Linux

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Linux
Tux Linux Mascot.svg
First release date September 17, 1991

Key points

Native Linux version of Steam has been released.
The number of natively supported Linux games has dramatically increased with the introduction of the Humble Bundle.
Windows-only games can be run using Wine, but depending on the game it may be significantly more challenging than on Windows.

Resources

Phoronix - Website dedicated to hardware and benchmarking in Linux
Linux game database - resource of games and tools.
DistroWatch - page dedicated to Linux distributions
OpenBenchmarking - a list of user-made benchmarks in Linux
/r/linuxhardware - Subreddit dedicated for Linux Hardware
/r/linuxquestions - Subreddit dedicated for Linux-related questions

Communities

Gaming on Linux - A large community dedicated for gaming on Linux.
/r/linux_gaming - Linux Gaming Subreddit
/r/linux4noobs - Subreddit dedicated for Linux newbies
Linux Game Cast - pod/videocast.

Release Models and their distributions[edit]

There are two types of release models which linux distros are using, each one of em have their advantages and disadvantages.

Fixed Release[edit]

Offers stable packages
Most distros which use it are beginner friendly
Package versions are usually tied to the distro version, meaning that upgrading your system is a must if you want to get the recent versions which are considered stable
The release of new version of the distro, depending on the developer, may take from 6 months up to 2 or more years
Manual intervention is required in order to add user-made repositories in some distros.
Updating the distro to the next version doesn't require a fresh install, often it all takes a simple command to perform it.
  • Ubuntu and its flavours (Such as Xubuntu, Kubuntu etc.) - The popular and most recognized distro created by Canonical. Based on the Debian (Testing), it uses apt for package management. Ubuntu follows a 6 month release starting from April. Since the 17.10 version, Ubuntu has abandoned their own desktop environment Unity in favour of GNOME, while flavours stick to the desktop environment they use, such as Xubuntu using XFCE or Lubuntu using LXDE.
  • Linux Mint - The most popular and beginner friendly distro ever created. It includes multiple desktop environments to choose from such as KDE, MATE, Cinnamon and XFCE. The distro is based on Ubuntu, which means that all the packages that are present and supported in Ubuntu are supported in this distro as well. It also has a Debian Edition, which is mainly based on the Debian. Its release time for each version generally happens a few months after the release of the new version of Ubuntu. Due to its ties with Ubuntu, Steam or other digital stores with Linux support that system in case if there are issues.
  • Fedora - Developed by the community-supported Fedora Project and owned by Red Hat. It is an independent distro using the RPM (dnf) package management which concentrates on innovations and integrating new technologies early on while working upstreams with Linux community. Its release time for each version are mostly 6 months or more. By default it uses GNOME desktop, but in Fedora Spins section you have a choice of KDE, XFCE, LXDE, Cinnamon, Soas and MATE (with Compiz). Be aware that some third-party packages such as FFMPEG may not be included and require manual installation.
  • Debian - The most stable and organized distro created by Debian Project. It is mostly used as a base of other distros, as it provides 3 release models such as fixed (Stable), semi-rolling (Testing), rolling (Unstable). Its stable version has a rather very long release, as it takes 2+ years for the new version to come out. All these versions use GNOME desktop by default. However bear in mind that PPA is absent (although it can automatically source-compile from Ubuntu PPAs) and Testing/Unstable version (rolling releases) may not be relieable as sometimes changes make it into its repo, that break the system or leave apt (package manager) confused. It does not happen to the former version.
  • openSUSE - A Linux distro which is a part of the community program sponsored by SUSE Linux and other companies. It promotes the use of Linux everywhere with 3 goals in mind: making openSUSE the easiest Linux for anyone to obtain, being mostly widely used for new and experienced users in terms of Linux and its desktop environments and dramatically simplify and open development of packaging process to make it as a platform of choice for both developers and software vendors. Its biggest strength is in its exclusive configuration program called YaST which lets you configure and tweak most of the system settings along with the kernel, while being simple to use. Another one is the fact you can create packages for any distro you ever want. It uses KDE as a default desktop environment.
  • SteamOS - Created by Valve for their Steam Machines, it can be used on your PC as well. It is based on the Debian (Stable). Be aware that it doesn’t have enough basic software pre-installed. It uses GNOME Desktop by default.
  • KDE Neon - Created by the KDE Community, it's a distro based on Ubuntu LTS which always provides the latest version of KDE desktop first than other distributions, while both being stable and use drivers from the Ubuntu LTS. It is not by all means compatible with Kubuntu (KDE version of Ubuntu)!

