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Steam Link app now available for the Linux desktop

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Valve along with their partners at open source consulting firm Collabora have ported over the standalone Steam Link application to the traditional Linux desktop.

Originally available as the Steam Link hardware that was discontinued in 2018, which Valve then replaced with the standalone application. The idea is that it allows you to stream content from Steam on one PC to another, or to a different device like an Android phone. Previously the app was only supported for Windows, iOS, Android, or a Raspberry Pi but that ends now with the official announcement today adding traditional Linux desktops to the mix.

So why now? Well, Valve only just recently announced Remote Play Together - Invite Anyone, which uses the Steam Link to allow people without a Steam account to join a game hosted by someone else. So you could host a game of your favourite co-op or multiplayer experience, let's say Stardew Valley, and someone only needs the Steam Link installed on whatever device they have available to join your game with a link you send over.

You can grab the Steam Link for Linux from Flathub and you can see the reference files on GitHub. Looks like this is Valve's first official release as a Flatpak package.

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Hori 2 Mar, 2021
Yay! It's about time :D
Also great to see that they keep improving this, as it has been getting quite a bit of attention lately.
Looking forward to even more improvements!

Last edited by Hori on 2 March 2021 at 9:00 pm UTC
Julius 2 Mar, 2021

Edit: arg, seems like x86_64 only. Why Valve? Why? We were able to run a normal Steam Linux client on x86 before :( What is really missing is an Arm64 build of the steam-link :(

Last edited by Julius on 2 March 2021 at 9:33 pm UTC
fagnerln 2 Mar, 2021
It's surprisingly that they are using flatpak, they should release Steam officially on flatpak or create a sandbox solution with their Steam Runtime, most of the users of rolling distros are having problems on CSGO because of the new glibc, which not happens with the flatpak version.
Linas 2 Mar, 2021
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This is what was missing for a proper local streaming setup. You can stream games using a standard Steam client, but if you have to enable Proton, change command line arguments, etc., you'd have to physically do it on the host machine. Well, no more!
a0kami 2 Mar, 2021
I've never had great use on my Steam Link, but that's always nice seeing improvement over there! :)
Despite discontinued is the Steam Link hardware still being updated with latest software updates ?
MayeulC 2 Mar, 2021
This is huge, especially the bit about they releasing it on flathub.

I wish they built it for ARM as well, though maybe it is usable in qemu-binfmt? Is it using HW-accelerated decoding with VA-API or similar?

I also wouldn't be surprised if it ends up reverse-engineered.
hardpenguin 2 Mar, 2021
Nice, r/cloudygamer can finally stop asking the question "which Android box should I get"!
sgtnasty369 2 Mar, 2021
So if I have a Windows 10 PC running steam, I can play via my Laptop/Linux but I need a Steam Controller? I don't understand how this works.
eldaking 2 Mar, 2021
I find Steam Link such an exciting piece of technology, but people barely pay any attention to it. The possibilities! Get a single good desktop PC, with all its versatility (install whatever you want, navigate with any peripherical, customize it, whatever), but play on your TV like a regular console or on a portable device (including any android phone or tablet). This is the kind of tech that enables stuff like Stadia or GeForce Now, but without the strings attached - you can just rent a server from anyone and stream you games however you want. It's even an interesting possibility beyond games - just use your phone as a thin client for your powerful desktop!

Now it's possible to just share your games for some remote couch gaming, which is just great. Eases multiplayer with your friends, instead of finding a random stranger that purchased the game.
CatKiller 2 Mar, 2021
Quoting: sgtnasty369So if I have a Windows 10 PC running steam, I can play via my Laptop/Linux

You already could, as well as Linux <—> Linux. But you needed to install the Steam client and have a Steam account. Now you don't.

Quotebut I need a Steam Controller?

You don't need a Steam controller. They don't even make them any more.
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