Installing (OpenXcom)

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OpenXcom requires a vanilla version of the original X-COM resources. This includes:

  • DOS Version 1.4: You can check if you have the correct version if it contains a "SOUND\GM.CAT" file.
  • Windows Version / Collector's Edition.
  • Steam Version: You can find the game folder in "Steam\steamapps\common\xcom ufo defense\XCOM".

Make sure your copy has the latest patch. Do not use modded versions (eg. XcomUtil) as they may cause bugs and crashes.


OpenXcom requires the original game resources (specifically the GEODATA, GEOGRAPH, MAPS, ROUTES, SOUND, TERRAIN, UFOGRAPH, UFOINTRO, UNITS subfolders), just copy these to OpenXcom's Data folder (usually the "data" subfolder). Do not just drag/copy your whole X-COM folder into the Data folder, it won't work. It should end up like this:

  • data
    • Language
    • MAPS
    • Resources
    • ROUTES
    • Ruleset
    • Shaders
    • SoldierName
    • SOUND
    • UNITS

If you do this incorrectly, you'll get an error about "X not found". For more specific instructions, check your platform below.


The installer will automatically detect Steam installations, patch the game and copy the original data for you, just follow the instructions.

If installing manually, copy the resources to the data subfolder.

Mac OS X

Copy the resources to the application's data resource (right click the application > Show Package Contents > Contents > Resources > data).


OpenXcom requires the following libraries:

Check your distribution's package manager or the library website on how to install them.

If installing through a package manager, you should copy the resources to /usr/share/openxcom/data, otherwise the data subfolder is preferred.


To make a portable version of OpenXcom, just put all the files in the same folder, with a data subfolder for the resources and a user subfolder for your saves and settings.

Data Folder

In most cases the OpenXcom data is in the data subfolder, but it will also look in one of the following paths.

You can also specify your own path by passing the command-line argument "-data ". The X-COM and OpenXcom data can be in different folders.

  • <game directory>\data


  • C:\Documents and Settings\<user>\My Documents\OpenXcom\data
  • C:\Users\<user>\Documents\OpenXcom\data

Mac OS X

  • <application resources>\data
  • ~/Library/Application Support/OpenXcom/data


  • $XDG_DATA_HOME/openxcom/data (usually ~/.local/share/openxcom/data/)
  • $XDG_DATA_DIRS/openxcom/data (usually /usr/share/openxcom/data/:/usr/local/share/openxcom/data/)

User Folder

OpenXcom automatically creates a User folder on first startup (if one doesn't already exists) in one of the following paths, where it stores all your screenshots, savegames and options.

You can also specify your own path by passing the command-line argument "-user <user path>".

  • <game directory>\user\


  • C:\Documents and Settings\<user>\My Documents\OpenXcom
  • C:\Users\<user>\Documents\OpenXcom

Mac OS X

  • ~/Library/Application Support/OpenXcom


  • $XDG_DATA_HOME/openxcom
  • $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/openxcom

Log file

In case you experience any problems or errors during the initial game loading/startup, these will be shown and logged in openxcom.log in the User Folder. Make sure you installed everything correctly as instructed, and if you still experience problems, check the forums.