Rolling Release[edit]

Provides the latest version of the package once it’s available
No distro upgrade is required, as most distros have only one version.
Distros following the fixed release have an option to enable this type of release. Mostly under the name of Testing or Unstable
An update for the package may cause stability issues, so it is recommended organize an update by yourself in case a revision gets a release, which fixes stability issues.
In some cases, manual intervention is required.
Some distros offer a semi-rolling release, meaning that the package will be tested before the release, it mostly takes less than a month, often a week depending on distro.
  • Arch - An independent and most used distro which aims to be simple and lightweight. It provides a simple, but powerful package manager called pacman while its Arch Build System provides an easy way to create the package, or even modify the configuration of the package which can be shared. The biggest advantage is the Arch User Repository, which provides a library of packages created and managed by the community without requiring the manual way of adding the package repository compared to Ubuntu or Debian. The package will be either compiled automatically or even extract the DEB/RPM file as an installation procedure, while automatically installing required dependencies, if specified by the creator of the package. By default, the distro only has the terminal and some core files required to work, but with the help of its wiki page (while providing the tutorial for beginners) you can create your own system. It can be also used as a help file for other linux distributions due to its simple explanation and troubleshooting. Bear in mind that there may be some slight differences. By default it does not have any desktop environment, but text mode so manual intervention is required.
  • Manjaro - Often called “An Ubuntu of Arch”. This distro provides a graphical interface and is already configured for the beginners. Manjaro provides their own repository while including a great hardware detection and including a program which helps with installing the required packages for it and a stable rolling release model (each new version of the package are tested for a week or sometimes less than a month before the release to the public). The community is also very supportive and provides a great help for beginners.
  • Antergos - Based on Arch, it is aimed for those who want to start with the Arch immediately with all required packages installed without using the text mode. It uses its own repo mixed with the official Arch ones but doesn’t have any special programs on it’s own. You can choose GNOME, Cinnamon, MATE, KDE, OpenBox, XFCE as your default desktop or choose the text mode to download and install your own chosen desktop.
  • Solus - A new, independent distro released in 2016 which despite its rolling release model is very stable and is the only one which supports Nvidia Optimus out of the box. It uses its own package manager called EOPKG, which is a fork of PiSi. You can choose Budgie (Default desktop), GNOME or MATE.
  • OpenSUSE Tumbleweed - A rolling release version of openSUSE which is treated as its own system compared to other distros with fixed release, which are just additional packages. The packages are constantly being updated and tested in this version, sometimes even so far where Arch’s pacman won’t keep up. Just like the fixed release version, it uses KDE as a default desktop.
  • Gentoo - Distro aimed only for advanced users who want to have a total control over the system. It's a source-based distro with unique package manager called Portage with upfront configuration: the user specifies which components and with which features he/she wants to have - and the package manager automatically compiles the software accordingly (in the background). This approach allows maximum flexibility, but requires more knowledge to operate the system. While the software installation time is longer, availability of new versions is almost instant. There are precompiled packages and Portage supports their installation and generation. In addition, several Gentoo-based distributions come pre-configured and include binary repositories (Sabayon, Calculate Linux). Its wiki can be easy to use while being useful for choosing an appropriate compilation option in other distros while explaining them in an understandable manner. It does not have a desktop environment, so manual installation is required.

