Steam Linux Usage Still Roughly Around 1%
Written by Michael Larabel in Valve on 1 January 2014 at 01:45 PM EST. 65 Comments
At the start of every month one of our rituals is always checking in on Valve's Steam Software/Hardware Survey to see their Linux statistics for the month prior. Let's see how Steam Linux usage was in December with the arrival of SteamOS...

Steam Linux usage -- when measuring up all of the Linux distributions reported -- was right around 1.1%. Of course, there's some margin for error with the "Other" OS not being broken down, this being a random sampling of Steam gamers participating in the survey, etc. In November the result was right around 1.0%, so basically there was no major change or only a small rise over the past month.

SteamOS arrived in mid-December and it's only at a 1.0 Beta stage so it didn't really impact the results much for December. Given the early state of SteamOS and it not adding too much value yet over what can be found by installing Ubuntu / Debian / Fedora / openSUSE/Gentoo and playing your favorite Steam games, I wouldn't expect much immediate rise in the Linux numbers. There's also only a small number (circa 300) Steam Machines running out in the wild.

The Steam Linux usage should almost definitely rise later this year when more Steam Machines begin to surface -- from both Valve and various IHVs. Those Steam Machines should be running the Debian-derived SteamOS. We may also see the Linux desktop slowly improving too, which could equate to a rise in Steam Linux use as more gamers are ported over and gamers have less dependence upon Microsoft Windows or Apple OS X.

Those wishing to see the December 2013 Steam Software/Hardware Survey numbers can visit the survey.

If you missed our earlier exclusive coverage on SteamOS at launch, check out the SteamOS vs. Ubuntu benchmarks, SteamOS vs. Windows 8.1 benchmarks, Intel HD Graphics SteamOS testing, and a NVIDIA GeForce comparison on SteamOS. There were also many other SteamOS Phoronix articles in the past few weeks.

What's your hopes for Steam on Linux, SteamOS, and more broadly Linux gaming for 2014? Let us know in the forums!

About The Author
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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