Proper support for the Linux platform

This has already been requested before – you can use the search to turn up some of these threads. The decision by the staff was that there weren’t enough Linux users to warrant support.

Regardless of how inconvenient this is for you, this would not be beneficial to the platform. Unless something significant changes, Roblox won’t likely support Linux.

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Why? Stop using Linux as your primary OS if you find it inconvenient to use.

ROBLOX support for Linux is counter intuitive and would probably degrade the platform. Having to modify the whole platform ecosystem to allow for linux support, accounting for future updates, QA, bug testing all have to be extended to yet another platform - and to what end? So that 0.01% of the Playerbase can have a slightly less inconvenient time?

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Just to clarify: note that this is in Studio Features, what OP needs is a more reliable way to run (at least) Studio on Linux-based systems. If there is a way that they can make it more convenient to run Roblox on Linux-based systems (albeit a workaround) that is better than the current Roblox+Wine or running it in a VM, that would resolve the feature request already.

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Yeah. You’ll have to get employees here to respond to that one :laughing:

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I’m not sure what you mean by a workaround, assuming it’s different from Wine or VM. We either port Roblox to Linux or we don’t, I don’t really see a middleground (apart from only supporting 1-2 distros which - if we ported - we would do anyway, I believe this is mostly how Steam works?)

I talked to @CodeWriter about this at RDC US.

I think he said something along the lines of the market share not being significant enough for them to invest effort into supporting the platform. I don’t remember if that’s exactly what he said.

I don’t think it would hurt to push for mainstream Linux support, but it requires an industry-wide effort to do so.

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Yes, this is how steam works. They support SteamOS and Ubuntu, which are basically the same thing. Generally, software that is wanted by the users of distributions is handled by the community itself. A great example of this is the Arch user repository.

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Disclaimer: These are my own views, not necessarily those of Roblox.

I’ve thought about doing a Linux client port for a hack week project, but there’s a few things to keep in mind about this:

  • It’s a huge amount of effort to make a port like this, like I doubt I’d get even a buggy mess working within a single hack week.
  • The drivers are still super broken. Roblox runs into driver problems all the time on the platforms we support, and Linux drivers are much worse because they are not as well maintained.
  • There are a large number of Debian users, who have 3 years out of date graphics drivers on top of the drivers being buggy. These users would blame us for any problems they run into, not their bad distribution.
  • We directly use OS APIs, and the usage of these would have to be ported. This is a lot of engineering time, especially because on Linux there aren’t really “OS APIs”, there’s just a heap of libraries.
  • Porting Studio would be a whole extra can of worms on top of the huge effort of porting just the client.
  • Maintaining this support would be an ongoing headache and require continuous engineering time. Especially fixing / working around critical Linux driver bugs.

How would we even distribute a Linux version? It’s bad practice to have an installer like we do on other platforms, and there’s no “app store” on Linux. We would have to get every distribution maintainer to add a package. The package would have to install a launcher stub which downloads the Roblox launcher used for automatically updating the client. The distribution package manager updates far too slowly and does not allow for force upgrades, so we cannot rely on it at all.

We’ve tried to look into bugs related to Roblox not working well under virtualization or under wine in the past, but we’ve been pretty much completely unable to diagnose the cause of the issues. Many of the bugs seem to be caused on their end, not on ours.

I used to run Linux as my primary operating system, but I switched to running Windows 10 at the start of this year. These are the best solutions I can think of, if you can afford them:

  • Switch to Windows or MacOS
  • Buy a second PC
  • Build a PC designed for virtualization with as little virtualized hardware as possible. Specifically, use PCIe passthrough to a GPU for Windows.

@zeuxcg Steam ships its own sets of common libraries like libpng (with sane sonames and stuff) that games use. The actual client itself is shipped as a .deb package built for Ubuntu/Debian, and then repackaged for other distros by their respective maintainers. It’s also possible to just statically link literally everything (including libc, probably musl), so that the only dependency is the Linux syscall ABI.

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Sure, but Roblox can’t work like that - we need to be in control and push updates every week. So we’d need to support whatever distros we need ourselves.

And re: Steam, note that Linux on Steam is still 1/5th of OSX. This most likely just isn’t enough market share for us to make it worthwhile. If we could get native Chromebook support by doing that that’d be a different story, but that doesn’t work.

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I wAnT tO pLaY cOmMaNd LiNe RoBlOx

The only thing that would benefit from having linux support would be exploiting the game – just look at CSGO. I do not doubt that you have a windows computer, considering you’re an active developer.

Also, @zeuxcg, personally I have a chromebook and it worked fine with ROBLOX after using wine in developer mode. Only thing that didn’t like ROBLOX was my school’s internet.

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A small note about the distribution problem. Jagex gets around this by distributing their launcher using their own debian repository which then works via the exact same process as @Tiffblocks suggested.

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We directly use OS APIs, and the usage of these would have to be ported. This is a lot of engineering time, especially because on Linux there aren’t really “OS APIs”, there’s just a heap of libraries.

I’m just asking this out of curiosity, how are you dealing with this on Android and iOS?

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adjusts mic thank you, thank you… coughs… ahem…

Why do you use Linux?

Personal preference, in just the same way as someone would use a mac over anything else. I could give a plethora of reasons why I prefer Linux, but I’m not going to. As history has taught me, it is a bad idea to go into personal preferences on the internet without starting a flame war, this is not the intention of the topic and I’m not about to make this happen. If you really want to know more you can either send me a PM me here on the forum, or contact me on Discord.

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As a person who uses linux a lot as well (though my main computer is windows), these are the reasons for me:

  • I actually have control over my computer, unlike windows, updates, telemetry, etc is hard to stop on windows. I practically broke my windows just stopping all the telemetry.
  • It can be more bareboned, so the OS itself will use less RAM.
  • one feature i like with ubuntu is that the OS stores applications you use in memory that isnt being used, and will clear automatically if you need more ram. This can speed up loading applications.

I primarily use it for servers and small projects like raspberry pi’s, etc.
I also have a bit of experience with gaming on linux, it wasn’t that bad thanks to steam handling a lot, but drivers were a pain for me personally.

Although Linux is awesome to play around with and run servers, I can agree with their points. I still do hope it becomes worthwhile for a port in the future.

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I kind of glanced over your 1/5th claim last night and I feel I have to correct you on that one. 3754 games on Steam have support for Linux and 5625 games have support for MacOS. I believe that’s not 1/5th. Note that in both search queries I ticked the games filter, I did this so the comparison only included games. Now when that games checkbox is unticked you get 7716 results for Linux, 12136 results for MacOs and 32569 in total. These last three queries include everything on steam (DLC bundles, software and etc). Again, 7716 is a far cry from being 1/5th of 12136. While looking at the numbers, I also think you shouldn’t forget that Linux got Steam support way later than MacOs.

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Yeah - going into pedantics about the market shares isn’t really beneficial for the discussion. ROBLOX doesn’t have any reason to put in the engineering time to port to Linux.

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Well maybe if they were smart then they would have built ROBLOX on Java…

(jk jk don’t hurt me)

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I’m not talking about the number of games - it doesn’t seem particularly relevant to me - I’m talking about the number of users: http://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey

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I just want to remark here that you can play Roblox from the command line in all supported OSes and that does not instantly mean I can exploit it. In order to exploit a game, you need to edit its memory/manipulate its network requests/do other low-level stuff and that is possible in all systems, given the tools are available.

For games like CS:GO, there are specialized third-parties that carefully design their cheats around known vulnerabilities in the VAC system, which are kept really secured by Valve, and the situation is not much different from Roblox: there is a whole forum dedicated to exploiting Roblox that is pretty much known by every developer/staff member nowadays.

Of course, Linux does provide some extra low-level tools so you can tweak the system as you wish, but most of the time the cheaters you see in games are using Windows. Today’s serious exploits are cross-platform, ya know??

Lastly, Windows and its backbones are not exactly “secure”, because, differently from open-source community initiatives, the only security patches you’ll get are from Microsoft (which usually take a long time to be assembled, distributed and installed). That opens a door not only for malware but for exploiting tools too, allowing them to manipulate system resources that applications use.

tl;dr: Tagging Linux as an exploiting tool and disregarding other systems in that capability is not a valid argument.


I was a Linux user for about a year and half, and something I definitely missed in this was proper support for games. I don’t think Roblox will be ever supporting Linux, though, and the reasons stated by the employees are pretty much valid. The enormous amount of distros, each with their own different systems doesn’t help either.

Roblox still annoys me whenever I am running outdated drivers on Windows, but I’d rather update them anyways since it is really easy to do that in Windows. I see the issue in Linux, though. Drivers were, as many said before, a pain to install and maintain.

The platform already shadowbans games in mobile platforms when they run too poorly, but the public that uses those devices are generally younger and will in fact blame Roblox for it. I don’t see Linux being used by such a public though (other than in schools, which most certainly wouldn’t allow their students to play games like so). Because of the complexity of the system, I wouldn’t expect someone who’s not a geek or a tech-savvy using Debian/Arch.

But yeah…

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