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Valve Releases Debian-Based SteamOS Beta

timothy posted about 9 months ago | from the actually-sounds-pretty-cool dept.

Debian 211

An anonymous reader writes that, as promised, "Valve has put out their first SteamOS Linux operating system beta. SteamOS 1.0 'Alchemist' Beta is forked from Debian Wheezy and features its own graphics compositor along with other changes. Right now SteamOS 1.0 is only compatible with NVIDIA graphics cards and uses NVIDIA's closed-source Linux driver. SteamOS can be downloaded from here, but the server seems to be offline under the pressure."

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Torrent (5, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45686317)

An alternate submission [slashdot.org] links to another article about the use of a Debian base system [muktware.com] as well as an unofficial torrent [steamdb.info] .

Re:Torrent (1)

cusco (717999) | about 9 months ago | (#45686767)

Slashdotted even before the story hits SlashDot?

Re:Torrent (1)

gangien (151940) | about 9 months ago | (#45687403)

do sites even get /.ed anymore?

Re:Torrent (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687445)

Not really, no. Usually by the time Slashdot runs a story these days it's been on other, more popular sites for a week for more.

Re:Torrent (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686957)

Torrents are for sweaty people.

Steem (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686335)

My body is ready

Debian! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686339)

The one distro to rule them all!

Re:Debian! (3, Funny)

gagol (583737) | about 9 months ago | (#45686509)

Amen brother.

Re:Debian! (4, Insightful)

sayfawa (1099071) | about 9 months ago | (#45686605)

Amen, Amen. Based on what people in the know said, I was really starting to think that this would be some tivo-like garbage. So glad it's going to be a traditional distro. And the fact that it's Debian-based; icing on the cake.

Re:Debian! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687385)

Also, Valve is telling developers to develop for a specific open-source runtime environment, rather than the OS: https://github.com/ValveSoftware/steam-runtime

You could in theory run Steam and the games on any Linux on which you can get the runtime set up.

Re: Debian! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686771)

[insert] ***** !!! IT IS HAPPENING !!! ***** [/insert] flashing Ron Paul fun banner

Debian is now the "distro franca" of Linux (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686627)

Although Debian is not one of my desktop distros (which are Gentoo and NixOS), I recognize that it has become the most reliable and best supported distro with the largest community and the most respected pedigree. It's also the most common base or parent for other distros like Ubuntu, so clearly it has the largest slice of the pie. And here's a little secret that is no secret: it just works.

I use it occasionally on little ARM boards like the awesome BeagleBone Black, where you have to overwrite the pile of junk Angstrom distro that comes on the board out of the box. Debian is totally painless and just works in that role. If you need a replacement distro that you can depend on, Debian never disappoints.

It's the "distro franca" of Linux, the GOTO choice for those who don't like pain.

Debian has ALWAYS been the top distro. (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686835)

What you describe is nothing new. It's something that smart people knew very well by 1994. Debian is indisputably the best Linux distribution around in every practical measure, and that has been the case for years now.

It is the distro with the best packaging system. It is the distro with the best variety of packages. It is the distro with the best package maintainers. It is the distro with the best release practices. It is the distro with the best community. It is the distro with the best reliability. It is the distro with the best stability. It is the distro with the best cutting-edge version. It is the distro with the best experience in a huge range of usage scenarios.

As far as general-purpose distros go, there's really no reason to even consider any of the others. In my opinion, they're all inferior to Debian in one or more ways. The sensible thing to do is to just use Debian, and get the best experience right away.

Re:Debian has ALWAYS been the top distro. (0)

fisted (2295862) | about 9 months ago | (#45687265)

Wow you're one fanboy. half your claims are wrong.

When wasn't it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687069)

No, really... are you new to this Linux thing?

Re:Debian! (4, Interesting)

aaronb1138 (2035478) | about 9 months ago | (#45686951)

Valve forked the graphics subsystem. Keep forking and letting everyone be their own little fiefdom of incompatibility Linux... That's the way to the desktop (set top?)