Desktop Environments[edit]

Each desktop environment you are using or installing have an impact on your user experience and the performance on games. It is often recommended to run the game in fullscreen so the desktop compositor won’t affect the game’s performance, some DE have an option which lets you disable it such as Cinnamon or KDE Plasma (Automatic)Otherwise, XFCE,LXQT/LXDE and OpenBox are recommended to gain as much performance as possible. Due to the low or even absence of desktop compositor use.

GNOME[edit]

Supports Wayland
Provides innovative features and can be expanded
Simple to use
It’s less friendly in terms of customization
It’s GUI may take time to get used to, unless you are using GNOME Classic
This is the only desktop environment which it's Wayland session properly supports NVIDIA GPU.

KDE Plasma[edit]

Powerful in terms of customization and features
Friendly for beginners since 5.10 version
Balanced use of memory usage
Supports Wayland (if Plasma Wayland Session is installed and selected)
May be buggy due to it’s huge reliance on it’s own dependencies made by the developers
The desktop compositor is automatically disabled once you run the game in full screen

XFCE[edit]

Uses less memory and resources
Very customizeable
More responsive
Friendly for beginners
No Wayland support
It’s desktop compositor’s vsync does not work
XFCE will use GTK3 upon the release of version 4.14. The progress can be seen here.

Cinnamon[edit]

Provides both hardware and software acceleration
Friendly for beginners
Balanced use of resources
No Wayland support (But it is planned)

MATE[edit]

Uses less resources than Cinnamon
Friendly for beginners
Good customization
No Wayland support
MATE Tweak is required to change the desktop composition type.

LXQT and LXDE[edit]

Very low resource and memory usage
Very simple to use
Qt based instead of GTK
Some elements are not customizeable
Very slow development time
No desktop compositor is present

OpenBox[edit]

Very low resource and memory usage
Extremely customizeable
Not beginner friendly
Requires you to set up a desktop on your own using parts of other desktop environments.
Can be used as an alternative window manager for other desktop environments such as KDE or XFCE

Budgie[edit]

More simple to use than GNOME
Uses GNOME applications
GNOME updates may cause issues with Budgie
Upon the 11 version, Budgie will use Qt as a default graphical interface instead of GTK.

Graphics[edit]

AMD[edit]

ArchLinux wiki article (ATI/Catalyst)
AMDGPU/AMDGPU ArchLinux wiki article (AMDGPU/AMDGPU Pro)

It is generally recommended to install open source drivers as they provide the much larger performance and are better optimized to the kernel than the proprietary ones. Here is a list of drivers and required libraries:

  • AMDGPU - Open source kernel driver for AMD, it is required for 2D support.
  • MESA - Open source graphics library for 2D and 3D acceleration. Must be installed for 3D support.
  • AMDGPU Pro - Closed source kernel driver for AMD.
  • Catalyst - Closed source kernel driver for older AMD GPU
  • ATI - Open source kernel driver for older AMD GPU.

It is recommended to install the open source version of drivers for a longer support and better performance than the proprietary/closed source ones. Due to the reliance on MESA for 3D acceleration, it’s best to keep it updated once a new version is released. Sometimes the AMDGPU Pro may have a better performance in some games or 3D model editors like Blender, as the driver contains special features which may not be present in the open source counterpart.

Be aware that the Catalyst is no longer supported and if you are forced to use it, you must downgrade your Xorg/X11 server where it was last supported!

NVIDIA[edit]

ArchLinux wiki article (NVIDIA)
ArchLinux wiki article (Nouveau)

Compared to AMD, NVIDIA offers only the proprietary drivers, however there are versions to choose from:

  • nvidia - Supports from GT300 series and newer
  • nvidia 340.xx - Supports up to GT200 series (Legacy)
  • nvidia 304.xx - Supports up to GT200 series (Binary)
  • nouveau - Unofficial NVIDIA driver by FreeDesktop.org

It is not recommended to download the drivers from NVIDIA’s website! Always install them from your repository!

Despite the fact that nouveau works with almost all of the NVIDIA GPUs, their performance is rather worse, but can be somewhat improved by tuning it while updating MESA, which relies on it. Compared to official ones which uses their own library, however MESA is still required to perform 2D acceleration.

Intel[edit]

ArchLinux wiki article

There’s only one driver that is available for all of the integrated GPU present in Intel’s Core series and it also relies on MESA for both 2D and 3D acceleration.

Vulkan support[edit]

If your graphics card supports Vulkan API, you need to install additional driver package in order to enable the support, with the exception of Nvidia ones as they are already included and then install the Vulkan ICD Loader to let your GPU to use it on an application which supports it.

NVIDIA Optimus[edit]

NVIDIA Optimus Linux Guide

In case of laptops which contains NVIDIA Optimus support it is recommended to have PRIME enabled, which can be done by installing additional package, follow the distro’s documentation to learn which one. The alternative to it can be NVIDIA XRun package and Bumblebee's optirun/primusrun (Not recommended as it is no longer in development), but then the manual intervention is required (With the exception of the former). The linked guide will explain in detail the differences between them, as well as how to use them.

Xorg[edit]

Main Page

Xorg/X11 is the 1st display server released in 1986 which became a standard of creating Graphical user interface (GUI) for Linux. It received a major change during the popularity of Linux in 2000s. Despite the long support and being commonly used it has major issues which are still present today such as focus stealing, client and server separation which may lead to delays depending on the application it was made, tearing issues or even security ones which other user may capture key inputs from the keyboard. Depending on the desktop environment it also has accessibility issue for disabled users. Despite the release of it's successor, Wayland, it is still maintained by Xorg Foundation and Free-Desktop.org.

Wayland[edit]

Main Page

Wayland is a successor to the Xorg/X11 server which allows to simplify the whole graphics stack without creating a Client while using a 3rd party compositor. It is only available for GPUs which have a Kernel Mode Setting support. Intel, ATI, AMDGPU, Nouveau have KMS enabled automatically by default, however in case of NVIDIA drivers the support started since 364.12 version and a manual intervention is required to enable KMS and gain the advantage of using Wayland.

The main benefit of the Wayland is a much faster response to programs compared to Xorg/X11 due to the simple communication between APIs. Keep in mind that you may need to add a command to inform you are running in that session to avoid using XWayland, which may affect the performance even if it has a support implemented. Such as games based on SDL2 like Team Fortress 2.

Be aware that Wayland’s support with NVIDIA isn’t so good, due to the different API which their graphic cards use compared to competition.

Microcode[edit]

ArchLinux Wiki Article

It is extremely important to install the microcode for your CPU! As the manufacturer provides security and stability updates for your processor which without it, you will expect a lot of issues using your system.

AMD users only need to install the Linux Firmware package, however in case of Intel, you need the Intel Ucode package and then set up the bootloader to use it as a 1st thing to load. GRUB can automatically set it up if it’s used as your default bootloader by updating the configuration.

Kernel[edit]

Main Linux Kernel page

It is important to update your Linux kernel if updates are available as they provide security updates, bugfixes, better support for computer hardware, new modules and better performance. There are two main versions of the official Linux kernel which they differ each other. The Long Term Support (LTS) kernel versions are slightly behind in terms of hardware support and features than it’s counterpart, but offers the same security updates while being more stable with longer kernel support than other, non-LTS kernels.

Other users are free to edit the main kernel’s source code to add features, improvements, or security updates for different purposes. While both normal and LTS can be used for gaming, there are also community-made ones which may even improve it even further.

The most notable ones are (Bold ones are kernels which have additional options to enhance the performance):

Notes

  • Some repos already provide a pre-compiled kernel
  • Be sure to keep the current kernel you have in case if things go wrong.

Benchmarking[edit]

ArchLinux Wiki Article
Gallium HUD Guide

It is entirely possible to benchmark native Linux games in this system by using the Phoronix Test Suite. While it is not in GUI form, it's actually very easy to use. You will need to download any game you wish to benchmark through this program and later on run it. The biggest advantage is that once it's completed, it will save the information as a webpage which the program automatically generates, creating a separate result is not required, as the program can also include it to the existing ones, making a comparison between the hardware you have used or settings much easier.


