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Steam Client Beta updated with PipeWire desktop capture for Remote Play

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Valve continue upgrading and tweaking the Steam client with a fresh Beta version being released today with a couple of tweaks that are interesting for Linux users.

Some of the issues fixed are for everyone including slow startup after suspend, Cloud Sync will now happen as soon as possible to avoid delays launching games and for Remote Play they fixed using multiple PS5 controllers from the Steam Link app.

Just for Linux though these caught my eye today:

  • Enabled pipewire desktop capture by default on Linux, pass -nopipewire on the command line to disable it
  • Fixed Linux games seeing multiple controllers when Steam controller configuration support is enabled
  • Fixed Linux clients not getting any controller input once streaming starts

Some real nice fixes, the controller issues are something I came up against a couple of times. The first one is the bigger and more interesting change as PipeWire is basically the next-generation of audio and video on Linux. As the official website states:

It provides a low-latency, graph based processing engine on top of audio and video devices that can be used to support the use cases currently handled by both pulseaudio and JACK. PipeWire was designed with a powerful security model that makes interacting with audio and video devices from containerized applications easy, with supporting Flatpak applications being the primary goal. Alongside Wayland and Flatpak we expect PipeWire to provide a core building block for the future of Linux application development.

So now that Valve are using it for Remote Play, perhaps this will work even better (especially on Wayland). This is quite likely another improvement to ready up for the Steam Deck, since we already know games will be played on it inside a Wayland session along with it using Gamescope.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Apps, Beta, Meta, Steam
38 Likes
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20 comments
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Mohandevir 23 Sep
Is Pipewire the solution to the long standing audio degradation issue with PulseAudio, when it comes to in-home streaming from a Linux host?

I have to disable all HDMI audio devices in Pavucontrol of the host computer to prevent that from happening.
katp32 23 Sep
Now if only they would release a 64 bit build...
Switching to pipewire was a PITA earlier this year because I didn't know I needed to nuke `~/.config/pulse/` and maybe 1 or 2 other cache directories, but since has been doing just fine 8 Archlinuxes. I use standard Stereo, AUX, HDMI, D-Sub, 5.1, 7.1.

My ex-linux audio recording buddies biggest complaint used to be PulseAudio was terrible & JACK was very difficult to configure and maintain (2016?). They are more hopeful that pipewire is better but yet to try it. It seems like from talking with them they have a renewed interest in Linux especially because of the Steam Deck. I am hopeful that many new talented people develop interest as SteamDeck and Linux in general are amazing development platforms & devices.


Last edited by ElectricPrism on 23 September 2021 at 4:04 pm UTC
Numeric 23 Sep
Always good to see stories like this. They serve as a reminder of how developing technologies like Pipewire, Wayland, Flatpaks, etc... are valuable to Linux for establishing modern frameworks that application support can be built on top of. Last year's technologies of PulseAudio, X11, non-sandboxed package files, were good things to help get Linux to where it is today. They will continue to remain in use, shoring up the new frameworks till ultimately they reach maturity. However new frameworks do need to made as our understanding (and expectations) of technology evolves over time. Hopefully, these nice features continue to roll into the "mainstream" Linux so that old and new Linux users alike can enjoy the benefits.
denyasis 23 Sep
Quoting: MohandevirIs Pipewire the solution to the long standing audio degradation issue with PulseAudio, when it comes to in-home streaming from a Linux host?

I have to disable all HDMI audio devices in Pavucontrol of the host computer to prevent that from happening.

Huh... I'll have to try that fix. Pretty much made everything unplayable for me after an hour or two. Thanks for sharing!
omer666 23 Sep
Been using Pipewire ever since it became default on Fedora and it is great so far. There are still some instabilities but nothing serious either way.
Mohandevir 23 Sep
Quoting: denyasis
Quoting: MohandevirIs Pipewire the solution to the long standing audio degradation issue with PulseAudio, when it comes to in-home streaming from a Linux host?

I have to disable all HDMI audio devices in Pavucontrol of the host computer to prevent that from happening.

Huh... I'll have to try that fix. Pretty much made everything unplayable for me after an hour or two. Thanks for sharing!

Can't promise it will solve your issue, but for my GTX 1660 Super, it's the way to go.
BielFPs 23 Sep
Quoting: katp32Now if only they would release a 64 bit build...
And Wayland support...
Sojiro84 23 Sep
Steam client that is 64 bit and supports Wayland...?

One can dream!
elmapul 23 Sep
hell i hope that means i will be able to use something like jack-rack without messing the audio of everything else
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