Re:Debian! (4, Insightful)

jd (1658) | about 9 months ago | (#45687271)

For a console system, you need sprites, high-speed polygon placement, built-in shaders and deadline-based updates (it has to be damn smooth, if it's going to compete with the alternatives).

What you do not need are windows (beyond picture-in-picture), client-server overheads (consoles aren't likely to be connected to X terminals in a different room, city or country, unless you're using a VERY big monitor), memory overheads from components never used in this context, or support for multiple users with one or more displays each on a single console.

Now, I haven't inspected the code yet, so can't say how far they've gone. Nor do I know if anyone still works on KGI or GGI, although those would be far closer to console requirements than X.

(Hey, I love X, I actually have made a lot of use of redirecting screens several hundred miles for diagnostic purposes, I think there is a lot of life in the system yet, but vanilla X is totally wrong for consoles and even modded X won't give the experience console addicts crave.)

Besides, Valve isn't a desktop flavour. If you want a desktop flavour, one that wows desktop users (just as the desktop market starts dying horribly, it's anguished cry half-drowned in the blood and tabletness flowing forth like a monstrous, misshapen river) then you need to make one.

Re:Debian! (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 months ago | (#45687389)

the games wouldn't be compiled against this new compositor, afaik. too much work in that. just opengl, but this is for the steam portion of it. I'm not so sure it makes any difference that they went this route vs. doing it in x and memory overhead is neglible from that anyways.

Re:Debian! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#45687621)

For a console system, you need sprites, high-speed polygon placement, built-in shaders and deadline-based updates (it has to be damn smooth, if it's going to compete with the alternatives).

Sure, you do need all of those things.

What you do not need are windows (beyond picture-in-picture), client-server overheads (consoles aren't likely to be connected to X terminals in a different room, city or country, unless you're using a VERY big monitor), memory overheads from components never used in this context, or support for multiple users with one or more displays each on a single console.

Memory is cheap now, and you definitely need support for windows for all kinds of features. You don't need the rest but it doesn't weigh much by modern standards.

Re:Debian! (4, Informative)

Microlith (54737) | about 9 months ago | (#45687379)

I'll wager that this compositor is temporary until Debian ships Wayland and Nvidia has drivers that work with it. This thing is still running Xorg, just using a customized compositor.

Re:Debian! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687547)

Bingo.

Imagine if they had chosen Shuttleworth's os (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | about 9 months ago | (#45687583)

Imagine if they had chosen Shuttleworth's os. Now they still support his os, but also many more, apart from itself.

Hail Debian, the mothership.

TORRENTS! (4, Insightful)

stonebit (2776195) | about 9 months ago | (#45686347)

When will the clods learn... need to share something big to a lot of people? TORRENT!

Graphics Cards (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686361)

No love for Radeon :(

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

symbolset (646467) | about 9 months ago | (#45686421)

Any excuse for a trip to Newegg. It seems GPUs have come a long way since I last bought one.

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about 9 months ago | (#45686579)

Any excuse for a trip to Newegg. It seems GPUs have come a long way since I last bought one.

Oh shoot, I have a Nvidia EVGA GTX-570; It's outdated now if the running beta of BF4 counts.
Sadly they still want the same price for one (no SLI in my future).

Re:Graphics Cards (4, Funny)

SuperTechnoNerd (964528) | about 9 months ago | (#45686443)

Like Linus Torvalds said.
NVIDIA, Fuck You! [youtube.com]

Re: Graphics Cards (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686791)

Linus better show support to SteamOS, actually, thinking about it, Gabe should hire Linus as an evangelist for SteamOS, even a few months would be worthy, that would make AMD and nVidia take notice.

Re:Graphics Cards (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686541)

ATI/AMD sucks, never again

Re:Graphics Cards (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686591)

fuck their pos drivers. they make nvidia's look like perfection (even though they're not) by comparison. On windows they're bad enough, but on linux? holy fuck are they fucked.

Re:Graphics Cards (3, Insightful)

gman003 (1693318) | about 9 months ago | (#45686691)

It's a very early release. I'm not surprised they decided to limit it to just one set of drivers, and Nvidia's drivers, while not that great in an absolute sense, are in a much better state than AMD's (and Intel's hardware just isn't sufficient for gaming).

