Hello Linux Geeksters. 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, Piixl is working with Valve at creating Jetpack, a gaming computer released with SteamOS as default and Digital Storm has announced their first Steam Machine, running SteamOS and Windows 8.1 in dual boot.
The first Beta version of SteamOS 1.0 is a customized Debian Wheezy system, running on Kernel 3.10.11, back-porting fresh Nvidia, Catalyst and Mesa binary drivers, uses SysVinit as the system’s default event manager, a personalized GNOME 3.4 as the default desktop environment for the Big Picture mode and Xcompmgr, a lightweight graphics compositor.
It requires UEFI support, Intel or AMD 64-bit processor, 4GB or more memory, 500GB or larger disk and NVIDIA, AMD or Intel GPUs.
Despite the fact that SteamOS 1.0 Beta was created to work with the first Steam Machine model which uses Nvidia graphics, it works well also with ATI Radeon and Intel Mesa GPUs.
The 14th of December was an important day for Valve. While It brought the first beta version of SteamOS 1.0, it was also the first shipping date for the Steam Machines that are sent to 300 lucky testers. Also the Steam Controller has native support for Linux systems, not requiring any specific drivers.
The first 300 units of the Steam Machine have been sent in wooden boxes having the receiver’s name graved on the box, followed by the units number.
The above videos provide both the unboxing of the Steam Machines and the booting process. If you are curious, see watch them: