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Valve continue working behind the scenes for Linux gaming with 'Gamescope'

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Valve are definitely up to something. For a little while, Valve developer Pierre-Loup Griffais has been tweaking steamcompmgr, the SteamOS session compositing window manager.

After being quiet on SteamOS development for a long time with no update since July last year, it certainly seems now like some parts of it are being revived either for the next major SteamOS release or Valve's other Linux gaming projects. Work on steamcompmgr seemed to stall back in 2018, with it suddenly seeing activity on GitHub in October last year.

In fact, it's no longer named steamcompmgr and seems to be expanding to do a whole lot more. It's had so many tweaks and changes, Griffais has actually given it a new name. Meet Gamescope (GitHub), which Griffais said when renaming it that "We're a superset of steamcompmgr now, but have a wider scope, so new name to reflect it.".

Going over the project there's a few things that stick out. It seems that they're going with Vulkan and Wayland (what's supposed to eventually replace Xorg in most major Linux distributions). Exciting!

Once they talk more about what they're doing and their plans, we will let you know. With all that Valve's doing including Steam Play, the Linux container system, this Gamescope and various other projects they're certainly still giving Linux gaming plenty of attention.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Steam, SteamOS, Valve
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26 comments
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TheRiddick 15 January 2020 at 11:13 am UTC
I wish Wayland and NVIDIA got along, but they don't really.

I like the idea of wayland even tho its still too early, apparently it could allow freesync to work on multi monitor setups and also within windows (on freesync screens). That would almost put it on par with windows freesync flexibility.
BielFPs 15 January 2020 at 11:14 am UTC
QuoteIt seems that they're going with Vulkan and Wayland

Newbie question: I know Linux games today relies on X.org and xWayland doesn't have hw acceleration, but what about games running with wine/proton? Can they use hw acceleration once wine start to use wayland?
YoRHa-2B 15 January 2020 at 11:20 am UTC
QuotexWayland doesn't have hw acceleration
Wat?

XWayland generally does work with native games and wine, but there are a ton of issues, especially related to the Vulkan WSI, so you sometimes get weird performance, Vsync may or may not be broken, etc.


Last edited by YoRHa-2B on 15 January 2020 at 11:20 am UTC
rustybroomhandle 15 January 2020 at 1:15 pm UTC
I still think all of this is leading up to a second attempt at Steam Machines, except this time with Valve also being the hardware provider.
tmtvl 15 January 2020 at 1:17 pm UTC
Always nice to see some well-written documentation /s.

Still, always nice seeing some investment into Wayland, it is the superior tech.
Mohandevir 15 January 2020 at 1:28 pm UTC
Could it mean that it might get included in the Steam Desktop client as a "DE" for any supported distro? That would be really awesome!

Anyway, I'm looking forward to this. I'm a steamos-compositor fan. I still use it to this day, on top of Ubuntu.


Last edited by Mohandevir on 15 January 2020 at 1:42 pm UTC
gustavoyaraujo 15 January 2020 at 1:36 pm UTC
Always good news from Valve. But one thing I miss from them is the business thing. Yes, they are great and they do a great Linux support, But I still think they don't treat Linux as a serious business platform. They could talk more to other companies to bring more games to Linux, make some exclusive content for Steam OS and offering some real advantages for Steam OS users. What about give developers a better revenue to port games to Steam OS? I just can not understand how a company like Valve is not doing things like these to help their own official platform.


Last edited by gustavoyaraujo on 15 January 2020 at 1:40 pm UTC
Nanobang 15 January 2020 at 1:44 pm UTC
Valve seem quite prophetic in their launch of SteamOS as the basis for line of console-like gaming PCs (aka "Steam Machines"). With the upcoming console generation looking less like their toy-like forebears and more like their PC competition, Valve is no longer the only company to see the storm clouds brewing for the PC gaming market

Intel has announced the Ghost Canyon NUC, which uses a modular approach to building a mini-gaming PC, something Razer already appears to be ready to use as the basis for their Tomahawk gaming PC..

There's already third party support for Intel's idea, too. Cooler Master has introduced their own case for the new gaming NUCs, and Asus has unveiled a mini RTX 2070 2070 "specifically designed" for Intel's new tiny, gaming rig.


Last edited by Nanobang on 15 January 2020 at 1:45 pm UTC
BielFPs 15 January 2020 at 1:58 pm UTC
YoRHa-2BWat?

XWayland generally does work with native games and wine, but there are a ton of issues, especially related to the Vulkan WSI, so you sometimes get weird performance, Vsync may or may not be broken, etc.

Good to know, I've read somewhere that one of the problems with wayland and games is the lack of hw acceleration with xwayland, so the performance would be terrible

But of course, I'm far from being an expert in this subject
Thetargos 15 January 2020 at 2:21 pm UTC
Any news on multithreaded input support in Wayland yet? About the most annoying thing (for me) in modest systems (I still have and use a netbook, for simple tasks) and Xorg is deffinitely faster in such scenarios, particularily input-wise than Wayland, and reading about these issue, seems it stems from the fact that Xorg has at least the mouse input in a different thread than the window-drawing, and it does show especially under load. Good thing Valve are getting behind further wayland refinement and pushing it forward.
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