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NVIDIA working with Valve to get Gamescope working on their drivers

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Good news for NVIDIA GPU owners on Linux, as an NVIDIA developer has confirmed that work is in progress to get Gamescope working with their drivers.

Gamescope, for those not aware, is a Wayland compositor originally forked from the older SteamOS 2 compositor. It's a big part of what makes Gaming Mode on the Steam Deck do all it can. This includes features like scaling, AMD FSR, frame rate limiting and more. It would be great to see it fully working across more vendors, especially for those gaming on multiple monitors as it can help get around some troubles there too.

However, it only really works with AMD / Intel GPUs (Mesa) right now but that is set to change. On the NVIDIA forum, developer amrits confirmed "We are working with Valve to ensure Gamescope runs well on our driver." and linked to a GitHub request to fix up issues with it to have it work on the NVIDIA driver.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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22 comments
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Mohandevir 25 Mar
Quoting: toor
Quoting: MohandevirNice! Looking forward to install SteamOS 3 on my Nvidia PC.
I'm not sure it would be that good, for now SteamOS 3 is pretty much specialized for the steam deck, and although you can use the desktop on SteamOS 3, it's a bit experimental I would say, you would either have to remove the read-only and see your changes overwritten by updates, or install everything via flatpak, which I'm sure has its limitations.

You can use gamescope on a standard linux distro, like ubuntu or manjaro, just fine. You just have to edit the steam options to use it with the games you want

It's all speculation, for the moment. From what I read, Valve plans to release SteamOS 3 for other configurations. It will probably be a little different to what we see on Steam Deck. I'm still willing to at least try it and make my own opinion, but my gaming rig is hooked to my TV, atm... It's a big console... Could be a good match.
jens 25 Mar
  • Supporter
Quoting: HoriThey either need to be serious (right now they're anything but... and always have been) about their Linux support in their drivers, or open source them... or ideally both.

Ignoring the very likely legal issues with what you propose, do you really think that just changing the license and dumping thousands of lines of code on GitHub would change anything?

I guess what you are really asking is that NVIDIA sets up there driver development like amdgpu (the kernel part) and Mesa, which essentially means rewriting the complete driver from scratch. I don’t know anything about the NVIDIA driver, but I’m very certain that you don’t do this on a Friday afternoon.

Please don’t get me wrong, I would also prefer that NVIDIA drivers integrates better into the modern graphics stack on Linux and I’m also certain and don’t like that e.g. Wayland adoption is unfortunately way slower due to that. It’s also completely fair that you are switching vendors for your next card. Though please don’t demand a solution which sounds popular, but really wouldn’t work in practice and completely misses the point for this complex issue.
fabertawe 25 Mar
Quoting: Hori
Quoting: kalinAs owner of nvidia gpu for so long time I would say that it's too late for me to get excited. So far nvidia is not good deal for gaming on Linux. My plans are to buy amd gpu next year. I hope things get better for me after that
Cannot agree more.
My next GPU is going to be AMD for sure.
Even if Nvidia GPUs are technically more powerful (though that's very debatable) it doesn't matter much on Linux if they drivers are garbage. On Windows it might make sense to keep using Nvidia, but on Linux I will go with AMD from now on and save myself a lot of trouble, headaches, disappointments and stuff that I paid for but cannot use or works shoddily.

They either need to be serious (right now they're anything but... and always have been) about their Linux support in their drivers, or open source them... or ideally both.

I've used Nvidia GPUs since I've been using Linux, since 2006 and never had any problems. They always just worked and it's very easy to update the drivers on Arch. I recently upgraded my GTX 970 to an AMD RX 6600 and it was incredibly painful. I even had to buy a new monitor! I wish I'd waited for an RTX 3060 at the time.

It's all working smoothly now (eventually) but I'm writing this just for balance as I see a lot of people on here moan about Nvidia drivers

Edit: I also miss GPU hardware accelerated nvenc ffmpeg encoding for my DVD rips.


Last edited by fabertawe on 25 March 2022 at 5:24 pm UTC
toor 25 Mar
Quoting: HoriEven if Nvidia GPUs are technically more powerful (though that's very debatable) it doesn't matter much on Linux if they drivers are garbage.

Nvidia hold people by the balls with Cuda, and the fact they have a huge advance in AI (DLSS) and in ray tracing.

Nvidia drivers have always been "decent" on Linux, I remember the time it was the only viable solution before AMD/ATI opened up the specifications of their hardware and made their drivers open source.

