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The day I'm sure many have been waiting for, and just as many probably thought it wouldn't happen. Linux has finally hit 1% again on the Steam Hardware Survey.

Not the first time, in fact years ago when Steam for Linux was pretty fresh we actually saw it remain over 1% for a while. That didn't last long though, and it's been bouncing around at sub 1% for multiple years now as we've been showing on our dedicated Steam Tracker.

Want to see what systems our readers are running? Check out our statistics page.

If we take how many monthly active users Steam has which Valve reported at over 120 million at the start of this year, that would give us an estimated 1,204,000 monthly active Linux users on Steam.

The question in my mind is: why are we seeing a sudden surge? Starting in April 2021 it started to gradually slowly move upwards but now it's a much more pronounced jump. Perhaps this is as a result of the Steam Deck announcement? It certainly wouldn't be surprising to see more people try out Linux as a result of it so they know a bit more about what to expect.

What do you think has caused the recent up-tick in users? Let us know in the comments.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Meta, Steam, Valve
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I would expect the Steam Deck announcement timed with the latest LTTs video, probably has something to do with it.

I also fully expect we will see more months of 'less than 1%', since we're 'well above the trend line' right now, but that's nothing to feel bad about. What matters is that the trend is good, we're inching higher. Eventually it will be normal to see months above 1%.

Next milestone: 2%!


Last edited by gradyvuckovic on 2 August 2021 at 8:31 am UTC
I think it's both the Steam Deck announcement and the Windows 11 announcement that seems to have pushed some of the more hardcore users away from it. Thinking of moving to Linux is a quite common sentiment right now in tech enthusiast space when asked about Win11.
Let's hope the ones crossing over do not come into contact with GNOME desktop first. Otherwise they might start to find windows 11 not so bad after all. ;-)
Quoting: ignaloidasI think it's both the Steam Deck announcement and the Windows 11 announcement that seems to have pushed some of the more hardcore users away from it. Thinking of moving to Linux is a quite common sentiment right now in tech enthusiast space when asked about Win11.

I think so, too. Because Windows 11 can't run on 5 year old and older Hardware. Win 11 runs only on AMD side on Ryzen 2000 Series and younger.
Maybe this was the reason.
dpanter 2 Aug
I'm hoping (without any actual hope at all really) that Steam will show the Deck/SteamOS as a separate data set rather than lumping it in with the Linux data we are familiar with today. It would indicate if the Deck had a positive effect on desktop Linux adoption.
The sudden spike is suspicious... Seems like an error!
PJ 2 Aug
Quoting: SchattenspiegelLet's hope the ones crossing over do not come into contact with GNOME desktop first. Otherwise they might start to find windows 11 not so bad after all. ;-)
and that's debatable. My personal experience is that when I introduce some non-techie to Linux Gnome works best (with addad dock and some minor tweaks). Those were folks that actually kept using Linux.
With "techies" KDE is usually the best choice. Sucks with default settings but you can do almost anything with it.
IMO one of the issues with Linux desktop is by default every single DE sucks... even though every single one (among the major ones) is actually awesome.
Eike 2 Aug
Quoting: dpanterI'm hoping (without any actual hope at all really) that Steam will show the Deck/SteamOS as a separate data set rather than lumping it in with the Linux data we are familiar with today. It would indicate if the Deck had a positive effect on desktop Linux adoption.

I hope for the opposite. We will see the positive effect if Linux numbers are climbing up significantly, and I don't want to be a third class citizen after Windows and Deck.
pb 2 Aug
Quoting: dpanterI'm hoping (without any actual hope at all really) that Steam will show the Deck/SteamOS as a separate data set rather than lumping it in with the Linux data we are familiar with today. It would indicate if the Deck had a positive effect on desktop Linux adoption.

We should be able to discern it in the "Linux Version" section anyway. It will show SteamOS for Steam Deck.
I wonder how long ago it was that there were just 1,204,000 total people playing video games of any sort.
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