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Valve Releases SteamVR For Linux (gamingonlinux.com) 61

New submitter JustNiz quotes a report from GamingOnLinux: Valve has launched SteamVR for Linux officially in beta form and they are keen to stress that this is a development release. You will need to run the latest Steam Beta Client for it to work at all, so be sure to opt-in if you want to play around with it. VR on Linux will exclusively use Vulkan, so it's going to be a pretty good push for Vulkan if VR becomes more popular. Those who are interested can head over to GitHub for more information.
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Valve Releases SteamVR For Linux

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    I think it's awesome that they're focusing on linux development, but I'm still waiting for a standalone installer/updater for SteamVR so I don't have to install Steam in order to use the OpenVR API.

    Could we please have that soon Valve?

  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Thursday February 23, 2017 @07:27PM (#53920965)

    When are we going to get a Linux por-OOH MY GOD!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The more quality gaming available on Linux, the less the dependency on Windows, steam seems to be making good headway.

  • The 1% of Linux users among the 1% of gamers currently playing VR. I think that's about 7 people tops.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It's actually a smart idea. If VR takes off this time around then they are getting it on Linux at square one, where there is much more even footing against Windows since Windows also doesn't have much in the way of VR. This could be the "killer app" that eventually popularises Linux.

      • Not to mention that Valve knows well enough that Microsoft is working hard to throw as many obstacles between their feet to make Steam as unusable as possible in Windows to promote their own game store.

        Valve, of all companies on the planet, has a VERY good reason to push for full blown Linux support in gaming. And that's basically what Linux needs if it wants to take off.

        Because, face it: What reason does Joe Average still have to use Windows? Internet? Nope. Every major browser, mail system, video player y

        • by AC-x ( 735297 )

          Not to mention that Valve knows well enough that Microsoft is working hard to throw as many obstacles between their feet to make Steam as unusable as possible in Windows to promote their own game store.

          I know people like Sweeney have claimed that Microsoft "will" break Steam to promote their own store, but is there actually any evidence that they are doing so?

        • by Kjella ( 173770 )

          Not to mention that Valve knows well enough that Microsoft is working hard to throw as many obstacles between their feet to make Steam as unusable as possible in Windows to promote their own game store. Valve, of all companies on the planet, has a VERY good reason to push for full blown Linux support in gaming. And that's basically what Linux needs if it wants to take off.

          Well Microsoft doesn't want to lose the Windows users to Linux and Valve doesn't want to lose the Windows gamers to the Microsoft store, so I'd say their Linux support is mixed. They want to keep Linux as a credible threat so Microsoft doesn't play dirty and that whole SteamOS and Steam Machines play was part of that, but they don't really want an all out war and neither would Microsoft. Because many gamers would stay on Windows and Valve would lose, but also many Windows users would migrate to Linux and Mi

    • The 1% of Linux users among the 1% of gamers currently playing VR. I think that's about 7 people tops.

      As a proponent of both Linux and VR, I am sadly going to have to say that I'll be staying away from that unholy combo.

      VR is fledgling technology that struggles to be quite what everyone wants it to be, supported by an established platform with carefully optimised drivers.

      Linux is an established technology in everything but mainstream gaming, with graphics drivers that struggle to perform as well as their windows counterparts.

      Jamming the two together? Why yes, I do like chilli powder in my eyes. It'll hurt

    • by e r ( 2847683 ) on Thursday February 23, 2017 @08:18PM (#53921225)
      (disclaimer: I run Ubuntu 16.04 on all three of the computers that I use-- two at home and one at work)

      Speak of the devil: I just logged into Steam and it gave me the hardware survey [steampowered.com].
      Linux is about 0.8% of the machines running Steam.

      It's kind of a chicken-and-the-egg problem.
      But the game industry, and Valve in particular, are in a difficult spot as Microsoft moves to force everyone to go through their app store.

      I, for one, applaud Valve for bringing awesome games (about 80% of my Steam library runs natively on Linux) and great technology to Linux.
      Hitman just released for Linux. Deus Ex came out for Linux not too long ago. The Total War series runs very well. XCOM, XCOM 2, The Witcher 2, Torchlight, Talos Principle, Stellaris, Rocket League and so on and so on...
      I have more and better games than I have time to play. Thanks, Valve.

