Steam OS Finally Here

Posted: 15/12/2013 in Apps, Tools
Tags: , , , , ,

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Now that the first Steam Machine prototypes have shipped out, Valve has released its Steam OS into the wild.

You can download Steam OS here, and it’s advisable that you carefully read the Steam OS FAQbefore diving in.

SteamOS is a fork (derivative) of Debian GNU/Linux. The first version (SteamOS 1.0) is called ‘alchemist’ and it is based on the Debian ‘wheezy’ (stable 7.1) distribution.

SteamOS is designed to run Steam and Steam games. It also provides a desktop mode which can run regular Linux applications.  SteamOS currently provides a limited set of packages, but many Debian wheezy packages work fine on SteamOS, says Valve.

Steam OS can only run Linux games, so your Windows-only library is out. However, Valve is working on a system which will allow Windows games to be streamed from your Windows machine to the your Steam OS machine.

SteamOS Hardware Requirements:

  • Intel or AMD 64-bit capable processor
  • 4GB or more memory
  • 500GB or larger disk
  • NVIDIA graphics card (AMD and Intel graphics support coming soon)
  • UEFI boot support
  • USB port for installation

 

How do I install SteamOS?

There are two different installation methods for SteamOS. The recommended method is the Default Installation method, which is a pre-configured image-based install using CloneZilla. The other method uses Debian Installer, which allows for customization after an automated install step. Please choose one of those methods below.

WARNING: Both installation methods will erase all content on the target computer

Default Installation

You will need to create a SteamOS System Restore USB stick to perform this install. The image provided here requires at least a 1TB disk.

Download the default SteamOS beta installation

Format a 4GB or larger USB stick with the FAT32 filesystem. Use “SYSRESTORE” as the partition name.

Unzip the contents of SYSRESTORE.zip to this USB stick to create the System Restore USB stick.

Put the System Restore USB stick in your target machine. Boot your machine and tell the BIOS to boot off the stick. (Usually something like F8, F11 or F12 will bring up the BIOS boot menu).

Make sure you select the UEFI entry, it may look something like “UEFI: Patriot Memory PMAP”. If there is no UEFI entry, you may need to enable UEFI support in your BIOS setup.

Select “Restore Entire Disk” from the GRUB menu.

When it is complete it will shutdown. Power on the machine to boot into your freshly re-imaged SteamOS.

Custom Installation

The second method is based on the Debian Installer. It requires multiple configuration steps:

Download the custom SteamOS beta installation

Unzip the SteamOS.zip file to a blank, FAT32-formatted USB stick.

Put the USB stick in your target machine. Boot your machine and tell the BIOS to boot off the stick. (Usually something like F8, F11, or F12 will bring up the BIOS boot menu).

Make sure you select the UEFI entry, it may look something like “UEFI: Patriot Memory PMAP”. If there is no UEFI entry, you may need to enable UEFI support in your BIOS setup.

Selected “Automated install” from the menu.

The rest of the installation is unattended and will repartition the drive and install SteamOS.

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