3D Studio MAX

Version 7 of this application; runs only on Windows 2000 and newer.


Application Details:

Version: 7.x
License: Retail
Votes: 0
Latest Rating: Silver
Latest Wine Version Tested: 1.3.19

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Test Results

Old test results
The test results you have selected are very old and may not represent the current state of Wine.
Selected Test Results

What works

  • Installing
  • Running in DirectX 8.1, Software, and OpenGL mode
  • Most basic features (creating objects, editing textures on faces of objects, etc.)

What does not

  • DirectX 9 mode (works, but objects are rendered as dark)
  • OpenGL mode without disabling the extension mentioned in the HOWTO
  • Uninstalling
  • Combustion plugin


What was not tested

  • Product activation

Hardware tested


  • GPU:
  • Driver:

Additional Comments

Used the NVIDIA 64-bit graphics drivers version 185.18.36. Graphics chipset on the laptop I tested with is a GeForce 6100 Go.

selected in Test Results table below
Operating systemTest dateWine versionInstalls?Runs?Used
ShowUbuntu 11.04 "Natty" amd64 (+ variants like Kubuntu)May 01 20111.3.19Yes Yes NoSilverJustin Soulia 
ShowUbuntu 10.04 "Lucid" amd64 (+ variants like Kubuntu)Aug 13 20101.3.0Yes Yes NoSilverJack Crow 
CurrentUbuntu 9.04 "Jaunty" amd64 (+ variants like Kubuntu)Oct 04 20091.1.30Yes Yes NoSilverJustin Soulia 
ShowUbuntu 7.10 "Gutsy" i386 (+ variants like Kubuntu)Jan 12 20091.1.12Yes Yes NoGoldAthrun 
ShowUbuntu 8.04 "Hardy" i386 (+ variants like Kubuntu)Oct 27 20081.1.7Yes Yes NoSilverJustin Soulia 

Known Bugs

Bug # Description Status Resolution Other apps affected

Show all bugs

HowTo / Notes

Native alternatives for non-windows platforms
There are some good alternatives to this application that might exist for your platform. You'll find a list on the main page of this application.

These instructions are for use on wine versions 1.3.19 and higher.


Because 3DS Max 7 cannot be activated and cannot be uninstalled properly, one might find themselves having to constantly delete and recreate their wineprefix. The problem with this is many people have their programs in one wineprefix, set up as they want it, and destructive processes in this case are simply not an option. The following instructions could save you some trouble in the future.

Create a seperate wineprefix and install 3DS Max in this new Prefix:


This will force the generation of a custom wine prefix, and it will also run winecfg. For more information on how to use wine prefixes, look at this wiki article. Using information provided from there, you may append the instructions for your unique situation.


Next, run the installer as you normally would. It will finish with a few registry errors, but almost all of the registry entries will be made as they should be. One of those left out is a registry entry for the combustion plugin, which causes a deadlock when the program starts (see further down in the tutorial, and the bug listed for this issue for more information).

At this point, you have two options to work around the issues with the combustion plugin: remove it, or use the special registry fix. If you would like to use the registry fix, look under "Special fixes" in this HOWTO, apply it, and ignore the rest of this paragraph. Otherwise, continue. Go to where you installed 3DS Max 7, and look for the folder stdplugs, and enter it. Move (do not delete) the file cmbtex.dlt to your home folder, or simply rename it (ex: cmbtex.dlt.bak).

Now, in a terminal, navigate to the install directory of 3DS Max 7, and type in:

wine 3dsmax.exe -h

This will bring up an option to choose your 3D renderer. As of wine 1.3.19, with any sane graphics driver, you should be able to use Direct3D 8.1 or Direct3D 9 modes without issues, otherwise you can choose Software Rendering, instead. However, the OpenGL renderer is much faster than those options (and possibly more compatible). If you want to try using the OpenGL renderer, continue reading.

