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Steam hardware survey does not appear on Linux #2286

Spanguole opened this Issue · 65 comments

Last time I got a Steam Hardware Survey prompt on Steam for Linux was on December.
After that, it never prompted me again.
Meanwhile, if I start Steam Windows client (either on Wine or real Windows, doesn't matter) I do get the a survey prompt all the time. (I cancel it, so it asks me each time)
I would like to submit my stats for the survey as a Linux user, so it would be great if it started working on Linux for me again.


The hardware survey will appear at random to users. Since the hwsurvey page has ~2% of users on Linux, they must be seeing the survey no?


Two things:
The Linux user count plummeted from the last month.
Never had this problem on the windows version throughout the year 2012 - the survey scraped me every month, if my memory serves right.


I have seen the hardware survey come up on my Linux Steam. It does seem it chooses randomly, and does not pull everyone all the time.


I have installed steam on linux about 20 or so times, just because I am always installing new distros and I have only seen the survey pop up on me one time. So that kinda gives you an idea of how rare it is.


I have not seen the survey at all on Linux. Is there a reason why it does not just upload the information every time you log in?

@triage-valve triage-valve was assigned

I haven't seen it ever, too, except on Windows, where it pops up every time. This randomness sounds weird to me.


Another weird thing - I have several scratch-monkey / alternative steam accounts. I did not have the HW survey pop up on the Linux version with any of them. Yet, if I log in on Windows, it always pops up on all of them.


I had the hwsurvey only once, in December 2012. I never used steam on windows, except one or two times with wine. So I have no idea how often it happens on win.


In April I used Steam on Linux almost everyday and never got the survey. I ran Steam on Windows about 7 times and I got the survey about 5 times.
I used Gentoo amd64 with and without the Steam runtime enabled.


I have never seen it on Linux. I've been asked in Wine but never on Linux (btw. I'm almost non-stop on the native Steam Linux client. Usually once at a month on the Windows client in Wine. it must be a bug).


I think I’ve only gotten it once while being on Linux and in the years I've been using Steam I think it's asked me a total of 3-4 times. It's far too little to be accurate.


I can confirm I have never seen the survey on Linux, but when I installed Steam on Windows, it popped up immediately.


I've received the survey once since december last year. In between that time, I've changed from 12.04 to 12.10 and finally to 13.04. Even installing Steam for Linux on other Ubuntu machines, I don't get the survey. Yet, when opening the Windows version of Steam in Wine, I get it every month without fail thus far.


I've used the native Linux client since the beta and never once seen the survey on Linux.


In my 3+ years of using Steam I've only ever had the survey come up once in Windows and so far not at all in Linux.

It's supposed to be a random sample across all Steam users. If there is a bug here, I'd be more concerned that it might be certain users being oversampled.


I never once seen the survey on Linux.


I've never seen the survey in Linux, ever. I loaded Steam in Wine a single time, and BAM - survey.


Same problem


I've seen it only once on Windows, I believe. Never on Linux.


Another month passed and the linux share is even lower than in May. I didn't get survey once on linux version and when I've started Steam in Wine it popped up immediately. Something is very wrong here. Any comments from Valve?


OP here,
I still did not get the HW survey on Linux this year yet. Meanwhile, it keeps popping up when I run on Wine or Windows. Definitely doesn't seem right.


I don't think I've ever seen the survey in the years I've been playing games on Steam (I think since 2004). Maybe I'm just unlucky, but it seems like there may be a problem. I've been using it on Linux exclusively since the Linux beta began.


Same thing for me, my Windows version of steam asked me to complete the survey 3 times in the last week, I finally cave in and did it today, but the previous times I just closed the dialog and hoped it would ask me while I was playing on Linux. And I do spend a lot more time on Linux with my Steam always running (though it is Arch Linux and not Ubuntu).

So it really looks to me like the survey has a big flaw or bug because otherwise it sure looks like it's biased toward Windows.

Please fix this.


Never see it on Linux, though it pops on Windows when I occasionally log into it for games not ported yet.


While running Steam using wine, i saw it very often, but with the native linux client, i have yet to see it. Something is not right.


To all those who see the survey "lots", "every time", etc on Windows and/or WINE:

Did you actually fill out the survey?

If so, did it continue to ask you to fill out the survey after that point?

I've been using Steam on a regular basis for 3.5 years and have only ever got the survey twice. Once for Windows, and once (a couple of weeks ago) on Linux.

The survey is NOT supposed to show up lots and definitely not every single time - it's supposed to be a random sample across all Steam installs and should be EXTREMELY RARE for any Steam user to actually see it when they open their client.

