Chuckles Mar 27, 2013 @ 11:17pm
Expectations of the Linux client - how does the official environment compare.
My frist psot so feel free to break out the cluebats and point me elsewhere.

I gave up games for a long time to avoid having to have Microsoft installed; my work life is 100% Linux dev for a few years. I got a PS3 about a year ago and have a few games there, but playing on my desktop is my target. I suspect I'm not unusual in wanting to play games but not using Ubuntu as my distro. My own install is x86_64/LMDE. I poked around, banged my shins, googled a bit, and have an install that works for me, I've tried a couple of demos and casual games to build a bit of confidence and am generally able to get a gaming break in during the day as stress relief. So why am I bugging you?

There are a couple of things that _may_ be anomalous and if it helps I'd like to chip in experience/data, but I don't know what I should expect. I'm just looking to see what might be Valve's problems versus my own environment. I'll own work made by not wanting to dual boot a distro just for playing, but helping record "real" problems seems the least I can do. So DAE see:

When I fire up some games/operations, there's a significant lag. TF2 for instance, brings up the baldy logo reasonably quickly but getting to the game menu takes longer than I usually care to sit and watch. Wouldn't necessarily be a big problem if ...

When I switch away from full screen displays, half-life/TF2 etc, the refresh doesn't seem to go back to full screen, so I end up with a quarter screen mask of the top left of the display which isn't awfully useful since there's precisou little kbd navigation I've found, and clicking on menu items doesn't work if the menu is outside the mask, as most are. Very occasioanlly switching back refreshes properly.

The browser doesn't have flash installed and the steps indicated don't get it installed. I mention it because iit's obvious, but to be honest I don't care enough to have tried to resolve/troubleshoot it and won't unless it is something that helps others out.

I'll cut it here since it's my first attempt at communitydom. (communityship? :-)

Cheers.
Showing 1-12 of 12 comments
< >
Tuskan GA Mar 28, 2013 @ 1:07am 
I haven't personally tested games in Linux yet as the one I'm using to type this is a pretty useless laptop I fixed up a while back so it can't actually play games (intel integrated from years and years ago; unsupported).

However I don't find it likely that the software itself has problems like the ones you described. I've seen no reports of similar issues around here at least, but that's not the most accurate indicator.

Regardless, it's not like you'll end up shelled by an elephant while wearing a peanut costume because of it so it's probably something you can wait for an answer on.
Chuckles Mar 28, 2013 @ 1:58am 
It's all ones and zeros, right? Somewhere in the stack something's misrendering or hanging around without cause, I'm just trying to compare what I see with what the folks who're doing it right see. :)

Thanks for the sanity test wrt what you've seen reported. Just so I'm clear. I start say, TF2, I get bored waiting for it to draw the "choose a server" screen, or otherwise accidentally move to another console/virtual desktop. You're saying that based on what you've heard from Ubuntu running folk you believe, if I had the Ubuntu install, I'd be able to switch back and everything would be fine and dandy? So that makes me think I should dig deeper into "my" parts of the stack, thanks.

Any opinion on the flash support in the browser, or the slightly stodgey response? On the latter, visual inspection of the gnome system monitor seems to say it's not CPU bound, plenty of idle cores and the "busy" ones aren't pegged. Tying in network exchanges is tougher ad-hoc but it doesn't _seem_ to be waiting on a network response. (No I couldn't defend that statement in court :)

You are kinda making me feel dumb about not putting together an Ubuntu boot to do my own comparison.

Cheers
Tuskan GA Mar 28, 2013 @ 2:14am 
Originally posted by Chuckles:
It's all ones and zeros, right? Somewhere in the stack something's misrendering or hanging around without cause, I'm just trying to compare what I see with what the folks who're doing it right see. :)

Thanks for the sanity test wrt what you've seen reported. Just so I'm clear. I start say, TF2, I get bored waiting for it to draw the "choose a server" screen, or otherwise accidentally move to another console/virtual desktop. You're saying that based on what you've heard from Ubuntu running folk you believe, if I had the Ubuntu install, I'd be able to switch back and everything would be fine and dandy? So that makes me think I should dig deeper into "my" parts of the stack, thanks.

Any opinion on the flash support in the browser, or the slightly stodgey response? On the latter, visual inspection of the gnome system monitor seems to say it's not CPU bound, plenty of idle cores and the "busy" ones aren't pegged. Tying in network exchanges is tougher ad-hoc but it doesn't _seem_ to be waiting on a network response. (No I couldn't defend that statement in court :)

You are kinda making me feel dumb about not putting together an Ubuntu boot to do my own comparison.