OpenGL Renderer Configuration

Before starting 3DS Max 7 up for the first time after installation, open up wine's registry editor and add this string:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Wine/OpenGL/DisabledExtensions = GL_KTX_buffer_region

If the OpenGL key is not there, create it and add the string into the newly created key. Then use the command mentioned above to start the program and choose OpenGL rendering.


In order to proceed with these instructions, the following is required:

  • A working copy of Windows that 3DS Max 7 supports. However, the instructions assume you are running Windows XP. If you do not have Windows XP on your system(s), but do have a copy, you can install it to a virtual machine, at your option, as 3DS Max 7 will not be required to stay on the Windows partition for very long.
  • A working license/activation code for 3DS Max 7. If you do not have one, you will not be able to activate your copy of 3DS Max 7 on WINE or Windows.

Activate the copy of 3DS Max 7 on your Windows partition if you haven't done so already. If you are running Windows XP, the key is saved to C:\Documents and Settings\\My Documents\Adlm\3DSMAXENURegInfo.html, and C:\Documents and Settings\\My Documents\Adlm\3DSMAXENURegInfo.xml. Remember where these files are, as they will be copied for use with the copy of 3DS Max 7 installed using WINE ($HOME/.wine/drive_c//Adlm).

On your Linux distro, export your 3DS Max 7 product key using the Portable License Utility provided with 3DS Max 7. It should create a file named like "...plu250.cfg" or something similar. Next, copy it to your Windows partition in a place you will remember. This can be accomplished by mounting your Windows partition in Linux, or putting the file on a jump drive and saving it from the jump drive on Windows. There are other methods, but these are the easiest.

On Windows, move the ...plu250.cfg file to your Desktop and merge the key with the key already in use using the Portable License Utility. This will create a new ...plu250.cfg file to replace the old one; this is the full license for 3DS Max 7. Copy this to a jump drive or directly to your Linux partition (if you can).

Also, copy the two files mentioned earlier the same way.

The copy of 3DS Max 7 on your Windows partition will now be using the demo license. You can uninstall it from Windows if you like.

Boot up your Linux distro.

Move the two files first mentioned in these instructions where they need to go ($HOME/.wine/drive_c/Users//Adlm), overwriting the old files that were there, then start the Portable License Utility. Import the new ...plu250.cfg file.

The key should now be in place and your copy on Wine should be fully activated. To test, start 3DS Max 7, and if it doesn't show an activation nag screen, you've successfully completed these instructions.

Credit goes to C Cole for this process.


Special Fixes

Fix Combustion plugin deadlock without removing it.

Thanks to C Cole, it has been discovered that the cause of the deadlock when starting 3DS Max 7 is due to the fact that a crucial registry entry for the combustion plugin is not made when trying to install 3DS using Wine. Add the following registry information to a text file (make sure it has a .reg extension) and run regedit from the terminal, and import the file to your registry. If you have renamed or moved the combustion plugin files already, restore them and start 3DS. It should pass the startup, but may cause crashes in the material editor.

This is only known to work on Wine 1.1.17. This does not work on newer Wine releases.

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Autodesk\3DSMAX\7.0\Plug-ins\Discreet\Combustion* texture (Discreet) - (19120)]


"LibDescription"="Combustion* texture (Discreet)"




[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Autodesk\3DSMAX\7.0\Plug-ins\Discreet\Combustion* texture (Discreet) - (19120)\Combustion - (13588)]








Caveats with the Program

-You can't activate the program. It gives you a window (which inconvieniently renders behind the splash screen on startup..but you can drag it around to the front) to do it, but the activation window doesn't load properly. There is now a potential workaround. See above.

-Combustion plugin is unusable. The Combustion plugin is one of the standard plugins that come with 3DS Max 7. It doesn't load properly at startup, so you have to move it out of the stdplugs folder of the program before running it or it will lock up the program.



3DS Max 7 uses a fairly large amount of memory starting up, and may cause your operating system to transfer alot of that memory usage over to swap space, which will result in your computer performing very slowly.

Having at least 1gb of RAM is recommended.


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