Those who haven't seen the survey on Linux or have only seen it once: That's what is supposed to happen, it is not a bug!
Those who keep seeing the survey on Windows and/or WINE: If you actually filled out the survey and it keeps showing up, then THIS is the actual problem here.


it's supposed to be a random sample across all Steam installs and should be EXTREMELY RARE for any Steam user to actually see it when they open their client.

I thought it was supposed to sample every steam user over the course of a year (so 1/12th of the active player base per month)? Or has that changed?


I thought it was supposed to sample every steam user over the course of a year (so 1/12th of the active player base per month)? Or has that changed?

Only a Valve developer can answer that question for sure - as far as I am aware there is currently NO official word on this. It is listed as one of the "gathered/assumed fact" in some random thread (search steam survey FAQ), however that section starts with this disclaimer:

I have not been able to find any "official" confirmation for many of the statements below

Personally but I'd be surprised if that was ever the case - The first time I ever saw the survey in Windows was earlier this year, over 3 years after joining Steam.

Also, I would seriously question whether the survey selects users at random - I suspect it selects Steam installs at random.


Personally but I'd be surprised if that was ever the case - The first time I ever saw the survey in Windows was
earlier this year, over 3 years after joining Steam.

There was a bug in Steam a long time ago which make steam not to prompt the users on after a certain condition was triggered. IIRC it was something Win7 related, but I am not sure. Because of that bug, many users never got the survey prompt or got it only once. When it was fixed, users got the prompt en masse, and many - for the first time. (I got the survey prompt for the first time after that bug was fixed.)
Thus, I've got a feeling this current situation and that older bug might be related...


Okay again within the last 3 days it must have flagged me, I was logged into Steam on Linux and nothing, rebooted and into Windows and it pops up so i log back into Linux, nothing.

Something is up, I know it doesn't survey everyone but I was obviously flagged for it and it didn't show up in Linux, it never has for me.

I don't see why Valve aren't looking into this or giving us some kind of reassurance themselves since they want it to succeed on Linux do they not?


Maybe they haven't figured out how to fix it. I would like a response that they are addressing it though.


I would like a response that they are addressing it though.

Being marked with "reviewed" tag means they are are addressing it. And since Steam is a closed platform, that is all they are going to tell us mare mortals. ...unless something spectacular would happen and they would require some sort of input from us.


Same here no survey in 6 months of using steam on Linux on a regular basis, installed on three machines, and two different distros.


This month I finally got the survey on Steam for Linux.
But I'm not sure it was counted because of connection problems. :-|


Three weeks ago I bought a new laptop and guess what happened.
I finally saw the survery on native Linux Steam.
It probably needs a complete hardware change?


It's not fair then. People switch the OSes but it has no impact on the survey results.


I agree. The Linux survey is too rare. Back then when i was using wine, I saw the survey every month. With Linux, i have yet to witness its existence. Perhaps Valve's system still thinks I'm a windows (wine) user.


I think it would be better to allow users to post public or private system information on the Steam Community. This way you can share your PC specs with friends and it would be more easy and reliable to build statistics.

It could be disabled by default and users would be allowed to enable it only if they bought at least one game to avoid stats spamming with empty accounts. It could also only use active users for the statistics. Users that played X hours in the last Y months.

Steam could also recommend games based on your gaming setup or even in the future, provide integration with benchmark tools that are already sold on Steam ex: Share bench result or use benchmark results in the stats.


I am using Steam for Linux since the second Beta wave and never got the survey, using Wine I got it a lot of times.


I have never ever have this survey on Linux, but.. even that I'm not very often on Windows - since Steam got officially released to Linux I've seen it 3 or 4 times on it, but never on Linux..


There is one thing i noticed. Once you get the prompt asking if you want to be part of the survey, if you do not answer and close Steam, the next time you will use it, it will ask again. It will always continue until you answer instead of closing the window. But even if it showed every single time on windows, i never saw it on linux. Tried different VM, with XP, Vista and Win7, they all asked me to take the survey, so it is not in the Steam files.

Why i never saw it on my linux system ???


The survey popped up on my main desktop with the native client this morning.


Just got the survey for the first time on Linux yesterday.

I still would not mind having an option to tick which just automatically collected the main stats from each computer once a month.

It should always a least pop up on the first time changing system or platform.


I got my survey last night. Seems to be working fine to me. Is it possible that someone here just "feels" that it isn't working due to the random chance that they weren't surveyed? Not everyone get surveyed each month, just a small portion of the overall population.


