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Command & Conquer

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

This page is for the original 1995 game. For the 2020 remastered version, see Command & Conquer Remastered Collection.

Command & Conquer
Command & Conquer cover
Westwood Studios
1995-1998 Virgin Interactive
1998-present Electronic Arts
Release dates
DOS September 26, 1995
Mac OS (Classic) December 18, 1996
Windows March 10, 1997
Metacritic 94
Monetization Freeware, Expansion pack, Subscription gaming service
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Europe, Africa, Sci-fi
Series Command & Conquer
Command & Conquer on HowLongToBeat
Command & Conquer on IGDB
Command & Conquer guide on StrategyWiki
Command & Conquer on MobyGames
Command & Conquer on Wikipedia
Command & Conquer 1995
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 1996
Command & Conquer: Sole Survivor 1997
Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun 1999
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 2000
Command & Conquer: Renegade 2002
Command & Conquer: Generals 2003
Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars 2007
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 2008
Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Uprising 2009
Command & Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight 2010
OpenRA (unofficial) 2010
Command & Conquer (2013) Cancelled
Command & Conquer Remastered Collection 2020
Renegade X (unofficial) EA

Command & Conquer is a singleplayer and multiplayer bird's-eye view RTS game in the Command & Conquer series.

Multiple versions of the game exist. After the original DOS release from September 1995, the Macintosh release came out in December 1996 featuring a change of resolution from 320x200 to 640x400, as well as a new user interface and Westwood Online multiplayer infrastructure.

The Windows-native version (released in North America as the Special Gold Edition and in Germany as the SVGA Version) came out in March 1997, and became the definitive version of the game, featuring all improvements of the Macintosh release. This release was made freeware on August 31, 2007 by Electronic Arts for the 12th anniversary of the franchise.

The Covert Operations expansion pack was released in April 1996 for the DOS version, but is regardless compatible with the Windows-native release without modifications. The missions released for the PlayStation and Nintendo 64 versions were subsequently ported to the Windows release by the community, and were officially included in the Remastered Collection version of the game in June 2020.

The Windows version has multiple issues running on modern systems without modification, ranging from installation issues due to a 16-bit installer to rendering and launch issues. The unofficial Project 1.06 fan patch alleviates some compatibility problems and long-standing gameplay bugs, but further development was continued by the developers of CnCNet, primarily for multiplayer. Homepages of both projects include modified downloads of the full game, so as to simplify installation for new users, making the official freeware ISO images obsolete.

The official multiplayer service, Westwood Online, was redirected to the also community-run XWIS server in 2005 in agreement with EA's German community team[1], and using the in-game multiplayer menus lead to it without any additional configuration, but this service is presently seldom used due to CnCNet's quality-of-life improvements.

Open-source versions with continued development are found in the Vanilla Conquer repository, based on the official source code of the Remastered Collection version of the game.

General information

Informally known as Tiberian Dawn, which was one of its working titles.
Command & Conquer Wiki - A wiki for everything Command & Conquer-related
CnCNet (multiplayer replacement)
Command & Conquer section on
Command & Conquer section on C&C Communications Center
Command & Conquer section on
v1.06 patch discussion
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
The Windows version is often called the Gold Edition and is fully patched. It's also available as part of The First Decade.
Mac OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
The First Decade. This version has no disc check when opened from the launcher but opening the game from the original executable gives an insert CD error.
Official website
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
Version that has been released for free by EA.
Bundled as part of Command & Conquer: The Ultimate Collection; includes The Covert Operations expansion. Pre-packaged with DDrawCompat. Included with EA Play.
Manual link for EA App purchase.
DRM-free after installation through Steam client (notes may include more details)
Bundled as part of Command & Conquer: The Ultimate Collection; includes The Covert Operations expansion. Pre-packaged with DDrawCompat. Included with EA Play (Steam).
Steam DRM removed on March 9, 2024.[2][3]


Type Notes
Expansion pack The expansion pack includes new campaigns and maps.
Freeware Released for free by Electronic Arts in 2007. The expansion pack is de facto considered free by the community and distributed without issue.
Subscription gaming service Available via EA Play.

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
The Covert Operations Retail version was only released for the DOS release, but the files work with the Windows release.
Comes bundled with the The First Decade and Ultimate Collection compilations.

Unofficial downloads

Nyerguds' installer is a complete fan-patched game pack which includes the singleplayer missions (including Covert Operations and PSX/N64 missions) and soundtrack. Cutscenes are available as separate packs at Mod DB.
CnCNet installer is a bare-bones version optimized for multiplayer (small size, portable). Missions, music and cutscenes are omitted. The music and map editor are downloadable inside the CnCNet settings.

Essential improvements

1024x768 resolution with the Command & Conquer Gold: Project 1.06 compared to earlier versions.
1024x768 resolution with the Command & Conquer Gold: Project 1.06 compared to earlier versions.