I really do hope they get support in soon, though I suppose that depends more on AMD than on Valve. I'm not particular to either vendor - both Kepler and GCN are pretty good hardware, and they're each doing some very interesting things in the software side.

PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (2)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45686769)

and Intel's hardware just isn't sufficient for gaming

An Anandtech review [anandtech.com] points out that the integrated GPU in Ivy Bridge (previous generation Intel Core) runs Skyrim playably: 46 fps at 720p. From what I've read about the PS3 port of Skyrim, the PS3 doesn't do much better. And because indie PC games tend to be lower budget, they also tend to be lower detail, which means they just might work on Intel.

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (2)

vux984 (928602) | about 9 months ago | (#45686779)

And because indie PC games tend to be lower budget, they also tend to be lower detail, which means they just might work on Intel.

Unfortunately they also tend to be MUCH less optimized.

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (3, Interesting)

gman003 (1693318) | about 9 months ago | (#45686953)

For my purposes (and, I suspect, most others') there is a difference between "sufficient for gaming" and "able to run certain games". Any computer can run games - Doom has been ported to damn near every 32-bit system, and many indie games may as well list requirements as "CPU: Yes".

I'm not denying that you can play a respectable number of games on a recent Intel GPU. But it is enough of a restriction that you have to be aware of your hardware limits when purchasing games.

Skyrim, incidentally, is not a very good example. It scales rather well to low-end hardware, especially on the GPU (it is less forgiving of CPU or RAM weaknesses). Looking at the same review, Battlefield 3, at minimum settings, 768p, runs at 37fps, which for a shooter is essentially unplayable. Civilization V was down to 15-20fps at low settings - not even remotely smooth, although I suppose since it's a turn-based game you could technically call it playable.

Don't get me wrong - Intel is improving quickly, and they're already good enough that SteamOS needs to support them eventually. They're already good enough for occasional gamers. But they are not something purchased by anyone who considers "gaming" a primary concern - and SteamOS is purely aimed at gaming. If you're installing an OS that boots into a game menu, you're already in the gaming niche.

That said, one of SteamOS's niches is as a game streaming box. Have a big, beefy (coughWindows-runningcough) box sitting elsewhere in your house, streamed to a small SteamOS box hooked up to your TV and controller. This is right up the alley for an Intel GPU, and I suspect this setup could become a primary use for SteamOS.

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (1)

Hadlock (143607) | about 9 months ago | (#45687211)

Most any game under $25 on steam will run on an ivy bridge laptop without a fancy/expensive/hot graphics card. The number of vidya games that require a non-intel graphics card is pretty small unless all you play is console ports. Even console ports like "mark of the ninja" run at native 30fps in native 720p resolution on Ivy Bridge laptops. Any game made before ~2009 will run just fine on an ivy bridge laptop.

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 9 months ago | (#45687427)

Any game made before ~2009 will run just fine on an ivy bridge laptop.

Saying that just days before 2014. Rather like saying pretty much anything made in 2000 will run a game from 1995. ;)

Granted the advancement of tech hasn't been quite that dramatic lately, but 5 years is multiple generations on the desktop.

Most any game under $25 on steam will run on an ivy bridge laptop without a fancy/expensive/hot graphics card.

meh... I agree they don't need one that's fancy or expensive, but "Intel integrated" is often still pretty awful. Even indie games suffer, due to being poorly optimized, and a number of indie games I've played have had much higher specs reqs than they really "should".

As for the $25 price point... on steam.. that's pretty much anything if you watch the sales.

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (0)

Mad Merlin (837387) | about 9 months ago | (#45687225)

An Anandtech review [anandtech.com] points out that the integrated GPU in Ivy Bridge (previous generation Intel Core) runs Skyrim playably: 46 fps at 720p.

Even 10 years ago 1280x720 would be pathetic... and you're telling me it doesn't even hit 60 fps?

Re:PS3-class and indie gaming on Intel (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687381)

10 years ago, you would not be able to play Skyrim at that resolution at 60 FPS even on the best consumer cards. Stop being such a dope.

