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Urban Terror on Linux FAQ - read this first Rate Topic: -----

#1 User is offline   F for Fragging (old) Icon

  • Joined: 19-July 04
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Posted 24 July 2004 - 11:41 PM

EDIT by woekele:
This thread was written a while back. It still contains very usefull info, but some stuff may be a bit outdated. Proceed with caution :)

For newbies, Linux is an Operating System (OS). For more information read this article on Wikipedia. The important thing is that you can also play Urban Terror on Linux. Perhaps the greatest advantage of Linux is that it is downloadable from the Internet for free.
This FAQ assumes that you have some basic knowledge of Linux. For example, you know who root is and you know how to change permissions. I use the GNOME desktop environment, so I will not give terminal commands in this FAQ. You should have read the Urban Terror manual and FAQ as well. If you think something in this FAQ is wrong or wish to see something added, please post in this topic.

1. Installing and playing Urban Terror

How do I install Quake 3 Arena on Linux and how do I get Punkbuster running?
This HOWTO on linux-gamers.net explains it all. For the rest of the FAQ I will assume that you have installed Quake 3 in the default location, which is /usr/local/games/quake3

How do I install Urban Terror on Linux?
After you have installed Quake 3 as described in the previous answer, download the zip file (which can be used for every OS) from  the Urban Terror website and extract it to the /usr/local/games/quake3/q3ut3/ directory.

What directories does Quake 3 and Urban Terror use on Linux?
This can be a bit confusing if you are new to Linux. In Windows there is only one directory where everything related with Quake 3 Arena is stored, but in Linux there are two directories. There is one system wide directory, /usr/local/games/quake3/ by default, and one personal directory in every users' home directory, /home/<username>/.q3a which is a hidden directory. All your config files, screenshots, demo's and punkbuster updates and other things are stored in the personal directory, the rest is stored in the system wide directory (but can also be stored in the personal directory, if you wish). It is done this way because Linux is a natural multi-user system, with the directory in every users' home directory every user can have different settings and such.

How do I start up Urban Terror?
Make a shortcut with the command: /usr/local/games/quake3/quake3 +set fs_game q3ut3

When I try to start up Urban Terror with the shortcut as described in the previous question, it starts up Q3 instead?
This can be caused by insufficient permissions for the q3ut3 folder, located in the Quake 3 folder (usr/local/games/quake3/ by default). Your user must have read permission for the q3ut3 directory, and read permission for all the files inside the directory.

I can't open the console in Linux. In Windows I can, am I doing something wrong?
I had this problem on a keyboard with a Dutch keyboard layout. It's possible you can also have this problem on other keyboards, I'm not sure about that. In I Windows I could open the console with the key below the Esc-key. In Linux I had to to keep SHIFT pressed and press the key left of the Backspace key.

After I connected to a server and joined a team, I'm kicked back to spectator mode?
This is because Punkbuster has problems with auto updating. To update it manually read this HOWTO on linux-gamers.net.

2. Mouse related problems and questions

My mouse pointer won't move after I started Quake 3/Urban Terror, is there a way to fix this?
Make sure that you have installed the latest pointrelease, which is 1.32b, not just 1.32.

The extra buttons on my mouse don't work in Linux in general and in Urban Terror. Is there a solution for this?
You can find a solution on linux-gamers.net.

I have a Logitech mouse, but in Linux it is not as accurate as it is in Windows. Is there a way to change that?
In Linux some Logitech mouse run at 400 cpi by default, but they are capable to run at 800 cpi, which is more accurate. Read this  HOWTO on linux-gamers.net.

Are there any other ways to speed up my mouse?
Yes, there is hack avaialble which can enhance the sampling rate of a USB mouse, making it the mouse more responsive. Take a look at this post on the Gentoo forums and this website. Members of this forum reported that this patch works.

3. Video card related problems and questions

I can't get Quake 3 Arena, Urban Terror, or any other game which requires 3D accerelation to work. What can I do?
Did you make sure you installed the drivers for your video card? I can't explain this in detail, as that would be difficult, the methods to install the drivers are different for most of the Linux distributions. Of course you can always download the sources from you video card vendor's website and compile them, but most likely there are easier ways to install them. Read the documentation of your Linux distribution.