I'm using an AMD GPU and I am very happy about it, I love having open source drivers that work great, and support for Wayland and gamescope.
Although for now I stick with X, games work with XWayland, but Wayland compositors don't yet handle everything that can be done with X, as for instance randr to control monitors (you can with compositors based on wlroots, but for instance kde and gnome don't rely on it), or being able to capture the desktop to stream it with steam link (you can if running steam with -pipewire argument, but then you have to pick which monitor to stream, you can't have all of them), and I really enjoy controlling my computer with my steam controller.
this is exciting as i have a nvidia gpu and have been wanting to play older windows 7 games but they have the old standard resolution from those days causing them to appear in a small windows on a 1080 monitor. hopefully the scaling that comes with gamescope can help with that.
TheRiddick 25 Mar
Waiting for Gamescope to get proper fullscreen and VRR support. Atm I think it just does borderless window which disables vrr/freesync etc...
axredneck 26 Mar
Quoting: silverhikarithis is exciting as i have a nvidia gpu and have been wanting to play older windows 7 games but they have the old standard resolution from those days causing them to appear in a small windows on a 1080 monitor. hopefully the scaling that comes with gamescope can help with that.
I thought Proton (not Wine) can "bilinearly" upscale them when these games are set to fullscreen. But yes, FSR would be better...


Last edited by axredneck on 26 March 2022 at 7:46 pm UTC
omer666 27 Mar
Quoting: fabertawe
Quoting: Hori
Quoting: kalinAs owner of nvidia gpu for so long time I would say that it's too late for me to get excited. So far nvidia is not good deal for gaming on Linux. My plans are to buy amd gpu next year. I hope things get better for me after that
Cannot agree more.
My next GPU is going to be AMD for sure.
Even if Nvidia GPUs are technically more powerful (though that's very debatable) it doesn't matter much on Linux if they drivers are garbage. On Windows it might make sense to keep using Nvidia, but on Linux I will go with AMD from now on and save myself a lot of trouble, headaches, disappointments and stuff that I paid for but cannot use or works shoddily.

They either need to be serious (right now they're anything but... and always have been) about their Linux support in their drivers, or open source them... or ideally both.

I've used Nvidia GPUs since I've been using Linux, since 2006 and never had any problems. They always just worked and it's very easy to update the drivers on Arch. I recently upgraded my GTX 970 to an AMD RX 6600 and it was incredibly painful. I even had to buy a new monitor! I wish I'd waited for an RTX 3060 at the time.

It's all working smoothly now (eventually) but I'm writing this just for balance as I see a lot of people on here moan about Nvidia drivers

Edit: I also miss GPU hardware accelerated nvenc ffmpeg encoding for my DVD rips.

Well you are kind of lucky. Nvidia has had some massive repaint bugs on some desktops and window managers that took literally years to get fixed. This alone should have made me switch to AMD but I wanted to give Nvidia another chance, as their gaming performance is really good aside from this.
fabertawe 28 Mar
Quoting: omer666Well you are kind of lucky. Nvidia has had some massive repaint bugs on some desktops and window managers that took literally years to get fixed. This alone should have made me switch to AMD but I wanted to give Nvidia another chance, as their gaming performance is really good aside from this.

Since Gnome went to V3 (long time ago) I've not used a DE, rolled my own, with Compiz as WM. Never had any problems (that I can recall anyway!). Nor any problems with games.

It's funny that I've been "so lucky". Same with using Arch, never a problem, yet some people appear to have no end of woes!
Ehvis 28 Mar
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  • Supporter Plus
Quoting: fabertawe
Quoting: omer666Well you are kind of lucky. Nvidia has had some massive repaint bugs on some desktops and window managers that took literally years to get fixed. This alone should have made me switch to AMD but I wanted to give Nvidia another chance, as their gaming performance is really good aside from this.

Since Gnome went to V3 (long time ago) I've not used a DE, rolled my own, with Compiz as WM. Never had any problems (that I can recall anyway!). Nor any problems with games.

It's funny that I've been "so lucky". Same with using Arch, never a problem, yet some people appear to have no end of woes!

Neither have I. Been using nvidia since 2004 and all I can recall is one driver update mishap. Most issues seem to have come from compositors that tried to do things "smarter". But gnome (and compiz with the unity desktop) never gave me a big hassle.

Quoting: TheRiddickWaiting for Gamescope to get proper fullscreen and VRR support. Atm I think it just does borderless window which disables vrr/freesync etc...

Don't know how freesync operates, but for GSYNC it really doesn't matter if it is fullscreen or borderless fullscreen window. It's just that the compositor needs to decide to let go of its control. Something that a lot of compositors refuse to do. No idea if this is different for wayland though.
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