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SteamOS Will Be Available For Download On December 13 211

Posted by Soulskill
from the year-of-linux-on-the-steambox dept.
sfcrazy writes "Valve Software, creator of Half-Life and Left 4 Dead, has announced that SteamOS will be available for public download on December 13. That's the day when the company will start shipping Steam Machines and Steam Controllers to the 300 selected beta participants. The company said, 'SteamOS will be made available when the prototype hardware ships. It will be downloadable by individual users and commercial OEMs. (But unless you're an intrepid Linux hacker already, we're going to recommend that you wait until later in 2014 to try it out.)"
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SteamOS Will Be Available For Download On December 13

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  • by jeek (37349) <jeek@je[ ]net ['ek.' in gap]> on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @06:53PM (#45665081) Homepage

    Kind of want to try this in Virtualbox.

  • Are they providing a sensible version of GNOME? I very want to shuck Ubuntu, and this would let me have my Steam games *and* a usable desktop system.

    (I know there are GNOME alternatives, but I'm hoping for the easy way out.)

    • Mint comes with multiple window managers, personally I like cinnamon. But anyway you can install it yourself on your ubuntu box, it is easy.

    • Re:GNOME? (Score:5, Informative)

      by GreatDrok (684119) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @07:15PM (#45665371) Journal

      "Are they providing a sensible version of GNOME? I very want to shuck Ubuntu, and this would let me have my Steam games *and* a usable desktop system."

      This isn't the Linux you're looking for. This is stripped down and intended to run Steam in Big Picture mode all the time. No desktop at all. The standard Steam client on a Linux system is what you're looking for.

      Personally, I shy away from the bleeding edge Linux systems and stick with CentOS.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        "Personally, I shy away from X and stick with Z."

        everyone has an opinion. ::yawn::

      • by Jartan (219704)

        This is stripped down and intended to run Steam in Big Picture mode all the time. No desktop at all.

        Do you have a source on this? Steam sells apps so this sounds unlikely.

        • Re:GNOME? (Score:5, Informative)

          by RoboJ1M (992925) on Thursday December 12, 2013 @06:00AM (#45668853)

          http://www.engadget.com/2013/11/04/valve-steam-machine-hands-on/ [engadget.com]

          "Anyone who uses Steam's Big Picture Mode is already intimately acquainted with SteamOS, as they're very similar. SteamOS looks and acts like Big Picture Mode, except it's the basis for the entire hardware system. It's controller-friendly and easy to navigate. The same Steam splash page washes across the screen when it launches, and the same tile-based layout of games and the Steam store are visible at launch. As promised, the OS is built on Linux (not based on Ubuntu, we're told, but entirely custom), though you'd never know it as the only interactive layer is all Steam.

          That means it also has the limitations of Steam: SteamOS is not the replacement for Windows 8 you've been waiting for. Beyond basics like browsing the web, there's little in the way of standard OS functions."

          • Taking bets on how long it takes people to fork SteamOS into SteamBoatOS with full desktop and other crap...

            I'm betting 45 seconds.

    • by exomondo (1725132)
      You know you can just use a 'sensible version of GNOME' on Ubuntu if you want right? It's really easy [ubuntugeek.com].
  • by crioca (1394491) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @06:56PM (#45665123)
    There's been a lot of hype and misconceptions about SteamOS within the gaming community especially. SteamOS isn't a desktop OS, it's a console OS and needs to be understood as such. It won't be a whole lot of use unless you're planning to set up a PC for use as a console.
    • by Dega704 (1454673)
      Indeed. People really ought to look at it as a gaming equivalent of XBMC or something along those lines.
    • ...if you're doing Linux gamedev or are already using Steam on Linux...you may well be ready for that.

      Me?

      BRING IT

      • ...if you're doing Linux gamedev or are already using Steam on Linux...you may well be ready for that.

        Me?

        BRING IT

        If you're serious about gaming on Linux, you're probably already doing that, actually... with a standard system. Unless you weren't actually planning on hooking it up to a TV in the first place (I wasn't).

        I can state, for example, that my USB XBoX controller works perfectly on Linux, and is supported by all but one or two of the games I have bought on Steam for Linux. It also works in Steam itself, for Big Picture mode. I also know for a fact that the HDMI out on my desktop/gaming system supports audio and

        • by tepples (727027)

          I also know for a fact that the HDMI out on my desktop/gaming system supports audio and 1080p to the TV. From there it's really trivial to set a desktop up [...] and put it on a TV.

          I've said this on Slashdot for years. But often, I've been told that the majority are unwilling to build or buy a second computer to dedicate to the TV. Whether computers that ship with SteamOS will change this is still unknown, but OUYA (an Android/Linux-based game console) hasn't made much of a dent.

          • by Anonymous Coward

            If you use a normal PC, nothing but inertia prevents the system from dual booting steamos and the desktop of your choice.

            If anything, running steamos beside a desktop linux with a shared /home would offer a great many perks.

            Just pick a default, and roll with it. When you want the other, just press one of the arrow keys on the grub(or whatever loader you like best) menu, then press enter.

            The purpose of steamos is not to replace the desktop; it is to replace a dedicated windows install, that exists only to pl

            • by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @10:31PM (#45667093) Homepage Journal

              If you use a normal PC, nothing but inertia prevents the system from dual booting steamos and the desktop of your choice.

