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SteamOS Has Its Own Graphics Compositor

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  • #16
    Originally posted by blackout23 View Post
    So it's basically a modified xcompmgr. Nothing fancy.
    Who cares if it's fancy if it's fast, functional, and reasonably secure?

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    • #17
      Originally posted by ninez View Post
      SteamOS appears to be using linux 3.10 - PREEMPT_RT_FULL (unsurprisingly) with a heavy amount of patching (282 patches for -rt in the 'all' architectures/folder, alone). The kernel is also using aufs and they seem to be sitting on some bug fixes for upstream on top of that.

      Some of the -rt related hacks they are using i have seen (in one case, i am using the same patch for ntrig)... It looks like they have gone to a lot of effort getting the kernel just right for their needs.
      I haven't yet got into Linux Kernel hacking, but why would Value use an older kernel when the latest versions have had so much adage. It's not as if they are running a critical infrastructure outfit.
      Last edited by e8hffff; 12-13-2013, 08:50 PM.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by e8hffff View Post
        I haven't yet got into Linux Kernel hacking, but why would Value use an older kernel when the latest versions have had so much adage. It's not as if they are running a critical infrastructure outfit.
        Because they need stability, so they are using a LTS kernel.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by iniudan View Post
          Because they need stability, so they are using a LTS kernel.
          I think it would have been easier to use say 3.12 Kernel and then if they find a bug then fix it for the whole community, rather than spend countless months backtracking/porting fixes for old code.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by e8hffff View Post
            I think it would have been easier to use say 3.12 Kernel and then if they find a bug then fix it for the whole community, rather than spend countless months backtracking/porting fixes for old code.
            Well, you may think that, but that is very uninformed... 3.12 has some weird issues with pstates (on PREEMPT_RT_FULL anyway), nohz is a bit flacky (again on -rt) and aside from that, as someone else pointed out to you - 3.10 is an LTS release... Lastly, as far as using the 'newest kernel' - 3.10 is still fairly new and linux-rt only tracks every 'even' number release; 3.0, 3.2, 3.4, 3.6, etc - So i think Valve has made the right selection, in this case...

            and it doesn't appear that they have done a whole bunch of backporting from newer kernels, but it does look like they are sitting on some fixes though - while other patches are listed as being submitted to XYZ mailing list for review...

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            • #21
              Can we all say "Thank you Valve for such a Merry Christmas" ? So incredibly jazzed ...! A base off of Wheezy was probably just about as close to a perfect *_Start_* as possible. It is always about the engineering tradeoff's. Very few people who really use Linux will say negative things about Debian, unless it is to say they are not as up to date as some folks might wish. Heh, great and stable start point!

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              • #22
                Originally posted by diriel View Post
                Can we all say "Thank you Valve for such a Merry Christmas" ? So incredibly jazzed ...! A base off of Wheezy was probably just about as close to a perfect *_Start_* as possible. It is always about the engineering tradeoff's. Very few people who really use Linux will say negative things about Debian, unless it is to say they are not as up to date as some folks might wish. Heh, great and stable start point!
                I like this:

                Q: Valve recommends Ubuntu for regular Linux desktops. Why is SteamOS built on Debian and not Ubuntu?
                Building on top of the Debian core is the best way for Valve to deliver a fully custom SteamOS experience to our customers.
                They don't give a "real" answer but every Linux user knows what's up.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by johnc View Post
                  It would take an awful lot of effort to replace something like XBMC. That's a lot of code. It would be better to just have an option to switch between the two interfaces. Though I do understand that Valve wants to get into the media services stuff eventually.
                  It would probably be just as easy to develop a steam UI plugin for XBMC. I'm wondering however if Valve has been able to work out something with Netflix so that we can have a true native solution. Alternatively it would be nice if XBMC or Plex worked with Valve and offered a seamless integration of both products.

