What is the SteamOS Operating System for Games?

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back_by_demand

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I have a whopping gaming PC in the study, but in the living room a modest HTPC attached to the TV, I could use SteamOS to stream games and it would therefore have a use, but it would also mean having to either remove my existing XBMC on Windows setup (never happen) or arrange a dual-boot (inconvenient) so we are back to square 1 again. I want my HTPC to have gaming, but easier not more difficult.
 

joaompp

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But can it run...office. Seriously though I hope they integrate more software into their library what's compatible with SteamOS
 

will1220

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They have to include a dedicated VoIP like ts3 or mumble, then I would have no problem switching once <b>all</b> new game are made for SteamOS
 

joaompp

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@ back by demand:
It's a Linux distro so once it's up and running someone will probably develop that particular function, also I believe SteamOS is a light weight Debian based Linux distro, so it might arrive sooner
 

taurine

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Question 4 contradicts question 1. Steam does have a built in browser, so you should be able to browse the internet in SteamOS, that is of course assuming that they don't remove that, but it would make sense if they left it in.
 

Fredrik Aldhagen

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"SteamOS is a Linux system"
"You won't be able to run an Internet browser or video streaming services that lack a dedicated SteamOS app"

Has it been confirmed that SteamOS wont run anything not approved by Valve? That sounds very contrary to what they claim on their own page on the beta signup for steam machines (saying you're free to install your own software)
 

JD88

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The big question is going to be what kind of performance can be expected on these things VS say a Windows PC running the same game.

To build a PC with comparable performance from what one could expect from the new consoles is going to cost north of $700 (more if you include Windows).

So, can the optimizations of the Steambox and the more efficient Linux OS make up say $200 worth the difference so these things can be priced between $400-500? If they can, and the developer support is there, this is a winner. I would almost rather see Steam self branding one of these things and selling it at cost or maybe even a loss with hopes profits will be made up through game sales. OEMs are going to want to make some profit off hardware sales which will drive up consumer cost.

Keep in mind, the new Consoles are also starting out with even less games than are currently available on Steam for Linux. This means pretty much an even playing field on the console front. What's even more interesting is the fact that all of the consoles will be based on x86 and likely either Mantle or OpenGL all of which are supported by Linux. This goes without mentioning that the PS4 is running a version of FreeBSD which is very similar to Linux. All of these factors mean porting games between these platforms should be relatively simple.
 

clonazepam

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I think a follow-up should be Tom's taking that $350 machine, slapping Windows, a Linux distro, and SteamOS on the thing, and having a go at em all. Up front, the Windows OS makes available any game that's playable in Linux/Steam OS, with the addition of every single game available to Windows.

I'd certainly pay the price for Windows to open ALL the doors.
 

LordHaHa

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So basically outside of the native Linux stuff this is basically like a less-portable Shield in regards to Win/Mac stuff?

I'd rather just run Steam off of a full Win/Mac/Mint setup and hit "Big Picture" if I'm HTPC-ing to be honest.
 

LordHaHa

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So basically outside of the native Linux stuff this is basically like a less-portable Shield in regards to Win/Mac stuff?

I'd rather just run Steam off of a full Win/Mac/Mint setup and hit "Big Picture" if I'm HTPC-ing to be honest.
 

CaedenV

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How is this any easier than hooking up my PC to my TV exactly? The only 2 things you plug in is an HDMI cable which caries audio and video, and a power plug. Turn the computer on and Windows (or OSX, or Linux) will auto-detect the TV with the correct settings. Is that really so hard?

Keyboards, mice, internet, and game pads are almost all wireless, so there is nothing to really plug in there except a little dongle. Plus you can rather easily set up PC Remote or some other software to remove the need for a keyboard and mouse, then you have a phone and game controller. Or you go get one of those little keyboards with the built in touch pad if you really want to be lazy and want something as small as a TV remote.

I am not saying that this is going to be an overall bad product or anything... just that I think we are all getting a little carried away with how 'difficult' it is to plug 2 wires into the back of a computer to make it work with a TV.
 

CaedenV

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How is this any easier than hooking up my PC to my TV exactly? The only 2 things you plug in is an HDMI cable which caries audio and video, and a power plug. Turn the computer on and Windows (or OSX, or Linux) will auto-detect the TV with the correct settings. Is that really so hard?

Keyboards, mice, internet, and game pads are almost all wireless, so there is nothing to really plug in there except a little dongle. Plus you can rather easily set up PC Remote or some other software to remove the need for a keyboard and mouse, then you have a phone and game controller. Or you go get one of those little keyboards with the built in touch pad if you really want to be lazy and want something as small as a TV remote.

I am not saying that this is going to be an overall bad product or anything... just that I think we are all getting a little carried away with how 'difficult' it is to plug 2 wires into the back of a computer to make it work with a TV.
 

JD88

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I'm not sure that's the right way to look at it because what they are playing up is the improved performance of the OS over Windows and probably even a standard Linux distro. As I commented earlier, the success of this thing is likely dependent on the extent of that performance difference.


 

mitch074

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Most of the comments are made by do-it-yourself'ers - and while most have a point, they're missing the main one: the possibility to get a gaming PC, while paying only for the (optimized and silent-running?) hardware (with no Windows + antivirus +etc. tax) and have the whole (eventually) Steam library running on it. So, like a console on which you can change the hardware to suit your needs. In that, it's a nifty idea. If you already own a PC though, this is mostly redundant.
 

JD88

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Exactly mitch, Steam OS is for all those guys posting on the Tom's forums asking for someone to make them a $500 build and is it better than the upcoming consoles.

This is something designed for the gamer and gamer only, not to replace the desktop PC. It's a competitor to the other consoles and the $500 gaming PC that can be built yourself and customized and upgraded however you like.

I think too many people are looking at this as a Windows alternative instead of basically just a console you build yourself. No one with a $1500 Windows gaming PC should consider this unless they want something to stream games to in the living room. It's just not targeted at those people.
 

CaedenV

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@ joaompp
If it has a web browser then it has office these days.

Seriously, it will not be very long (maybe 3-7 years?) that we have to even consider what software we are using, and what platform we are using it on. Most consumer and office software already has web based versions which will run on just about anything from a phone to a work-horse of a computer as long as it has a web browser. For more complicated software like games we are seeing all sorts of software solutions to stream inputs and outputs between devices with minimal issue.

Maybe I am over-reacting a bit, but if a device has a web browser and the ability to attach some form of keyboard and mouse, then it can be used for at least basic productivity... and it has been this way for a few years now! With the release of Office for iOS and Android this just became that much easier, and the stuff coming out over the next 2 years is going to bring full desktop capabilities to extremely small devices. All that you will need is a keyboard, mouse, maybe a display, and a network or internet connection to whatever device or service is providing your content.
 

CaedenV

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@ mitch074
It is essentially an Ouya with a real controller, and PC streaming capabilities. What makes this particular console irrelevant to most gamers is that it is very much an accessory to a PC rather than a self-sufficient console. Without a PC then you are stuck playing what few 5 year old games have been ported to Steam's particular stripped out version of Linux, and a few indie games. So really you need a $500+ PC AND this device to make it fun and interesting, when most of us would rather just play on the PC, or can much more easily plug an HDMI cable to our TV.
 
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