If decided to benchmark on your own, whenether the game has a built-in benchmark or not, using Gallium HUD is recommended. Due to the option of displaying the FPS, CPU or even the GPU load graph while running the software and can be customized to your need and it is available when the MESA package (version 13 or newer) has been installed. This option is only available for AMD, Intel HD and Nouveau.


Another much simpler and available for every kind of GPU is the glxosd which requires installing the package with the same name and just like Gallium HUD, you need to type glxosd before launching a game. The settings can be changed in the glxosd_config.lua file located in /etc/glxosd/. It is recommended to change the refresh rate of displaying the information as by default it will show the current info after 3 seconds (In config file it's 3000).


Steam users can use Valve's voglpref which only works for Steam. It will display both informations in the Terminal and at the custom website which can be accessed privately, from there you perform any task you want, although you need to know the SteamID of the game you wish to benchmark.

Audio[edit]

ArchLinux Wiki Page

Audio is mostly handled by ALSA, with or without PulseAudio. You may set up to use ALSA only, however it is mostly recommended to use with the latter, as it acts as a main central configuration point for audio itself.

In case of MIDI, installing Timidity is required along with either soundfonts or FreePats package. Depending on the distro, it will either set it up automatically or require manual intervention. Keep in mind that if you are using PulseAudio, all the sounds, beside the MIDI music, will be muted unless you include the -iA -Os argument for the timidity command as either an autostart or as a user-made service.

There are also other things to know, if your sound card has issues with playing the sound, make sure you have ALSA Firmware package installed, as for bluetooth headsets, check if PulseAudio Bluetooth package is installed and your output is set to A2D in the Sound settings.

There is also the OSS (Open Sound System) as a third option for audio, however it's been succeeded by ALSA.

Controller Support[edit]

All the controllers such as DualShock 4,DirectInput gamepads and XInput ones (Such as Xbox 360) are supported, however in case of issues regarding XInput ones, you may wish to install xboxdrv. For calibration purpose, you can install the graphical interface of JSTest package to do it.

The most interesting thing is the Steam Controller, as despite requiring Steam to make it work, it’s entirely possible to use it outside of it with the use of third-party scripts which lets you emulate it as an actual gamepad or a mouse. Even so far to use it on Wine, if it’s set properly.

Wine[edit]

Main Page
/r/wine_gaming
Application Database

WINE (Wine Is Not an Emulator) is a compatibility layer which allows you to run Windows programs in Unix/Linux environment, it’s main advantage is a wide support of Windows versions ranging from 3.11 to Windows 7 and supports both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of their systems (32 bit only if you have a 32 bit version of Wine). Besides that some games may even work better than on native Windows such as games which use OpenGL or Vulkan rendering. However a manual intervention may be required if there are issues and checking the WineHQ’s App Database to see if it’s compatible and how to make it work. There are multiple versions of this program each with their own differences:

  • Normal
  • Staging - Provides additional features such as CSMT which may or may not improve the performance of the game and contains community-made patches which improves the compatibility.
  • Gallium Nine - Uses Gallium3D State Tracker, which dramatically improves the performance for games using DirectX 9, as it won’t translate Direct3D calls into OpenGL.

AMD and Intel GPU benefits a lot from Gallium Nine version, due to the fact that Gallium3D is a part of MESA, which both of these cards rely on. NVIDIA is not affected by this, as it uses it’s own driver for performing 3D acceleration in it’s own utility package, unless you are on nouveau.

If WINE itself is hard to use there are also front-ends which may improve your experience with it:

PlayOnLinux[edit]

Easy and free to use
Beginner friendly
Includes precompiled scripts for automatic installation
Very slow development
Additional libraries available to install may be outdated

Crossover[edit]

Often superior in terms of compatibility than PlayOnLinux
Contains patches to add new features and/or to improve compatibility, similar to Wine Staging
Commercial product only, however buying the program will support the developers of WINE.

