This page is located on the SimsWiki. To view it in it's original form, click here.
Sims 2 Game Help Categories:

Custom Content  | Expansion Packs  | Installation  | Gameplay Guides  | Technical & Graphics Issues  | Body Shop & Homecrafter  | Miscellaneous Issues  | FAQ Index

MTS's Sims 2 Q&A Help Forums


Sims 2 Logo transparent.png This article is written for The Sims 2. For the equivalent Sims 3 article, click here.


Downloading for Fracking Geniuses

Installing Sims 2 Custom Content

This guide is designed for the advanced computer user, to quickly get you using content for the game. If you are not an advanced computer user, or you have questions that this guide does not answer, try Downloading for Fracking Idiots.

What to Watch For


Content that requires a new 3d model to work will generally say "mesh required." On MTS2 the links to required meshes will be at the bottom of the post. Other sites vary in how clear they are on meshes required. Make sure you get the mesh if you are downloading something that needs one that's not included in the game.


Content may require a certain expansion, and with hacks and hacked objects, may be incompatible with certain expansions. Read the post and look at the expansion icons for details.

Content Not Included

Creators of certain content may not allow it to be distributed with lots or sims, so creators of lots or sims may remove certain content. Their creation will then not display as they intended, unless you download the content they removed. They will generally say "required but not included" somewhere in the post, with links.

Special Installs

99% of content will install in one of two ways, explained below. Sometimes, though, there are things like lighting mods, cheat files, etc., that install differently. They should have instructions on the post.

File Types/Installing


If you're not familiar with RAR archives, they're just like ZIP files, only better! To use them, get Winrar, which is nagware. Mac users can use Stuffit.

Extract from the RAR or ZIP, then you probably have one of two types...


Most custom content files will be in .package format. Package files go in My Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Downloads

If you don't have a Downloads folder, just make one.

Occasionally, some Package files won't go in Downloads. Collections files will come in Package format, but they'll go in My Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Collections


Sims, houses, and sometimes walls and floors are in Sims2Pack format, which is sort of like its own type of archive. Double-click them to install them with the game's installer, or get something better.

You can use Clean Installer to install particular content from a sims2pack file, install to different locations, clean your own uploads, and organize your downloads.

Sims and their content will automatically install using any of these methods to the Downloads folder. Lots will install their included content to the Downloads folder... while the lot file itself will go into the Teleport folder, in .sims2tmp format. Once the game is run, it will move that file into the LotCatalog folder and change it to .package format.

Other Important Stuff

Stay Organized

You'll quickly find you have hundreds, even thousands of files. Get organized now, because it's a huge pain to try to fix after you've got tons of stuff.

Keep Hacks separate. Keep default replacements separate. How you can subfolder content depends on what expansions you have, and exactly the system you use depends on you and your needs. For a good guide, try: Game Help:Organizing Custom Content.

You can rename almost all files except for things like the InSIMenator and other really powerful hacks, so give things good filenames if that helps you.


The CEP or Color Enable Package enables recolours for Maxis items that, by default, only had one colour option. You need the CEP. Go ahead and get it: CEP

It Didn't Work!

Yeah, that happens. This game is really finicky, and sometimes you have to beat on it a while to get it to start seeing all your content. We've got a guide to fixing that here: Getting Custom Content to Show Up

If you found this article useful, please remember to click Post thanks.gif

Contributor Credits

Thanks go to HystericalParoxysm for the original article this FAQ is based on.

Sims 2 Game Help Categories:

Custom Content  | Expansion Packs  | Installation  | Gameplay Guides  | Technical & Graphics Issues  | Body Shop & Homecrafter  | Miscellaneous Issues  | FAQ Index

MTS's Sims 2 Q&A Help Forums