Steam Coming to Linux Soon

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Steam Coming to Linux Soon

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The open-source OS will finally get some gaming support.

Linus Torvalds had a great idea in 1991. To shake off the necessity of big corporations like Microsoft and Apple dictating how we use our computers, he founded Linux as an open source code project to give users more control over their operating system. The Linux OS movement has grown into a viable option for PCs, with several different branches and distributions based on the Linux kernel released by Torvalds. The only drawback to installing Linux over Windows is the lack of support for many games, but Gabe Newell and Valve's Steam service might just reverse that trend for good. Valve has hired dedicated Linux developers to port the Steam client and the Source game engine to run natively on Linux. Michael Larabel of Phronoix.com confirmed the news after visiting Valve's offices and speaking with Newell himself. Expect a Linux release of Steam in the next few months.

"This Linux work just is not some half-assed attempt by [Valve] to make it look like they are a Linux-friendly organization," said Larabel. "Gabe's vision to support, embrace, and promote Linux are amazing, assuming they execute, which looks to be very high probability at this point."

The game Valve has chosen to be the guinea pig for the Linux version of the Source engine is Left4Dead2, mostly because the stability of that code is rock solid. There have been a few snags in programming, but Gabe Newell is now personally overseeing the project, so the process has momentum. The flat management structure of Valve - detailed in the recently leaked employee handbook - was actually the reason for the delay of bringing Steam to Linux.

"There have been developers working on the Linux support for sometime, but not until recently has Gabe Newell become personally involved with the Linux client work," Larabel said. "In fact, his desk is currently in the current Valve Linux development camp!"

Larabel also mentioned Newell's personal distaste for Microsoft's new Windows 8, which perhaps has to do with the Valve chief's new desire to branch out. "Listening to Gabe Newell talk about Linux for hours made me wonder whether he was a former ex-Microsoft employee (where he actually did work in his pre-Valve days in the 90's) or the director of the Linux Foundation," Larabel said. "His level of Linux interest and commitment was incredible while his negativity for Windows 8 and the future of Microsoft was stunning."

The whole idea of Valve's Steam service and Source engine using Linux as a native platform is refreshing and has implications beyond the small percentage of current users who run Linux on their machines. With a controlling interest in the PC gaming market, if Newell is serious about using his influence to encourage other developers to adopt Linux as a viable option, the dark days of Linux gaming might be over. And it may actually herald a greater shift away from Windows or Mac OS to Linux for all computing needs.

Crap, I might just convert to running Ubuntu myself.

Source: Phoronix

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Oh, if enough of my games become available on Linux, I might just switch OS...

Holy shit yes! One step closer to me ditching Windows! Now I just need DirectX to be supported natively on Linux and I can tell Windblows to take a hike!

Waaghpowa:
Holy shit yes! One step closer to me ditching Windows! Now I just need DirectX to be supported natively on Linux and I can tell Windblows to take a hike!

Its a nice thought, but directx will never be on anything else but microsoft products seeing as they develope it.

Definitely a promising bit of news. I usually have at least one of my 2-3 boxes running Linux at any one time, but never my main gaming machine for obvious reasons. I don't really have anything against Microsoft and in fact Win7 is a good OS with a number of innovations, but I just enjoy monkeying with config files and Gentoo ebuilds. Call me a masochist - I don't understand why either.

However, the main thing that stops me from running Linux on my media center PC isn't games, it's Netflix. They run silverlight, which doesn't have a Linux port for their DRM. This despite the fact that Netflix runs on the Roku, ChromeOS and Android, all of which are Linux underneath. That just isn't right.

Gammayun:

Waaghpowa:
Holy shit yes! One step closer to me ditching Windows! Now I just need DirectX to be supported natively on Linux and I can tell Windblows to take a hike!

Its a nice thought, but directx will never be on anything else but microsoft products seeing as they develope it.

But the hope, as Tito mentioned, is that developers will start developing games for linux as well. Now that steam is going to be available for linux, that's 2 out of 3 OS's that support OpenGL. Even though Microsoft has the majority market share, there's more incentive to develop with OpenGL to cover as many platforms as possible since all 3 support it.

Here's to hoping.

Hooray! Child killing and sex Mods for everybody!

That's great, but we need more than Valve games to be available on Steam for this to be a game-changer (so to speak.)

Linux is free.
Steam is free.
this new was free.
SOMEONE NEEDS MY MONEY FOR HOW HAPPY THIS MAKES ME! 8D

Oh joy, another operating system to "support" by releasing about half their games and a buggy-as-hell client and then never touching it again. Seriously, I'm not holding out much hope that this will do anything worthwhile other than siphon off more employees who ought to be working on improving their existing products instead.

