Image: Valve

Valve has been spending some significant time over the past few years improving the state of gaming on the Linux platform with admirable initiatives such as Proton, a compatibility layer that allows many games that were originally developed for Windows to run on Linux-based operating systems.

According to the latest Steam Hardware Survey, Valve’s efforts in bolstering Linux gaming is steadily paying off, as the amount of Linux gamers on Steam have managed to rise to 1 percent for the first time in many years. (Linux gaming market share actually hit 2 percent around the time Proton was originally announced.)

It isn’t clear what drove this newer spike in Linux gamers on Steam, but one possible reason might stem from the hype behind Valve’s upcoming handheld PC, the Steam Deck, which leverages Arch Linux. Many prospective owners may have jumped on Ubuntu and other popular distributions to see just how well their favorite games run on Proton and how extensive the compatibility truly is.

Image: Valve

Steam conducts a monthly survey to collect data about what kinds of computer hardware and software our customers are using. Participation in the survey is optional, and anonymous. The information gathered is incredibly helpful to us as we make decisions about what kinds of technology investments to make and products to offer.

Source: Steam

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27 Comments

  1. Year of Linux!

    I told you, didn’t I tell you?

    It’s good to see. Any little improvement is a step in the right direction.

  2. …and this will probably keep climbing once the Deck gets out in peoples hands.

    I’m glad for the progress, but IMHO there is still too much of a performance loss in games compared to Windows, so I will still keep dual booting for games, at least until the time when I can easily get 60+ minimum FPS (the lowest dip is above 60 fps) in all new titles at 4K ultra settings. Until that happens, I will be unwilling to sacrifice any performance at all, and will keep dual booting.

  3. [QUOTE=”Zarathustra, post: 38785, member: 203″]
    …and this will probably keep climbing once the Deck gets out in peoples hands.

    I’m glad for the progress, but IMHO there is still too much of a performance loss in games compared to Windows, so I will still keep dual booting for games, at least until the time when I can easily get 60+ minimum FPS (the lowest dip is above 60 fps) in all new titles at 4K ultra settings. Until that happens, I will be unwilling to sacrifice any performance at all, and will keep dual booting.
    [/QUOTE]
    Yup it will skyrocket to 1.0000000000000000000001%

    Remember when Steam PCs were going to take over the world?, me neither… :p :p

  4. Next build will be Linux, whatever the implications. Tired of the Windows shenanigans. Plus every triple A game I’ve played since GTA V has been underwhelming.

  5. [QUOTE=”Dogsofjune, post: 38855, member: 168″]
    Linux users, the Hells Angels of the OS world
    [/QUOTE]
    [IMG]https://static.lwn.net/images/ns/linus+andrew-sm.jpg[/IMG]

  6. [QUOTE=”Auer, post: 38865, member: 225″]
    [IMG]https://static.lwn.net/images/ns/linus+andrew-sm.jpg[/IMG]
    [/QUOTE]
    Exactly

  7. Started messing with Kubuntu when Valve announced that they’d be using KDE, and the current non-LTS supports Wayland sessions – feels pretty good on the desktop.

    Still, [I]desktop[/I] Linux comes across as pretty halfarsed all around, whether it’s the lack of UI polish or the apps that look and work as low-rent as they actually are.

    I remain half of the opinion that desktop Linux isn’t really taking off until Microsoft ports Windows to the Linux kernel, and only half because the idea is only as half as crazy as it sounds.

  8. [QUOTE=”LazyGamer, post: 38904, member: 1367″]
    Still, [I]desktop[/I] Linux comes across as pretty halfarsed all around, whether it’s the lack of UI polish or the apps that look and work as low-rent as they actually are.
    [/QUOTE]
    I always thought it was the lack of unification.

    The good thing about Windows – there’s one authority, and what Microsoft says goes – developers get in line or gtfo. That is both a good and a bad thing. Apple is probably a better example – Microsoft is horrible at depreciating old standards, so you have a lot of older stuff that still lurks around for years, whereas OS X has been pretty good about eventually pushing the really old and depreciated stuff out for newer and updated standards. But both exemplify the point I’m trying to make – there is a single authority, who has the executive power and clout to push a standard.

    On the good side – take Linux, the exact opposite. Some developer doesn’t like what XWindows does, they fork the project and make their own competing standard. So there are like… dozens of largely incompatible distributions and Window managers and UI design elements and what not.

    Of course, the counter to that is, if you don’t like the standard and have to use that OS for some particular reason, your SOL. Make enough poor decisions, and users will just start to drift away.

  9. [QUOTE=”Brian_B, post: 38905, member: 96″]
    I always thought it was the lack of unification.

    The good thing about Windows – there’s one authority, and what Microsoft says goes – developers get in line or gtfo. That is both a good and a bad thing. Apple is probably a better example – Microsoft is horrible at depreciating old standards, so you have a lot of older stuff that still lurks around for years, whereas OS X has been pretty good about eventually pushing the really old and depreciated stuff out for newer and updated standards. But both exemplify the point I’m trying to make – there is a single authority, who has the executive power and clout to push a standard.

    On the good side – take Linux, the exact opposite. Some developer doesn’t like what XWindows does, they fork the project and make their own competing standard. So there are like… dozens of largely incompatible distributions and Window managers and UI design elements and what not.

    Of course, the counter to that is, if you don’t like the standard and have to use that OS for some particular reason, your SOL. Make enough poor decisions, and users will just start to drift away.
    [/QUOTE]
    I would agree with that sentiment.

  10. OSX, to me, is the extreme example, but also different given the adoption of a *nix kernel. Granted that was probably the only thing they could have done to revitalize their platform and attract developers, along with the adoption of x86 back when architecture mattered more.

