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The latest Steam Hardware & Software Survey is out for June 2022, putting the Linux user share at one of its highest ever points and likely thanks to the rise of the Steam Deck and SteamOS. As shown on our dedicated Steam Tracker, it's been trending upwards for quite a while but this latest figure is a pretty good showing.

As of June 2022, Linux is sitting at 1.18% of the Steam user share.

Now, that doesn't sound like a lot on paper, but it puts the monthly active Linux user count at around 1,557,600 at least (based on when Valve last gave the monthly active user count).

Here's the breakdown of the most popular Linux systems:

  • "Arch Linux" 64 bit 11.42% -1.43%
  • "Manjaro Linux" 64 bit 10.11% -0.98%
  • Ubuntu 22.04 LTS 64 bit 9.90% +1.86%
  • Ubuntu 20.04.4 LTS 64 bit 9.73% -2.02%
  • "SteamOS Holo" 64 bit 7.58% +2.35%
  • Linux Mint 20.3 64 bit 6.45% +0.48%
  • Description:Freedesktop.org 21.08.14 (Flatpak runtime) 64 bit 6.05% +6.05%
  • Pop!_OS 22.04 LTS 64 bit 4.79% +4.79%
  • Other 33.96% -11.11%

So you can pretty plainly see that the Steam Deck with SteamOS is already rising up the ranks, as one of the most popular Linux gaming systems on Steam's survey with it already making up well over 7% of Linux players which is a nice increase from the 5% from May 2022.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Editorial, Meta, Steam
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64 comments
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Quoting: CatKiller
Quoting: Mountain ManHow many people buying a Steam Deck but have never used Linux are going to bother trying to install Linux on their desktop based on their experience with the Steam Deck? My guess is very few because it's a console that does everything it can to hide the operating system from the average user (although it does give "power users" more freedom than a typical console).
More than would without it. We knew how great Linux is, but Windows users didn't believe it. Now they can see for themselves without having to go through the trouble and learning curve of installing it first.
I'll admit to a certain degree of cynicism. I've been using Linux for probably two decades and have heard that "The Year of Linux" is just around the corner for about as long, but in all that time, we have seen no significant gains on the desktop. Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled that I can play just about any game I want on my preferred operating system, and I'm glad that Valve seems to be in it for the long haul, but while we will no doubt see an increase in people playing games on Linux/Steam thanks to the Steam Deck, I don't expect to see the Linux desktop market share grow by any appreciable amount.
Right now, I'm not sure what the future holds with SteamOS 3.0 myself. The experience as it is now is highly tailored to the Deck, perhaps even handheld PCs in general, and I'm not sure how Valve could/would adjust it for general desktop usage with wildly varying hardware.

At a minimum, I don't expect SteamOS to cause desktop Linux to gain any significant ground. However, I do think SteamOS will become a popular option for pre-built gaming PCs, whatever form they might take. We might even see the return of Steam Machines in some fashion, although that might be optimistic.
Quoting: Mountain Manwhile we will no doubt see an increase in people playing games on Linux/Steam thanks to the Steam Deck, I don't expect to see the Linux desktop market share grow by any appreciable amount.
Some of the people who switched to Linux in the last year have deliberately left some of their games behind because most of them worked. So we don't need every single game. IMO the only game we need is Fortnite, which will IMO come to Linux in 2024. If that single game runs on Linux reliably with higher performance compared to Windows then gamers will flock to Linux.
mphuZ 4 Jul
Quoting: WorMzyJust like SteamOS v1 and v2 did?
Yes. With a small contribution to these systems, Valve achieved its goal - SteamOS became the minimum that developers focused on.
Lightkey 4 Jul
Quoting: mphuZ
Quoting: WorMzyJust like SteamOS v1 and v2 did?
Yes. With a small contribution to these systems, Valve achieved its goal - SteamOS became the minimum that developers focused on.
I think you are mixing up SteamOS with Steam SDK.
Solarwing 4 Jul
As someone famous said:"Steam Deck is trash. Why? Because if you buy it your wife/girlfriend will you leave for good when she sees Valve's logo smouldering in your eyes. From it She knows what is coming and will end your relationship. So If you wanna end your marriage/relationship buy Steam Deck!" Wow what a commercial speech! Don't blame me. I didn't invent this speech.I'm innocent But future looks good for Steam Deck.The next months will be very intresting.I hope for the best.
g000h 4 Jul
Quoting: SolarwingAs someone famous said:"Steam Deck is trash. Why? Because if you buy it your wife/girlfriend will you leave for good when she sees Valve's logo smouldering in your eyes. From it She knows what is coming and will end your relationship. So If you wanna end your marriage/relationship buy Steam Deck!" Wow what a commercial speech! Don't blame me. I didn't invent this speech.I'm innocent But future looks good for Steam Deck.The next months will be very intresting.I hope for the best.

