folder/captvty-2.5.1/Captvty.exe'
Name=TV Downloader Captvty

To have an icon for that, find a png, name it captvty.png and put it in ~/.local/share/icons

Credits: the answer is based on these posts here and here.

Version update:

Tested the above with version and also with 2.5.1. Testing the more recent the arte 7+ option gave no results, while this worked with the older version.

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