Linux

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Linux
Tux-Shirt.svg

Key points

Advantage Native Linux version of Steam has been released.
Advantage The number of natively supported Linux games has dramatically increased with the introduction of the Humble Indie Bundle.
Disadvantage Getting Windows-only games up and running in Linux can be significantly more challenging than on Windows.[1]

Steam

Information Steam Linux store
Information Steam Linux community
Information GitHub bug reporting
Information Ubuntu Wiki - guide to Steam.

Resources

Information List of Steam games with Linux native ports

Communities

More information Gaming on Linux - a large community.
More information r/linux_gaming - subreddit.
More information Linux game database - resource of games and tools.
More information #steamlug - IRC chat room.
More information Linux Game Cast - pod/videocast.
More information Holarse - German language.

Contents

[edit] Distributions

Many different distributions of Linux exist. A great family is based on Debian (Ubuntu is Debian-based). An other family is rpm-based (Fedora, Mageia, PCLinuxOS, Opensuse). There are also some other smaller families as Gentoo (Sabayon is Gentoo-based), Slackware (Salix is Slackware-based) and Arch (Manjaro is Arch-based)

[edit] Ubuntu

Ubuntu is the most popular Linux distribution for personal computers and is recommended for users who are making the switch from another OS to Linux. The Ubuntu Software Centre is a distribution center exclusive to this specific family of Linux distributions.

There are many Ubuntu based distributions like Linux Mint also recommended for inexperienced users

[edit] Arch

Arch Linux is one of the most popular minimalist distrobutions. It is only recommended for intermidiate to advanced linux users and requires a good understanding of terminal commands and patience. However one of the benefits of its minimal software approach is the user gets what software they want, the latest version of it, and preformance unmatched by distros like Ubuntu.

There are also Arch based distribution. Manjaro is based on Arch and is easier to install and use than Arch.

[edit] Useful Programs

[edit] Wine

Wine is a compatibility layer that allows one to run Windows applications and games on Linux. one of the easiest and most popular way for Linux users to run programs written for Microsoft Windows. It also provides a software library that can help developers port Windows games to Linux.

Information Tools like Play on linux make wine much easier to work with.

[edit] The Shell

The Unix Shell "bash" available on Linux is a very useful tool for doing system tasks. If you use Linux as your main operating system, then it is heavily recommended that you learn how to use it. Google Code University provides a good starting guide.

[edit] Steam

The Steam client for Linux only officially supports Ubuntu 12.04 LTS or later. You can download it from the Steam about page.

Steam can be installed in most distributions. In http://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey at the September 2013 statistics if Windows only is chosen (this only excludes Mac and mixes Windows with Linux) We see not only Ubuntu versions (0.86%) but also

0.11% Linux Mint 15 Olivia 64 bit
0.10% Linux 64 bit
0.05% "Arch Linux" 64 bit
0.56% Other

Most of the "other" is from the numerous Linux distributions.

[edit] Graphics

[edit] Laptop graphics

[edit] nVidia Optimus

The Bumblebee project provides support for discrete/integrated combos of graphic cards.

[edit] ATi/AMD

http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/Fglrx

[edit] Common Fixes

[edit] Graphics Drivers

Information On Ubuntu the drivers can be installed using a graphical utility. Ubuntu will automatically notify you if there are proprietary drivers available for your graphics card to install.

As Linux by default only provides open source drivers, proprietary graphics drivers are not provided. These drivers are generally much faster and can be installed via jockey-text:

1) Install jockey-text: sudo apt-get install jockey-text

2) List drivers: jockey-text --list

3) Enable the correct driver (whichever mentions being current) e.g.: jockey-text -e xorg:nvidia_current

[edit] Disable Desktop Compositing in Fullscreen

Fix CompizLink

  1. Install CCSM(CompizConfig Settings Manager)
  2. Be careful! This tool can easily break your desktop!
  3. Enable unredirect fullscreen windows under general settings
Information This is unnecessary in Ubuntu 12.10 and later, as this setting is enabled by default

Fix KDELink

  1. Press Alt-Shift-F12 (by default) - This will toggle the feature on and off.

Alternatively, you can enable it/disable it by:

  1. Open System Settings
  2. Open the Desktop Effects section
  3. Uncheck the box that says: "Enable Desktop Effects at Startup"

[edit] Running Games on a Separate x Server

Running games on a different X server from ones main desktop can dramatically improve performance and generally reduces the amount of problems within a game especially when using an advanced compositing window manager like Compiz. To launch a separate X server with a game create a new .sh file and paste in the fallowing code:

#! /bin/bash 
DISPLAY=:1.0
xinit $cd '/YOURGAMEPATH' $* -- :1

Save and allow the file to be executable. Running this script in the terminal will make it much easier end the server when you are finished with it. Alternatively you can set the path to a terminal emulator like Xterm /usr/bin/uxterm and launch the game from a terminal in the new server. You could even launch a file browser like nautilus /usr/bin/nautilus Press Alt+Ctrl+F7 to return to the main desktop and Alt+Ctrl+F8 to go back to the newly created one.

Fix X server Permission error Debian/UbuntuLink

  1. run
    # dpkg-reconfigure x11-common
  2. Set: Move down and select "Anybody"

Fix X server Permission error AnyLink

  1. open
    /etc/X11/Xwrapper.config
  2. Set
    allowed_users=root or console
    to
    allowed_users=anybody

Fix No soundLink

  1. Open the fallowing file as root in a text editor
    /etc/group
  2. Find the fallowing line
    audio:x:29:pulse
  3. Add a comma and your username ex:
    audio:x:29:pulse,linus

Fix Fullscreen problems/cursor won't disappearLink

Running a very light window manager may fix some problems with fullscreen games not going fullscreen and will make the mouse courser hide when in front of a full screen window. Openbox is a very light manager that is available for many distributions.

  1. Install openbox "sudo apt-get install openbox" or the equivalent for your distribution
  2. change
    $cd '/YOURGAMEPATH'
    to
    $cd 'openbox'

References

  1. http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/08/21/how-easy-is-it-to-play-windows-games-on-linux/
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