              And it is inertia that makes it so inconvenient. I mean this literally [wikipedia.org]: a desktop computer at rest stays at rest unless acted on by an outside force, such as by being carried into another room. Most people don't want to have to move a desktop computer from the desk to the TV to play a game and then move it back to surf the web.

              my Mint running i7 in the living room

              You happen to have your computer desk in your living room. Not everybody else does. Some people keep the computer desk in another room in order to preserve some level of peace and quiet.

      • by DrXym (126579)
        I expect Linux is largely an irrelevance here since most of the games are going to be streaming from somewhere else. Of course Valve might encourage game devs to port their game to Linux to benefit from cheaper hosting fees if they release a cloud based platform and that might trickle down to native versions of those same apps.
  • Gaming controllers (Score:5, Informative)

    by jones_supa (887896) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @07:07PM (#45665267)
    I browse Linux commit logs every now and then and these days there are surprisingly many various game controller patches flowing in. Good.
    • by emj (15659)

      Yes... e.g. the accelerometers in laptops are considered as a joystick, the reason for this is not clear to me,

      • by WrecklessSandwich (1000139) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @07:47PM (#45665715)
        Doesn't make sense for a laptop, but it's a common paradigm on mobile devices. There's flight sims etc. for Android/iOS where you steer by tilting your device like a little kid making racecar noises.
      • by higuita (129722)

        something that reports 3 axis movement... it looks just like a joystick to me! :)

        forget about the name, joystick is the first and main 3 axis mapping device and never change the name with other things start to also do 3 axis mapping.

  • by Dekonega (1606763) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @07:39PM (#45665647)

    The beta is U.S. Only, and that's a shame. I was hoping for the world wide beta test. But I guess they had their reasons. But at least the SteamOS will be downloadable so I can build my own device. I probably won't be investing too much time or money into it. If I buy Antec ISK300-150 and make a ~400€ AMD APU powered indie game device it would probably serve its duty well (and afterwards be a nice tiny server box). You people can probably recommend something better if this idea seems bad. Or share suggestions for others to read.

    • If you have a laptop I would try it out on it first before sinking money in. Laptops normally have HDMI and if you have a wired xbox 360 controller you are set.
    • The beta is U.S. Only, and that's a shame.

      What really bothered me was that I wanted to be part of the beta (I seem to participate in lots of beta stuff) but unfortunately to be considered you had to play a game for 10 minutes with a controller or something like that to get the Steam badge that would throw you in the candidate pool.

      Unfortunately I did not have a controller that I could get to work with my PC and I couldn't get the PS3 controller I had on hand to communicate with my PC.

      So I'm kinda bummed out about that.

      • If you weren't able to pass the almost non-existent qualifications for the beta then you probably aren't good beta tester material. Beta testing requires effort, perseverance, and the ability to solve problems and think intuitively about odd situations.

    • by Krneki (1192201)

      Or you can buy a used Intel CPU and used dedicated GPU and it will blow the poor APU away.

  • I'm there!!! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BLToday (1777712) on Wednesday December 11, 2013 @08:41PM (#45666279)

    No, seriously. I can totally justify spending around $350 for a HTPC with gaming to experiment with. Cheaper than my wife's purse.
    $150 - AMD A10-6800K (with mobo over at Microcenter). Yes, I know Intel is faster and it's not the fastest GPU either but for $150 it's hard to beat the combo.
    $80 - 8GB of RAM
    $100 - 3TB hard drive
    and I have a bunch of old ATX cases and power supply.

    It's Linux, if I don't like it I can always put something else on like Mint.

    • by Mashiki (184564)

      Pft filthly lies. Everyone knows that it costs $4000 to build a gaming rig. /console fanboys

      • Most of the PC enthusiast/gaming magazines have what they call their "baseline" or "minimal" machines at around the $1300 level.

        So yes, while there are guys who claim they game on a $600 machine, they're probably not playing at the high settings that most PC gamers claim are the reason to play on the PC in the first place.

        Besides, for $1300 you can buy a PS3 and $1000 worth of games. I've often made the joke that PC gamers play their LoL and de_dust over and over because they spent so much on their hardwar

        • by 0123456 (636235)

          Most of the PC enthusiast/gaming magazines have what they call their "baseline" or "minimal" machines at around the $1300 level.

          Spending $1300 to build a 'minimal' gaming machine. Ha-ha. You're funny.

        • by Mashiki (184564)

          Most of the PC enthusiast/gaming magazines have what they call their "baseline" or "minimal" machines at around the $1300 level.

          Try about half of that. Or right around the cost of the "next gen" consoles, and will still be more powerful.

    • by skine (1524819)

      Personally, I've been saving parts from old computers I've built for years with the intention of building a HTPC.

      Using this year's Christmas presents, I'll finally have enough parts to build one. So, for me, Valve has perfect timing.

    • by Krneki (1192201)

      A used Intel CPU and dedicated GPU is way faster then any AMD APU while still costing the same.

  • Did they pick that out or did it just fall that way.

  • by Lawrence_Bird (67278) on Thursday December 12, 2013 @11:44AM (#45670869) Homepage

    a problem. I must have missed people hating on their Xbox, Playstation, Wii and more generally pc's.

It is better to give than to lend, and it costs about the same.

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