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Revision as of 17:41, 22 February 2020

This page is for the 2007 puzzle-platform game. For the unrelated 1986 game, see Portal (1986).

Portal cover
Valve Corporation
Release dates
Windows October 9, 2007
macOS (OS X) May 12, 2010
Linux May 2, 2013
Portal guide on StrategyWiki
Portal on MobyGames
Portal on Wikipedia


The macOS (OS X) version of this game does not work on macOS Catalina (version 10.15) or later due to the removal of support for 32-bit-only apps.
Subseries of Half-Life
Portal 2007
Portal 2 2011
Portal 2 Sixense Perceptual Pack 2013
Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative (unofficial mod) 2014
Portal Stories (series)
The Lab 2016
Bridge Constructor Portal 2017
Moondust 2018
Aperture Hand Lab 2019

General information

Official Valve Portal Site
Unofficial Portal Wiki
Portal Section of the Half-Life Wikia
GitHub Issue Tracker for Portal and other Source-based games
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Icon overlay.png
macOS (OS X)
DRM-free after installation through Steam client (notes may include more details)
DRM-free when launched directly from the executable with -game portal command line argument.[citation needed]
Portal Bundle also available.
macOS (OS X)
All versions require Steam DRM.
A demo is available.
Soundtrack is available for free with purchase here.
Does not include the 14 bonus levels present in the Xbox 360 arcade version. However, modders ported over the levels, and have released them.[1]

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Soundtrack Available for free.
macOS (OS X)
Still Alive Originally an Xbox 360 exclusive, ported to PC by modders in 2017. Available for free.
macOS (OS X)

Essential improvements

Skip intro videos

Use -novid command line argument[citation needed]

Game data

In-game general settings.
In-game general settings.

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Steam <path-to-game>/portal/cfg/
This game does not follow the XDG Base Directory Specification on Linux.

Save game data location

System Location
Steam <path-to-game>/portal/save/

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud
Approx. 1 GB available.
Settings will sync too, except graphics settings.

Video settings

In-game general video settings.
In-game general video settings.
In-game advanced video settings.
In-game advanced video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Values between 75° and 90° horizontal can be set via ingame slider.[2] For higher values use this guide.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Set launch options to -windowed -noborder
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Up to 16 samples.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Up to 8x MSAA and up to 16x QCSAA.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Double and triple buffered.
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
Capped at 300 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
Rendered image uses SDR color space. In-game HDR option refers only to HDR Rendering.

Input settings

In-game key map settings.
In-game key map settings.
In-game mouse/gamepad settings.
In-game mouse/gamepad settings.

Audio settings

In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Over-all game volume and separate music slider.
Surround sound
7.1, 5.1 surround sound, 4 speaker surround. 7.1 output may require DirectSound3D restoration software.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
"Silence the audio while the game window is in the background" check box
EAX support
Set snd_legacy_surround 1 in console, 4 speakers in options, and use DSOAL for binaural HRTF mixing.


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese

VR support

3D modes Native GG3D Notes
G3D, DirectVR
Officially supported game, see official vorpx game list.
Headsets Native Notes
HTC Vive
This game might be playable with the Revive Compatibility Layer (compatibility list).
Oculus Rift
See Oculus Rift.
Windows Mixed Reality
This game might be playable with the Revive Compatibility Layer (compatibility list).
Devices Native Notes
Tracked motion controllers
Traditional controller
See Input for details.

Oculus Rift

Enable Oculus Rift support[3]
  1. Find Portal in your Steam Library
  2. Right-click and select Properties
  3. Choose Set Launch Options...
  4. Add -vr and press OK.
  5. Close the window and relaunch the game

Issues fixed

Black and purple textures and giant red models

See Missing models or textures.

Game crashes when going through a portal (Windows)

Run the game in DirectX 9 or higher[citation needed]
If the game is running on a version below DirectX 9 it will likely crash when entering a portal.

I can't see my crosshair

cl_drawcrosshair 1[citation needed]
  1. Open the console in game (Default key is ~)
  2. Input cl_drawcrosshair 1 to show your crosshair. Similarly, you can use cl_drawcrosshair 0 to hide it.
You may need to enable the console in the settings

Portals are rendered incorrectly

Run the game in DirectX 9 or higher[citation needed]

The game may have defaulted to DirectX 8, causing portals to be rendered without effects. Add -dxlevel 90 to the game's launch options to run the game in DirectX 9, then remove it after running the game once or your in-game video options will keep resetting back to the defaults.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 6, 7, 8, 8.1, 9
OpenGL 2.1 OS X and Linux only.
Shader Model support 2, 3
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
macOS (OS X)
This 32-bit-only macOS game does not work on macOS Catalina (10.15) or later.


Middleware Notes
Physics Havok Heavily modified variant.
Audio Miles Sound System
Cutscenes Bink Video Used for startup videos and in-game movies.

Console commands

Games running on the Source engine can utilize Source Engine Console Commands for various tasks.
Enabling the console in Source games[citation needed]
  1. Launch the game
  2. From the main menu select Options
  3. Select the Keyboard tab
  4. Click the Advanced button
  5. Check the box next to Enable developer console (~).
  6. Click Apply


Some commands may first require you enabling sv_cheats. You can do so with sv_cheats 1.
Many servers will not allow you to play with cheats enabled, or will disable them upon entering the server.
Users without a US keyboard could experience some problems.

Launch options

View this Steam Support Article regarding launch options as well as the relevant Valve Developer wiki page for further information and a list of useful Source engine launch options.
Enabling a launch parameter[citation needed]
  1. Find the game in your Steam Library
  2. Right-click the game name
  3. Select Properties
  4. Select Set Launch Options...
  5. Input your selected launch options and separate each command with a space
  6. Press OK
  7. Launch the game

Mute the radios from the Portal 2 ARG (Transmission Received)

Before Portal 2 was announced, Valve ran an ARG that cryptically hinted at a sequel through an update in Portal. The update added a radio to find every single level, and carrying them all to the end to be vaporized caused them to emit shrieking noises. These noises could be decoded into pictures that seemed to hint at Portal 2, which was later confirmed. Since the ARG serves no purpose anymore, the audio that these radios play to alert you to their presence may be distracting. To mute these radios and achieve a near-vanilla Portal experience, follow these steps.

Mute the Radios[citation needed]
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\portal\
  2. Create a folder named custom and open it
  3. Create a folder named mute radios inside the custom folder and open it
  4. Create a folder named sound inside the mute radios folder and open it
  5. Create a folder named ambient inside the sound folder and open it
  6. Create a folder named music inside the ambient folder and open it
  7. Find a replacement .wav file such as this empty one from wc3c.net and copy it into the music folder
  8. Rename the .wav file to looping_radio_mix.wav
  9. Launch the game.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) XP, Vista, 7
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 4 1.7 GHz
AMD Athlon XP 1700+
System memory (RAM) 512 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 4 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 3
ATI Radeon 8500
128 MB of VRAM
DirectX 8.1 compatible
Must be run without Steam to play on XP and Vista.
macOS (OS X)
Operating system (OS) 10.5.8
Processor (CPU)
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 4 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 8 series
ATI Radeon X1600
Intel HD Graphics 3000