Command & Conquer Gold: Project 1.06

Not needed for the unofficial packages.
This patch contains:
  • A large amount of fixes (changelog)
  • Support for newer Windows systems (including 64-bit)
  • LAN and online playability up to 6 players (includes new CnCNet lobby)
  • Support for higher resolutions
  • No-CD option
  • Missions from PSX and N64 versions and The Covert Operations
The site also offers Music Upgrade Pack if you installed the game through CDs/ISOs.
Support for regular installation, The First Decade and The Ultimate Collection.

Understorm: Command & Conquer 95 and Red Alert 1 LAN Patch

Due to the IPX protocol deprecation on Windows and changes in implementation on Windows XP and Windows 2000 the game crashed at startup. Westwood did release a patch that disabled LAN multiplayer entirely. A first community patch redirected IPX onto the UDP protocol, creating a workaround for the issue.

This patch is obsolete nowadays.



1.22 is the last patch for the DOS version. Note that the game's Covert Operations expansion upgrades the game to v1.20, which is not quite the same as the final v1.22. Some of the later DOS releases of the game come prepatched at v1.22.
European versions' alternate languages, German and French, have different versioning, meaning their final versions are called v1.20. This is equivalent to the English v1.22. They can be downloaded here and here.


DOS32A is a more advanced extender and open source replacement to DOS4GW. It can improve both performance and stability of Command & Conquer.

Command & Conquer has DOS4GW bound its executable. Use the command sb /r game.dat to replace it.

Hidden Options Enabler

Allows enabling hidden options within the game. Most useful perhaps it the ability to increase the netgame player limit to 6 and allow 1v1 game with AI players. More info here.

Console levels

Conversions of the N64 exclusive levels can be found here whilst the PlayStation versions can be found here.

Play without the CD

Copy the CD's contents (or at least its most important files, SCORES.MIX and movies.mix) to a folder inside the game's virtual C drive. Launch the game with the parameter -cd[cd contents folder]. Merging the different files from the base game and expansion is recommended.


scb13ea_fix solves a crash issue with the map 13ea.
C&CToss enables the missing grenade "woosh" toss sound.

Game data

External video settings (for the fan patch).
External video settings (for the fan patch).

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\conquer.ini
Windows <path-to-game>\*.ini[Note 1]
Mac OS (Classic)
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/2229830/pfx/[Note 2]
conquer.ini contains normal game settings.
ddraw.ini contains CnC-DDraw settings (added by the fan patch).
cncnet.ini contains CnCNet settings (added by the fan patch).

Save game data location

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\savegame.***
Windows <path-to-game>\savegame.***[Note 1]
Mac OS (Classic)
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/2229830/pfx/[Note 2]
DOS save games not compatible with C&C Gold.

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud


External options menu (for the original release).
External options menu (for the original release).
External video settings (for the fan patch).
External video settings (for the fan patch).
In-game video settings.
In-game video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
A fan patch is required. The maximum map size is 1488x1488.[4]
Playing on higher resolutions might cause visual artifacts.
4K Ultra HD
The maximum map size is 1488x1488.[4]
Field of view (FOV)
A fan patch is required.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
A fan patch is required. See Borderless fullscreen windowed.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Vertical sync (Vsync)
A fan patch is required. See Vertical sync (Vsync).
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
The game normally limits to 60 fps, and is advertised as such on the game box.
The maximum game speed option runs the game at the maximum speed the CPU can manage, without any limiting on frames or gameplay speed. This insane speed is not particularly useful for playing the game, though, and the lower speeds have no real benefits from running higher than 60fps.[citation needed]

Borderless fullscreen windowed

Set in ddraw.ini[citation needed]
  1. Go to the configuration file(s) location.
  2. Open ddraw.ini.
  3. Set: windowed=true, width, height = equal to computer resolution, border=false


The resolution settings in this file only stretch the image. To set internal resolution, CCConfig needs to be used.

Vertical sync (Vsync)

Set in ddraw.ini[citation needed]
  1. Go to the configuration file(s) location.
  2. Open ddraw.ini.
  3. Set: opengl=true, vsync=true


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
See here (Google Docs) for keybindings.
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
For DOSBox set in the DOSBox configuration file.
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
For DOSBox use the DOSBox Mapper (see the glossary page for other workarounds).
Controller types


External audio settings (for the fan patch).
External audio settings (for the fan patch).
In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Music and sound
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio
The exception to the self-published music is the track "Destructible Times" by the short-lived band I AM, the usage of which was licensed only in a shortened version in the Nod credits sequence.
The DOS version of the game actually supports stereo sound despite not appearing as an option in the setup program. A guide explaining how to enable it can be found here.


