Steam for Linux

Steam for Linux

shatsky Oct 25, 2012 @ 2:21pm
Steam in multiuser/multiseat system
I wonder if it is possible to have a shared Steam install and cache.
If I remember correctly, Steam in Windows can store shared cache for multiple accounts and creates user-specific directories for temporary files. What if multiple users will be logged in and try to run Steam simultaneously with different accounts?
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Showing 1-15 of 18 comments
shatsky Oct 25, 2012 @ 2:27pm 
If Steam is split into downloader/updater daemon and user frontend with launcher which checks if user has right to run this or that game... Then I think it can be used this way.
SergeantG Oct 25, 2012 @ 2:39pm 
First thing to think about is where games will be installed:
1. /home/$user/steam/ or something similar
or let say
2. /opt/steam/ or /local/steam

If it gonna be #1 then every person would need to download games.
If #2 than everyone will share installations.
RPG Master Oct 25, 2012 @ 5:37pm 
I'd prefer the games to install in the home directory, that way you don't need root.
You guys forget about Symlinks. Thanks to symlinks, we can always move it whereever we want.
shatsky Oct 25, 2012 @ 10:24pm 
>I'd prefer the games to install in the home directory, that way you don't need root.

It can be done to support both ways.

>You guys forget about Symlinks. Thanks to symlinks, we can always move it whereever we want.

No, it's not about symlinks. It's about multiple client processes operating on one cache directory simultaneously.
Last edited by shatsky; Oct 25, 2012 @ 10:41pm
Colgy Oct 26, 2012 @ 12:19pm 
Would be nice to have the game data files in /opt or /usr/local, but my hopes aren't too high on that one.
Eidolon Oct 26, 2012 @ 12:51pm 
Originally posted by Colgy:
Would be nice to have the game data files in /opt or /usr/local, but my hopes aren't too high on that one.

It's very unlikely, because the use of /opt and /usr/local varies from system to system. It's more likely that Steam will simply install itself to ~/.steam and then throw desktop files in ~/.local/share/applications since that is mostly system agnostic.
JoyJoy Oct 26, 2012 @ 1:05pm 
It will probably be similar to what it is on OS X.
~/Library/Application Support/Steam

Most likely on linux, it will be in
~/.steam
Last edited by JoyJoy; Oct 26, 2012 @ 1:06pm
SergeantG Oct 26, 2012 @ 1:53pm 
Originally posted by Furyhunter:
It's very unlikely, because the use of /opt and /usr/local varies from system to system. It's more likely that Steam will simply install itself to ~/.steam and then throw desktop files in ~/.local/share/applications since that is mostly system agnostic.

It's even more unlikely because /opt or /usr needs root privileges to write so if the game or steam itself would need update, You will have to run Steam as root - complete mess & totaly not user friendly.
JoyJoy Oct 26, 2012 @ 2:14pm 
Originally posted by sgtGarcia:
It's even more unlikely because /opt or /usr needs root privileges to write so if the game or steam itself would need update, You will have to run Steam as root - complete mess & totaly not user friendly.
You seem to forget about the Ubuntu Software Updater.
Colgy Oct 26, 2012 @ 2:35pm 
Originally posted by sgtGarcia:
Originally posted by Furyhunter:
It's very unlikely, because the use of /opt and /usr/local varies from system to system. It's more likely that Steam will simply install itself to ~/.steam and then throw desktop files in ~/.local/share/applications since that is mostly system agnostic.

It's even more unlikely because /opt or /usr needs root privileges to write so if the game or steam itself would need update, You will have to run Steam as root - complete mess & totaly not user friendly.
Unless it was in a /usr/local/steam folder with permissions set correctly for steam to update the game files located within. Once the initial system wide install is setup that requires root, you wouldn't need root for updating/installing games in the directory.
Last edited by Colgy; Oct 26, 2012 @ 2:35pm
SergeantG Oct 26, 2012 @ 3:41pm 
Originally posted by Colgy:
Unless it was in a /usr/local/steam folder with permissions set correctly for steam to update the game files located within. Once the initial system wide install is setup that requires root, you wouldn't need root for updating/installing games in the directory.

Yes, but still I think using /home folder/partition is more practical.

Originally posted by Killjoy:
You seem to forget about the Ubuntu Software Updater.

Ubuntu Software Updater could update Steam application if it would be available in repo, but not games that are inside Steam Distribution, because Steam will not be coupled with repositories ( if it would, it would need to have repos for every single distro that Steam will be available).
Kung Fu Jesus Oct 26, 2012 @ 4:08pm 
I imagine the most practical is a shared directory for all users for the actual steamcache. Similar to the way games currently are put into /usr/share/games and the user specific stuff (config files, additional maps, game settings) are put into a user specific ~/.steam directory. If the user is installing through the Ubuntu Software Center anyway they'll need root (for apt under the hood). If I have five users on a computer I certainly do not want the same game downloaded five times and I'm sure neither do they.

When the gnu install command is run simply give it read permissions for others. What machines do you plan to install this to that you do not have root? In any such case it is trivial for Valve to supply a user configurable location for steamcache.
henu Oct 27, 2012 @ 2:01am 
I really hope Steam games are installed system wide i.e. main files to the root filesystem and small settings files, etc. to your home directory, for example ~/.config/Steam

The advantages are:

1) If you have multiple users and game is big, then only one installation is needed
2) Home directory might be much slower than root, for example my home directory comes from gigabit LAN, but my root comes from SSD.
3) If you manage to somehow corrupt your personal Steam config, then just remove your config files from your home directory, and steam is reset for your account.

I'm sure there would not be any mess with this. Linux has long history of working package managers. Install with sudo or root (this needs to be done only once per game, so its not that hard) and play with your normal account. Very simple. Many other games work like this on Linux already.
dcosnet Oct 27, 2012 @ 3:24am 
proper multiseat support would be nice, but that may be expecting a bit much from them at this time.
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Date Posted: Oct 25, 2012 @ 2:21pm
Posts: 18