Q4Wine[edit]

Free and moderately easy to use
Additional libraries are up to date, thanks to the winetricks implementation (Manual update is required)
Implemented AppDB for the compatibility check
Manual compiling/installing other Wine version is required if you want to use other version besides the one used in the system by default.

Stores and Clients[edit]

Steam[edit]

List of Steam games with Linux native ports
Steam Linux community
GitHub bug reporting
#steamlug - IRC chat room.

Steam is currently the biggest store which offers games that are compatible with Linux however it’s client is 32-bit only and support ranges only from Ubuntu 12.04 and most likely distros based on it. Outside of it Steam can run on other distros as well as it uses it’s own library to work.

It’s even possible to force Steam to use the library used in your system which makes it more responsive and generally work better. Some distros such as the ones based on ArchLinux have a Steam Native package available in their repo which can be easily installed without manual intervention.

Humble Bundle[edit]

Despite not having the client. Humble Bundle is the 1st store which has games supporting Linux and it is currently the 2nd biggest store for games with Linux compatibility.

GOG.com[edit]

GOG FAQ and troubleshooting thread for Linux

While the Galaxy for Linux is still development. GOG offers Linux games as a MojoSetup installer script. Keep in mind that after downloading the installer, you must label it as a executable file before running it. The store page of the game which supports Linux will display required packages in order to make it work properly in case if there are issues.

Itch.io[edit]

An open store which offers indie games whenether is it free or not. It’s client does support Linux and it is still in experimental phase.

Lutris[edit]

While it doesn’t have a store, it is an open source client dedicated to installing and managing your games in Wine, native, Steam Wine or even available emulators in your system. The main page offers scripts which will automatically install the game you have for you, while giving an option to install it by yourself. Sometimes a script may even offer a different version of Wine made specifically for one game you wish to install. One prime example of it is Overwatch, as it uses a special Wine version dedicated only for this game.

The Bash Shell and Terminal[edit]

The Unix Shell "bash" and Terminal are available on most Linux-distributions by default is a very useful tool for doing system tasks. If you use Linux as your main operating system, it may be unnecessary to use, but it is recommended to learn some of the important commands and terminal hotkeys to make your job easier such as creating a script binary to perform simple tasks or even create aliases to turn complicated commands into a much simple version. Each desktop environment includes their own terminal and can be changed anytime you want, especially the third-party ones such as Terminator,XTerm/UXTerm or Tilix (Recommended).

All user-made settings are always saved in .bashrc file in your Home directory.

It is recommended to learn commands related to file manipulation, text editing, finding specific words, hardware-related stuff and learn how it works.

Other Informations to know[edit]

  • There are no best distros, it all depends on your need. You may be switching between it until you find a perfect one, commonly called “distro hopping”.
  • Always ask the forum or refer to the documentation of the distro in case you have a problem
  • In some distros, such as ArchLinux, you may want to check the main page before updating, sometimes a manual intervention is required, but will always provide instructions what to do. Not required for fixed release type distros.
  • You don’t have to keep making an update if a new version is released in a rolling release distro, you can always do it later. It’s actually recommended to do it after some time to avoid any stability issue.
  • Always use virtual machines such as VirtualBox to learn about the distro you want to use. Some distros have a LiveCD or LiveUSB which allows you to check the distro out before installing or even use it for the maintenance.
  • Sometimes it’s best to divide partitions of your HDD/SDD for other main folders such as /boot, /var, /home etc. and giving them a limited storage.
  • There are loads of partition formats to choose from, but the most commonly used one is ext4.
  • Some keys on your keyboard are labeled differently in Linux world. Meta4/Super key are actually Windows key, while "^X" in text mode is actually Ctrl+X.
  • Almost all of the desktop environments have their own Terminal, you can install a 3rd party ones which generally are more feature rich.
  • If you are confused with using the package manager in Terminal for each distro, this page will help you.
  • Swap partitions are only required if you have less or equal to 4 GB of RAM. The less RAM you have, the bigger size of your swap is required.
  • Having a second workstation is extremely useful in case if the game hangs out or freezes without any option to minimize it back to the desktop. Mostly happens to the Xorg/X11 server display.
  • While /etc folder stores all the settings for the programs, it's recommended to save and hide them into your Home directory to make things much more simple. The program will look for the settings in your Home directory 1st, if not found, it will load the one from /etc.
  • Files and folders can be hidden by adding "." at the beginning of the name.
  • If using a 64-bit version of the distro. Always make sure to install the 32-bit package counterpart for the compatibility!
  • Most of the time you don't have to compile a program as they are mostly pre-compiled in distro's repo. If required, there are always instructions how to do it.

