Installing Dolphin

This page explains how to install or upgrade Dolphin on computer running on different OS. Read the FAQ for more Dolphin information and requirements.

Profile-breaking Notices

Please check these before updating your Dolphin setup to avoid the Dolphin profile incompatibilities between versions, with the exception of performing the first time Dolphin setup.

Windows and Mac

Installing or upgrading process for Dolphin on Windows PC or Mac is pretty simple. Download the latest revision or version from the Download page and extract it into a new folder (preferably named after the revision) or to replace an existing Dolphin setup.

macOS Security Restrictions

When downloading Dolphin for the first time, you may experience crashes or the Dolphin Updater will fail. This may be caused by Gatekeeper, because it moved Dolphin to a "quarantined" location for security. See issue 12105. This issue is fixed by 5.0-14529.

Before this revision, a temporary fix is to run two commands into Terminal:

sudo xattr -r -d /path/to/
sudo xattr -r -d /path/to/Dolphin\


Ready to use packages for a range of Linux distributions are available from Open Build Service:

Arch Linux

Install: # pacman -S dolphin-emu

See also the AUR and read more on the ArchWiki.


Dolphin is available in the repositories of the "testing" and "sid" branches of Debian, for AMD64 and ARM64 platforms. NOTICE: Users of Jessie or any earlier versions MUST build from source as per the instructions linked below in "Other Distros"!

Install: # sudo apt install dolphin-emu

See further package information on the Debian Package Info page.

openSUSE Linux

Install from the software page for dolphin-emu, or use the following code:

zypper ar
zypper ref
zypper in dolphin-emu


As of 18.04LTS, possibly some time prior, Dolphin is available in Ubuntu's own package repository, so if Ubuntu's Universe repositories have been enabled first, users can run sudo apt install dolphin-emu.

The Universe repositories provide versions of Dolphin for amd64 (a.k.a. x64 or 64-bit) and arm64 (a.k.a. ARMv8-A).

Ubuntu Launchpad and Ubuntu's package search as of 28 February 2024, lists Dolphin versions (though not necessarily recent Dolphin updates) for 14.04 LTS, 16.04 LTS, 18.04 LTS, and 20.04 LTS, but claims to only supports 23.04 and 23.10 among stable Ubuntu versions.

Older Ubuntu versions

At one point, Dolphin had its own Ubuntu PPA (which also applied to all Ubuntu-based distributions) that could be added to the apt fetch list with sudo apt-add-repository ppa:dolphin-emu/ppa, whose PPA also offered sudo apt install dolphin-emu-master.

However, the PPA is no longer active as of 28 February 2024.


On Fedora 24 and later, run the following command:

# dnf install dolphin-emu

Required dependencies will automatically be installed. See also the Fedora Package Database.

Windows Subsystem for Linux 2

The above guides for specific distros apply. However, WSL2 does not natively include a Linux desktop environment nor X11/Wayland as of 16 March 2024, and relies on spotty VNC implementations (whether built-in or third-party), so installing Dolphin in WSL2 requires advanced Linux expertise.

Other Distros

Other GNU/Linux users have to build and install from source code.


Provided as a standard installable APK, available from Dolphin's download pages, from Google Play Store, and from F-Droid.

As of 16 March 2024, the APK natively supports both ARM64-v8A and amd64; older devices that depend on ARMv7 (ARM 32-bit) will not be able to run Dolphin.

Devices need to support OpenGL buffer storage to run Dolphin in a playable state. This excludes Windows Subsystem for Android as of 16 March 2024, among others.

Post-Installation Quick Guide

In most cases, the default settings works fine, but Configuring Controllers is the first part that comes into mind that is more than likely needed to be configured.

See Ripping Games to learn how to rip games and saves to your new Dolphin set up. For complete Wii NAND dump to use on Dolphin, see NAND Usage Guide. The homebrew apps are freely available over the internet and can be added to the game list at any time.

Browsing Files

You can simply launch a compatible file by hitting File > Open... then open a file. To add a game to the game list, select Files > Browse for ISOs... then select a folder to be added to the game list.

Banners for Wii games will not load at first. Making a save file for that game fixes it. This is a limitation with the format of Wii games rather than a bug.

Compatible Files by File Extension

File extension Platform Notes
.ISO GameCube and Wii Generic file extension for disc image files.
.GCM GameCube This file extension is interchangeable with .ISO.
.GCZ GameCube and Wii Compressed GameCube/Wii disc image file.
.WBFS Wii "Wii Backup File System", compressed Wii disc image file.
.WIA Wii "Wii ISO Archive", compressed or uncompressed Wii disc image file. Available since 5.0-12188.
.RVZ Gamecube and Wii Compressed GameCube/Wii disc image file. This specifically works in Dolphin. Available since 5.0-12188.
.WAD Virtual Console and WiiWare
.DOL, .ELF Homebrew app

Managing Game List

You can also batch add/remove titles in the game list by creating folders that group each titles by platform (this is to keep game directories well organized), then go to Options > Configure... > "Paths" tab > then hit Add... then enable Search SubFolders within the "Paths" config, then add these folders to the ISO Directories list.