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Half-Life: Source

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

This page is for the Source Engine port. For the original, see Half-Life. For the unofficial Source Engine remake, see Black Mesa.

Half-Life: Source
Half-Life: Source cover
Valve Corporation
Release dates
Windows November 16, 2004
macOS (OS X) September 12, 2013
Linux September 12, 2013
Monetization One-time game purchase
Modes Singleplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives First-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Shooter
Art styles Realistic
Themes North America, Sci-fi
Series Half-Life
Half-Life: Source on HowLongToBeat
Half-Life: Source on IGDB
Half-Life: Source on MobyGames
Half-Life: Source on Wikipedia
Half-Life mods and fangames (series)
Half-Life 1998
Half-Life: Opposing Force 1999
Half-Life: Blue Shift 2001
Codename: Gordon 2004
Half-Life: Source 2004
Half-Life 2 2004
Half-Life 2: Deathmatch 2004
Half-Life 2: Lost Coast 2005
Half-Life Deathmatch: Source 2006
Half-Life 2: Episode One 2006
Half-Life 2: Episode Two 2007
Portal (series)
Half-Life: Decay (unofficial port) 2008
Half-Life: Alyx 2020


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.

A port of the Half-Life to the Source engine with additional enhancements such as ragdoll physics, shader effects, Oculus Rift support, improved controller support, extended console commands, and includes the High Definition pack.

However, the 2013 update introduced several issues not present in the prior builds, such as graphical glitches and broken scripted sequences.[1][2]

General information

GitHub Issue Tracker for Half-Life: Source and other Source-based games
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Icon overlay.png
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
SecuROM 5 DRM. Removed in a December 2004 update.
Included in all copies of Half-Life 2: Collector's Edition.
These copies can bypass Steam if hl2.msi is launched directly.
DRM-free after installation through Steam client (notes may include more details)
Initially only available as part of Half-Life 2 Silver and Half-Life 2 Gold bundles. Received a standalone digital release later.
DRM-free when launched directly from the executable with -game hl1 command line argument.[citation needed]
macOS (OS X)
All versions require Steam DRM.

Essential improvements

Half Life: Source Fixed

Fixes many issues and bugs.
Use replacement files
  1. Download files from link above.
  2. Extract the hls_fix directory into the sourcemods folder and restart Steam.

Half-Life: Source Fix Pack

Fixes bugs and restores some behaviors from original Half-Life.
Intended to be used with "Old Engine" version, but should also work with newest Steam release.
Use replacement files
  1. Download files from link above.
  2. Extract the hl1 and extra for steam version\hl1 directory and place it in <path-to-game>.

Skip intro videos

Use -novid command line argument[citation needed]

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Steam <Steam-folder>/SteamApps/common/Half-Life 2/hl1/cfg/
This game does not follow the XDG Base Directory Specification on Linux.

Save game data location

System Location
Steam <Steam-folder>/SteamApps/common/Half-Life 2/hl1/save/

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud


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
Some of the game UI becomes too small to read.
Field of view (FOV)
Values between 75° and 90° horizontal can be set via ingame slider.[3] For higher values use this guide.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See Borderless fullscreen windowed.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
Capped to 300 fps by default. Frame rate cap can be changed by changing fps_max in the developer console. To uncap FPS or cap FPS higher than 300 sv_cheats = 1 must be set first before using fps_max.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
Rendered image uses SDR color space. In-game HDR option refers only to HDR Rendering.

Borderless fullscreen windowed

-window -noborder[citation needed]
  1. Right-click Half-Life: Source in the Steam Library
  2. Select Properties
  3. Select Set Launch Options...
  4. Input -window -noborder
  5. Press OK
  6. Launch the game


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

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
Use the console command exec 360controller to automatically setup Xbox controller support (if not already configured at startup). To also make controller vibration work, download an updated version of the SDL2 file and replace it with the one in the outside "bin" folder. SDL2
Full controller support
Use this Controller UI Mod for a console style menu that can be navigated with a controller.
Newer "beta and beta_deck" version of the game supposed to include Steam Deck gamepad UI which normally can be enabled with -gamepadui Command line argument (requires Vulkan-supported cards) on most updated Source games, however, this was currently non-functional for now in HL: Source, use the above Controller UI mod instead.
Controller remapping
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Controller types
XInput-compatible controllers
DualShock 4 controllers
Tracked motion controllers
Generic/other controllers
Additional information
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback
Simultaneous controller+KB/M

Disable autorun

Add script to userconfig.cfg[4]

Add the following to <path-to-game>/valve/userconfig.cfg. Create the file as a plain text file if it does not already exist. Adjust keys as desired.

bind SHIFT +holdrun
alias +holdrun -speed
alias -holdrun +speed
alias "runon" "-speed;alias togglerun runoff"
alias "runoff" "+speed;alias togglerun runon"
bind CAPSLOCK togglerun


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.
By default, option exists but is non-functional, install this Half-Life: Source Fixed mod to fix subtitles.
Closed captions
See above.
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.
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese
By default, in steam version only the H.E.V suit is voiced in the game (the voice acting is taken from the translation of half life 2 by SDL), but there is also a full unofficial audio translation
Fan translation including subtitles, download.

VR support

Headsets Native Notes
HTC Vive
This game might be playable with the Revive Compatibility Layer (compatibility list).
Oculus Rift
Available under Video Settings. See Oculus Rift for more information.
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

By default VR mode will run full screen, to switch back to a borderless windowed set the vr_force_windowed convar.

Issues fixed

Purple and black broken textures

A generic fix for this issue can be found on our Source engine page.

Graphical glitches in the Residue Processing chapter

The glitches seem to have been introduced by a batch of updates & SteamPipe engine update in late 2013. An official fix is unlikely at this point, but disabling multicore rendering in the advanced video options seems to work or use this Half-Life: Source Fixed mod.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9, 9Ex
OpenGL 2.1 OS X and Linux only.
Shader Model support 1.x, 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
Input SDL
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


Press ~ to open the console.
Some commands may first require enabling sv_cheats via sv_cheats 1.
Users without a US keyboard may 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. Right-click the game in the Steam Library
  2. Select Properties
  3. Select Set Launch Options...
  4. Type the selected launch options and separate each command with a space
  5. Press OK
  6. Launch the game

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) XP
Processor (CPU) 1.2 GHz
System memory (RAM) 256 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD)
Video card (GPU) DirectX 7 compatible
Must be run without Steam to play on XP and Vista.
macOS (OS X)
Operating system (OS) Leopard 10.5.8, Snow Leopard 10.6.3
Processor (CPU) Dual core from Intel at 2.8 GHz
Dual core from AMD at 2.8 GHz
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD)
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 8
ATI Radeon X1600
Intel HD 3000
Operating system (OS) Ubuntu 12.04
Processor (CPU) Dual core from Intel at 2.8 GHz
Dual core from AMD at 2.8 GHz
System memory (RAM) 4 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 8 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 8600/9600GT
ATI/AMD Radeon HD2600/3600
OpenGL 2.1 compatible
Sound (audio device) OpenAL Compatible Sound Card
Other (Graphic Drivers: Nvidia 310, AMD 12.11)