Why nVidia only? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686363)

You are screwing a large group of people by doing that. Either that, or someone funding came their way to ignore AMD.

Re:Why nVidia only? (3, Insightful)

dosius (230542) | about 9 months ago | (#45686381)

Isn't it specifically designed for a specific system that specifies a specific model of nVidia graphics controller?

Re:Why nVidia only? (2)

symbolset (646467) | about 9 months ago | (#45686405)

Or maybe nVidia had more engineers to spare to support Valve, what with AMD being busy with the XBone/PS4 launch and all.

Re:Why nVidia only? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#45686705)

At this time, nVidia is trying to go it more alone, while ATI is closely coupling itself to Microsoft and Sony.

It's turned out well for nVidia so far, but the reason they can't give us driver sources like they're doing with Tegra is that they got too far into bed with Microsoft...

Re: Why nVidia only? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686429)

It seems like since this is only in beta, its a little early to start making the accusations that they wont support ati. Wait till they actually release the full version.

Re: Why nVidia only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686993)

mod this up...exactly what I was thinking

Re:Why nVidia only? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686435)

Probably because Nvidia was shamed into better supporting Linux before AMD? Because Nvidia has been working better with Valve on this project? Because the optimization for those AMD cards isn't done?

Had you been paying attention, even in the slightest, in the past few months, you would have known what has been going on and what the plan is for SteamOS. Perhaps you should actually do some reading on it instead of just saying that Valve is "screwing a large group of people."

Re:Why nVidia only? (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about 9 months ago | (#45686441)

Beta is beta. they've said before they intend to support AMD, but the first gen of hardware is all nVIDIA.

Re:Why nVidia only? (1)

Sable Drakon (831800) | about 9 months ago | (#45686515)

Seeing as 53% of Steam users rely on nVidia hardware and AMD's typically shitty driver situation, it's no big surprise that they're proritizing nVidia machinery first. Once AMD grows up, presents some decent drivers, and puts on their big boy pants, I'm sure Valve will be more than happy to include their drivers as a part of the system.

Re:Why nVidia only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686581)

Hopefully this will get AMD to step up their linux driver game. COME ON AMD, BRING US THE GOODS!

Re:Why nVidia only? (2)

Mashiki (184564) | about 9 months ago | (#45686775)

AMD's typically shitty driver situation, it's no big surprise that they're proritizing nVidia machinery first. Once AMD grows up, presents some decent drivers, and puts on their big boy pants, I'm sure Valve will be more than happy to include their drivers as a part of the system.

Wait. Were you using the same nvidia drivers that I was using among others for the last year, where it was fubared, beyond fubared. And got so bad at one point, that the drivers were causing hard locks across all 400-500-600 series cards. And to top it off, made a shit mess causing massive crashes, again across the board all the while claiming it was "on the users end" until it finally got so bad that they were offering to pay anyone in the continental US to have their rigs shipped to California so they could test them. There's a very good reason why a lot of people have switched to AMD in the last 6 months.

Re:Why nVidia only? (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | about 9 months ago | (#45687199)

Nvidia's got their own driver shittiness. Their drivers take friggin' forever to install on my system. Hybrid hard drive, i7-3930k, 16 gigs of DDR3-2133 in quad channel, dual GTX680 video cards. I started the installation of the latest GeForce experience and R331 game ready driver just about 3 hours ago. About 2 hours of solid grind for no reason I can figure and then an hour or so where everything looks idle and the progress bar doesn't move. Based on experience, I assume it will finish eventually if I let it keep going.

It's ridiculous and it's been an Nvidia problem for quite a while. I can't even remember the last time I had an Nvidia display driver installation that took less than an hour.

Re:Why nVidia only? (0)

epyT-R (613989) | about 9 months ago | (#45686629)

Is there actually a stable, reliable, non-broken X driver for radeon?

Re:Why nVidia only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686673)

What, fglrx doesn't work for you?

Re:Why nVidia only? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686721)

No.

