Work on Steam for Linux in progress

It appears that Valve is not done yet with ensuring their games will run on all major operating systems on the PC platform. With the public release of their Mac OS X Steam client and some of their games ported to OS X next Wednesday, they will now focus on doing more of the same to Linux.

Phoronix has been tracking the existence and progress of the Linux Steam client in recent weeks. The first piece of evidence towards the existence of the Linux Steam client is written plainly in the bash script used to execute Steam on OS X:

#determine platform
UNAME=`uname`
if [ "$UNAME" == "Darwin" ]; then
   PLATFORM=osx32
   # prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
   export DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH
elif [ "$UNAME" == "Linux" ]; then
   PLATFORM=linux32
   # prepend our lib path to LD_LIBRARY_PATH
   export LD_LIBRARY_PATH="${STEAMROOT}"/${PLATFORM}:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH
fi

Following this discovery, Phoronix writer Michael Larabel found more references to Linux inside the Steam client binary, as well as a text file on Steam's servers. On Saturday, a Phoronix reader provided a screenshot of the unfinished Steam client running natively in Ubuntu:

Steam running in Ubuntu

Steam running natively in Ubuntu. Shown is the unfinished login screen.

Linux environments are currently used to run game servers for Source-based games such as Counter-strike Source, Team Fortress 2, and the Left 4 Dead series. But sometime this year or perhaps the next, they will soon serve all PC gamers as clients, whether they run Windows, Mac OS X, or Linux.

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