Is there a way to overclock my video card in Linux?
Currently this is only possible if you have an NVIDIA video card. Check out the website of NVClock.

How do I turn on FSAA and AF in Linux?
If you have a powerful video card you can play Urban Terror with Full Scene Anti Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering. They will improve the visual quality of the game, but they will lower the framerate dramatically if you don't have a powerful videocard. If you have a NVIDIA video card there is an easy way to turn them on, there is a program called nvidia-settings which most likely got installed along with the NVIDIA drivers. To start it, you can most likely find it in your applications menu, or else type: nvidia-settings in the console. Select "Anitaliasing Settings". Then select "Override Application Setting" and enable Antialiasing and Anisotropic Filtering. Now start Urban Terror and notice the difference. If you have FSAA set to 2x you might not notice anything, if you have it set to 8x you will notice it. Don't forget to turn it off again if you play a game which is demanding more of your video card, such as Doom 3, otherwise it will become unplayable with high FSAA or AF settings.

Are there any other tweaks for NVIDIA video cards?
Yes, read this topic.

How do I benchmark in Quake 3/Urban Terror?
You will have to open the console and type: /timedemo 1 Then press ENTER and type: /demo <nameofyourdemo> and then press ENTER again. This will play your demo and return you to the main menu. Then you have to open the console to see the results. You might want to benchmark the demo shipped with the game to compare  benchmark results with others. Please read this FAQ for instructions on how to this.

Will Linux give me a higher framerate than Windows when I play Urban Terror?
I have the Fedora Core 3 Linux Distribution and Windows XP with Service Pack 2 installed on the same computer, a dual boot. I recorded a demo en then benchmarked that demo on both OS'ses, with equal graphical quality settings, and the latest NVIDIA drivers. Windows XP gave me 90 fps, Fedora Core 3 gave me 115 fps. So Linux can run Quake 3 and Urban Terror slightly faster. Other games however, Doom 3 for example, gives me less fps on Linux than on Windows XP.

Why are you constantly talking about NVIDIA? ATI exists as well...
That's because ATI's Linux drivers are bad. ATI is working on improving them, but if you like to game on Linux I advise that you buy a NVIDIA card. NVIDIA has Linux drivers which are a lot better than ATI's drivers, giving you better performance.

4. Other questions

When Urban Terror will be ported to Enemy Territory, will we still be able to play it on Linux?
Yes, Enemy Territory is also available on Linux, so we will still be able to play Urban Terror when it's ported.

In the zip file I can only find a low-res icon for Windows. Is there an icon for Linux?
Here you can find a Linux icon I created in xpm format. 

I don't want to use the server browser of Urban Terror, are there external server browsers avaialble for Linux? A program which is similar to the All-Seeing Eye server browser for Windows?
Yes, there is a program called XQF which can browse for Quake 3 Arena servers and it's mods, and works with some other games as well. Get it from the XQF website. You notice that when you scan for Quake 3 Arena servers, you will see the normal Q3 servers and all the servers running mods for Q3. If you only want to see the servers which run Urban Terror, you have to make a server filter. Start XQF -> Server Filters -> Configure -> New -> Enter a name for the filter -> then type: q3ut3 in the field "the game contains the string". Now press the "S Filter" button in the main window of XQF, and scan for Quake 3 Arena servers. You should only see the servers which are running Urban Terror now.

I can't play certain demo's?
If the demo is recorded in an older version of Urban Terror/Quake 3 than you have installed it won't play, but there also seems to be a Linux specific problem. If you want to play demo's from the demo menu, they will not play. Try typing in the console: /demo <demoname> The file name is case sensitive. Then they most likely will play.

How do I convert my UrT demo file to a movie on Linux?
This question requires a long answer. I can't explain everything concerning movie making, I will only explain a method to convert a demo to a movie and the programs which can be used to accomplsih that. I will not explain the usage of scripts in UrT and the codec configuration in the video editor. You will have to search for information yourself if you need help on that.
First we need a demo. I like to use this script for recording demo's when I'm playing UrT.

set r_demo_1 "set r_demo vstr r_demo_2; g_synchronousClients 1; record; g_synchronousClients 0"
set r_demo_2 "set r_demo vstr r_demo_1; stoprecord"
set r_demo "vstr r_demo_1"
bind m "vstr r_demo" //record demo

