I'm still relatively new to Linux's more technical side, but I wanted to know if it was possible to have the native Linux Steam client installed and launch games that do not have a native port from WINE, while launching the native games.. well.. natively. Is this possible to do without modifying the Steam's code? Because it reports that the non-native game is not for the system if you attempt to launch it. This would be really great for while we're waiting for more games to be ported, as then we would not actually have to install 2 separate clients on the machine. Thanks!

  • any updates on this issue? I would be very interested as well
    – byf-ferdy
    Sep 27, 2013 at 10:12

2 Answers 2


I realise that this is only a partial answer, but it's possible to add non-Steam games to Steam. This means that all of your games are listed in one place, and that you can use the shift-tab Steam overlay in game, but has the drawback that these games will not be installable through Steam nor automatically updated.


  1. Install the game outside of Steam for Linux.
  2. Create a .desktop file for the game if it does not already have one. In this example, I have installed War Thunder with Steam for Windows, rebooted into Linux, and placed the following in ~/.local/share/applications/war-thunder.desktop:

    [Desktop Entry]
    Name=War Thunder
    Comment=Multiplayer online combat flight simulator
    Exec=wine "/run/media/mavit/Windows7_OS/Program Files (x86)/Steam/steamapps/common/War Thunder/launcher.exe"
    Path=/run/media/mavit/Windows7_OS/Program Files (x86)/Steam/steamapps/common/War Thunder
    Icon=/run/media/mavit/Windows7_OS/Program Files (x86)/Steam/steamapps/common/War Thunder/icon.ico
  3. In Steam for Linux, select GamesAdd a Non-Steam Game to My Library..., and add the game.

  4. If you find that the game will not start, right click on it in Steam for Linux, select Properties, and check that the details are correct, editing Target and Start In to match Exec and Path respectively in the .desktop file above.
  1. Install PlayOnLinux here: http://www.playonlinux.com/en/download.html

  2. Press the Super (Windows) key and type in 'PlayOnLinux' and press Enter.

  3. Press the 'Install' + button at the top.

  4. Search for 'Steam', double-click on it and follow the install instructions.

  5. Comment if you have any problems :D

(Note that this probably won't run perfectly because POL uses WINE which is only a Windows compatibility layer)

[Other answers to similar questions recommend WINE which isn't as user-friendly or as flexible as PlayOnLinux in my opinion]

  • Haha I think I phrased what I want to do incorrectly :P I know about WINE and PoL, but that isn't what I'm looking to do. Basically, what I want to do is: 1) Install the native Linux Steam client 2) Run games from it that are native to Linux (like Killing Floor and L4D, etc) and 3) Run the games that are not yet native to Linux from the native Steam client through WINE (without installing Steam in WINE or PoL). I hope that makes it a bit clearer :) Jul 25, 2013 at 12:09
  • I doubt it would be possible. Because Steam isn't open-source, you wouldn't be able to mess around with it's code to try and force stuff like that to work... Just run native Steam + native games AND run PoL Steam + PoL games. It's the only way round it really sorry.
    – Ads20000
    Jul 25, 2013 at 12:47
  • Yeah.. I figured so, just thought it'd be worth a shot, maybe someone knew something. Ah well, too optimistic :P Thanks though! Jul 25, 2013 at 14:04

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