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Since this comes up so often when testing games for developers and surprisingly often for newly released Linux games, I thought it might help to give developers a quick hint.

The Issue

You've deployed your shiny new game onto Steam, later you've added a Linux version and it works fine for you. However, users are reporting a "Missing Executable" error that might look something like this:

The Cause

It's usually very simple, it's a case of the Linux version not being correctly setup on Steam and it's something only the developer can fix.

A super easy way to check, is to look at the game on the handy SteamDB website, comparing the Linux and Windows lists from the Depots link you will find on the left hand side.

Here's an example - Take a look at this content depot taken from SteamDB for a Linux game (thanks to the developer of Rings of Saturn for allowing me to show their game as the example - they've fixed it since):

Now, compare that to the Windows version which clearly shows it having Store purchases and another additional package which the Linux version above did not:

The issue there, should be obvious. The Linux version needs setting up in the same way as the Windows version, being linked to all packages of keys and the Steam store purchase, otherwise we get the issue.

Note: I can't show the actual Steam developer area where you do it, since I am not a Steam developer and all that stuff Valve usually keep confidential. Valve have been emailed to confirm if we can show this.

However, in this video on the Steamworks Development YouTube channel, if you look at about 3:04 it shows the Configuring Depots section, that should be what you're after. Make sure the operating system dropdown box is set to the correct systems. Additionally, you can find this Steamworks Documentation page that explains some of it.

I see this multiple times per week, so hopefully this little tip will help a few developers.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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17 comments
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Eike 13 August 2019 at 8:09 am UTC
The article really needs a screenshot from the Steam internals. I gues someone will read this who can do it.
Liam Dawe 13 August 2019 at 8:10 am UTC
EikeThe article really needs a screenshot from the Steam internals. I gues someone will read this who can do it.
As noted, Valve keep that from the public eye and as far as I and developers I spoke to are aware, you can't go around sharing shots of Steam's private configuration area.
Eike 13 August 2019 at 8:18 am UTC
liamdaweAs noted, Valve keep that from the public eye and as far as I and developers I spoke to are aware, you can't go around sharing shots of Steam's private configuration area.

Hm. It's not like it contains anything secret, and it's there to help people bringing games on Steam. I can't see any reason for Valve to not want it.
Liam Dawe 13 August 2019 at 8:29 am UTC
Eike
liamdaweAs noted, Valve keep that from the public eye and as far as I and developers I spoke to are aware, you can't go around sharing shots of Steam's private configuration area.

Hm. It's not like it contains anything secret, and it's there to help people bringing games on Steam. I can't see any reason for Valve to not want it.
Well, remember developers were only recently actually allowed to share any kind of sales info. So it doesn't surprise me developers are being cautious about sharing the Steam developer area. I have emailed Valve to confirm and will update with a shot if allowed.
Shepard62FR 13 August 2019 at 9:05 am UTC
liamdawe
Eike
liamdaweAs noted, Valve keep that from the public eye and as far as I and developers I spoke to are aware, you can't go around sharing shots of Steam's private configuration area.

Hm. It's not like it contains anything secret, and it's there to help people bringing games on Steam. I can't see any reason for Valve to not want it.
Well, remember developers were only recently actually allowed to share any kind of sales info. So it doesn't surprise me developers are being cautious about sharing the Steam developer area. I have emailed Valve to confirm and will update with a shot if allowed.

Everything you see on SteamDB is gathered by the public APIs/means that Valve developed and put in place. Some info is gathered through developer commands in the Steam client itself and the files it generates. If you donate a CD key for a particular app. to the Steam account that powers SteamDB, some extra information can be gathered about that app.

Of course, everything that is not exposed by the public APIs/means and/or everything that is not "published" is kept secret (exact marketing stuff for example).

In a nutshell, anyone could acquire the same data as SteamDB by his/her own. SteamDB just centralize everything.

Valve is aware of SteamDB and hasn't taken any action against it so you are safe of posting SteamDB screenshots.

The SteamDB FAQ and even Valve instruct the developer to be careful when publishing changes to Steamworks (branches, depots, achievements, stats...) to prevent leaking.

The only barrier that you are not allowed to breach is to publish anything marked as "confidential", this is an immediate termination of the NDA between you (the developer) and Valve if you don't move ASAP.

About the "missing executable" subject, I wish developers could setup a default branch per OS. In the case of Zombie Panic! Source, the Linux client is only available in the "unstable" branch (for now) so we have to tell every Linux user: "if you want to play the game, use that branch, not the default 'public' one that Steam download/install/update by default".
TheBard 13 August 2019 at 9:11 am UTC
Thanks Liam for talking about it. I'm very suprised that such a thing could not be caught on the release test phase. On the first release to a platform, it is a good idea to test the release process by acting as a regular user.
Liam Dawe 13 August 2019 at 9:13 am UTC
Shepard62FR: I'm very aware of everything relating to SteamDB. Not entirely sure what you're getting at, we're waiting on confirmation about getting a shot from Steam's own developer section which likely is confidential.
Eike 13 August 2019 at 9:32 am UTC
TheBardThanks Liam for talking about it. I'm very suprised that such a thing could not be caught on the release test phase. On the first release to a platform, it is a good idea to test the release process by acting as a regular user.

Then again it sounds like something Steam could check fully automatically.
monnef 13 August 2019 at 11:05 am UTC
liamdawe...we're waiting on confirmation about getting a shot from Steam's own developer section which likely is confidential.
I have released a game half year ago on Steam and every page in administration has noted in footer that it is under NDA (or something similar).

That said, I did some "ducking" and found tutorial videos on steamworks are public, so maybe take a screenshot from those? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoNH-v6aU9Q
Liam Dawe 13 August 2019 at 11:10 am UTC
monnef
liamdawe...we're waiting on confirmation about getting a shot from Steam's own developer section which likely is confidential.
I have released a game half year ago on Steam and every page in administration has noted in footer that it is under NDA (or something similar).

That said, I did some "ducking" and found tutorial videos on steamworks are public, so maybe take a screenshot from those? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoNH-v6aU9Q
Yeah that video is quite old now and by the looks like what a developer showed me, possibly a little different now too. However, the basics of it seem the same, so I will add a link to the article - thanks!
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