      Neither I nor anyone else can twist your arm to switch to Linux-- just don't complain when Microsoft puts ads on your desktop, tracks your every move, forces updates down your throat whether you want them or not, and eventually moves to make you pay a subscription just to use your computer.
      • But the game industry, and Valve in particular, are in a difficult spot as Microsoft moves to force everyone to go through their app store.

        No one except a few outspoken crazies in the game industry believe that's going to happen. Even APPLE hasn't shut down non-store apps. There are simply too many legacy apps that are critical to businesses and/or individuals for MS to kill the Win32 API, and that's what would essentially be required to force this on everyone. Windows' strength is its backwards compatibility and the size and robustness of its 3rd party ecosystem. Windows isn't open-source of course, but it IS still a very open development

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          Computer power makes backwards compatibility just a matter of an additional layer between old and new and old software being more compact means no appreciable speed loss, with that compatibility layer. Everyone knows the big uppercut is coming, Android and of course the Linux distribution that underpins that. M$ huge failure of phones and desktops is creating a software ecology that will spread to the new desktops, without windows. M$ is rapidly becoming the company people love to hate and that is death for

          • I definitely agree that MS made some bad decisions that annoyed a lot of their customers, and that may have pushed a few of them away, but let's be honest here: we still haven't seen any significant shift away from Windows [steampowered.com] in the desktop numbers. Microsoft Windows still dominates at 96%, Mac is an also-ran, hanging in their at ~3% or so, and Linux trails at 1%, like it always has, with even that spread across several popular distros, and dozens of less popular ones.

            For gaming, you're seeing more support fo

            • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

              Total computer installs M$ is destroyed by Linux. That is installs on TVs, Tablets, Phones, Servers and whole range of appliances. M$ is now just hanging in there on the desktop based upon nothing but lock in via applications and existing data and that is real bad, in new markets in only has the Xbone and the Xbone will come under real threat from more and more powerful smart TVs and smart phones. Keep in mind, with smart phones, with portable custom fitted VR glasses (still to hit the market), you have a b

      • I honestly think in the next 5 years or so with computers getting so much better, we will see AAA titles drop for linux at the same time as windows. I used to use linux exclusively. One day valve did some shit to tf2(the main game i play) and cut fps in half. I had to install windows as i had a crappy GPU at the time. I now run a GTX1070 and when i got it, it took me 6 hours to get it working on a fresh ubuntu 16.04 install. pain in the ass. I'm also lazy and haven't setup a virtualization to use my old gpu

    • by JanneM ( 7445 )

      If VR takes off you'll have plenty of other uses besides gaming. Scientific visualizations, vertical applications and whatnot. You'll want to support Linux as an OS just like NVIDIA supports it for GPGPU, workstations and embedded applications. That it gives Linux desktops 3D gaming ability is just a small bonus.

    • by 3vi1 ( 544505 )

      I think you underestimate the number - there were way more than seven of us Linux gamers just developing for the DK1 years back. There are over a 100 vive owners asking Valve to support Linux here: https://github.com/ValveSoftwa... [github.com], and that's just the subset of us that have github accounts and thought it would be a good idea to me-too the issue.

      At any rate, it's the chicken and the egg - there can't be a huge number of Linux VR gamers until the platform is supported.

  • I assume this means the Vive will actually be supported in Linux? I own one and keep telling myself that I'm going to have to switch to Linux for gaming after support for windows 7 dries up. I already use Linux for everything else.

    • I answered my own question: SteamVR needs to be able to access the HTC Vive's USB devices.
      That's a yes!

    • by JustNiz ( 692889 )

      >> I'm going to have to switch to Linux for gaming after support for windows 7 dries up.

      Like you I already use Linux for everythig else, and am looking forward to totally get rid of my windows partition. But I've been like that for at least 10+ years and still he only thing holding me back is the lack Linux versions of the games I want to play. I don't get how the end of support for windows 7 is a good reason to switch though... how does that stop you from continuing to just play games on Windows?

      • I don't think I'm able to give into the shittiness that is 10, I might be able to stomach 8. I imagine support for older Windows versions will dry up when it comes to gaming.

        • by JustNiz ( 692889 )

          No , I mean why don't you just stay on Win7? Even when Microsoft stop supporting it (which just means not getting more patches that most usually just do pointless shit like fix some corporate interface or typos in Ukranian language support or whatever).
          Windows 7 itself won't just suddenly stop working.

  • How about game support? What games can I expect to work with VR on Linux right now?

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