Steam for Linux for real this time?

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3vi1 Posted: Wed, Apr 21 2010 9:09 PM

I'm not going to hold my breath hoping this means... what I hope it means, but I saw this post over at Phoronix, that included the following part of the shell script used to bootstrap Steam on a Mac:

if [ "$UNAME" == "Darwin" ]; then
PLATFORM=osx32
# prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
export DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH
elif [ "$UNAME" == "Linux" ]; then
PLATFORM=linux32
# prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH
fi

Pretty interesting that the shell script isn't just assuming it's running on a Mac, and actually sets the library path when running on Linux, eh?  I wonder if this means those years long rumors of internal builds for Linux are true?

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Apr 21 2010 9:15 PM

3vi1:

I'm not going to hold my breath hoping this means... what I hope it means, but I saw this post over at Phoronix, that included the following part of the shell script used to bootstrap Steam on a Mac:

if [ "$UNAME" == "Darwin" ]; then
PLATFORM=osx32
# prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
export DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH
elif [ "$UNAME" == "Linux" ]; then
PLATFORM=linux32
# prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH
fi

Pretty interesting that the shell script isn't just assuming it's running on a Mac, and actually sets the library path when running on Linux, eh?  I wonder if this means those years long rumors of internal builds for Linux are true?

I don't think it's 100% true seeing as how very few game companies treat Linux as an actual platform but if they did make steam for Linux then I think it would use WINE or CrossOver to emulate Windows so that the games can play.

Sure, steam for Linux is possible but I don't think gaming companies will be making games for Linux. I don't know if Valve will jump on the linux bandwagon either.

 

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3vi1 replied on Wed, Apr 21 2010 9:41 PM

TaylorKarras:

But I don't think gaming companies will be making games for Linux. I don't know if Valve will jump on the linux bandwagon either.

You do know that they already make the Source Dedicated Server for Linux, eh?  (I run it on my arcade cabinet for CS:S).  So, it's not like their devs haven't already been writing for Linux for years.

I disagree with your idea that if it does come out, it would be using WINE or CrossOver.  They could have done that for the Mac ports using Cider or Darwine, and they did not - they added OpenGL (which both the Mac and Linux use) support to the Source engine and they replaced the IE6 components with WebKit (which is totally crossplatform too).  The client is probably pretty close to having everything it would need for Linux support already (minus some input/audio API work).

Like I said:  I'm not holding my breath for a native Linux client, because it still needs to be worth the money for them to maintain and support.  But, I'm hoping for it.

I can already (and do) play my Steam games under Wine, but I'd love to see faster, native, supported versions.

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TaylorKarras:
but if they did make steam for Linux then I think it would use WINE or CrossOver to emulate Windows so that the games can play.

Doubt that. I don't think they would bother if they would just implement something like that. You can run steam just fine in Wine right now. Games are of course hit or miss, though most Source games run ok.

TaylorKarras:
Sure, steam for Linux is possible but I don't think gaming companies will be making games for Linux. I don't know if Valve will jump on the linux bandwagon either.

Not saying I totally disagree, but the same thing could be said about Mac and Valve is bringing Steam and Source to Mac. Once the engine is cross platform I wouldn't think it would take that much more work to bring it to Linux. One can dream. People found icons and such in the beta of Steam before they announced the Mac version.

 

 

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Apr 21 2010 11:02 PM

 

bob_on_the_cob:

TaylorKarras:
but if they did make steam for Linux then I think it would use WINE or CrossOver to emulate Windows so that the games can play.

Doubt that. I don't think they would bother if they would just implement something like that. You can run steam just fine in Wine right now. Games are of course hit or miss, though most Source games run ok.

*slap in the face*. I surprisingly forgot, Mac OS X is based on Linux so they can probably do the same thing for Linux although they may have to change some things. I can't believe I forgot Mac OS X was linux based.

bob_on_the_cob:

TaylorKarras:
Sure, steam for Linux is possible but I don't think gaming companies will be making games for Linux. I don't know if Valve will jump on the linux bandwagon either.

Not saying I totally disagree, but the same thing could be said about Mac and Valve is bringing Steam and Source to Mac. Once the engine is cross platform I wouldn't think it would take that much more work to bring it to Linux. One can dream. People found icons and such in the beta of Steam before they announced the Mac version.

Here's one thing, the number of people buying Macs and the number of people using Macs have been rising so to Valve, it became a viable market. I don't think they'll bring it to Linux because most hardware that would work under Windows is unsupported in Linux (disregarding the usual, "CPU, GPU, etc") and it takes some command prompt knowledge in order to install a driver or a program or a service. People want an OS that's easy to use and quick to set up.

In short, unless more people use Linux or it gets easier to use (if Ubuntu counts as easy-to-use linux) then Valve won't see Linux as a viable market. 3vi1 pointed out to me that Valve has released their dedicated server software for Linux but I'm talking about selling Steam games to Linux users. Valve is a business and like all businesses it needs money, but it does care a whole lot about it's fans, and that's a plus in my book.

 

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TaylorKarras:
I don't think they'll bring it to Linux because most hardware that would work under Windows is unsupported in Linux (disregarding the usual, "CPU, GPU, etc") and it takes some command prompt knowledge in order to install a driver or a program or a service. People want an OS that's easy to use and quick to set up.

Think it may have been a long time since you have messed with Linux. I still use the terminal for some things, but only out of habit. There is really no need. You install a copy of Ubuntu and it installs all the needed drivers at install or after a reboot and keeps them up to date. Has as much if not more support than Windows 7 for drivers since big companies don't write new drivers for old products. The Linux community does.

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3vi1 replied on Thu, Apr 22 2010 7:26 AM

TaylorKarras:

*slap in the face*. I surprisingly forgot, Mac OS X is based on Linux so they can probably do the same thing for Linux although they may have to change some things. I can't believe I forgot Mac OS X was linux based.

Mac OSX is not based on Linux.  Mac OSX is based on the Mach kernel, whose history draws pieces from FreeBSD.  FreeBSD and Linux are entirely different, independently developed, kernels though both do implement the APIs necessary to make them POSIX compliant to varying degrees.

What this means is that you can recompile the same software to run on most any *nix-type platform, because the different kernels all support a core set of standards.  This is why you see many of the same the GNU utilities across every one of these OS's, which tends to confuse people into thinking they're the same underneath, when they're actually very different underneath and only similar at a subset of APIs and above.

I agree with what Bob said in regards to Linux being extremely easy to use nowadays.  My parents have used it for almost two years now, and they've literally never, ever, used the command line.   Kubuntu 10.04 will be released in about a week and a half; you may want to give it a look (or check out the beta now - though I think the release candidate comes out tomorrow).

-J

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AKwyn replied on Thu, Apr 22 2010 10:53 AM

bob_on_the_cob:

TaylorKarras:
I don't think they'll bring it to Linux because most hardware that would work under Windows is unsupported in Linux (disregarding the usual, "CPU, GPU, etc") and it takes some command prompt knowledge in order to install a driver or a program or a service. People want an OS that's easy to use and quick to set up.

Think it may have been a long time since you have messed with Linux. I still use the terminal for some things, but only out of habit. There is really no need. You install a copy of Ubuntu and it installs all the needed drivers at install or after a reboot and keeps them up to date. Has as much if not more support than Windows 7 for drivers since big companies don't write new drivers for old products. The Linux community does.

I have messed around with a mini version of miniubuntu but I have never considered installing it on my PC, considering that I'm a gamer and all. I guess Linux has gotten easier to use.

Now that I think about it, I think they can release Steam for Linux if they wanted to. Both Windows and Mac OS X use the same Steam servers but offer different games, so basically Steam for Linux shouldn't take much effort to do and it wouldn't cost anything more out of their wallet because they can configure the servers to also send games to Linux if they decide to make Steam for Linux.

I guess I was wrong about what I initially said.

 

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3vi1:
Kubuntu 10.04 will be released in about a week and a half; you may want to give it a look (or check out the beta now - though I think the release candidate comes out tomorrow).

7 days. I'm waiting on it to try out Kubuntu netbook edition. http://www.kubuntu.org/ They have a countdown on the left

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3vi1 replied on Thu, Apr 22 2010 9:27 PM

Oh my... I saw another post where a guy made some educated guesses at the URL and found THIS FILE out on Valve's servers. 