And what's this about Windows 8? It's Windows 7 with an ugly menu screen replacing the Start menu and support for oversized mobile apps. Does Gabe know some ugly secret about it that I don't?

steve it is no secret that M$ is moving even further away from what was great about XP with 8.

Great news, I run Steam in a VM on Linux whilst I'm using it just for the chat, then Desura seems to function as Steam does for my Linux gaming needs.

There's a fair amount of games on Steam already with Linux clients so I can't wait for a Linux client for Steam. Hopefully it would make even more people develop Linux clients meaning I get to spend even more time with it instead of Windows.

Wait Paul has moved on to install Linux on steam? THE MADNESS! Now I'm hungry for perogies for some reason. To the Microwave!

Bujiraso:
Linux is free.
Steam is free.
this new was free.
SOMEONE NEEDS MY MONEY FOR HOW HAPPY THIS MAKES ME! 8D

I'll take some of it...as long as you don't want anything but your happiness in return.

If Valve can find a way to make this work across the multitude of distributions of Linux without hassle and then get enough developers to make a Linux version of their games then the last barrier to keeping me from running Linux might finally be obliterated.

On the other hand I doubt that anything will be able to entice the bigger developers from continuing to write their games solely for Windows, which in a lot of ways is a shame since generally Linux uses less resources than Windows and is far more flexible.

Gaming on Linux can be done now through emulation but it's too huge of a pain in the ass to deal with. More than a few games either spaz out or just plain don't work. Right now it's up to individual users to work on making the games compatible with Linux which leads to a lot of games either not being supported, or it taking forever and a day for the next improvement to something that just barely works.

they need to start pushing devs to use Open GL perhaps offer favourable terms like M$ do for those using DirectX

If this works (and most of my games are eventually supported) then I'll definitely be interested. Gaming is the one thing that's prevented me from trying out Linux so far, and though it's obviously too early to judge accurately, I REALLY dislike the look of Windows 8. Seriously, why would I want my PC to look like an iPhone?

So... Will we get a free game? Imo that was only good thing to come out of Steam going to mac.

I'll DEFINITELY have a linux-boot for this. Hell, where do I sign up for a beta?

And it's no surprise an EX-microsoft employee can be so keen for the competition, after all he did LEAVE the company and he knows how it works. Remember, even Bill Gates jumped from Microsoft, not because it is a sinking ship but because it's a ship out of control.

Microsoft aren't evil... well... not completely evil. But they have that very unpleasant mixture of incompetence and petty meanness that make them unbearable at times. I use windows purely because it has the widest video games support and I fart-in-the-general direction of Games for Windows Live. As most PC gamers do.

Maybe my PC gaming will finally get out of Wine and Minecraft
Do we know if it will support 64-bit binaries?

Bujiraso:
Linux is free.
Steam is free.
this new was free.
SOMEONE NEEDS MY MONEY FOR HOW HAPPY THIS MAKES ME! 8D

I'll take it, my Birthday is on the 5th, my Girlfriend that I haven't got to see in almost a year will stay for a month, and I'm looking at graduating.

Hope that makes you happy enough =)

Well time to get ready to reinstall Linux

Waaghpowa:

Gammayun:

Waaghpowa:
Holy shit yes! One step closer to me ditching Windows! Now I just need DirectX to be supported natively on Linux and I can tell Windblows to take a hike!

Its a nice thought, but directx will never be on anything else but microsoft products seeing as they develope it.

But the hope, as Tito mentioned, is that developers will start developing games for linux as well. Now that steam is going to be available for linux, that's 2 out of 3 OS's that support OpenGL. Even though Microsoft has the majority market share, there's more incentive to develop with OpenGL to cover as many platforms as possible since all 3 support it.

Here's to hoping.

If every source game is Linux supported, that is going to be a great start for anyone getting INTO PC gaming as that shaves off around $100 from any new PC build, not having to buy a (legit) microsoft operating system copy.

Hell, that may force microsoft to sell their OS at a lower price as it is no longer the "only OS in town for serious PC gaming". sorry, but linux support has fallent critically low in recent years, particularly with id software's lack of support.

To say you have:
-Team Fortress 2
-Left 4 Dead 2
-Portal series
-Half Life series

Is a HELL of a good start on any gaming PC. Adds to the current Linux roster considerably:
-QuakeLive
-Unreal Tournament 2004
-Nexuiz
-QuakeWorld
-Amnesia: Dark Descent
-Cube 2: Sauerbraten
(well, those are what I consider the highlights see a mosre comprehensive list here: http://www.penguspy.com/#/All/free_and_commercial/open_closed/sort=3/view=1/limit=0)

At the very least a new PC build can just have a Linux boot for the time-being and when the person has the money they can install a Microsoft boot. But it would have to have some serious offerings. You could honestly say you are a Linux gamer and not be missing out on too much.