    With Linux it’s a bit different. Windows and OSX couple the entire ecosystem from kernel to UI. Linux, being just a kernel, is exceedingly modular and flexible, but very little that isn’t server or enterprise focused above that is really well supported. Lots of passion of course, but as has been said, very little ‘follow through’.

  11. [QUOTE=”Auer, post: 38852, member: 225″]
    Who would have thought 10 years ago that Linux would be so popular!
    lol
    [/QUOTE]

    Whelp, considering it’s the only OS on every single top 500 supercomputer and on more devices than everything else combined… It’s easy to demonstrate that it IS popular if you use any metric that exists outside of your little bubble of ignorance.

    But what do you say to a troll on a tech site who’s talking out of his ass? ‘lol’, of course.

  12. [QUOTE=”rat, post: 38949, member: 327″]
    Whelp, considering it’s the only OS on every single top 500 supercomputer and on more devices than everything else combined… It’s easy to demonstrate that it IS popular if you use any metric that exists outside of your little bubble of ignorance.

    But what do you say to a troll on a tech site who’s talking out of his ***? ‘lol’, of course.
    [/QUOTE]
    Did you read the title of this thread?

  13. [QUOTE=”Auer, post: 38951, member: 225″]
    Did you read the title of this thread?
    [/QUOTE]

    Because snotty memes about desktops are excused from the facts? Sorry bud, your shit still stinks, even in here. Mobile has more players than desktop. Mobile is overwhelmingly Linux as well.

  14. [QUOTE=”rat, post: 38997, member: 327″]
    Because snotty memes about desktops are excused from the facts? Sorry bud, your **** still stinks, even in here. Mobile has more players than desktop. Mobile is overwhelmingly Linux as well.
    [/QUOTE]
    No one is talking about mobile, or servers, or mainframes in this thread. Except you.

    We’re talking about Gaming PCs, as the title infers.

    I’m a huge Linux fan, so don’t get me wrong. But, if you think Linux is ruling the world in the PC gaming segment, well, …

    Linux Gaming and Linux Desktop deserves every meme it’s ever had, and then some.

  15. If there was a seamless, braindead, no performance loss way to play windows DX games on linux I might consider it. Running a windows VM to play games is not interesting to me.

  16. [QUOTE=”rat, post: 38997, member: 327″]
    Because snotty memes about desktops are excused from the facts? Sorry bud, your **** still stinks, even in here. Mobile has more players than desktop. Mobile is overwhelmingly Linux as well.
    [/QUOTE]
    Apology accepted.

  17. There has been a bunch of updates lately to Proton. I did have one that would kick me out of the game as it started up, but the next update hit pretty quick and I was back to playing it without issues again.

    I’d like to see it continue to be supported. There are a few more games I’d like to play from my Steam backlog on my Linux box.

    I am disappointed though of my lack of performance with the 2400G in linux vs Win 10. The support just wasn’t there for that APU.

  18. Ok.. I’m just asking here. But how sure are we that these Linux users are not just windows 11 users being misdietected? I’m not saying all of them.. just a bump of them.

  19. [QUOTE=”Grimlakin, post: 39017, member: 215″]
    Ok.. I’m just asking here. But how sure are we that these Linux users are not just windows 11 users being misdietected? I’m not saying all of them.. just a bump of them.
    [/QUOTE]
    Probably not, when it breaks it down, it’s pretty specific about which distro is being run.

    If I take off my glasses and squint really hard – “Manjaro Linux” 64 bit kinda looks like “Windows 11” 64 bit… but not really.

  20. Linux…. Often confuses the crap out of me when installing software.
    Often i just trust all the console commands some random person wrote in bulletin board, which could very well be instructions to download a trojan horse for all I know. I guess theres repositories some where I assume they are secured I suppose…
    Its a fairly fun and powerful os thats for sure ( ive used zorin os) one thing is going to be true going forward if you want for pc to be your pc it will have to be linux if you want to use Microsofts cloud desktop that has hardware you paid for, you use windows. Any sincere observer wouldn’t disagree after the speed ms in moving, and the fact that sadly people EAT IT UP and pay their cloud office (and think it’s great!) And their cloud adobe ( i had my wife go for affinity photo, and its a great software, lots of people moving to that one) people just eat up not owning anything and paying monthly, its a disgrace really.

  21. [QUOTE=”Uvilla, post: 39028, member: 397″]
    Linux…. Often confuses the crap out of me when installing software.
    Often i just trust all the console commands some random person wrote in bulletin board, which could very well be instructions to download a trojan horse for all I know. I guess theres repositories some where I assume they are secured I suppose…
    Its a fairly fun and powerful os thats for sure ( ive used zorin os) one thing is going to be true going forward if you want for pc to be your pc it will have to be linux if you want to use Microsofts cloud desktop that has hardware you paid for, you use windows. Any sincere observer wouldn’t disagree after the speed ms in moving, and the fact that sadly people EAT IT UP and pay their cloud office (and think it’s great!) And their cloud adobe ( i had my wife go for affinity photo, and its a great software, lots of people moving to that one) people just eat up not owning anything and paying monthly, its a disgrace really.
    [/QUOTE]

    I think its great that there are options.

    I prefer Adobe’s walled pay per month garden and it’s not even expensive.
    Affinity is great for retouching, not so much for Raw shooters.
    And honestly if you really retouch a lot you should be in Photoshop anyhow and that comes with the Adobe plan. As does Camera RAW.

    But $50 and be done is a great deal if Affinity gives you what you need.

    Also worth mentioning is Exposure X7. [URL]https://exposure.software/[/URL]

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