5 Reasons SteamOS Is a Good Way to Learn Linux

Configurare noua (How To)


The Steam Deck’s Desktop Mode has served as many people’s first introduction to Linux. People are getting to encounter desktop Linux without needing to pick a distro, download an ISO, or wipe their hard drives. But is SteamOS a good introduction to Linux, or is it too different?


Part of switching to Linux means learning how to use a new desktop environment, and KDE Plasma is the interface in use on the Steam Deck. At first glance, it resembles Windows. But KDE Plasma doesn’t use any of the same code as Microsoft’s operating system, nor does it behave identically. When you click on the app launcher or in the system tray area, the resemblances start to fade away.

If you’ve only ever used Windows, the Steam Deck shows you what it’s like to dabble with something new. And if you decide you want to replace Windows with Linux, KDE Plasma will largely look and function the same way as it does on your Deck.

That means time spent familiarizing yourself with Desktop Mode on the Deck is directly relevant to using Linux, especially if you install one of the various KDE-based distros.

2. Discover What Software Is Available for Linux

Switching operating systems means having to familiarize yourself with a new set of software. While some of the apps you may know on Windows or macOS may be available for Linux, the majority won’t be.

There are ways to run Windows software on Linux, but in general, Linux has a different software catalog, and the Steam Deck gives you a chance to explore. When you open the Discover app on a Steam Deck, the apps you see aren’t specific to Valve’s console. Those are regular Linux apps. You can browse the same catalog of apps at any time by heading over to Flathub in a web browser. The site serves as a centralized place to find software that can run on most Linux-based desktops.

So if you find that there’s enough software in Discover to fit your needs, you know you’re safe to install Linux on your laptop as well.

3. Free Software Without Ads or Tracking

All of the software you encounter in Discover is available for free. On other operating systems, that can be cause for concern. How do you know free software is of any quality?

If it’s free, doesn’t that mean someone’s monetizing it by tracking your usage or displaying ads? Or worse, the app could install unwanted browser toolbars, fill your computer with extra bloatware, or even install outright malware! Linux is a fundamentally different beast. Unlike Windows and macOS, Linux doesn’t come from any one company. It’s a compilation of code from people collaborating all over the world. They share their code freely and make it available for anyone to view, edit, and audit. Most of the apps available for Linux were made and offered in the same spirit.

On the Steam Deck, you get to acclimate yourself to software that isn’t merely free of cost, but software that is given freely. The apps you encounter don’t have ads or tracking, and this open-source software is actually more trustworthy than most commercial software you encounter on proprietary operating systems and in mobile app stores.

4. Get a Feel for the Open-Source Culture

The cost, or lack thereof, is only one part of the difference between Linux software and the kind you more often find elsewhere.

In the open-source software world, you aren’t a customer. That means you don’t have to pay for software, but it also means there isn’t someone obligated to fix an issue you encounter. Developers want to fix issues if they can because they want their software to be good, but they ultimately provide their software as is. Many developers are volunteering their time and would be happy for you to help out by contributing to open source or giving back in whatever way you can.

In your Steam Deck’s Gaming Mode, you download games, and you reciprocate with cash and reviews. Maybe you post additional content about the games.

In Desktop Mode, you have the option to become an active developer or designer for the software you’re using. If you contribute graphics or code to the KDE project (for example), you can then see those changes roll out to Steam Decks all over the world, without needing to have a job at Valve.

5. Safely Learn Linux Terminal Commands

The Steam Deck does not require that you open up the terminal, also known as the command line. Most versions of desktop Linux don’t. The software is easy to navigate and use as you wish.

But the Linux terminal is a convenient and powerful way to perform many tasks, even for regular people. For example, as easy as it is to open Discover and navigate to the app you wish to install, installing that same app with a single command can be even easier. Any terminal commands you use on the Steam Deck will apply to other Linux desktops as well. You can use the command line to manipulate files, view system information, manage networks, and much more. It’s the knowledge that can be helpful to learn and could even serve as the foundation for a fruitful career.

Tip solutie



(9 din 14 persoane apreciaza acest articol)

Despre Autor

Leave A Comment?