@dh04000 please read the thread carefully. People said that they immediately got the survey in windows version of Steam on Wine, canceled it, started linux version and got nothing. Then they started Wine version again and the survey was there. May be they really spread it between unique installations or per machine ID and not between usernames. I'm glad it's probably not a bug since now it pops up on linux but I'm yet to see it here.


@rkfg Oh, I see, I misunderstood. This doesn't seem like a bug then. If they didn't want to be counted as a Wine user, then they should have been using steam on Linux/Mac instead. Its random, so the more you use one platform, the more likely you will be picked as part of the sample on that platform. Statistics.


@dh04000 I rarely use Wine these days because most of games I usually play are already ported or are being created for linux anyway. It's like 99% of the time I run the native version and once in a while try something in Wine. The problem is that nevertheless the survey always (for me, at least) appears only on the Wine version. Well, now we know it's rather a feature, not a bug. Probably.


I also reported problems in this thread and I also received Steam survey this month. I wonder whether it is accidental, or whether it is a bug fixed. There are now 4 people reporting a survey appearance since October started.


Deleting/moving ~/.steam every month seems to be the only way to get it here after 10 months of messing with it on the same install. It gives a survey every time once a month..


Started Steam for the first time this month and the survey popped up. Now we are 5 users who have it this month for the first time. I wonder if the linux users will rise up next month... Anyway, IF this is caused by a bugfix it looks weird, too.


@V10lator The surge in people saying that they got it for the first time maybe the fact that people from found this link.... they're so into conspiracy theories that they were posting that this "bug" was a valve attempt at discrediting linux and that they had to spam this thread until valve learns they are serious. So, these are most likely false positives.....


@dh04000 not sure what You mean about the thing

also, 5 people getting it is surely not "it's OK now". If absolutely nobody got it on Linux, the current user count would be down to 0.0% in the Steam usage stats. Thus, some people getting it is still expected.
If this is really a bug after all, it would explain why Linux user count in the Steam usage stats is dropping constantly. sigh
P.S. I still didn't manage to get it on Linux this year. And I launch the Steam Linux client ~ once a day on average.


bump for never seeing it under linux.

i haven't used windows in 16 years. i've been in steam for linux since beta. i've been asked once, ever.


Same here. I remember getting it a lot 4 years ago on Windows. Not once on Linux since it launched.


It showed up for the first time since I installed Linux version of Steam (which was back when it was in beta) and it detected and submitted all the info correctly, so it really seams to be working for now, will have to wait and see if it comes back as frequently has it does on Windows in the future.


Likely just the result of randomness, seen it twice on Linux now, once on twins Win7 box (giving them my family sharing permission) and once under wine…


Hasn't showed up for me since I installed Steam on Ubuntu 12.04 x64 (somewhere around December 2012)


Has shown up to me 2 times since Steam for Linux Beta, in january and may. When I play in Windows however it shows up -every month-.


Why not show up on -all- accounts every month? Or would that cause too much traffic?


Everytime i install steam on windows i get asket for an survey, on linux i was never asked.


@TachyonSpace it’s random :^)


Just reinstalled steam yesterday. Never got the survey on Linux before, but this time I got it immediately after installation.


Today (1st December) i got the steam survey on linux for the first time.


I think there is some check to avoid duplicated entries. IIRC when I received the survey on both PC and Mac and I filled it out on my Mac I stopped receiving it on my PC. When I received the survey on 2 accounts on the same installation I stopped receiving it on both accounts after I filled out the survey with one.
Perhaps is there some check that interferes? I have 5 Steam installations on 2 computers with 2 accounts and I've seen the survey much less than when I had just 1 installation with 1 account.
Since most Linux users have other systems and many could have a WINE installation this could explain why we feel we receive the survey less frequently.


I received the survey when Steam for Linux first became available, didn't see it for a long time except once when I ran Steam under Wine, then finally received another survey this month. I would suspect that it's just that the sampling means that some people don't see the survey very often and other people see it all the time.


I have seen a lot of speculation and confusion about this topic. This is my own conclusions from a tiny bit of testing.

The survey is remembering the date you last filled it in for each steam install (file location), not per user or machine. It displays again if you haven't submitted it in the last 12 months. For new installs the date is initialized to 9 months back (only tried once, had just filled in survey on main machine then installed a new wine prefix and logged in with a account to initialize it).

Knowing that the date doesn't get saved for that specific user, i can know happily tell steam not to ask again in all my wine prefixes (or for windows if that is installed for some reason) without the fear that it won't show up on my main machine.

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