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Debian Ubuntu Games Linux

Valve's Steam License Causes Linux Packaging Concerns 163

New submitter skade88 writes "With the Linux Steam beta giving Ubuntu and its large userbase all the love, other Linux gamers understandably want to be let in on the fun. For the beta, Valve has provided Steam as a Debian package. Many hungry Linux gamers have reported that they have Steam running on their favorite distro, but that still leaves the legal debate. What is the legal threshold needed to get Steam in the repos of your preferred flavor of Linux? Will Valve's one-size-fits-every-OS license be flexible to work on Linux or will it delay the dream of a viable gaming world for Linux? We are so close to bridging the last major hurdle in finally realizing the year of the Linux desktop: Gaming. Lets hope the FOSS community and Valve can play together so we all win."
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Valve's Steam License Causes Linux Packaging Concerns

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  • a non-issue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by X0563511 ( 793323 ) on Friday November 16, 2012 @05:36PM (#42006265) Homepage Journal

    Seriously, this is not an issue.

    Valve wants to make it easy? Run a repo, and provide instructions for using it.

    Valve wants to make it only moderately difficult for newbies? Provide package files and leave it at that.

  • by dgharmon ( 2564621 ) on Friday November 16, 2012 @05:37PM (#42006281) Homepage
    Nothing to see here , moving on ...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 16, 2012 @06:01PM (#42006611)

    The thing they are packaging is just a script that downloads the real steam binary. You know, exactly like with flashplugin-installer, which has a similar license. This is a non-issue. Put it in non-free.

  • by mfearby ( 1653 ) on Friday November 16, 2012 @06:12PM (#42006759) Homepage

    It happens every so often around here that someone will claim X as the final hurdle to "finally realizing the year of the Linux desktop", and if you think that packaging Steam is that last cab off the rank, you are sorely mistaken. What about the ruination of a good desktop environment (GNOME), and the torture that getting a video card properly working can be? Or the cacophony of sound libraries that mean I can't get Skype to pick up my microphone? Or the many mail programs that *should* be able to import/export each other's databases yet, to this day, still manage to be a PITA (Kontact!).

    I've been using Linux full time for 5 years (since the Windows Vista calamity) and it wasn't until Ubuntu ruined their distro with Unity that I had to hop to another one (Debian Squeeze and now openSUSE due to a new mobo install, and to get support for the LAN on same I wasn't prepared to upgrade to Sid). openSUSE 12.2 hasn't turned out to be as stable as I had hoped, so my Mac Mini should be delivered on Monday (TNT tracking currently has it in transit from Hong Kong :-) And installing and configuring Oracle Java is a nightmare. Just when you think you've found the right HOWTO to get it installed, you find that there's another way, and the way you were using was perhaps ill-advised. Yes, this isn't Linux's fault but Java is a necessity for some people, and the free Java doesn't quite cut it for some apps (CrashPlan, for example). It used to be that there were non-free repos in Ubuntu that added all these things nicely, but these seem to be a thing of the past nowadays for most distros.

    Until Linux learns to cope with the installation/addition of other software that doesn't live up to its high and mighty standards, and stops fragmenting its core GUIs and programs, the much prophesied "year of Linux on the desktop" is NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN! And if you think that people are going to accept a totally stripped-bare 100% pure distro the likes of which Richard Stallman would use, then it's game over (though it's probably been game over for years, now).

  • Re:a non-issue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LoRdTAW ( 99712 ) on Friday November 16, 2012 @06:31PM (#42007033)


    I don't see Microsoft or Apple worrying how they will distribute Steam, because they don't*. I don't see why browsing to and downloading the client for your OS of choice should be any different than on Windows or Mac OS. The belief that everything should be in the repos is silly.

    *Even if they were to make Steam available through their app stores its still the publishers responsibility to submit the app for distribution.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 16, 2012 @10:38PM (#42009327)

    Not exactly. Debian packages stuff like this as a wrapper. Examples are the Microsoft fonts and Flash. The wrapper knows where to download the actual package from, and may perform some extra work after extraction to make the installation more compatible with Debian, but the package itself does not contain the proprietary files.

    It would be a little different here, given that the proprietary data is already packaged, but in principle it's the same.

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