Man, this is great news! I don't even really care if it's in 'Valve' time, as long as it's a rock solid client. I look forward to the day when I'll no longer have to use WINE, even if it is a remarkable little program.

definitely agree with gabe Windows 8 SUCKS! From a technical point of view, it looks flimsy, unreliable; it doesn't look like it's a great release. it looks worse than the transition from XP to Vista-Looks better(not really) but probably has bugs. Not ever switching to windows 8. not if they pay ME.

medv4380:
Maybe my PC gaming will finally get out of Wine and Minecraft
Do we know if it will support 64-bit binaries?

Well, it IS 2012... not 1996. They bloody well should.

As far as I know the only reason 32 bit is so common is because Microsoft operating systems have stuck to it for so long. WHY? I don't know. Anyway, almost every chipset made in the past half decade has been 64-bit compliant and on the system memory front we have most definitely hit that wall (4096 MiB of memory addresses) I'd be really surprised if 64 bit wasn't comprehensively supported.

If this gathers enough steam I might swap to Linux permanently. Bad pun not intended.

Steve the Pocket:
Oh joy, another operating system to "support" by releasing about half their games and a buggy-as-hell client and then never touching it again. Seriously, I'm not holding out much hope that this will do anything worthwhile other than siphon off more employees who ought to be working on improving their existing products instead.

I'm pretty sure this won't be so bad after all. Nobody believed Steam would come to Mac OS X, but here we are 2 years later, with 245 games that run on OS X through Steam. Also, since all OS X games use OpenGL, all those games can be ported to Linux without much hassle. In addition, most of the Humble Indie Bundle and other indie games are released for Linux as well. And one final point, since they are hiring people specifically to do the work on the Linux port, it means they're not taking away any other developers from their work. I've used Steam on my gf's mac, and it worked fine, all updates are released for both platforms as well, how will it be any different with Linux?

My initial reaction;

Soon I may never have to boot into windows to play games. Which is my only gripe with having linux as my main OS.

Fayathon:
If this gathers enough steam I might swap to Linux permanently. Bad pun not intended.

I see what you did there.

There is no end to the happiness this has brought me.
Oh sweet sweet glorious happiness.
As if I needed another reason to love Valve. Sure, they may have really long dev times for their projects, but when they deliver, they really do deliver.

Akisa:
Wait Paul has moved on to install Linux on steam? THE MADNESS! Now I'm hungry for perogies for some reason. To the Microwave!

And now Graham will be able to run Steam (on himself).

Akisa:
Wait Paul has moved on to install Linux on steam? THE MADNESS! Now I'm hungry for perogies for some reason. To the Microwave!

I have Linux installed on my toaster, I can't wait to play TF2 on that!

Treblaine:

medv4380:
Maybe my PC gaming will finally get out of Wine and Minecraft
Do we know if it will support 64-bit binaries?

Well, it IS 2012... not 1996. They bloody well should.

As far as I know the only reason 32 bit is so common is because Microsoft operating systems have stuck to it for so long. WHY? I don't know. Anyway, almost every chipset made in the past half decade has been 64-bit compliant and on the system memory front we have most definitely hit that wall (4096 MiB of memory addresses) I'd be really surprised if 64 bit wasn't comprehensively supported.

Actually there is another reason. A lot of programmers who use C and C++ use Pointer Arithmetic, and in a lot of code instead of using a 64bit int (long) they cast it into a 32 bit int. As long as they don't have over 2 gigs that works. If they have 4 gigs hopefully they used an Unsigned 32 bit int, and anything over 4 gigs will break. That's actually what caused Skyrim to crash to the desktop whenever it hit the 2 gig limit, and their fix was enabling up to 4 gigs with the unsigned int.

living_brain:
definitely agree with gabe Windows 8 SUCKS! From a technical point of view, it looks flimsy, unreliable; it doesn't look like it's a great release. it looks worse than the transition from XP to Vista-Looks better(not really) but probably has bugs. Not ever switching to windows 8. not if they pay ME.

"Then you will die" - The Emperor

People said that about Vista

I am so excited!!!! I been hoping that Valve would convert their games to linux, gaming was the one of the few reasons, I still have windows 7

Aenir:

Akisa:
Wait Paul has moved on to install Linux on steam? THE MADNESS! Now I'm hungry for perogies for some reason. To the Microwave!

And now Graham will be able to run Steam (on himself).

I hate you so much now, it hurts when I laugh at the moment, and I been laughing for like forever.

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