The Steam Universe group was updated on Wednesday with news that SteamOS now has support for AMD and Intel GPUs. Unfortunately, Optimus solutions – those with Nvidia discrete GPUs plus Intel integrated graphics with dynamic switching – are still unsupported at this time.
"This update upgrades the Catalyst driver in our repositories with a preview release. This build should fix the poor in-game performance and malfunctioning return to desktop functionality," writes Valve's Pierre-Loup A. Griffais. "Known problems include tearing and poor overlay performance in-game; please install them and post your feedback!"
According to the Valve team, SteamOS installs should update themselves automatically. However, refreshed installation images are also available to download. Keep in mind that SteamOS has minimum requirements: a 64-bit processor, 4 GB of RAM, 500 GB of hard-drive space, and support for UEFI booting.
The Tech Report points out that this "alchemist" release includes AMD's Catalyst 13.11 Beta 9.9 graphics drivers for Linux, which can also be downloaded from AMD. The driver notes list two open issues with SteamOS: some OpenGL applications exhibit screen tearing with V-sync enabled, and loading the SteamOS overlay while playing games can result in a slower user Interface response time.
News of the update should be good news for Gamers with AMD and Intel GPUs, as the previous two releases of SteamOS only supported Nvidia graphics. Now the only gamers left out of the beta are the Optimus customers.