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Unofficial; use Language add-on.
Installed by patch 1.06, audio only, from Fan mirror #2.
The only localized UI text in the game are the mission briefings; all the rest is English. Lacks briefings for the expansion pack, though they can technically be ported from the Playstation version. Text in videos is not translated, and for any such text without voiceover, translations are provided in a readme file on the CD.
Unofficial; use Language add-on.
Brazilian Portuguese
Partial audio; use Language add-on.
Fan translation, download.
Fan voice-over by «ENPY Studio».
Unofficial; use Language add-on.
Fan translation and full dubbing by TSF, download.
C&C patch adds support for multiple languages. Download them from PCGamingWiki repository.


External multiplayer settings (for the fan patch).
External multiplayer settings (for the fan patch).

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
6 Versus
Uses IPX protocol. Use Project 1.06 fan patch or IPXwrapper to work around this.
Alternatively, the CnCNet client includes its own workaround.
Online play
6 Versus
Lobbies point to XWIS by default since October 20, 2005 as part of an agreement with EA.[1] CnCNet is a more popular alternative.

Connection types

Issues unresolved

This list assumes all patches are installed.
  • The game has some minor problems with missions that are smaller than the game resolution, where graphics are not refreshed in the area between the map border and the sidebar/screen edges. It can be "fixed" temporarily by pressing Esc.
  • When playing in any resolution higher than 640x400, buildings can not be placed with a placement height of only one cell on the lowest row of cells on the map.

Issues fixed

If you have problems with The First Decade or The Ultimate Collection, be sure to check this FAQ at EA forums.

General fixes

General checklist[citation needed]
  1. Install the patches properly.
  2. Uncheck all compatibility mode settings.
  3. Enabled "Back buffer in Video memory" and disabled "Allow hardware filled blits" in CCConfig.exe.
  4. Check if the game can be run as administrator.
  5. Switch to a different renderer or enable/disable singlecpu in ddraw.ini.
  6. Try disabling cnc-ddraw (may introduce some other issues like scrambled colors).

Crash after overheating

Enable "singlecpu" in ddraw.ini[5]

Game is laggy after installing the patch

Change the renderer in ddraw.ini[6]

Game speed/Map scroll rate issue

Resolved by using frame-rate limiter in the fan patch, but this may cause an unresponsive in-game menu.[citation needed]
Set the slider in-game[citation needed]

While in-game, press Esc to open a menu, press game controls and move the game speed slider to adjust the game speed or scroll rate slider to adjust the scroll speed.

Mouse pointer stuck at screen edge

Check disable display scaling on High DPI settings in compatibility options[7]

"Unable to set video mode" error

Change the resolution[citation needed]
There are 2 ways how to fix this error:
  • Change the resolution.
  • Enable windowed mode.

No music in the CnCNet version

Go to CnCNet lobby and download the music in the settings[citation needed]

Scrambled colors (without ddraw.dll)

Use palette fix[citation needed]

See DirectDraw troubleshooting for solutions.

No videos after installing the patch

Download the videos[citation needed]

If the game was installed from the CDs and the unofficial patch is installed, the No-CD option is enabled by default. Either turn off the option, copy movies.mix from the CDs into <path-to-game> or just download the videos.

Cannot Alt+Tab

Use Project 1.06
From Launcher settings, set Renderer to either OpenGL or Direct3D 9.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
DirectDraw 3
DOS video modes MCGA, VGA
ExecutablePPC16-bit 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Mac OS (Classic)


Middleware Notes
Audio Human Machine Interface (HMI) audio drivers
Cutscenes VQA
Multiplayer Westwood Online Only in Macintosh and Gold (Windows) versions, absent from original DOS release.


C&C has support for external maps, both multiplayer and singleplayer.
CnCNet includes its own online map folder.
An upgraded version of the map editor from of the Remastered edition is available, which can run without the Remaster, using the classic game files of the freeware game.
The XCC Utilities pack contains a (somewhat older) map editor for the game, called "XCC Editor". - Mapping discussion


Thanks to dedicated C&C community, there are a couple of re-implementations and total conversion existing.
  • OpenRA - Open Source recreation that tries to modernize the classic gameplay.
  • Vanilla Conquer - faithful to the original source port
  • FreeCNC - an attempt to reverse engineer and reimplement, abandoned in early stages

Total conversions

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) MS-DOS 5.0
Processor (CPU) 486 DX2 66 MHz
System memory (RAM) 8 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 800 MB
Video card (GPU) MCGA video card
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95, 98
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 75
System memory (RAM) 8 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 40 MB
Video card (GPU) 1 MB of VRAM


  1. 1.0 1.1 When running this game without elevated privileges (Run as administrator option), write operations against a location below %PROGRAMFILES%, %PROGRAMDATA%, or %WINDIR% might be redirected to %LOCALAPPDATA%\VirtualStore on Windows Vista and later (more details).
  2. 2.0 2.1 Notes regarding Steam Play (Linux) data: