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Ubuntu retains 32-bit support following backlash from Valve and Linux gamers

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Canonical, the developer of the popular Linux distribution Ubuntu, recently announced their upcoming removal of support for 32-bit applications. Many Linux application developers were extremely displeased with this development as it would mean a large percentage of older Linux games would no longer be supported on the most popular Linux distribution.

Valve has been at the forefront of development for gaming on Linux, and 32-bit support has been critical to their initiative. Pierre-Loup Griffais, a major programmer on Valve’s Linux team, had previously implied on Twitter that Steam would be “switching our focus to a different distribution” in response to Canonical dropping 32-bit support from Ubuntu.

After backlash from Valve and from Linux gamers, Canonical backtracked on their stance. They announced on their blog that “We will change our plan and build selected 32-bit i386 packages for Ubuntu 19.10 and 20.04 LTS. We will put in place a community process to determine which 32-bit packages are needed to support legacy software, and can add to that list post-release if we miss something that is needed.”

In the aftermath, Griffais posted on the “Steam for Linux” discussion forum, stating:

Quote

It seems likely that we will be able to continue to officially support Steam on Ubuntu.

He also states:

Quote

We don't have anything specific to announce at this time regarding what distribution(s) will be supported in the future; expect more news on that front in the coming months.

At the very least, Steam will be compatible with Ubuntu for the time being. Thankfully Canonical was willing to listen and accommodate to community backlash.

Are you a Ubuntu gamer? If so, do you plan on sticking with Ubuntu?

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