Hello Linux Geeksters. As you may know, Valve has released their first beta version of SteamOS 1.0 “Alchemist”, based on Debian Wheezy.
While Debian Wheezy does not use up to date packages from stability reasons, SteamOS 1.0 back-ports fresh Nvidia and Catalyst binary drivers, comes with support for Mesa, eglibc 2.17, runs on customized kernel 3.10, uses SysVinit as the default system event manager, auto updates from its own repositories, uses GNOME Shell as the default desktop environment for the Big Picture mode and comes with its own graphics compositor, which is actually a customized version of the lightweight Xcompmgr compositor, that runs over X.org.
- Intel or AMD 64-bit capable processor
- 4GB or more memory
- 500GB or larger disk
- NVIDIA graphics card (AMD and Intel graphics support coming soon)
- UEFI boot support
- USB port for installation
Valve provides a SteamOS installer (download link), in order to facilitate the users to easily install the first Linux gaming system on their computer.
For those who don’t know yet, Valve, now a member of The Linux Foundation, has initiated some ambitions projects: the SteamOS, a Linux operating system optimized for gaming, the Steam Machine, a gaming colsole that will run with SteamOS and the Steam Controller, a game controller specially designed for SteamOS and the Steam Machine. A demo video of the Steam Controller can be found here. Also, iBuyPower, a third party manufacturer will release the first non-Valve Steam Machines running with AMD hardware, while Piixl is working with Valve at creating Jetpack, a gaming computer released with SteamOS as default.
Also worth mentioning is that SteamOS will not provide the basic functions of a normal OS, since it won’t have a file manager or a image view aplication. However, it will most likely have support for streaming video services, like Netflix or Hulu Plus, since Valve has announced that the most popular and loved TV shows, music videos and other video media will be available via Steam and SteamOS.