Re:Why nVidia only? (1)

Solozerk (1003785) | about 9 months ago | (#45686903)

I think not - I may be wrong, but the last time I tried to use a proprietary ATI driver under Xorg it tended to have a lot of bugs - like for example, my resolution had to be a multiple of 16 or 32 (can't remember which) in order to enable anti-aliasing.
It's that kind of shit that made me look for a nvidia card on all my new laptops and desktops in the future - nvidia might not opensource their drivers, but at least they work under xorg, and they also offer proper CUDA support for the same (used it for mining LTC at the time).

Then again, I had a surprise with my latest laptop - it uses Optimus: a "new technology" that includes an on-motherboard intel chipset for common graphics as well as a real nvidia GPU for gaming, the later being used only for graphics-intensive stuff. Sounds like a good idea (especially for battery consumption), but almost no official support for Linux systems. Thanks christ for Bumblebee (http://bumblebee-project.org/) - an attempt at Linux support for Optimus. It requires you to run games and the likes through a wrapper that runs a separate framebuffer using the GPU while running an intel-based Xorg. It works pretty well, but still, it's more a hack than a real support for Optimus.

Re:Why nVidia only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686687)

Actually, the install includes fglrx drivers.
So I wouldn't count AMD out just yet.

Re:Why nVidia only? (4, Insightful)

Tailhook (98486) | about 9 months ago | (#45687029)

You are screwing a large group of people

That large group of people are the ones at fault here.

AMD/ATI has never attempted to even approach NVidia's commitment to make hardware run well with Linux. Yet you people keep buying their hardware. The small cost savings of AMD has always been enough to get even regular Linux desktop users to buy their stuff despite their chronic indifference to anything other than Windows.

The best thing that could possibly happen at this point is for gamers to ignore people like you and buy Steambox compatible hardware, meaning not AMD, in large quantities. Then, maybe, at long last, at least fifteen years too late, that fucking company will finally step up and deal with the problem.

Linus not withstanding, NVidia has provided me with up-to-date, stable, performant Linux drivers for their hardware without fail for almost twenty years. Recently, NVidia has invested even more effort and collaborated with Valve to capture the Steambox platform. If this Debian based, open gaming platform succeeds we all have NVidia to thank. NVidia has EARNED this outcome, and people like you, with your sad-sack AMD crap need to reconsider your behavior.

But you won't. Nope. Instead, you'll download Steambox and try to run it on your Windows-only video hardware, watch it catch on fire and the bitch up a fucking storm all over the Internets about how Steambox is a giant POS.

If Steambox succeeds it will have to be despite you god damned AMD buyers, as always.

Re:Why nVidia only? (4, Informative)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#45687631)

If Steambox succeeds it will have to be despite you god damned AMD buyers, as always.

Oh, but haven't you heard? AMD are the good guys now because they occasionally trickle out some of the information you need to make a half-assed open source video driver which supports some of their older cards.

Time for new underwear (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686373)

Seeing as i cream my pants every time Valve announces something, it is now time for some new underwear.

At least it isn't like the time I got an auto-reply to my job application at Valve. Sure, they didn't end up hiring me into their utopia, but if you ask me one shitty bed is a fair price to pay at heroin-like bliss.

What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686731)

Can somebody explain to my why the parent comment is currently at 4, Insightful?

His first sentence is all about ejaculating uncontrollably into his own clothing, somehow because of video games. Interesting, perhaps, but it surely is not insightful.

The second sentence is completely irrelevant to anything and everything.

The final sentence is completely absurd. It's damn near impossible to parse, even taking into account that it's very broken English. The best I can gather is that he once defecated in the bed he was sleeping in during some drug-induced episode.

Is this some sort of hipster, Ruby on Rails, hyper-ironic moderation or something? Is the insight supposed to be that the moderation here is so completely fucked up these days that comments babbling on about narcotic-induced penile and bowel incontinence are somehow seen as insightful?

Re:What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686751)

Is this some sort of hipster, Ruby on Rails, hyper-ironic moderation or something?

Where the hell did that come from?

Re:What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686787)

He's probably referring to how the modding at sites like Digg and reddit went to hell after the hipsters (many of whom are also Ruby on Railers) showed up. Utterly stupid shit ends up getting modded highly by these people, and sensible content is modded down. Pretty much like we are seeing in this very thread, in fact!

