Valve releases Windows drivers for Steam Deck

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,135   +154
Staff member
What just happened? Valve has marketed the Steam Deck as a portable gaming PC, albeit one that ships with a Linux-based operating system. The company promised users would be able to install any application or operating system they wanted on the handheld, and today Valve is making the latter even easier with the launch of Windows drivers for Steam Deck.

The Windows resources page currently has downloadable GPU, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth drivers. Audio drivers are being worked on by AMD and others but aren’t ready as of writing. As such, the speakers and 3.5mm audio jack will not provide audio, but USB-C or Bluetooth can be used in the interim.

Installing Windows requires you to wipe your Steam Deck as dual-booting with SteamOS is not currently available. It’ll eventually be possible to dual-boot on the Steam Deck, but the SteamOS installer that provides the dual-boot wizard isn’t ready yet, Valve said.

Also see: Using the Steam Deck as a desktop gaming system

Those interested in installing Windows on their Steam Deck can get to the boot menu by powering down, then turning the system back on while depressing the volume down button.

Only Windows 10 is supported right now, but Valve is working on a BIOS update to enable fTPM for Windows 11 installs.

Valve’s Steam Deck started shipping late last month to early reservation holders. It starts at $399 for a model with 64GB of memory. If you haven’t already placed a reservation, be prepared to wait a while as expected order availability is listed as beyond Q3 2022.

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Dimitriid

Posts: 2,206   +4,245
Not getting audio seems kinda significant but I am more concerned about having to go through valve to get windows drivers for the APU: I would expect those to be up to AMD instead as they can probably do a better job.

Truth is Valve can rely on the Linux community a lot for driver support under Linux and this "We put together some drivers for you, no audio btw" approach will likely be what you can expect in the way of support from them: nominal at best but they really just want you to STFU and use their Linux distro.
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 2,074   +1,654
When will Valve all the things its promising ready? Watching reviews it looks like its going to take quite a while. But then again if you buy one its 3-6 months wait minimum.

Personally im not sold, I think this will be one of those products that shows promise and prospect but never materialises. Maybe the steam deck 3 will be better.
 

eforce

Posts: 950   +1,361
I hope Valve's weight can make SteamOS a viable alternative to Windows by the time Windows 10 support ends in 2025.