Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (168 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] Has openSUSE as a project approached Valve re the possible upcoming Steam for Linux?
  • From: C <smaug42@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2012 09:04:19 +0200
  • Message-id: <>
A couple of points based on your comments Rajko.

- Any points we make are pure speculation on what Valve may do if
they release a Steam Client for Linux. The only way we can possibly
know what's planned is if we contact Valve as a project (a single user
standing alone will likely not get much traction in finding out what's
happening and what can be done)

- Your comments lead me to conclude that you've never used Steam on
Windows, nor have you used Desura on Linux. I'll explain why with my
comments in-line.

On Mon, Apr 30, 2012 at 00:53, Rajko M. <rmatov101@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On Sunday, April 29, 2012 02:26:30 AM C wrote:
Steam for Linux has been floated a few times starting int 2010.
Today I spotted this:

and this made me wonder... are we (as a project) also approaching
Valve in some official capacity too ...

SUSE as company can do that, but openSUSE as cloud like entity is not really
interesting for Valve [1]. They need someone that can guarantee that game
store for openSUSE users will be present in every release, visible and easy to

A game client like Steam or Desura does not require a game store be
present in every release. The principle of the client is that the
user downloads the client from the distributor (that would be Valve
for the Steam client not openSUSE repos) and installs (ie, it's not
distributed via the openSUSE repos, it falls under the same process as
Steam, TeamViewer etc where a user installs the client downloaded from
an external source). Once installed they launch the client and the
client manages all commercial or open source games for them - this is
exactly what Desura is doing now (for both commercial and open source
games), and the exact model used for Steam on Windows and OSX.

Games are managed 100% by the client (following the current Desura
model which is pretty much the same as the Steam for Windows model...
and it makes sense for now that the Steam for Linux model will do the
same). This means that any games installed are self contained. They
provide statically linked libraries for the game - so that the game
developer does not have to rely on locally installed libraries being
in place and the right version. This works very well with Desura.

Why not just stick with the fact that Desura sort of works on
openSUSE? Well... because Desura sort of works (issues with trailers
not working in the client), and Desura does not have the industry
clout that Valve does. Valve is a multi-billion dollar/Euro company
that top tier game developers are very interested in co-operating

Games will ask for certain level of stability in every release, easy
access to proprietary graphic drivers and possible more proprietary
components, that could mean more mandatory purchases of other components that
make multimedia support for games.

Yes the stability is a factor.. sure, but that applies to the distro
in general. Proprietary drivers... we already provide that via the
Community repos... so what's the issue there?

Theoretical mandatory purchases of other components would logically
need to be managed by the client, not openSUSE since said components
should be game specific... again I don't see the issue here. If a
specific game needs some proprietary bits, those bits need to be
included in the game purchase or available via the client, not managed
by the distro... it's not the distro's business what a commercial
application is doing.. that is no different to the situation as it is

Basically, do not mix up games and the client, they are two different animals.

With current SUSE goals, to serve enterprise market, not individual consumers,
this would require serious adjustment in openSUSE treatment, or creating
completely new edition that will be supported for a longer time, media
oriented, purchase based [2].

That's SUSE, not openSUSE and it doesn't make any sense that SUSE pursue this.

Will that benefit openSUSE?
I think yes, specially that openSUSE doesn't need much adjustments, nor much
time to create product that will support media stuff. Problem is public
perception reflected on , [3] and
probably other sites, that openSUSE is similar to Fedora.

It is obvious that Ubuntu has some advantage, at least in size of user base,
and public perception that they are friendly distro for beginners and all that
want to use computer, but not to dive in computer internals. openSUSE can fix
that in a few years, that much needed Ubuntu to raise from newcomer on the
Linux scene to the most used distro. But, that will not happen with current
goals that cut fine to linux oldtimers, do-it-yourself guys, but not to
current trends where more users are coming that use computer to do stuff that
is not computer configuration.

A few years will be too late. This is a one time opportunity. If...
if Steam for Linux is actually released, and say that it runs well on
Ubuntu because they are *already* in there assisting, but there is no
RPM released, or the client fails to install on openSUSE because of
something simple like a library naming convention difference (this
specific issue has happened over and over with openSUSE), we will be
left in the dust.

We can ignore it... that's the "easy" way, and if this client is
released as is hinted at, the uptake of Linux goes the way speculated,
openSUSE risks being left as a "once-was-great, but they missed the

OK, that may be a bit over the top, but hopefully you see my point here.

[2] Purchase. It is not simple purchase installation CD. It could be purchase
game with link to site that will provide installation ISO, offer CD/DVD to
order with preinstalled game(s),

This is not how Steam works.. not at all. Not even remotely close.
There are no installation ISOs. Steam is not a webshop, it is a
delivery and management platform - the closest analogy we have on
openSUSE is... YaST. If your view of Steam is that it's a simple
webshop where users can purchase a CD/DVD, you really need to go check
it out because you are way off the mark here.

openSUSE 12.1 x86_64, KDE 4.8.2
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