Re:What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686847)

He's probably referring to how the modding at sites like Digg and reddit went to hell after the hipsters (many of whom are also Ruby on Railers) showed up.

Seconds after opening?

Re:What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686879)

Nah, Digg and Reddit were generally fine until about mid 2008 or so. That's when the Ruby/Mac/iPhone/Web 2.0/"hipster" fanaticism went mainstream, and flooded those sites and others with idiocy that remains to this day. Their communities were actually decent for a few years prior to then, since they were mostly made up of people with university-level education, and some sort of a technical or scientific background. Nowadays, these good people are massively outnumbered by those with a more useless background (like the social "sciences"), those who never even made it to university in the first place, the chronically unemployable, and the social rejects you see working the counters at coffee shops.

Re:What the fuck, Slashdot mods?! (2)

melikamp (631205) | about 9 months ago | (#45686907)

His first sentence is all about ejaculating uncontrollably into his own clothing, somehow because of video games. Interesting, perhaps, but it surely is not insightful.

Actually, his first sentence makes a cognitive leap from observing an involuntary visceral reaction to the Valve branding, to concluding that it is now time for some new underwear. An average slashdot moderator is not in the habit of thinking this far ahead.

SteamOS, Distributed by Steam? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686379)

Why not use their famous cloud-based distribution system aka 'Steam' to load SteamOS for those interested. Or they don't have enough faith in their platform.

Interesting pick on NVIDIA, now I know which stock to buy. I've never been too impressed by AMD/ATI nowadays anyway.

Re:SteamOS, Distributed by Steam? (1)

symbolset (646467) | about 9 months ago | (#45686433)

Maybe they underestimated the demand for their Beta. People seem to be going nuts over it.

Re:SteamOS, Distributed by Steam? (1)

game kid (805301) | about 9 months ago | (#45686463)

Valve said people should wait a bit before trying the OS [slashdot.org] anyway, so no surprise here even if they did plan on a release of SteamOS on Steam.

Re:SteamOS, Distributed by Steam? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686539)

Valve said that weenies should wait a bit before trying the OS.

Why does UEFI matter? (4, Interesting)

visualight (468005) | about 9 months ago | (#45686399)

UEFI boot support is in the list of HW requirements, which I've managed to avoid so far. There's no mention of TPM but maybe that's the reason?

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686419)

DRM, closed source, spying on you, whatever. Piece of shit.

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (1, Informative)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 9 months ago | (#45686459)

Not required, supported. The list is supported hardware. I would assume standard BIOS is supported as well but they wanted to point out that newer UEFI only boards are also supported.

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (1)

visualight (468005) | about 9 months ago | (#45686559)

Ah. Thanks

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (5, Informative)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 9 months ago | (#45686723)

Son of a Bitch. They do say it's required in the FAQ. It appears they are using it to simplify the boot from USB installation process based on the FAQ. I'd imagine if your board supports booting from USB you are probably ok but they may have hardwired support for UEFI in the installer (such that it will only look for UEFI instances for installation media) so you won't know till you try.

My bad for misleading you.

UEFI Booting is Required (4, Informative)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 9 months ago | (#45686707)

Not required, supported. The list is supported hardware. I would assume standard BIOS is supported as well but they wanted to point out that newer UEFI only boards are also supported.

Seems you got modded up, despite being WRONG. UEFI booting is required for the installer, which is why UEFI Support was listed as a hardware requirement in the FAQ you looked at. The requirement is also mentioned further down in the FAQ. Also reference:

http://store.steampowered.com/steamos/buildyourown [steampowered.com] .
http://steamcommunity.com/groups/steamuniverse/discussions/1/648814395741989999/ [steamcommunity.com]
http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2013/12/valve-releases-steamos-beta-early-build-your-own-system-requirements/ [arstechnica.com]

One benefit to this is that people won't be trying to install this on an old piece of crap and then complaining it's slow.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686735)

Make sure you select the UEFI entry, it may look something like "UEFI: Patriot Memory PMAP". If there is no UEFI entry, you may need to enable UEFI support in your BIOS setup.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (2, Insightful)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 9 months ago | (#45686741)

Seems you got modded up, despite being WRONG.