I have these lines copied in my autoexec.cfg, all I have to do is press the "m" key when I'm playing UrT to record a demo, pressing "m" again will stop recording. After the demo is recorded, return to the main menu, open the console and type:

/cl_avidemo 25
/demo <nameofyourdemo>

The command cl_avidemo will create an image sequence of the demo, which can then be converted to a movie. The number 25 specifies the framerate, in this case it means it will create 25 images for every second the demo plays.
After the demo is done playing, exit UrT. The sequence of images can now be found in the directory /home/<username>/.q3a/q3ut3/screenshots (assuming that you installed Quake 3 in the default directory).
We will now convert the image sequence into a movie. To accomplish that we will use the program Avidemux. But before we convert the image sequence into a movie, we first have to convert the images to the BMP file format because Avidemux can't handle the TGA file format. This can easily be achieved with ImageMagick, which is most likely already installed on your PC, depending on your Linux distribution. Open a terminal and enter the following commands:

cd /home/<username>/.q3a/q3ut3/screenshots
for i in *.tga; do convert $i `basename "$i" .tga`.bmp; done

Now you have to wait for some time, it can be a few minutes or it can be a few hours if your demo is very long and your computer is slow. When it's done, open Avidemux. Press “Open” and type: /home/<username>/.q3a/q3ut3/screenshots/shot0000.bmp
If it's all right your image sequence should be imported now. Press “Play” -> “Play Video” to see your movie being played. Now all we have to is press “Save”. Type in a filename and your movie will be encoded. Again this will depend on how long your video is, how fast your computer is, and the codec you've chosen and it's configuration. When it's done, open the video file and see the result.

To do list:
USB mouse hack answer needs more work.

#2 User is offline   gk245 (old) Icon

  • Joined: 07-February 04
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Posted 25 July 2004 - 05:32 PM

For that last question about 3d drivers, well i have the following links to help out:





http://xoomer.virgil...-installer.html (ati precompiled debian packages)



Watch out for kernel 2.6 and 4kb stacks. Not sure if they work with ati drivers yet.



(Debian specific)

#3 User is offline   CorlacolII (old) Icon

  • Joined: 03-June 04
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Posted 29 July 2004 - 01:21 AM

I just found that hid-interup-polling patch again, with help from the author whom I found on my irc-server :D
It still applies ( with fuzz ) to 2.6.8 and I am building the kernel now.


#4 User is offline   CorlacolII (old) Icon

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Posted 29 July 2004 - 01:45 AM


I just found that hid-interup-polling patch again, with help from the author whom I found on my irc-server :D
It still applies ( with fuzz ) to 2.6.8 and I am building the kernel now.


wraaah. I just played Urban Terror and I have much higher precision with the mouse. Great Patch! 8)

#5 User is offline   F for Fragging (old) Icon

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Posted 09 January 2005 - 01:05 PM

Can anyone help with a more detailed answer on how to install that USB mouse hack? BTW, mods please sticky this topic. I had to rewrite this FAQ because the backup from a few weeks ago was restored.

#6 User is offline   mitsubishi Icon

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 07:25 AM

A few that come to mind,

A few servers report "Q3UT3" as a game instead of "q3ut3". Windows don't have problems getting into servers that report game "Q3UT3", a symlink (i.e. "ln -s Q3UT3 q3ut3" in e.g. /usr/local/quake) would make it work in case-sensitive linux and etc. unises.


I don't know if that happens only to me.. but: If you can't get DEMOs to run, maybe letter case is the problem. If you scroll up on quake3 messages on console and find "error: can't find file XXXXX", replace the file name you've got with that one on the error message.


If you're looking for a nice off-line game server browser try "xqf". Supports "favorites" and "friends" and it can even search gamers with regular expressions.


google or read in the nvidia README about the __GL_FSAA_MODE env var for nvidia cards. If you're looking for eye candy it's nice, if you're an FPS freak like me, avoid it.

edit: and another for FPS freaks:

q3 and ET would probably run considerably faster if the x server is on 16 instead of 24 bits. keep in mind though other applications like doom3 will not run on 16 bits.

