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I'm sure this will excite some of our readers who are fans of game streaming: NVIDIA has added the ability to play GeForce NOW game streaming via the browser.

Currently, it's limited to ChromeOS and Chromebooks as per their announcement. However, you can easily get around that because of how stupidly flawed browser agent strings are. Spoofing it is easy, although it only works in Chrome and not Firefox from my own testing. Just grab a User Agent Switcher plugin (like this), then add this as an option:

Mozilla/5.0 (X11; CrOS x86_64 13099.85.0) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/84.0.4147.110 Safari/537.36

That allows NVIDIA GeForce NOW to run on desktop Linux, simply in a Chrome browser. Just like Google Stadia has been able to since release. Here's a video of it in action on my Linux desktop:

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Well, how about that? Another barrier broken down for Linux gaming fans. Surprisingly it did actually work really well. Input was responsive and the picture quality was really good.

NVIDIA GeForce NOW is quite different to Stadia, in that it uses games you have in your library across Steam, Origin, Ubisoft, Epic Games and more. However, if you wish to play past 1 hour, you have to pay a monthly subscription. The integration also feels far weaker than Stadia, which is a proper platform. On GeForce NOW, it's clearly Windows machines in the cloud to the point of hearing the Windows 10 ping sound when you click around as it doesn't let you. Stadia feels much tighter as a system and platform but GeForce NOW has the big benefit of games being available locally on your system as you "own" them as well as streaming them which Stadia does not, Stadia can only stream the games.

Obviously, at this point NVIDIA are not supporting the Linux desktop with GeForce NOW in any way and it could break any time - so keep that in mind. A mod on the community GFN Reddit did indicate this looks like the direction NVIDIA are going (having it in the browser), to open it up to more. Options are good for everyone though of course and we're just here to bring the tips.

You can try it on play.geforcenow.com.

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64 comments
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Alm888 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: ShmerlKeep in mind also that Geforce Now is using Windows on the server.
Does it matter?

I mean, you are playing "The Witcher 3", a game using Microsoft® API (DirectX™) via Proton™.

As much as I despise Proton, it's proponents' main argument "As Long As It Works" has some merit. Why a user should be bothered by this minor detail, if (s)he does not have to deal with Windows™ in any way her-/himself?

Both methods (GFN and Proton) involve purchasing a game, which developers could not care less about Linux. But I say, if anything, using GeForce Now is even purer than using Proton™: you don't have to deal with Microsoft yourself at all.
Shmerl 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Alm888Does it matter?

Depends for what or may be for whom. I'd say those who don't want to give any edge to Linux gaming hostile MS, don't dual boot, so they don't use Geforce Now either. Those who don't care would say it doesn't matter.

Comparison with Wine is invalid in this context. We are talking about actual Windows.


Last edited by Shmerl on 19 August 2020 at 7:40 pm UTC
Alm888 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: ShmerlI'd say those who don't want to give any edge to Linux gaming hostile MS, don't dual boot…
Dualbooting has nothing to do with this case. A user is not required to do so in any way (while using GFN).
Quoting: ShmerlComparison with Wine is invalid in this context. We are talking about actual Windows.
No, we are not. GFN does not require to use either "actual" or "virtual" Windows. And what nVidia is using is nVidia's problem, not user's.
By using GFN one does not makes another sale for Windows (contrary to WINE, where some may argue it is de-facto a Windows copy). On the opposite, by using GFN you are sending a "clear signal" (as Proton™ adepts would put it) to game developers that you are not a Windows gamer (but a ChromeOS user, a Linux variant, mind you, in this case).
Shmerl 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Alm888Dualbooting has nothing to do with this case.

I already explained what it has to do with it. Really not interested in spending time arguing with demagoguery. See above.


Last edited by Shmerl on 18 August 2020 at 7:22 pm UTC
Alm888 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: ShmerlReally not interested in spending time…
If you are inclined on just being rude and accuse others of "demagoguery" instead of presenting arguments, then so be it.

It is OK, I also hate many things after all, preaching included.