Cheers

No, I'm just saying there hasn't been any talk HERE about stuff like that. I think there's a dedicated Linux subforum on here somewhere that could probably answer your question better.

I'm neither discounting nor refuting your experience. It may very well be an error of the platform. However, at the same time it could very well be a conflict of the distrobution you're using.

My experience is less than yours; I haven't tried gaming on a linux box yet; I'll get around to it when I install OSX Mountain Lion on my gaming rig next week.

It's new software on a technologically diverse platform. It could be any number of issues.

Hell, it could be that the drivers for your GFX card aren't particularly well coded for your hardware and distribution and that may be limiting your ability to game. It sounds more like it would be a CPU problem if it were a hardware problem at all, but it's still a possibility.

My basic gist is that the Steam client seems stable on my Linux Mint laptop but I don't have enough information to really help you nail down your problem.

You'll need to either wait around for others or you'll need to see if there's a Linux subforum still and ask again there. Because it doesn't necessarily sound like a problem of the platform to me but it might be.
Chuckles Mar 28, 2013 @ 2:25am 
I thought I'd seen a Linux specific sub forum, but couldn't find it when I posted the original. Any clues on how I can find it? I'm new to steam, so feel free to try and insult my intelligence. :)

And After posting the question I noticed that there was a pending update, so I restarted steam and - well - I just switched to/from TF2, per my description, three times in a row and didn't have a problem. Maybe they're _really_ responsive to idle questions. I have more testing to do now.

Thanks for the company sounds like we're in the same corner.
Tuskan GA Mar 28, 2013 @ 2:33am 
They used to have a Linux subforum but now that I looked for it again it seems to have been removed.

Whatever the case, it sounds like they are keeping on top of making sure the client is compatible across the board. They said they would only support Ubuntu but apparently the fragmentation wasn't bad enough for it to not work across multiple other distros.

It does sound like it was a Steam client problem after all if an update seemingly fixed your issue. I hope it stays fixed.




Also, I was very sad you didn't get my reference. In my first post that out-of-left-field joke was actually an obscure pop culture reference based on your username.

Look up "Chuckles the Clown" and "Mary Tyler Moore Show" for hilarity.

It was a long shot, but it would have been so satisfying if you got the joke. Oh well, another day another failure. Life goes on...
arc| Gps Mar 28, 2013 @ 2:43pm 
I think it would be easier to use one of these distroś

https://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Steam_under_Linux

1.2 Arch Linux
1.3 Fedora
1.4 Gentoo
1.5 openSUSE / SUSE

I am openSUSE 12.3 and can confirm loading of TF2 takes a while.

After using one of these four, you could compare it to your distro.
Chuckles Mar 28, 2013 @ 5:44pm 
Originally posted by Tuskan GA:
Also, I was very sad you didn't get my reference. In my first post that out-of-left-field joke was actually an obscure pop culture reference based on your username.

Look up "Chuckles the Clown" and "Mary Tyler Moore Show" for hilarity.

Sorry. Plenty old enough to know the show, but only been here for a few years. I feel I miss a lot of baseball references too. :)
Chuckles Mar 28, 2013 @ 5:53pm 
Originally posted by arc| Gps:
I think it would be easier to use one of these distroś

https://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Steam_under_Linux

1.2 Arch Linux
1.3 Fedora
1.4 Gentoo
1.5 openSUSE / SUSE

I am openSUSE 12.3 and can confirm loading of TF2 takes a while.

After using one of these four, you could compare it to your distro.

Thanks for the pointers. I have a dual boot of Arch on this box, and only Gentoo not represented even in a VM. But my day to day life is much too invested in the LMDE desktop setup. I only want to enable sweet relief from mind bending work, so what I have fits me. But you always wonder whether there's some greener grass hanging out within reach. :) And I would like to help out by reporting real problems in appropriate places.

If I install a second environment to check out behaviours for my self at some point, is there a reason to not use the officially supported distro?
Chuckles Mar 28, 2013 @ 5:56pm 
Man how did I miss your point by _so_ much. I am behind the curve as usual, it's spreading like wildfire. Thanks a second time.
Teisei Mar 28, 2013 @ 6:01pm 
@OP

First of all you could provide us with your system information (Steam main window -> Help -> System Information). That information is always useful, even if it doesn't directly solve the problems.

In most cases the problems with Steam for Linux are related to graphics drivers, libraries, or the desktop environment itself.

I'm glad if I can be of help.