#7 User is offline   F for Fragging (old) Icon

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 01:13 PM

Thanks fs, I just added questions concerning XQF and FSAA/AF to the FAQ. I dunno about Q3UT3 and demo playback yet, I'll investigate. But can you please describe how to change from 24 to 16 bits? I've never done that.

#8 User is offline   mitsubishi Icon

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 01:53 PM

Well, there are the options in the game itself, both q3 and urt(they are actually the q3 options on both) but I meant the xserver options.

The file is in /etc/X11 and called XF86Config-4 on Xfree v4 and above or XF86Config, if XF86Config-4 doesn't exist. In Xorg I'm not sure, but it should be Xorg.cfg or sth.

On the part that says
Section "Screen"
there is
You set there the depth you need and restart the xserver(yeah microsoft is better on that, we have to actually restart the x server, I don't know if Xorg has that fixed).

On "SubSection "Display"" on the same section should have the resolutions for that depth, it's not difficult to understand just by reading the file what they are for. Usually 24 and 16 modes are already setup so onl;y a change in "DefaultDepth" is needed. BTW, the resolutions can be changed with "alt+ctrl" and either "+" or "-" but that's not very usefull always, since the desktop is not resized, only the visible part. The first resolution on "SubSection "Display"" parts is the one to be used as a primary resolution.

I set mine to 1600x1200 because my monitor is 22''. However even though a difference in color depth makes a considerable difference, 3d rendering is not affected by the desktop size unless the application's own resolution changes (i.e. 1600x1200 desktop and quake3 on 640x480 is the same on a 640x480 desktop). However a larger desktop should consume more video RAM so don't take this idea as a rule :-)

#9 User is offline   mitsubishi Icon

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 06:03 PM


Will Linux give me a higher framerate than Windows when I play Urban Terror?

Most probably it would, if the drivers were equally good on both. ATI is a bit behind and nvidia is the best choice for best drivers at least at the time I'm writing this. ATI before a year wouldn't even be in the discussion, only the community's drivers existed and these were incomplete. Even now older ATI models can only be run with the gpl incomplete drivers.

Generally after some reading I've done on proper benchmarking reviews on tom's hardware and anandtech linux is a bit behind in FPS on both ATI and nvidia because of the drivers.

However, in some cases and especially on nvidia cards the differences are no more than 2-5% of fps.

Also, if they are theoretically "the same" in FPS at some point or 2-5% worse as it is now - ATI is trying to compete with nvidia and vice versa so I think the drivers will be improving as time passes by - it would be the sane solution to run linux because of the advantages linux offers as an operating system.

BTW, keep in mind I was reading Doom3 benchmarks. Maybe OpenGL calls used it that make it slightly faster on windows are not in quake3 so q3 to be the same or even better, I have no idea.

#10 User is offline   mitsubishi Icon

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Posted 12 January 2005 - 11:54 AM

I'll write these here to remember them myself too;p

Fast and dirty HOWTO for making a DivX movie of a UrT game

1) Record a demo

2) Before watching the demo run:
/cl_avidemo XXX (where XXX is the final frame rate, better to be "25" or sth)

3) Get mplayer, it includes mencoder, if compiled from source offers optimizations.

4) Get into the "screenshots" dir.

mencoder mf://shot* -mf type=tga:fps=25 -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg4:vhq:vbitrate=1200 -o lala.avi

then to watch it run

mplayer lala.avi

done! :-)


1) Reading the freaking manual of mplayer/mencoder is always a good idea.

2) "fps" in "mf" options of mplayer better to be the same as the ones in cl_avidemo, better to be 25 or sth, don't use 125 or anything like that:P

3) "-ovc" "lavc" may sound gibberish to new users to mencoder but you get used to it after a while(especially if you actually read the manual). Here I used the ffmpeg divx codec(lavc) in 1200kbit/sec, there are other codecs too, including XVID, the official divx.com codec, even some windows codecs. FFMPEG is the fastest though according the programmers of mplayer. It's compatible to the official divx codec.

4) the "screenshots" dir could be a symlink to a disk that actually has enough storage. for a few seconds it could consume gigs.

5) For video and sound mixing I've heard Cinelerra is good enough, never used it though.

6) If it's just for splitting, merging or adding a sound track on top of the video without much effects, just mencoder/mplayer can do the job.

Bleh.. that's just a fast and dirty draft, don't take this too seriously and is incomplete.

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