Our conversation is over.
Quoting: PatolaWho said the developers have access to this data?
And who said they don't? Let's not speculate on thing we do not have information about, OK?
Quoting: PatolaThe important part: do you think they would have to incur the costs of supporting ChromeOS at any time, instead of Windows?
No, I do not. As I do not think they will be willing to incur costs by supporting Linux after seeing a bunch of "Linux Gamers" playing on Proton™.
To be clear here, I am just playing a "Devil's Advocate" role here, nothing more. In my own opinion (of which you are very well aware) I am equally against GFN and Proton™, as both ways a gamer is wasting money on Windows products instead of supporting Linux (NTNB is my motto).
But I find bashing of GFN by people endorsing Proton™ to be unjustified (and unethical).
Quoting: PatolaIn the case of proton, as small as it is, developers who see advantage in letting users use it often do make modifications and patches of their games to better ensure compatibility, like with Hello Games' No Man's Sky.
And other developers see that "Linux Players" are more than happy to play Windows versions, as the "Supraland" developer. It all comes down to the person responsible. For your every positive example I can bring a negative one. Let's not get into particularities. Proton's overall influence has not been evaluated yet and we can not claim it to be beneficial or detrimental. Besides, that is besides the dispute. We are about the "ethics" of using GFN, not about what developers might think.
Quoting: PatolaDude, seriously, stop your anti-proton crusade…
Don't you see the irony? I did not bash Proton™ this time around! I defended GFN.
If you are so pro-Proton because (as Liam would say) it enables Linux market to be more viable as it brings more games to ecosystem, then you shall accept GFN, as it also does just that!
Quoting: Patola…it is not fruitful and makes you look like a histrionic person.
Seriously, what's up with you guys? Can not maintain a conversation without resorting to calling names? You are absolutely need to get personal, aren't you? Shall we continue discussing our personalities instead of the news? (No!)
Quoting: PatolaAnd by no means using a compatibility layer for Windows on Linux for some software, without paying a dime to Microsoft…
Moot point. Using GFN also does not require to spent a dime on a Microsoft product.
Quoting: Patola…would be worse than running that software within an actual Windows environment with a license paid to Microsoft.
Again, nVidia pays the license, not player. Stop telling "un-truths" in order to strengthen your position in a dispute.


Last edited by Alm888 on 18 August 2020 at 8:13 pm UTC
elmapul 18 Aug, 2020
if you going to buy an new game, you have 2 options:

you can buy it on stadia, and you will be able to stream it in fullHD forever, or pay to stream it in 4k.
(if you dont care about not being able to play offline)

or you can buy it in steam/epic store/etc and pay nvidia to stream it (you can use the free tier as well if you dont care about waiting in an quee and only playing for 1 hour...)

in my opinion, stadia is still an great option for the games you didnt purchased yet.

as for the games you already paid for, GFN sounds like the cheaper option (its cheaper than buying it again)
elmapul 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Shmerl
QuoteObviously, at this point NVIDIA are not supporting the Linux desktop with GeForce NOW in any way and it could break any time - so keep that in mind.

Keep in mind also that Geforce Now is using Windows on the server. So it's not any better than dual booting or running Windows in VM locally. You just get a longer cable for it. It's essentially a glorified remote Windows VM.

i kind of agree, but this will make it more convenient for people who are considering test/migrate to linux, so this may increase our marketshare and the developers support who want to support those who want to offline gaming as well as streaming...

or maybe not, its a double edge sword.


Last edited by elmapul on 18 August 2020 at 8:15 pm UTC
elmapul 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: ShmerlKeep in mind also that Geforce Now is using Windows on the server.
Does it matter?

I mean, you are playing "The Witcher 3", a game using Microsoft® API (DirectX™) via Proton™.

As much as I despise Proton, it's proponents' main argument "As Long As It Works" has some merit. Why a user should be bothered by this minor detail, if (s)he does not have to deal with Windows™ in any way her-/himself?

Both methods (GFN and Proton) involve purchasing a game, which developers could not care less about Linux. But I say, if anything, using GeForce Now is even purer than using Proton™: you don't have to deal with Microsoft yourself at all.
actually steam will count the sale as an linux sale, if you play it on proton.

it will apear in the data send to the developers that you are using linux.
afaik
Shmerl 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Alm888If you are inclined on just being rude and accuse others of "demagoguery" instead of presenting arguments

Your claim it has nothing to do with dualbooting is pure demagoguery. It's not rude to point that out, especially since demagoguery is waste of time for everyone. Drop it.


Last edited by Shmerl on 18 August 2020 at 8:26 pm UTC
elmapul 18 Aug, 2020
Quoting: Alm888
Quoting: ShmerlI'd say those who don't want to give any edge to Linux gaming hostile MS, don't dual boot…
Dualbooting has nothing to do with this case. A user is not required to do so in any way (while using GFN).
Quoting: ShmerlComparison with Wine is invalid in this context. We are talking about actual Windows.
No, we are not. GFN does not require to use either "actual" or "virtual" Windows. And what nVidia is using is nVidia's problem, not user's.
By using GFN one does not makes another sale for Windows (contrary to WINE, where some may argue it is de-facto a Windows copy). On the opposite, by using GFN you are sending a "clear signal" (as Proton™ adepts would put it) to game developers that you are not a Windows gamer (but a ChromeOS user, a Linux variant, mind you, in this case).

wrong, you DO pay another licence.
it may be cheaper because nvidia buy in a lot with a bunch of licences, but you're still paying.
nvidia cant make unlimited copies of an software and distribute it just because you're streaming it from an vm running in their servers, instead of using it yourself.

otherwise they would be able to buy 1 copy of an game and distribute it to everyone.

they pay per user, and if nvidia is an publicly traded company, its dirt easy for microsoft to know how many windows licences they are using.
they just need to know how many clients are using gfn, they can get this info by reading the info that nvidia give to stake holders about their profits, the origin of the money and where they're spending.

they ARE payig microsoft for each user, either an rent of an windows licence or an entire licence, but they are.
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