I was able to download the files from the public/client directory of their store.steampowered.com server.  In addition to the standard Steam directories, they contain a directory compiled for 32-bit linux (which will run on 64-bit linux transparently, as long as you have the supporting libraries)

evil@mars:~/steam$ ll linux32
total 45244
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil   335331 2010-03-10 09:08 filesystem_stdio.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil   349285 2010-03-10 09:08 filesystem_steam.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil  6510895 2010-03-10 09:08 friendsui.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil  5621893 2010-03-10 09:08 libsteam.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil   320378 2010-04-08 11:12 libtier0_s.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil   398705 2010-04-13 17:14 libvstdlib_s.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil  2416878 2010-03-10 09:08 serverbrowser.so
-rwxrwxrwx 1 evil evil  4437557 2010-03-10 09:08 steam
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil 11551709 2010-04-21 13:16 steamclient.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil  9856102 2010-03-10 09:08 steamui.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil   142579 2010-04-13 17:14 vaudio_speex.so
-rw-rw-rw- 1 evil evil  4359864 2010-03-10 09:08 vgui2_s.so

I was also able to get it to run, but unfortunately something on the server-side is not there yet.

[  0%] !!! Fatal Error: Failed to determine download location for universe 0
[----] Verifying installation...
[  0%] Downloading Update...
[  0%] !!! Fatal Error: Failed to determine download location for universe 0
unlinked 0 orphaned pipes
CellID: Fetching server list from CSDS. . .
CellID: CSDS returned 164 servers.
CellID: Connecting to 68.142.100.78:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 68.142.100.78:27031 took 100 MS
CellID: New Best!
CellID: Connecting to 193.34.49.3:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 193.34.49.3:27031 took 190 MS
CellID: Connecting to 118.107.173.150:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 118.107.173.150:27031 took 246 MS
Shutting down. . .
CellID: Connecting to 203.77.185.183:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 203.77.185.183:27031 took 193 MS
CellID: Connecting to 79.141.165.2:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 79.141.165.2:27031 took 181 MS
CellID: Connecting to 209.197.20.99:27031. . .
CellID: Connect to 209.197.20.99:27031 took 55 MS
CellID: New Best!
unlinked 2 orphaned pipes
CAsyncIOManager: 0 threads terminating.  0 reads, 0 writes, 0 deferrals.
CAsyncIOManager: 1097 single object sleeps, 0 multi object sleeps
CAsyncIOManager: 0 single object alertable sleeps, 1 multi object alertable sleeps

So...

  1. Valve *has* made a steam client that is Linux compatible (It remains to be seen if it's complete or not).
  2. They're actively compiling binaries that target the Linux platform.
  3. They're putting said binaries out on their EXTERNAL web servers.

This is beginning to look serious.

Maybe Dave, Marco, or one of the others can buy Dan Berger a few drinks and get the inside scoop.  His was the only ID I could find inside the binaries:

evil@mars:~/steam/linux32$ strings * | grep 'home/VALVE' | grep -v rackadmin
/home/VALVE/dberger/P4Clients/steam2_main/Projects/GazelleProto/Client/Engine/../../../Common/Logging/Src/Log.cpp
/home/VALVE/dberger/P4Clients/steam2_main/Projects/GazelleProto/Client/Engine/../../../Common/Misc/BlobRegistry.cpp
/home/VALVE/dberger/P4Clients/steam2_main/Projects/GazelleProto/Client/Engine/../../../Common/Misc/ConfigDatabase.cpp

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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I'm as giddy as a school girl right now.

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3vi1 replied on Sat, Apr 24 2010 10:35 AM

Yeah, I'm pretty psyched too.  Unfortunately, there's no way to tell if this is just a pet project of one of the devs, or if there's a set internal direction to eventually support the Linux desktop.  I guess we won't really know until Valve makes an announcement.

Working on Linux support now might be a good idea simply because there are a growing number of Linux-powered mobile devices that they might want to target for potential ports.

Valve's the one company that might already know how many potential Linux sales they have.  When people use Wine, CrossOver or Cedega to play their games, and click 'allow' on the poll that gathers hardware statistics, Valve can tell you're actually using Linux because of the uniquely named virtual audio devices.  They probably also know that they'd get even more players if the games ran natively, because some people either don't know about Wine - or run into other issues trying to use it.

Hey Valve:  Bring Source to Linux, even in an 'unsupported' fashion, and I'll be happy to spend time helping forum users with issues!

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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Diddo. I would love to see it. I run steam and many of the games ok under wine, but I would love to see a native client. Even if no one other companies push games I would love to play source games native. That's what I spend 90% of my gaming time playing anyway.

I installed the RC of Ubuntu 10.04 last night. Have not done much with it, but update it and download TF2. But check out the new default steam window in the background and the default new Ubuntu theme.

http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/606/screenshotqw.png Full size

 

It's a match made in heaven.

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