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Thread: The Steam Linux Beta Begins...

  1. #121
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    Serious Sam 3 purchased and working. Performance not fantastic--had to turn down to medium/medium/ultra for steady 30fps (AII 620 @ 3.3ghz, gtx 460). Nice looking game though compared to what else we currently have in the linux world. Can't wait for the source games to start going live.

  2. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackout23 View Post
    No freaking way the majority said they're running a 32 bit system.
    The default download for Ubuntu when you visit their site is the 32-bit version. It could easily have detected that I'm running a 64-bit OS already from my browser user-agent string, but did not. Fedora is now defaulting to 64-bit (not sure if it's detecting my OS or just always defaults to 64-bit now), but I recall it always defaulting to 32-bit too not too long ago. Unsure about the other popular distros, but I imagine most are in a similar boat. Most users likely have whatever that default download is. If you're thinking that all Linux users are computer geeks who know or care about 32-bit vs 64-bit and know to select a non-default download, then you're making the case that Linux is a nerd-only OS, and that doesn't bode well for Steam or gaming on Linux being commercially successful.

    There are plenty of people who install the 32-bit version intentionally for compatibility reasons. I recall Flash on Linux, among a few other proprietary programs, being a bitch to get working in 64-bit mode. It's better now I believe, but who knows. It wasn't too long ago that I was struggling with my 64-bit OS and reading tons of folks in forums loudly proclaiming that 64-bit was useless and nothing but a problem and that folks should just stick to 32-bit. Again, different now, but I don't doubt that many users have just stuck to 32-bit out of inertia.

    There's also people who think that 32-bit is faster if you have 4GB or less of RAM, which is still very common for most PCs built before this year. It actually _is_ faster for some programs, hence the whole x86_32 architecture thing that Google was pushing (smaller pointers means data structures are smaller means more data fits in cache and can be retrieved with each memory access means better data throughput). These folks might intentionally be avoiding 32-bit still. Older hardware is popular with Linux users, and in general cutting-edge hardware is geared more towards gamers who are of course not generally Linux users on account of almost every major PC title still being Windows only. Older hardware with less RAM hence is a target market of Steam on Linux, and that includes all the folks who choose 32-bit for speed benefits (even if it's only an imaginary benefit).

    Lastly, yes there are still a number of 32-bit-only Linux PCs around (older hardware being popular with Linux and such), and there are certainly people who are interested in gaming who have them. One of the big draws of Linux is its compatibility with older hardware (see all the endless bitching about GNOME 3's GL dependence for an example of such people). Older hardware is recycled, often sent to underprivileged homes and children, many of whom I'm sure would love to play some free or very low-cost Steam games. Steam has plenty of games that will run perfectly fine on older hardware, too, including a good number of the existing Linux games in the beta. Indie games in particular tend to have simpler engines with simpler content that doesn't stress the hardware much. Even every single one of the popular Valve games are older titles running on the aging Source engine, and they (in fact, every single AAA PC game) run perfectly fine on 32-bit. 64-bit binaries don't run on 32-bit-only CPUs, but the reverse is not true. There's no reason for the company to bar a ton of potential customers from purchasing titles just to satisfy technophiles' hatred of legacy. We will likely see some 64-bit only games in the near-ish future, but we're hardly at a point where you should expect a game to be ready to make ready use of increased memory space or to be optimized poorly enough to outright need the other performance advantages of the amd64 architecture.

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by elanthis View Post
    The default download for U....snip... of the amd64 architecture.
    Still, pretty much every PC out there in the last 3 years has been shipping with a 64-bit os. As far as the flash/java stuff goes, that has been resolved as well and hasn't been a factor for fairly long time already. Sure there is still a lot of old hardware in use with linux. Part of the reason for that is there are also a lot of people that keep a huge gaming system running windows meanwhile keep an older box for their linux since there hasn't been much to push the hardware in linux for quite some time. This may change with Steam coming to linux. Sticking to 32-bit also means that you may lose taking advantage of items like newer instruction sets if the application does not have some type of runtime detection and even then it may be built to a lower common denominator to maintain a wide compatibility path across the various 32-bit cpu's.

  4. #124
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    @psycho_driver

    Did you install libpci3:i386 ?

  5. #125

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    Quote Originally Posted by psycho_driver View Post
    Serious Sam 3 purchased and working. Performance not fantastic--had to turn down to medium/medium/ultra for steady 30fps (AII 620 @ 3.3ghz, gtx 460). Nice looking game though compared to what else we currently have in the linux world. Can't wait for the source games to start going live.
    Hi,

    can you please post your system info ? I also tried ss3 but i have tons of graphical issues. I use nvidia 310.14 (its the same with 304.64) on an intel dual core (core2duo e8200) with f17 32bit. 4gb ram.

    Best regards,
    Christian

  6. #126
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    Hmm your cpu is pretty old, whats your gfx card then?

  7. #127
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    How do I run benchmarks in SS3?

  8. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by elanthis View Post
    I recall Flash on Linux, among a few other proprietary programs, being a bitch to get working in 64-bit mode.
    It wasn't that it was any harder to get working. For a while there were certain features within the 64-bit codepath that were broken and that Adobe took their sweet time fixing.

    Quote Originally Posted by elanthis
    There's also people who think that 32-bit is faster if you have 4GB or less of RAM, which is still very common for most PCs built before this year.
    The speed difference between 32-bit and 64-bit binaries is a wash. 32-bit programs will have the benefit of using less memory since they'll be utilizing 4 byte ints instead of 8. You can see this illistrated by booting up a 32-bit livecd of a distro and then the 64-bit version of the same distro. However, since the world is moving on from 32-bit, most people will find themselves running 32-bit binaries with compatibility libraries, which may introduce weird bugs and performance problems into the program. I do hope Valve intends to offer a 64-bit native steam binary.
    Last edited by psycho_driver; 11-11-2012 at 01:10 PM.

  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kano View Post
    @psycho_driver

    Did you install libpci3:i386 ?
    I'm running gentoo. I have /usr/lib32/libpciaccess.so.11.1 installed, not sure if that is the library that would be provided by the above package.

    I'm running a very customized gentoo, as well, so the fact that Steam is running well on my machine bodes well for it working across many distributions.

  10. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by christian_frank View Post
    Hi,

    can you please post your system info ? I also tried ss3 but i have tons of graphical issues. I use nvidia 310.14 (its the same with 304.64) on an intel dual core (core2duo e8200) with f17 32bit. 4gb ram.

    Best regards,
    Christian
    I'm running the 304.43 drivers. Xorg 1.13.0. Kernel 3.5.3. Do you have x86 pat enabled in your kernel (if default kernel, probably yes)? I've always had better luck with it disabled for my nvidia cards.

    What distro are you running it under? It may be having problems with certain compositors? I run E17.

    To the person who asked about benchmarking, there's a checkbox under advanced options to show FPS. I'm not sure if there's a timedemo type of method for benchmarking. I seem to be stuck with vsync on whether I specify it or not, since my FPS are either 60fps or 30fps (very occassionally drops into the mid 20s). It's pretty smooth at 30fps though, so no complaints there.

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