After Valve Software announced SteamOS, a few days later, the company announced the Steam Machine, a hardware gaming console that will be released sometime in 2014. Right about the same tine, the lead developer of Sabayon Linux, a multi-purpose distribution based on Gentoo, announced a remastered 64-bit version of Sabayon that you can use to, in a sense, build your own Steam Machine. It’s called a SteamBox.

Now, I don’t think it has all the features of the yet-to-be-released Steam Machine, but this is a good start. By the time the Steam Machine is released and its features are known, Sabayon’s developers will be in a better position to implement those features in the SteamBox, if possible.

So while Valve Software is still working on the Steam Machine, you can download this edition of Sabayon Linux, burn it to a DVD (it’s a 1.4 GB ISO file) or transfer it to a USD stick, boot it from any computer, and enjoy your “Steam Machine.” Users of Sabayon Linux should be familiar with this type of configuration, because a similar setup is available for XBMC.

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This image shows the boot menu. By default, it will boot into the SteamBox’s login screen.
Sabayon Linux SteamBox login

Accept the terms of agreement.
Sabayon Linux Steam license

At this step, you can either log into a Sabayon Linux desktop, or choose to log into the SteamBox, which will prompt the system to start downloading all it needs to run from Valve Software.
Sabayon Linux Steam cleiitn game download

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Then you can log into the Big Picture mode of Steam, if you have an existing account, or create one.
Sabayon Linux SteamBox Steam OS,steam machine

This screen shot shows the Steam Manager, which allows you to customize aspects of the SteamBox.
Sabayon Linux SteamBox Steam OS settings

The voice Settings.
Sabayon Linux SteamBox Steam OS,steam machine voice settings

The SteamBox is built atop a GNOME 3 edition of Sabayon. This screen shot shows the entries in its Session menu.
Sabayon Linux SteamBox GNOME 3 login

And it runs GNOME 3.8.4, so you can use it as a regular desktop to get more productive work done, that is if you don’t count playing games as “productive work.”
Sabayon Linux SteamBox GNOME 3 GNOME Shell

You may read the announcement and download an installation ISO image of the SteamBox from here.

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2 Responses

  1. Out of the top 10 Linux distros I’d say Sabayon is in my top 3.

    Being a Gentoo Binary based distro has many advantages from the Gentoo family – it was the perfect mixture of Geek while maintaining sanity for normal PC users.

    Funny thing was, it was a little hard to get Steam working on Sabayon X when Steam for Linux was in Beta; These screenshots look great! 🙂

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