EDIT: In case you're planning to switch over to a more popular/recommended distribution, I strongly recommend Xubuntu. It's lightning fast, easy to use, beautiful and customizable. It's also a part of the Ubuntu family, so you get Canonical's support.
Last edited by Teisei; Mar 28, 2013 @ 6:07pm
Chuckles Mar 29, 2013 @ 5:47am 
Originally posted by :
@OP

First of all you could provide us with your system information (Steam main window -> Help -> System Information). That information is always useful, even if it doesn't directly solve the problems.

That I can do, for reference I get:
Processor Information:
Vendor: GenuineIntel
Speed: 2668 Mhz
8 logical processors
4 physical processors
HyperThreading: Supported
FCMOV: Supported
SSE2: Supported
SSE3: Supported
SSSE3: Supported
SSE4a: Unsupported
SSE41: Supported
SSE42: Supported

Network Information:
Network Speed:

Operating System Version:
Linux Mint Debian Edition (64 bit)
Kernel Name: Linux
Kernel Version: 3.2.0-4-amd64
X Server Vendor: The X.Org Foundation
X Server Release: 11204000
X Window Manager: compiz
Steam Runtime Version: steam-runtime-release-i386_2013-03-25

Video Card:
Driver: NVIDIA Corporation GeForce GTX 660/PCIe/SSE2

Driver Version: 4.2.0 NVIDIA 304.48
Desktop Color Depth: 24 bits per pixel
Monitor Refresh Rate: 59 Hz
VendorID: 0x10de
DeviceID: 0x11c0
Number of Monitors: 2
Number of Logical Video Cards: 1
Primary Display Resolution: 1600 x 1200
Desktop Resolution: 3280 x 1200
Primary Display Size: 17.01" x 12.76" (21.26" diag)
43.2cm x 32.4cm (54.0cm diag)
Primary Bus: PCI Express 16x
Primary VRAM: 2048 MB
Supported MSAA Modes: 2x 4x 8x 16x

Sound card:
Audio device: Realtek ALC1200

Memory:
RAM: 12037 Mb

Miscellaneous:
UI Language: English
LANG: en_US.UTF-8
Microphone: Not set
Total Hard Disk Space Available: 503966 Mb
Largest Free Hard Disk Block: 404926 Mb

Installed software:

Recent Failure Reports:
Wed Mar 27 07:33:28 2013 GMT: file ''/tmp/dumps/assert_20130327003319_1.dmp'', upload yes: ''CrashID=bp-294779aa-db7c-450e-a8a6-3dcd72130327
''
Thu Mar 28 20:16:05 2013 GMT: file ''/tmp/dumps/assert_20130328131557_1.dmp'', upload yes: ''CrashID=bp-4e019d15-4eca-4b3e-ab14-3edac2130328
''

The failure reports and microphone setting are interesting; I thought I'd set the webcam mic as input, the crash reports I hadn't noticed and don't recall explicitly being asked about phone home operations.

The mic testing had some nasty feedback and I'm still new enough to modern gaming not to be pluggged in and needing it. :)

This is quite a little treasure trove of data, thanks.

Originally posted by :
@OP]
In most cases the problems with Steam for Linux are related to graphics drivers, libraries, or the desktop environment itself.

I'm glad if I can be of help.

EDIT: In case you're planning to switch over to a more popular/recommended distribution, I strongly recommend Xubuntu. It's lightning fast, easy to use, beautiful and customizable. It's also a part of the Ubuntu family, so you get Canonical's support.

Yeah, I bought a new graphics card, guided by a friend, because the old one was too boring to be supported by ATI/AMD. This one has given me no problems with display quality and as I mentioned above, now let's me switch away and be responsible and repaints nicely when I get back most times. The only time it doesn't seems to be when there's a long exchange with "servers", so the display wouldn't be responsive anyway. Soon as that clears, repaint works and I'm fd&h.

I'll look into the recommendation, Unity is pretty much a no go for me, and beautiful is in the eye of the beholder, but fast and tweakable appeal to old farts who sepnd most of the time at a shell prompt of some kind. :)

I really appreciate your time, thanks.
iskeledz Mar 29, 2013 @ 9:12am 
Download the newest NVIDIA driver here: http://www.nvidia.com/object/linux-display-amd64-310.40-driver.html
You have an outdated version (probably from the LMDE repo) from when Steam for Linux wasn't even released yet.
Showing 1-12 of 12 comments
< >
Per page: 15 30 50
Date Posted: Mar 27, 2013 @ 11:17pm
Posts: 12