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Steam for Linux (Closed Beta)

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by D4rkSilver, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. caesius

    caesius New Member

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    I would be happy to put money on their having zero interest in doing that.
     
  2. bsduser35325

    bsduser35325 New Member

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    I don't see what is the point of porting games on Linux when windows is the mainstream and will always be for a long time. I saw Half-Life on that page, seriously? The game is already ancient what is the point? it'll never get any new games or forgein ones. Most of the games are either clones or so obscure you don't even care. I don't want it even if it cost nothing.

    Do these developers really think they can compete with windows as a gaming platform?
     
  3. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    Well it is a good start.

    Not to mention that the Linux market, though smaller is a lot less saturated with game development companies (competition).

    Perhaps software developers would rather appeal to 90% of the Linux market than the 0.001% of the Windows market. I know that is my aim.

    It also has something to do with the Windows Store that Microsoft is bringing in. Valve obviously knows something that we dont. It sounds like it is going to be pretty damn restrictive. Probably in a similar way to the iPleb stores.
     
  4. Amzo

    Amzo New Member

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  5. bsduser35325

    bsduser35325 New Member

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    Enlighten me how it is a good start when Linux gaming is like 20 years behind. If the Linux market(safe to say non-existent) was any lucrative you would see some big names behind it. Regardless of how restrictive the Windows Store is, IMO I think people will still use it.
     
  6. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    It is a good start for gaming on Linux. It means the games industry on Linux has jumped forward by at least 10 years.

    Unfortunately this also brings about DRM so can go to hell quite frankly.

    Now Linux users have the freedom of choice to boycott Steam due to the DRM lol.
     
  7. BlueCoder

    BlueCoder New Member

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    I more surprised they don't use FreeBSD

    Anything they come up with will be DRM'd. It would be better for them I believe to avoid the GPL and fork from FreeBSD. Then require it to run from it's own drive/partition/setup like for a dedicated device or in a virtual machine XEN session. It could then run alongside Linux and Freebsd.

    It would be much easier for them to maintain as a separate system. And they could then choose what code to share or not. But we could ALL play games on whatever system we choose, be it Windows, Linux, BSD, or Apple.

    It might also be beneficial to FreeBSD as they might advance DOM0 in the FreeBSD kernel in the short term and improve the video drivers in the long term if not invent a completely separate GUI system in place of X. More or less do a smaller scale version of what apple did except keep the FreeBSD kernel.
     
  8. Crivens

    Crivens Member

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    This is IMHO not so much about what was, but about what is going to be.
    Valve et al are watching very closely what Microsoft is doing to their game loader^h^h the Windows OS. With Win8, Microsoft has done the step of UEFI and secure boot and is now about to pull an Apple in making a market place and rumbling about that no app will be allowed to be installed from somewhere else. With them in control of what is "appropriate" for you.

    The question is not if this really is going to happen, but if the game companies are going to survive this in case it does happen. Can they take that risk? I do not think so, and I would be not suprides at all should suddenly some tools/apps find their way to steam which run foul of some MS policy. For the end user there is no big difference between being spied on by valve or being spied on by someone else, the user normally preferes not to be spied on. But if is has to be, he will then go where the things are he wants, and that may well be steam.

    So in preparation of such a scenario, they invest some time/money into being the first choice should it happen. Because then it does not matter if the games are 20 years behind (hey, nethack is how much 'behind'? Still a ton of fun to play), but it is going to be a matter of being some month up ahead then.
     
  9. D4rkSilver

    D4rkSilver New Member

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    Well you can't really expect Linux gaming to start as big as Windows now can you?

    At least with the Steam coming to Linux now there is some Open Source system advertisement for gamers. Sure I believe they did not chose the best OS but at least it's something.

    Peoples might disagree with Steam's DRM but at least it's generally a permissive one, it does not requires you to be connected to internet 24/7 just to play your single player game.

    Valve being a company I am not 100% sure that they would spend any kind of money on a Linux version of Steam if it did not have a chance to either make money or grow...
     
  10. bsduser35325

    bsduser35325 New Member

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    The casual gamer don't care about games that are aim at a specific audience. IF they want to succeed they need to target at the general pop IMO.

    They probably know something the public doesn't. Yeah, probably.
     
  11. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    Well I am maintaining a port of devel/radare2 for a reason. If Steam is ever released for FreeBSD, I am gonna try cracking the fsck out of it.
     
  12. drhowarddrfine

    drhowarddrfine Member

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    It seems more so today to me that Windows is only used to play games on. Big corporations just use XP. Normal people just use their phones.
     
  13. BlueCoder

    BlueCoder New Member

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    Steam has no reason to release a million different platforms. Right now it's beta so they are looking at all the angles and to get people excited. They can choose to support a few distros in the beginning. Mainly Ubuntu because it's the most windows like. And a few other distros that that other distros derive from.

    I see little chance of them supporting FreeBSD, OpenBSD, or NetBSD along with Linux. For support purposes their only choice is a dedicated platform which is why I think XEN or any other virtual server would be the best bet. With hardware PCI passthough you'll get near native performance. On systems without it you'll still be able to run the less demanding games.
     
  14. jtsn

    jtsn New Member

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    Now that Steam is out of beta, the issue is mainly getting FreeBSD's Linux ABI up to speed for the steam runtime. This Ubuntu-based environment works much like the /compat/linux directory tree, but it's maintained and updated by Steam itself.

    Once the runtime works, Steam itself and almost all games delivered by it should work also.
     
