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back to article Valve's Steam streaming service lets you play games on the toilet

Games maker Valve has launched Steam In-Home Streaming, a new service that allows Steam subscribers to view and play games that are running on their primary PCs on devices located anywhere in their homes. "When you log into Steam on two computers on the same network, they automatically connect, allowing you to remotely install, …

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Well...

At least we can run more than one client instance now. Hopefully that will also allow me to let my laptop download updates while I play from my desktop.

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Joke

Cool

Not to mention actually workable rather, than pie-in-the-sky cloud-rendered gaming.

Latency-sensitive games will still be out, but there's a whole lot of other things which will be fine.

I wonder if Valve might think of applying the tech to more business-oriented applications once the kinks have been ironed out. If it can do games, it should handle LibreOffice rather easily. If we get full-duplex sound you're edging towards an RDP replacement. Add SteamOS and you might have a small-biz server in a box. Virtualise a windows workstation to add a mainstream accounts package...

The year of the linux desktop! :p

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Great

I can run the game on my serious machine in the cellar, and play on a small laptop in the living room.

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Super

I can run the game on my serious machine, and play it on the much much bigger TV screen using the TV PC as a guest

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Re: Super

The TV PC can consist of cheap hardware ans SteamOS to keep costs down and improve the range of games that can be played (I assume some linux only games will be released as more publishers add their catalogues)

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Just tried it

Single player CoD Ghosts is playable. You adjust for the lag ok.

However, I just got my butt whooped by a normal bot in Quake 3. Anything fast paced is going to be an issue.

Still very impressive for a free update!

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Linux support

Just FYI, in the public beta, Linux was working as a host OS for streaming from, so I'm guessing that's just having the kinks ironed out...

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Coat

Sore Valve

Valve's Steam streaming service lets you play games on the toilet"

The last streaming experience I had that involved a toilet and logging on had less to do with a Linux shell and more to do with shell fish, so I'll be sticking to my PC thank you very much if you don't mind...

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Déjà vu

Wahey, it's X Windows all over again.

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Only issue I've had when running this is one of resolution.

My laptop is considerably older and smaller than my desktop monitor yet the streaming keeps settings from your host computer. This ends up giving me 1920x1080 on a screen generally built for 1366x768, resulting in quite a bit of eye strain. It's easy enough to change the resolution to fit my laptop but that change is remembered on the host machine, resulting in a fair bit of resolution swapping on occasions where I computer swap a lot.

Past that, I've had a small warning in the bottom left telling me of slow decoding but damned if I could feel the difference in a 4X game.

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Anonymous Coward

Why show steamOS and linux seperately?

SteamOS is just Linux pre-installed with the Steam client. It's a useful project for a number of reasons, but in terms of Steam functionality there is nothing you don't get from simply installing the steam client on a regular Linux machine. Linux (including SteamOS), fair enough..

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Linux

Re: Why show steamOS and linux seperately?

I'm more interested in XBMCBuntu plugin. Come on clever people.

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Re: Why show steamOS and linux seperately?

It's a bit more than that, but essentially you're correct.

What you get with SteamOS is effectively a gaming appliance, without all the extra gubbins you don't need, and without having to build it yourself from scratch.

I for one am perfectly happy with Steam running atop Ubuntu - but I can see the appeal of a tweeked gaming OS that needs no user-end tweeking and gets relevant, approved updates (Ie the repo GPU drivers don't break your custom X config etc)

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Re: Why show steamOS and linux seperately?

I guess they just want to market their SteamBox/Piston/whatever machines as a console instead of a PC. Saying that your Steam-games-playing-device runs SteamOS is akin to saying that your device is not a PC because it doesn't use PC-centric OSes.

On the other hand, you can also install SteamOS onto desktop PCs, so long as it has an x86-64 CPU and uses the UEFI firmware...

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Re: Why show steamOS and linux seperately?

That's the nice thing. Don't want to buy a new gaming rig? Got a 680Ti that's still capable of throwing enough polygons, with enough shading at enough frames, but have a nice laptop which means you don't need all the Windows (or linux) potential crash-vectors and malware threats (flash etc)? Are the games you play on SteamOS?

Fine. Grab a (free) SteamOS installer and throw it on that box, and boom, you have one decent little gaming appliance.

Niche market for sure, but it's a market - and it's not the only one.

Of course, we still have the chicken/egg issue - will developers write AAA games for it (Gabe has been pushing for this) to get the gamers in, or will AAA developers wait for market penetration before writing games for it?

If it's the latter, it's FUBAR before it starts. If it's the former, then it may well have a bright future for a substantial minority of gamers.

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Thanks Valve ......

..... but it's not needed. I got one of those luddite solutions to gaming when and where I want, a divorce :D

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Thanks Valve ......

I bet it also fixed your sex drought

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Re: Thanks Valve ......

I would tell, but El Reg would have to delete the post :D

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Sweet

Good move valve.

Time to get the padsaw and cat6 out.

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Works surprisingly well even over wifi

I tried a few games on my Mac mini via ethernet and they were fine. There was a little mouse lag but switching to my Xbox 360 controller masked that quite well. Some fast games will put you at a disadvantage but I can now play Train Simulator on my Mac. How far we have come.....

Seriously though, I even fired up my retina MBP over wifi and was able to play most games pretty well. There was obvious video degradation when playing Just Cause 2 but if I dropped the resolution that could be handled. Again, lag was a bit of a problem but I suspect my slow network wasn't helping things.

All in all though, a wired dedicated SteamBox able to access games from my Windows box would be of more value to me than a PS4 or XboxOne simply because I already have a large game selection and many many more for next to no money.

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Pint

Thanks Valve!

I' had been desperately trying to work out a justification for a 10G network!

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