                  If it doesn't happen I suppose that would be fun winter project for me after rebasing it on openSUSE.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                    It would probably be just as easy to develop a steam UI plugin for XBMC. I'm wondering however if Valve has been able to work out something with Netflix so that we can have a true native solution. Alternatively it would be nice if XBMC or Plex worked with Valve and offered a seamless integration of both products.

                    If it doesn't happen I suppose that would be fun winter project for me after rebasing it on openSUSE.
                    Yeah, I've been thinking along the same lines. Integrating Steam/XBMC/Plex/etc with each programme's respective library databases with plugins. Shouldn't be too hard so long as Steam allow for connectivity, even if the plugin is a binary to preserve their DRM format. Just dont lock down our paid-for content!

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                      In other words they don't want to base on a distro that is more and more "doing it's own thing".
                      Oh yeah I'm sure valve really cares about wayland vs mir right now. /rolleyes

                      Originally posted by blackout23 View Post
                      They don't give a "real" answer but every Linux user knows what's up.
                      The real answer is that there is no point in using a highly customized desktop OS just to launch steam in big picture mode when you can get barebones, stable Debian and accomplish the very same thing. In other words what makes sense for a Desktop doesn't for an HTPC or server machine.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by cynical View Post
                        Oh yeah I'm sure valve really cares about wayland vs mir right now. /rolleyes
                        You think with companies like intel telling Canonical to maintain their own patches and with their leader bickering and slighting the very community that feeds them doesn't weigh in their decision? Do you think that Valve wants to be dependent on one company that has to maintain their own solutions? All of those factor into their decision.
                        Last edited by deanjo; 12-14-2013, 12:06 PM.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                          You think with companies like intel telling Canonical to maintain their own patches and with their leader bickering and slighting the very community that feeds them doesn't weigh in their decision? Do you think that Valve wants to be dependent on one company that has to maintain their own solutions? All of those factor into their decision.
                          Maybe, but I think it's got more to do with the fact they already got everything ported to X, so using anything else implies either losing time porting things again or paying a performance cost on running most of their solutions through XMir/XWayland.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by mrugiero View Post
                            Maybe, but I think it's got more to do with the fact they already got everything ported to X, so using anything else implies either losing time porting things again or paying a performance cost on running most of their solutions through XMir/XWayland.
                            Pretty much this. Years from now when these solutions are mature they might begin to care, but at this point since everyone is still using Xorg I think stability of the base packages was much more important than which display server someone was using. They would gain nothing from going with Ubuntu since they don't care about desktop oriented stuff so Debian is a natural choice. (since it serves as Ubuntu's base)

                            Originally posted by deanjo View Post
                            You think with companies like intel telling Canonical to maintain their own patches and with their leader bickering and slighting the very community that feeds them doesn't weigh in their decision? Do you think that Valve wants to be dependent on one company that has to maintain their own solutions? All of those factor into their decision.
                            Again, I really don't think they tune in to the conflict between Canonical and everyone else. If they cared about any of that stuff they probably wouldn't be recommending Ubuntu as a platform to begin with, which btw you can still find prominently displayed on their website. Using their choice of Debian as a way to bash Canonical for deviating from the community is just annoying, especially on an article that isn't about Ubuntu at all and when there are far more logical reasons for their decision.

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                            • #29
                              About Debian - it was more than expected. Valve had zero reasons to put themselves in position on depending on Canonical's mess with Mir and etc. This way they can depend on rock solid Debian, and switch to Wayland with the rest of the Linux world when that time will come.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by cynical View Post
                                Again, I really don't think they tune in to the conflict between Canonical and everyone else. If they cared about any of that stuff they probably wouldn't be recommending Ubuntu as a platform to begin with, which btw you can still find prominently displayed on their website.
                                Reputation is everything for a new project especially in the FOSS arena. Do you think ReiserFS was dropped by many because of technical hurdles? Ubuntu was chosen early on by Valve before they started doing stuff that really started ticking off the community. I wouldn't doubt that they would change their mind had they released steam today.
                                Last edited by deanjo; 12-14-2013, 08:13 PM.

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