  15. BlueCoder

    BlueCoder New Member

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    What DRM mechanism does steam use? Seems that method would leave itself open to widespread cracking. Not that there wouldn't be cracking anyway but that just seems way too open for attack.
     
  16. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    Steam on Windows is pretty much 100% cracked. Anyone can download and play almost any game offline now.

    The DRM system requires the average user to log into Valve's servers and download a specially packed (though fully extractable using 3rd party tools) game cache file (.gcf). This is basically a compressed zip file using a certain format.

    The game once extracted comes with a .exe which is wrapped to check in with the Steam service (which must be running) so that it can use the API and confirm that the logged in user has the correct access level. This is where the DRM from the .exe can be patched away in a generic manner.

    Nowadays Steam is one of the best mediums to obtain pirated games. Valve only seems interested in preventing the average (legitimate) user from accessing their software in an acceptable manner.
     
  17. BlueCoder

    BlueCoder New Member

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    Pretty simple; especially if it's the same DRM on everything.

    The thought that they are using a /compat hierarchy is interesting. It also makes me think of what PCBSD does. It takes care of library issues and software but it will require Steam to support various versions of the Linux kernel and different distributions handling hardware, daemons, startup routines, and IPC differently. Maybe they will require a systemd Linux. That means they will probably use a library to abstract calls for different systems services, their own version of HAL or should I call it OS Abstraction Layer, which would be a good thing for FreeBSD.

    I can see it's possible now. But I still think a XEN appliance approach would be the simplest and more elegant approach.
     
  18. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    Unfortunately this wont work. The virtualized hardware will change in the future and Steam will require re-activation (which will of course be impossible when the servers are retired when Valve is no longer around.) due to a change in the hardware hash.

    Qemu and VirtualBox also change their hardware profile a couple of times every major version which will also break Steam's (and also Windows's) DRM.

    Trust me.. these greedy fsckers have thought of everything to prevent you from playing your purchased games in the future.
     
  19. BlueCoder

    BlueCoder New Member

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    Two separate issues. If you pay money for Steam it's with the understanding that it can go belly up. Personally I think consumer advocacy groups need to step up on this and demand an insurance policy for a support program when this inevitably happens for all digital stores to protect consumer purchases. That's a consumer choice and legal issue. But I don't see Valve going out of business anytime soon; I don't see alternative trustable alternative competitors for game makers. Game makers will trust Valve more than the megacorps.

    I can easily see using a transparent proxy and virtual servers to get around defunct servers should the company go belly up.

    I don't see why virtual machines necessarily need to change their hardware. Paravirtualized drivers only need to be written once. For passthough PCI devices it will just work if you have the hardware. You will have a choice to use paravirtualized drivers or a PCI passthough device per game. Once you create a virtual appliance it should be able to run the same in a thousand years as today. But you can rest assured that Valve will keep their virtual appliances updated just to update their own software and the OS with the latest features. Think of a virtual appliance as a console within your computer. A virtual XBOX will still need to update it's firmware periodically. But it would be a single platform to support and not multiple.
     
  20. Crivens

    Crivens Member

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    And with Valve being then part of the t*tsup.com set, does anyone really think they will give a flying fsck? After your 'purchase', which is none at all, they have your money. What stops such companies from giving you the binary-4 right then is that this would impact future 'sales'.

    One may learn from the examples of others.
     
  21. bsduser35325

    bsduser35325 New Member

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    Wow, that is just outrageous.
     
  22. kpedersen

    kpedersen New Member

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    Another example is where Adobe gave out unrestricted CS2 products for free because they were taking down the activation servers for these proucts.

    http://www.adobe.com/downloads/cs2_downloads/index.html

    On initial inspection, this seems like a really good outcome and that Adobe has the right idea.

    However, what it really shows is a complete lack of organisation or after-thought from Adobe when the product was originally sold ~4 years ago. It shows that they didn't really care what they were going to do once supporting the activation servers was no longer feasible. Short sighted idiots...

    If Adobe was going bankrupt rather than EOL'ing CS2, then this would be an extremely different situation.

    Likewise, on the Microsoft Norwary page, it said something like "Once Windows XP reaches end of life, it is likely an update will be released to bypass the activation steps". This page was only up for about 3 months and was the only mention of this statement I could find. Again, Microsoft has absolutely no care or thought on what they are going to do with their current DRM. Whatever "solution" they come up with in 2015 will not have been well thought out at all.

    edit: I kept the proof ;) (But the link is now invalid.)

    http://www.microsoft.com/norge/piracy/activation_faq.mspx
    edit 2: But it is immortalized in the wayback machine...
    http://web.archive.org/web/20120222115712/http://www.microsoft.com/norge/piracy/activation_faq.mspx
     
  23. Amzo

    Amzo New Member

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    I know this thread is old, but I did some work getting Steam to run, just a few library issues to fix.

    Setting Linux version to 2.6.32 and using glibc 2.12 (which works with that kernel." Steam will run in the Linux binary compaitability. I created a Linux jail using Arch Linux packages from 2012:

    Anyways, here's it running on FreeBSD 9.1

    http://i.imgur.com/hc2pjyZ.png

    I will possibly need to write a wrapper, to brandelf -t linux for all the binaries Steam downloads.
     
  24. D4rkSilver

    D4rkSilver New Member

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    That is interesting news. I hope you can tell us how games actually work for you, and that you can tell us exactly what you did to make this work if it happens. :e
     
  25. hedgehog

    hedgehog New Member

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    I wouldn't say it's old unless it is completely solved :)

    May I please ask you to describe how did you do that? Does that mean that you just replaced the /compat/linux contents with the Arch distribution under a FreeBSD jail?