It's official: Valve is working on Steam for Ubuntu 12.04 Linux

By Lee Kaelin on July 17, 2012, 5:30 PM

Valve games running on Linux moved a step closer to reality yesterday with the company confirming the development of Steam for Linux. The team working on the Linux port will first focus with on compatibility for Ubuntu 12.04, with games such as Left 4 Dead 2 to be released once the platform is completed. The company might support other distributions, but for now it will concentrate on perfecting the user experience on Ubuntu.

"For some time, Gabe has been interested in the possibility of moving Steam and the Source game engine to Linux," the blog post reads. "At the time, the company was already using Linux by supporting Linux-based servers for Source-based games and also by maintaining several internal servers (running a 64-bit version of Ubuntu server) for various projects. In 2011, based on the success of those efforts and conversations in the hallway, we decided to take the next step and form a new team."

Valve said in August 2010 that it wasn't working on a port to Linux, much to the dismay of its Linux-loving fans. Since then however, the two have been linked several times, most recently in April when Valve confirmed what Linux users wanted to hear: Steam for Linux was in the works.

The company promises to update the blog regularly as development progresses and have invited members of the public to submit feedback, opinions and ideas by email. "We also encourage you to leave comments and ideas for future postings. We want this to be a community of game developers, communicating with each other and talking about current efforts and future efforts in a powerfully creative environment."

Could Valve's efforts -- if successful -- potentially ignite an increased adoption of Linux on the desktop?

User Comments: 16

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yorro said:

The game changer.

Randomthom Randomthom said:

I already own L4D, L4D2 etc. I wonder if I will own the linux version automatically or if I'd need to buy it again...

Guest said:

I can only assume since if you already own a game for PC on steam you also own it on a mac that, yes, you will own it on linux.

Ranger12 Ranger12 said:

Assuming I wouldn't have to buy another copy just for my Linux install then yes, I would probably ditch Windows for good and move to mainly using Linux. Right now my gaming habit is what keeps me attached to Windows.

Guest said:

awesome news!

Time for Linux desktop to shine!

Darkshadoe Darkshadoe said:

If Valve gets this working to play most of their game library, what do you want to bet Microsoft will be throwing lawsuits at them left and right? Yorro is right, this could be a game changer.

Guest said:

Linux is open and free, why close it down like Windows or worse, like a console, with the closed Steam? I dont see any benefit to linux gaming, only to Gabe's already very deep pockets. Doesnt matter whether Steam runs on linux, how many game developers will make their Steam games run on linux? I dont like l4d2, what other games will steam offer on linux?

ikesmasher said:

Above guest, you DO realize valve is one of the main reasons (if not the main reason) PC gaming is still alive?

You want to know what the benefit to linux gaming is? a FREE OS. and as for compatibility, it will vary from developer to developer. However, I see this as an opportunity for many indie developers to begin considering linux as a platform.

Guest said:

Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! :D

SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

I don't know the answer. But I'd speculate that if it has a Mac version then it will have a Linux version too. The difference in coding between Windows and Mac has to be a lot larger than the difference between Mac and Linux.

captainawesome captainawesome said:

Now, if only Nvidia and AMD could step up and write better linux drivers. That would be great. Or better yet, rewrite X window system. It is fricken HORRID and in serious need of a revamp. Scratch that; canning and complete re-conceptualisation.

Guest said:

Now, if only Nvidia and AMD could step up and write better linux drivers. That would be great. Or better yet, rewrite X window system. It is fricken HORRID and in serious need of a revamp. Scratch that; canning and complete re-conceptualisation.
Actually there is a project to replace X window system, called Wayland which is going to find its way inside Ubuntu later :

Say good bye to desktop composition glitches :D

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I'm glad that Steam is coming to Linux. For a lot of indie devs Linux is already an important platform and now finally all versions will be available in one place. It's also nice to get Valve games on Linux.

It's another step towards Linux becoming a more mature platform for users of all types. Hopefully this will help make my experience with Linux better the next time I try it.

Guest said:

This is really great news as it will more easily allow game developers to access another group of users and help expand the Linux platform.

Guest said:

at ikesmasher,

I┬'m specifying that linux┬' openness and freedom going against Valve's Steam's closedness. There┬'s several indie games right now that support linux without needing Steam. I dont see why linux users, who enjoy freedom should now comply to Steam's closed, xboxlive-like service.

Guest said:

and no, they are not the reason why pc gaming is still alive, as much as they claim they are.

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