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Thread: Valve Reveals More Steam Linux Distribution Details

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by duby229 View Post
    That isnt the real question though.... Heres the real one....

    What's the benefit of sticking to 32bit when a 64bit multilib system can still support 32bit?

    Sooner or later all systems will have more than 4GB of RAM. It really isnt the larger registers that matter, in some cases it hurts, but it is the number of registers that do. A multilib system that can use either 32bit or 64bit depending on whether or not it makes sense is going to be a good idea even if you don't have 4GB.
    It actually requires you to have a larger amount of libs on your system and can make things (unnecessarily) more complicated. So if you have less than 4GB RAM, I only see disadvantages in installing a 64bit OS. Or what advantages do you see? I see none.

  2. #22
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    Although it's not necessarily always the case, 64-bit distributions often compile their 64-bit packages with more advanced instructions (SSE, for example), which may improve performance in certain programs.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nuc!eoN View Post
    It actually requires you to have a larger amount of libs on your system and can make things (unnecessarily) more complicated. So if you have less than 4GB RAM, I only see disadvantages in installing a 64bit OS. Or what advantages do you see? I see none.
    32 bit apps can access a full 4GB virtual address space on 64 bit OS's.

    I'd say 2GB of RAM is around where i'd say it makes sense to stick with a 32bit OS instead of using the 64 bit version.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty3268 View Post
    32 bit apps can access a full 4GB virtual address space on 64 bit OS's.

    I'd say 2GB of RAM is around where i'd say it makes sense to stick with a 32bit OS instead of using the 64 bit version.

    Even if you did only have 2GB RAM, a 64bit OS allows to use the full register table. Double the general registers and also double the SSE registers as well. If the applications you need arent compute heavy then it probably wont matter, but it is still an advantage of 64bit over 32bit that applies even at smaller memory amounts.
    Last edited by duby229; 03-17-2013 at 10:20 PM.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by FLHerne View Post
    Netbooks...

    Also, there are still a fair few Pentium M laptops (and some P4 desktops, although I haven't seen many recently) in existence - mostly with XP*, and not really suited to Vista or Win7 but quite happy with some XFCE/LXDE distro. Quite a lot of those are owned by students etc, who are much more likely to be using Linux than your average PC owner*.

    *NB: Such statements are based on what I see as a permanent resident of a university town in the UK, and might not properly represent global trends. I don't see why they shouldn't, though.
    My Pentium-M laptop does a fantastic job at running KDE 4.8 . You don't need a stripped down distro, you just need to throw in an SSD and now it boots to desktop faster than my quad-core i7 ivy bridge laptop with a 5400RPM HDD that's 7 years newer... Waiitng for the new Intel SSDs to come out later this year to buy for my Ivy Bridge laptop...
    Last edited by Sidicas; 03-17-2013 at 10:43 PM.

  6. #26
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    Many people such as myself have Steam detected as being run on Ubuntu, when in fact it's just a Ubuntu chroot. Some might even have configured a dual-boot setup just for Steam to minimise problems.

    About 2-3 weeks ago I switched to running natively on Debian, but I've had a few issues in doing so. Occasionally, Steam updates break my setup and I manually need to fix things (such as updating my Steam launcher wrapper script to include additional environment variables, changing from running the beta release - which I didn't even know I was still using - to reinstalling as stable, etc.).

    Until Steam actually officially supports a larger number of mainstream distributions such as Debian, Fedora, OpenSuse and Arch, these numbers won't mean much. As others have pointed out, it doesn't help matters that Ubuntu has been supported by Steam from day 1 so people might have chosen Ubuntu when they normally would not have.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by r1348 View Post
    I don't like where Ubuntu is going, and a sizeable part of linux users with it.
    It still uses the Linux kernel and GNU userland, it's still a GNU/Linux distribution.
    I don't really see the problem to be honest.

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by boltronics View Post
    Until Steam actually officially supports a larger number of mainstream distributions such as Debian, Fedora, OpenSuse and Arch, these numbers won't mean much. As others have pointed out, it doesn't help matters that Ubuntu has been supported by Steam from day 1 so people might have chosen Ubuntu when they normally would not have.
    Steam has a bug in it that would make it difficult to support Fedora outright. Some of the libraries they used request both write and execute permissions on the same heap memory mapping. This compromises the system's security, and the default SELinux setup will have none of it.

    FYI, the bug report seems to indicate the problem is actually a bug in WebKit.

  9. #29
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    Default Dont have fits over 32 bits

    Quote Originally Posted by elanthis View Post
    It's somewhat annoying to me that the major distros even keep making 32-bit x86 releases... Still, I can't imagine a sizable portion of users are upgrading to the latest Fedora/Ubuntu or Windows on ancient hardware; I'm sure it happens (someone here will claim they do it, surely), but happens enough to be worth caring about?
    I have a gifted laptop from circa 2005 with an AMD Sempron processor (32-bit, 1 core), 512MB RAM and a 4200rpm 75GB IDE hard drive. Needless to say, Windows 8 isn't much of an option here. However, I just installed the new OpenSUSE 12.3 on it and the machine is quite usable (so long as you don't want to run lots of programs or browser tabs at once). In fact, I can run XBMC on it and its ATI (yes, ATI, not AMD) 200M (X300) graphics. It can play back 720p video files too - granted with no video acceleration and just about 100% CPU usage, but it works! Web browsing, Marble, Google Earth, Eric5 IDE and python coding... I can even use WINE to run games up to circa '98/'99 like Dungeon Keeper II and Half Life.

    I have to go on overnight trips every few months and having this old laptop in a functional state is a lot better than not having a laptop at all. Please don't start asking people to kill off support for 32bit just yet. Why, it was just last year Linux killed off 80386 support! :-) Besides, there's a bazillion embedded controllers, including x86 controllers, kiosks, ATMs, etc. that are 32 bit that Linux needs to run on.

  10. #30
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by duby229 View Post
    Please don't misunderstand me, I'm not calling Ubuntu users retarded. Instead I'm saying that a certain percentage of any userbase is going to be retarded, and lets face it, most of that group will be using Ubuntu.
    It's still somewhat of an offensive phrase. I prefer to put it this way: "Ubuntu is the AOL of Linux". Or as the joke goes: "What's the difference between an Ubuntu user and an AOL user? Ten years. "

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