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Steam Beta for Ubuntu May Arrive in October

By - Source: PC Gamer | B 23 comments

Signs are pointing to an October release of the Steam beta for Ubuntu.

PC Gamer and several other sources believe that Valve Software plans to release Steam for Linux sometime in October. The theory is based on a mention of the Linux client in the Steam database records which was spotted last week. The official Linux tag has also now appeared as a search option for Steam Greenlight titles.

According to reports, the Linux client will likely arrive in beta form sometime just before Microsoft launches Windows 8 on October 26. Currently Steam Greenlight is listing a large number of games for the Linux client including Major Mayhem, Blue Libra, and even Postal 2. Left 4 Dead 2 and a handful of other unannounced AAA titles are also expected to launch with the beta.

"Left 4 Dead 2 is running at 315 FPS on Linux," Valve said at the beginning of August. "That the Linux version runs faster than the Windows version (270.6) seems a little counter-intuitive, given the greater amount of time we have spent on the Windows version. However, it does speak to the underlying efficiency of the kernel and OpenGL. Interestingly, in the process of working with hardware vendors we also sped up the OpenGL implementation on Windows. Left 4 Dead 2 is now running at 303.4 FPS with that configuration."

Valve said earlier this summer that the goal of the Steam Linux client project is to produce a fully-featured Steam client running on Ubuntu 12.04. "We’ve made good progress this year and now have the Steam client running on Ubuntu with all major features available," the company added back in July. "We’re still giving attention and effort to minor features but it’s a good experience at the moment. In the near future, we will be setting up an internal beta focusing on the auto-update experience and compatibility testing."

Valve chose Ubuntu because working with a single distribution is critical when experimenting with the possibility of porting over to Linux – it reduces the variability of the testing space and makes early iteration easier and faster. Ubuntu is also a popular distribution and has recognition with the general gaming and developer communities.

"This doesn’t mean that Ubuntu will be the only distribution we support. Based on the success of our efforts around Ubuntu, we will look at supporting other distributions in the future," Valve said.

 

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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    joytech22 , September 14, 2012 3:18 AM
    Yes! YES! OH MY GOD YES!

    Maybe one day I will have Ubuntu as my full-time OS. Maybe one day...
    First leap is migration which will be a significant step (considering not all of my applications have an equivalent for Linux).
Other Comments
  • 7 Hide
    Parsian , September 14, 2012 3:18 AM
    I absolutely love Valve. I just hope other legends of PC gaming worked more cooperatively and actively in promoting the form factor.
  • 10 Hide
    joytech22 , September 14, 2012 3:18 AM
    Yes! YES! OH MY GOD YES!

    Maybe one day I will have Ubuntu as my full-time OS. Maybe one day...
    First leap is migration which will be a significant step (considering not all of my applications have an equivalent for Linux).
  • 6 Hide
    itookmypills , September 14, 2012 3:29 AM
    I moved to linux 3 years ago and I haven't looked back. Maybe one day, I will not have a Windows hdd/partition sitting in my computer.
  • 0 Hide
    AidanJC , September 14, 2012 5:02 AM
    Could of sworn source games on Windows were capped at 300 FPS =\
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , September 14, 2012 6:07 AM
    By Postal 2, do you mean Portal 2?
  • 5 Hide
    atikkur , September 14, 2012 6:08 AM
    this is the beginning of new era.. one small step of a man, one giant leap of a mankind...
  • -5 Hide
    damianrobertjones , September 14, 2012 8:28 AM
    I moved to Windows 3 years ago and I haven't looked back. Maybe one day, I will not have a Linux hdd/partition sitting in Hyper-v.

  • 3 Hide
    silverblue , September 14, 2012 10:21 AM
    I've been thinking of tinkering around with Ubuntu... perhaps this is another reason to do so?
  • 1 Hide
    Steveymoo , September 14, 2012 10:53 AM
    Alright, time for thousands of l33t windows gamers to try and install Ubuntu, figure out they can't get video drivers working correctly, and limp back home to the comfort of windows.

