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Google announces Steam for ChromeOS Chromebooks in 'Alpha'

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It's finally here in Alpha, Google and Valve have brought Steam to ChromeOS giving even more platforms using Linux a chance to get their gaming on.

This is another huge step for Linux gaming. Even though ChromeOS isn't exactly a traditional Linux distribution, the Steam client on it is still pretty much the same as the one available for Linux desktops and runs inside Google's special "borealis" Linux container.

Announced during the Google for Games Developer Summit 2022 Keynote, they said it's available for "select" Chromebooks for users to try.

They said to check out info on their community forum, which actually has nothing posted on it right now. Will update when it does with what info they provide. More to come…

Update — their post on the Chromebook community forum is now live, but it still doesn't actually give any info:

As you may have already heard, our team is working with Valve to bring Steam to Chrome OS. We are very excited to share that we’ll be landing an early, alpha-quality version of Steam on Chrome OS in the Dev channel for a small set of Chromebooks coming soon. Please come back to the forum for more information!
Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Google, Meta, Steam
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21 comments
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mphuZ 15 Mar
Wow!
Mohandevir 15 Mar
Now that the Steam Deck is out, I'm probably not going to try it, but anything to attenuate gaming's reliance on Windows is a good thing, imo.
pb 15 Mar
Next up, streaming Steam games using Stadia's technology.
One can hope...
alka.setzer 15 Mar
For what should be support at this drop:

  • 11th generation Core i5 and i7

  • Have at least 7Gb of ram

  • Specific boards only



Source: About Chromebooks
Jpxe 15 Mar
I hope both Google and Valve are working closely with and sponsoring open source projects for running x86 code on ARM. Would be great for both Chromebooks and future Steam Decks.


Last edited by Jpxe on 15 March 2022 at 5:41 pm UTC
alka.setzer 15 Mar
Quoting: JpxeI hope both Google and Valve are working closely and sponsoring open source projects for running x86 code on ARM. Would be great for both Chromebooks and future Steam Decks.

Having an arm chromebook (lenovo duet) I can say, not really. Closed source drivers don't offer desktop gl (mine is limited to 2.1), and even if they do have vulkan and opengles (i.e. 3.2) that does not mean it gets exposed to the linux container. Again in the case of the duet, I only get OpenGL 3.1 (and not 3.2) and no vulkan (because the venus virt-io does not work for arm atm). In any case the open source drivers are not really better for gaming.
You can use box86/box64 with some success depending on the game but chromeos layers also get in the way.
elmapul 15 Mar
" and runs inside Google's special "borealis" Linux container."

great now things can run inside pressure vessel container inside borealis container...
or maybe inside proton inside borealis...

elmapul 15 Mar
Quoting: JpxeI hope both Google and Valve are working closely with and sponsoring open source projects for running x86 code on ARM. Would be great for both Chromebooks and future Steam Decks.

i dont know how good that would be, unless we were willing to completely give up on accuracy we wouldnt have any modern system:
https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2011/08/accuracy-takes-power-one-mans-3ghz-quest-to-build-a-perfect-snes-emulator/


that said, the margin for bugs running proton/wine under arm would grow exponentially, it might not be an great issue for steam games, but for everything else, doing the QA ourselves will be hell, dont expect to play any obscure indie game on that thing.

that said, amazon will contribute too in theory, at least with proton/wine, not sure with the arm version of those.
i think our biggest bet at an arm migration would be give up on local gaming and use cloud instead, wich would be an sad ending for freedom.
Liam Dawe 15 Mar
Added a small update.
Kelvinhbo 16 Mar
So Linux might be the future of gaming after all.
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