Now we just need a song by Shirley Bassey - "Steam-Decks are Forever"

Steam-Decks are Foreverrrrr,
They are all I need to please me,
They can stimulate and tease me,
They won't leave in the night,
I've no fear that they might desert me.


Last edited by g000h on 4 July 2022 at 11:15 am UTC
Quoting: denyasisSo that's about 118,000 Deck Users. I guess that's a good number for sales, but I guess I was expecting the over all Linux % to be more positively affected by the Deck. I guess it'll take more time. Hopefully it translates into more mainstream Linux use as well.

I'm wondering if Valve wasn't also using Q1 and Q2 shipments for beta testing. They might have voluntarily reduced the quantity of units shipped to avoid being overwhelmend by support tickets. Probably they feel more confident now, because the first batch of Q3 emails is like a tidal wave compared to what it was before, in terms of units shipped. Looking forward for next months Linux market share.


Last edited by Mohandevir on 4 July 2022 at 1:31 pm UTC
Quinn 4 Jul
Quoting: denyasis
Quoting: Quinn1.18% of the survey were GNU+Linux users, and 7.57% of those were Steam Deck owners, which means \~0.09% of Steam users have a Steam Deck (9 in 10,000).

Steam's last announced figure of 132 million monthly active users came at the beginning of 2022.
That comes out to a little over 100,000 Steam Decks in the wild (unless my maths is wrong). That seems reasonable, based on what I've heard about estimated numbers of shipped units (approx 6,000 per week).

Though not everyone with a Deck is getting opted-in to the survey, so it's more of a snapshot than definitive numbers.

Agreed, I think the 118k number is probably pretty accurate. It's also in Valve's interest to force a survey for every Deck, not only to show strong numbers, but to comparee purchase with usage. I wouldn't be surprised if it does a survey on first run (which is ancedotally consistent with my experience with Steam; survey on new installation.)

Quoting: udekmp69
Quoting: fireplaceI’m glad the Steam Flatpak is getting more traction. Native games on Linux sometimes required libraries outside of the Steam runtime, and developers don’t notice this and just say that it only supports ubuntu or fedora or some crap like that. Now with the Flatpak, it’ll be clear as day if the native game works or not.

Flatpak Steam has some issues but mostly with older native goldscr games and is easily fixable with a launch option. However I use it simply due to organization and the fact it limits read/write of all my other files on my desktop. 100% recommend the steam flatpak especially if you hate when native linux games just throw folders anywhere in /home/.

Question, I'm not familiar with snap/flatpack, but if it keeps everything in the container, does that mean it limits what it can access outside the container? Like prevents Steam from reading the rest of my /home partition for example?

I've never been asked to take part in the hardware survey on my Deck (or on any of my other PC's). Not sure if there's anywhere to opt-in either.


Last edited by Quinn on 4 July 2022 at 5:32 pm UTC
mphuZ 4 Jul
Quoting: LightkeyI think you are mixing up SteamOS with Steam SDK.
No. Runtime did not appear immediately and a lot depended on the distribution itself.
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