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SteamOS and Steam Deck on top for Linux in the Steam Hardware Survey

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The latest Steam Hardware & Software Survey is out now for September 2022, with it showing that clearly the Steam Deck with SteamOS is the most popular way now to game on Linux.

With the latest numbers though, there is a dip in the overall Linux user share with it now at 1.23%. A drop overall of 0.04 percentage points which some may attribute to just noise but that's what the survey says. Historical data can be found on our Steam Tracker like the below graph snapshot:

As for the most popular Linux distributions, it's now pretty clear that SteamOS is on top:

  • SteamOS Holo 64 bit 17.04% +3.35%
  • Ubuntu 22.04.1 LTS 64 bit 12.48% +4.28%
  • Arch Linux 64 bit 10.57% -0.32%
  • Manjaro Linux 64 bit 7.80% -1.13%
  • Flatpak runtime 64 bit (multi-distro) 4.81% +4.81%
  • Pop!_OS 22.04 LTS 64 bit 4.31% -0.15%
  • Other 42.99% +5.10%

I'm sure some will argue about combining distributions together, like Arch and Manjaro that would put them on top but really they're quite different. Just like how SteamOS has its own update schedule, so does Manjaro they're just based-on Arch. A bit different for Pop and Ubuntu, which share the same base directly.

As for devices, Steam Deck is clearly top for Linux with it's GPU being used by 17.07% putting it at the top for Linux players. That's an +3.35% increase compared with last month too, so the lead is only continuing to grow. Once again though, it's still not even showing up in the Windows stats meaning very few overall people are using Windows on the Steam Deck.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly.
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TheSHEEEP 3 Oct
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With these, I always wish Valve would give out absolute numbers instead of percentages.

It's a bit like that "PC gaming is dead! Mobile is the future" nonsense that crops up every now and again - with PC gaming being in better shape than ever and with more games than ever.
Just because some share shrinks (or grows), doesn't mean there are actually less (or more) absolute users.

You only get this "very rough ballpark" number when Valve shares some actual user numbers once in a blue moon.
Eike 3 Oct
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Nobody's installing Windows on the Steam Deck.

As far as I know, the Steam Deck and only the Steam Deck has got the "AMD Custom GPU 0405". This comes up in the general GPU list with 0.21% of all systems. Linux is installed on 1.23% of all systems, and when filtering by Linux, we can see that 17.07% of the Linux installations are using said GPU. And guess what 1.23% * 17.07% is? Right, 0.21%.


Last edited by Eike on 3 October 2022 at 2:26 pm UTC
MayeulC 3 Oct
QuoteThat's an 3.35% increase

Do you mean [percentage] points?

I've been looking at GoL's survey. OSS GPU drivers surpassed proprietary ones recently (AMD pretty close to overtaking nvidia). Interesting trends all around, included for Wayland adoption, which seems to be picking up (btw, there's no "window managers" on Wayland. Not yet.)

I'm wondering if you could do monthly "one-off" surveys in the reminder post. Maybe also accept anonymous input (counted separately). The topic could be quite random. "Will you get a steamdeck", "have you tried VR", "What language do you have Steam set to", etc.
SikSlayer 3 Oct
Quoting: EikeNobody's installing Windows on the Steam Deck.

Speak for yourself.
Eike 3 Oct
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Quoting: SikSlayer
Quoting: EikeNobody's installing Windows on the Steam Deck.

Speak for yourself.

I showed the numbers. Got different ones?

(Obviously, there might be a handful of individuals that do install Windows on Steam Deck. These will not show up in my numbers as their count is insignificant. I expect everybody reading here to understand that without mentioning.)


Last edited by Eike on 3 October 2022 at 4:13 pm UTC
Go, go, little market share percentage!
The trend line of that graph is certainly looking great. Does look like 1.4% is at least possibly within reach by the end of the year, which would be a fantastic result if we can hit it, given we started at 1.06%.

Here's an alternative way of looking at the numbers:

September 2019 - 0.83%
September 2020 - 0.94% (+0.11%)
September 2021 - 1.05% (+0.11%)
September 2022 - 1.23% (+0.18%)
Arten 3 Oct
Quoting: TheSHEEEPWith these, I always wish Valve would give out absolute numbers instead of percentages.

It's a bit like that "PC gaming is dead! Mobile is the future" nonsense that crops up every now and again - with PC gaming being in better shape than ever and with more games than ever.
Just because some share shrinks (or grows), doesn't mean there are actually less (or more) absolute users.

You only get this "very rough ballpark" number when Valve shares some actual user numbers once in a blue moon.

I don't think it is good idea. Valve dont have actual data about all, because every month only subset of their user is in survey. So % is better solution, because if they write absolute number, you expect real value.


Side note: -0.04% is so small number that can be be statistical error and reality can be positive change just because some bias in selection process or small sample size...
Quoting: ArtenValve dont have actual data about all, because every month only subset of their user is in survey.

As I have been complaining forever, Valve could easily take the data from live Steam client connections. They really have daily information of the base OS for every single user. It wouldn't have the hardware detail, but the OS statistics would be a 100% sample of logged-in users. Not sure why they don't.
Interesting that Ubuntu's back in 2nd place, and both Ubuntu 20.04 and Linux Mint have disappeared entirely.
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