Welcome to Slashdot, a division of Dice tolling media. You must be new here, otherwise you would know factual relevance has little to do with moderation.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (1)

MarcoAtWork (28889) | about 9 months ago | (#45686765)

my older core2quad PC should be able to run games still quite nicely at medium settings, but unfortunately the ASUS P5K mobo is not UEFI compliant so no dice, not sure why UEFI should matter really...

Secure Boot (1)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45686783)

One benefit to this is that people won't be trying to install this on an old piece of crap and then complaining it's slow.

But wouldn't it be harder to boot from USB on a UEFI system? Most UEFI systems that I'm aware of default to Secure Boot with Microsoft keys. On the other hand, I guess people smart enough for beta are smart enough to figure out how to go into UEFI configuration and turn off Secure Boot.

Re:Secure Boot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686837)

But wouldn't it be harder to boot from USB on a UEFI system?

No. Why would it?

Most UEFI systems that I'm aware of default to Secure Boot with Microsoft keys.

Good for you? What relevance does that have to anything? Secure boot was only recently added in v2.2. 10s if not 100s of millions of shipped systems predate that by many years such as every Intel Mac, Itanium systems from both Intel and HP, etc.

How widely deployed is x86-64 UEFI pre-2.2? (1)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45686857)

Secure boot was only recently added in v2.2.

And every (non-Apple) x86-64 PC and PC motherboard since the release of Windows 8 has shipped with Secure Boot.

10s if not 100s of millions of shipped systems predate that by many years such as every Intel Mac, Itanium systems from both Intel and HP, etc.

I thought Intel Macs were just EFI, not UEFI. And according to the FAQ [steamcommunity.com] , this distro is designed for x86-64, not Itanium. I understand Windows 7 Service Pack 1 for x86-64 supports UEFI [technet.com] , but did most Windows 7 PCs come with UEFI pre-2.2, or did they come with legacy BIOS?

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (1)

Hadlock (143607) | about 9 months ago | (#45687233)

UEFI has been avalible since at least the Core 2 Duo era, there's plenty of old pieces of crap that will run this. Most any mid-range computer from 2007 forward should run this just fine. My $100 intel motherboard I bought in January 2008 is a UEFI bootable board. That's six year old hardware at this point.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (1)

EvanED (569694) | about 9 months ago | (#45687297)

Most any mid-range computer from 2007 forward should run this just fine.

I can't give you a date for when I'd be comfortable saying that, but I strongly suspect your 2007 is at least a little early. The computer I'm posting from now, actually, I built in late 2007, and it is BIOS. I don't remember enough about the chipsets that were available at the time to precisely place mine (P35), but I'd say my motherboard is definitely at least mid-range and was perhaps slightly high-end.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (2)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 9 months ago | (#45687435)

I can't give you a date for when I'd be comfortable saying that, but I strongly suspect your 2007 is at least a little early. The computer I'm posting from now, actually, I built in late 2007, and it is BIOS. I don't remember enough about the chipsets that were available at the time to precisely place mine (P35), but I'd say my motherboard is definitely at least mid-range and was perhaps slightly high-end.

Intel started providing UEFI as an option since the turn of the millennium I believe. And Intel stopped providing BIOSes since the Core 2 chips - every board since then shipped exclusively UEFI. Of course, most don't expose it - they run a BIOS compatibility layer instead so the computer boots into UEFI and runs the BIOS application.

It's only in recent years that PC manufacturers began to expose the UEFI interface out of necessity - you can't boot from a > 2TB drive using the BIOS anymore as you hit the maximum size of partition in the MBR.

Apple has, of course, been doing this for a long while now.

Re:UEFI Booting is Required (1)

Hadlock (143607) | about 9 months ago | (#45687545)

My $95 Intel DF33FB board was decidedly mid-range and UEFI, if you bought a bottom tier (http://ark.intel.com/products/50377/Intel-Desktop-Board-DG33FB

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (4, Interesting)

EmperorArthur (1113223) | about 9 months ago | (#45686753)

You don't realize how much easier UEFI makes things until you figure it out and start using it.