    Max respect to Valve though, I will be giving this a go when it's released..
  • 3 Hide
    master_chen , September 14, 2012 11:14 AM
    Cool. Even though I won't move to Ubuntu (from my GODLIKE Archie), I'll definitely try this.
  • 6 Hide
    crewton , September 14, 2012 12:11 PM
    The only reason I have windows is to game. If steam fixes that then so long windows!
  • 3 Hide
    djscribbles , September 14, 2012 12:20 PM
    SteveymooAlright, time for thousands of l33t windows gamers to try and install Ubuntu, figure out they can't get video drivers working correctly, and limp back home to the comfort of windows.Max respect to Valve though, I will be giving this a go when it's released..


    Linux help forums around the world are going to explode
  • 0 Hide
    master_chen , September 14, 2012 1:04 PM
    crewtonThe only reason I have windows is to game. If steam fixes that then so long windows!

    It'll probably take at least 5 years IN THE BEST CASE to turn Linux into a platform that can compete with Windows on a "video game compatibility" term. Because using Steam on Linux helps significantly, but it does NOT fix the problem completely.
    What I'm trying to say, is basically: there are thousands of video games out there, of these many thousands Steam supports only, like what, 30~50%? That's NOT good enough at all, you can't buy ANY PC game you want, through Steam, even though it's title selection is pretty massive, Steam STILL has a very long way to go.
    And my main point is - as long as Steam won't be able to offer at least 98% of entire PC video game base (including even the most oldest and obscure titles), there won't be a massive migration to Linux from Windows, because Windows offers that video game compatibility and selection opportunity from the very beginning.
  • 1 Hide
    xaephod , September 14, 2012 2:30 PM
    Guild War 2 on Linux? Please.
  • 2 Hide
    itookmypills , September 14, 2012 2:31 PM
    SteveymooAlright, time for thousands of l33t windows gamers to try and install Ubuntu, figure out they can't get video drivers working correctly, and limp back home to the comfort of windows.Max respect to Valve though, I will be giving this a go when it's released..


    Most drivers install automatically, or an "Additional Drivers" app starts up notifying you that you have drivers available. Alternatively, AMD and NVIDIA both have driver install programs that make it really easy to install.
  • 0 Hide
    itookmypills , September 14, 2012 2:33 PM
    master_chenIt'll probably take at least 5 years IN THE BEST CASE to turn Linux into a platform that can compete with Windows on a "video game compatibility" term. Because using Steam on Linux helps significantly, but it does NOT fix the problem completely.What I'm trying to say, is basically: there are thousands of video games out there, of these many thousands Steam supports only, like what, 30~50%? That's NOT good enough at all, you can't buy ANY PC game you want, through Steam, even though it's title selection is pretty massive, Steam STILL has a very long way to go.And my main point is - as long as Steam won't be able to offer at least 98% of entire PC video game base (including even the most oldest and obscure titles), there won't be a massive migration to Linux from Windows, because Windows offers that video game compatibility and selection opportunity from the very beginning.


    It would be great if gaming was browser based. Browser based gaming is getting closer, and I bet Microsoft is dreading that day.
  • 0 Hide
    master_chen , September 14, 2012 2:35 PM
    itookmypillsIt would be great if gaming was browser based.

    On-Live, Gaikai...
  • 0 Hide
    itookmypills , September 14, 2012 2:39 PM
    master_chenOn-Live, Gaikai...


    Locally executed code, not streaming.
  • 1 Hide
    phate , September 14, 2012 6:51 PM
    SteveymooAlright, time for thousands of l33t windows gamers to try and install Ubuntu, figure out they can't get video drivers working correctly, and limp back home to the comfort of windows.Max respect to Valve though, I will be giving this a go when it's released..


    Hi my names Steveymoo and I'm stuck in 2003, please send help.
  • 0 Hide
    TuffLittleUnit , September 14, 2012 8:16 PM
    Hmmm ... not sure I really fancy a return to the days of technical jiggery pokery to get a game to run. Quite often optimising AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS so that you could run the game with your SoundBlaster, mouse and joystick was more satisfying than completing the game. Win7 is an awesome platform when you sit back and look objectively at what it provides.
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