Improvements[edit]

Enabling threading optimizations for NVIDIA drivers
  1. Add __GL_THREADED_OPTIMIZATIONS=1 before the command of the game. For example in Steam, define the command launch paramteres as:
__GL_THREADED_OPTIMIZATIONS=1 %command%

Notes

For some games, threading optimizations cause a huge improvement to the frame rate of the game.
  • Not needed with nvidia driver 378 ¨Enabled OpenGL threaded optimizations by default in the driver. Refer to the "Threaded Optimizations" section in the "Specifying OpenGL Environment Variable Settings" chapter of the README for details. These optimizations will self-disable when they are degrading performance. As a result, performance should be unchanged for many applications, and increased for those that benefit from threaded optimizations and were not already forcing them enabled.¨
Optimize the program to your CPU when compiling
Improves the performance of the program after it's compiled.
May not work on other system but yours.

In Makefile remove any -march and -mtune arguments from the CFLAGS and CXXFLAGS and add -march=native at the beginning.

Notes

  • On ArchLinux-based distro you can edit the makepkg.conf to use it by default when using AUR.
  • The default option for -march is generic, in case if there are issues.
  • Please refer to the GCC Optimization Guide and Safe CFLAGS from the Gentoo Wiki
Use more cores to improve compilation time

Add -j#+1 after the make command. Where # is number of cores. So if you want to use 2 cores of your CPU, use make -j3, in case of 4 cores usemake -j5 etc.

Notes

  • On ArchLinux-based distro you can edit the MAKEFLAGS from makepkg.conf. To apply it as default when using AUR.
  • Keep in mind that some programs requires using one core for the stability sake. So if you are on ArchLinux and using AUR, don't be surprised it uses only 1 core.
  • By default it uses one core when compiling.


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 following 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 Ctrl+Alt+F7 to return to the main desktop and Ctrl+Alt+F8 to go back to the newly created one.

Common Fixes[edit]

Mouse issues on multi-monitor systems[edit]

Some games requires the primary monitor to be set to function correctly.
XRandr[citation needed]
  1. Install xrandr using your linux distribution's package manager.
  2. Run xrandr from a terminal emulator and find the name of the monitor you want to set as the primary (i.e. "HDMI-0").
  3. Run xrandr --output <name> --primary.

Notes

To automate this when the system starts, prepend the command to your ~/.xinitrc-file, or your desktop environment's equivalent.


X server Permission error Debian/Ubuntu[citation needed]
  1. run
    # dpkg-reconfigure x11-common
  2. Set: Move down and select "Anybody"
X server Permission error Any[citation needed]
  1. open
    /etc/X11/Xwrapper.config
  2. Set
    allowed_users=root or console
    to
    allowed_users=anybody
No sound[citation needed]
  1. Open the following file as root in a text editor
    /etc/group
  2. Find the following line
    audio:x:29:pulse
  3. Add a comma and your username ex:
    audio:x:29:pulse,linus

OR

  1. Open the Terminal and type as root
    gpasswd -a <username> audio

Fullscreen problems/cursor won't disappear[edit]

Fullscreen problems/cursor won't disappear[citation needed]

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