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Gaming with a VM

#1 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 12 April 2014 - 10:14 PM

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I'm interested in migrating to Linux for a few reasons, but there's a couple of games that I still want to play that I can't play natively. Pretty much my entire library, if you care to look.

Thing I want to know is, are there any special considerations I should make for playing games through a virtual machine?

#2 User is offline Covarr 

Posted 12 April 2014 - 10:43 PM

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Yeah. Use Wine instead. It'll get you far better performance than a VM.
This post has been edited by Covarr: 12 April 2014 - 10:44 PM

#3 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 12 April 2014 - 11:16 PM

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Performance maybe, but what about compatibility?

#4 User is offline Covarr 

Posted 12 April 2014 - 11:38 PM

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Wine's got very good compatibility. Virtually every game in your library with few exceptions should run without any major issues in Wine. Arkham games might give you some trouble, but for the most part it'll handle everything you throw at it.

#5 User is offline Billy 

Posted 13 April 2014 - 09:27 PM

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Gaming in a VM is a huge pain in the ass if the game requires hardware acceleration at all. Getting stuff like DirectX and OpenGL working well in a VM is downright impossible. If gaming is your goal, do not use Linux. Keep a Windows install around to boot into for games. That's what most people do. Wine works, but not great, for a variety of reasons

#6 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 13 April 2014 - 09:53 PM

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Well I know that much, but the goal is to not have to boot into Windows at all just for games. That's going to be too irritating for me until I get an SSD.

#7 User is offline Billy 

Posted 13 April 2014 - 10:13 PM

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Then you will have to deal with games generally running at slower framerates (if they work at all), I guess.

#8 User is offline winterhell 

Posted 14 April 2014 - 01:28 AM

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VMWare with guest OS X barely runs OpenGL 2.1 things(its from 2006). The Linux machine I tried was running faster, though it didnt support shaders, despite saying it supports 2.1.
Why run away from Windows anyway? The OS being Open Source and Free/Non Monopole are not valid reasons. Drivers and hardware support is better on Windows 7. The free programs you are going to see on Linux have alternatives on Windows, sometimes better ( Visual Studio Express anyone?). My machine rarely crashes, less than once per day. I havent reinstalled it since I got the PC in April 2011, and I'm using it 12+ hours daily for heavy programming.

#9 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 14 April 2014 - 02:10 AM

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There is no real reason. This isn't about freedoms, monopolies, or some other crap. I have reasons, but they aren't important.

I just liked Ubuntu when I used it before, and I want to delve deeper into the rabbit hole and try out other distros. But not at the cost of gaming, so I was looking into a compromise. If the best compromise is just "dual boot", I can wait until I buy an SSD.
This post has been edited by Aerosol: 14 April 2014 - 02:10 AM

#10 User is offline Overlord 

Posted 14 April 2014 - 12:41 PM

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To be fair, with Valve's considerable weight behind it (honestly, not a Gaben joke), Linux gaming is only going to improve from here on out, moreso when Steam Machines start hitting in a big way and those controllers are widely available. Give it long enough, and a lot of incompatibility issues will disappear.

#11 User is offline Miles Prower 

Posted 14 April 2014 - 04:30 PM

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This post has been edited by Miles Prower: 14 April 2014 - 04:30 PM

#12 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 14 April 2014 - 10:06 PM

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That looks very interesting, thanks for that. Seeing as it's still Wine in the end, I'm guessing I'm still going to have to "suffer" Wine's performance but...I can probably manage it.
This post has been edited by Aerosol: 14 April 2014 - 10:07 PM

#13 User is offline kuroshi 

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:44 PM

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Parallels, unlike VMWare, is actually quite capable of running games in a Windows virtual machine. Unfortunately, you still have to contend with OpenGL only supporting version 2.1 of the specification, while the DirectX support is all the way up to 10. Maybe they'll make higher OpenGL versions a priority in the next paid upgrade. Which doesn't help you at all, since you're planning to run Linux. It does, however, disprove that virtual machines are incapable of running high end games. I can run Borderlands 2 at a reasonable speed in the VM, (which has a Mac port that loses multiplayer compatibility with the PC version whenever there's a version desync) as well as Killing Floor. (which has a Mac port that's just plain broken. For instance, it is incapable of remembering progress of class advancement achievements, unless you actually earn the entire level and Steam achievement in one match.)

If "Anything but Windows" for your primary OS is really the general idea, consider Hackintosh or CustoMac, as it generally works on many systems. Of course, depending on your motherboard and GPU, you may have to look up whatever customizations you may need. Recommended install kit is built with myHack, and if that doesn't even boot, your machine may need something in the kernel boot parameters, like npci=0x2000 or 0x3000, or pcirootuid=1. Or if you have a recent AMD video card, you may need to enable your integrated graphics for boot, even without a monitor attached to it. Sounds like fun, doesn't it?

#14 User is offline Overlord 

Posted 21 April 2014 - 02:57 PM

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Why would you move from the Windows Tax to the Apple one? When while Linux is making steps towards an open platform for gaming, Mac OS is if anything running in the other direction? That, with how much of a pain in the arse a Hackintosh is to set up, would make that route an insane option.

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