UEFI can do other fun stuff, but by default it runs "\EFI\Boot\bootx64.efi" on the first fat32 partition it sees.
No more dealing with trying to backup custom bootloaders, or trying to figure out why grub install isn't letting you dual boot. Just rename a shell with a default script to bootx64.efi and you're good to go. Hell, those shells even include their own editor.

I wonder how many people realize that UEFI means that as long as a USB drive is fat32 they can just drag and drop the files without worrying about formatting the thing with a bootloader.

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (1)

dshk (838175) | about 9 months ago | (#45687087)

as long as a USB drive is fat32

Does this mean that I am paying to Microsoft if I buy an UEFI motherboard? AFAIK they still extort money for their FAT file systems. Why did somebody choose FAT? If I am clever enough to dual boot than I am also clever enough to format a drive with the completely free ext2.

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (1)

EmperorArthur (1113223) | about 9 months ago | (#45687289)

as long as a USB drive is fat32

Does this mean that I am paying to Microsoft if I buy an UEFI motherboard? AFAIK they still extort money for their FAT file systems. Why did somebody choose FAT? If I am clever enough to dual boot than I am also clever enough to format a drive with the completely free ext2.

Because just about every OS and it's mother reads fat32. I run Linux, but all I ask from motherboard manufacturers are easy to follow open standards. Like it or not fat32 is the de facto inoperable file system.
Are you really saying that you want bios coders to understand NTFS and HFS+? Because you can't have them reading ext2 without those as well. Plus all the OS's touch the EFS partition. If anything you should be grateful that one of those two didn't win.

Besides, I use btrfs not ext2. Expecting bios makers to support every *nix file system is crazy talk.

Re:Why does UEFI matter? (1)

dshk (838175) | about 9 months ago | (#45687521)

I did not intend to say that motherboards should understand all file systems. But they should understand at least one non-proprietary, non patent-encumbered one. I mentioned ext2 because that is a relatively simple one. I am afraid you confused ext2 and the current, more complicated ext4. But the actual file system is not important, except it should be patent-free.

is there any way to turn off that horrible beta co (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686445)

is there any way to turn off that horrible beta comment mode?

Re:is there any way to turn off that horrible beta (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687489)

Yes. Start visiting another site. The very first comments when the beta went live were about how shitty and wasteful the layout was. No one cared, obviously. Now that Slashdot is throwing the last positive thing it had left in the shitter, it's time to start phasing it out.

omg! (-1, Offtopic)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 9 months ago | (#45686493)

Its healthcare.gov all over again!

Re:omg! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686557)

Its healthcare.gov all over again!

Thanks, Obama!

The server being offline is a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686505)

Viva la GaBEN!

The "only compatible with NVIDIA graphics cards" i (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45686563)

The Catalyst and Mesa drivers are present on the system, but SteamOS Beta 1 is being advertised as NVIDIA-only.

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=MTU0MzY

Re:The "only compatible with NVIDIA graphics cards (4, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about 9 months ago | (#45686663)

They probably don't want to hear any square pegs complaining that they only get 2 fps out of the AMD drivers.

STOP (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687043)

Please don't support a DRM Monster that is Valve/Steam... you're better of buying from more reliable distributors.

I just can't fathom why people would get excited about one of the worst companies in the world that quite frankly go hand-in-hand with MPAA and all those types when it comes to their business models and consumer protection.

In reality, Steam/Valve is a totalitarian empire and like a tick it needs to be removed from the fabric of society.

Half Life 3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687227)

Debian is currently on version 7. If you take the Half of 7, you end up with 3. Half Life 3 will launch as a Linux exclusive!

Re:Half Life 3 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687321)

You're trying too hard.

Nvidia GPL compliance issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687585)

They might get in trouble for shipping the proprietary Nvidia drivers if it is shipped together with the Linux kernel which is GPL.

I thank you for your timie (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45687689)

when done playing Where it belongs, that *BSD 0wned. is also a miserable market. Therefore, [gay-sex-accees.com]?
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