Does Valve Index Work on Linux?

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By Monica Bates

If you’re a Linux user and a fan of virtual reality, you may be wondering whether the Valve Index headset is compatible with your operating system. The answer is yes, but with some caveats.

Valve Index Hardware Requirements

First, let’s take a look at the hardware requirements for the Valve Index. The headset itself requires a DisplayPort 1.2 video output, USB 3.0 Type-A or Type-C port, and an AC power outlet. The controllers require Bluetooth connectivity and two AA batteries each.

Linux Compatibility

Valve officially supports Ubuntu 18.04 and newer versions of the operating system for SteamVR on Linux, which is necessary to use the Valve Index headset. However, users have reported successful setups on other distributions such as Arch Linux and Fedora.

Setting up SteamVR on Linux

To get started with SteamVR on Linux, you’ll need to download and install Steam onto your system if you haven’t already done so. Once that’s done, follow these steps:

  • Open Steam and navigate to the Library tab.
  • Select Tools from the dropdown menu.
  • Scroll down until you find SteamVR.
  • Right-click on SteamVR and select Properties.
  • Navigate to the Betas tab.
  • Select ‘beta – SteamVR Beta Update’ from the dropdown menu.
  • Close out of Properties.
  • In your Library tab again, right-click on SteamVR and select Install Game.

Launching SteamVR on Linux

After installation is complete, launch SteamVR by navigating back to your Library tab in Steam and selecting it from there.

Keep in mind that while some games may work flawlessly on Linux using the Valve Index headset, others may require additional steps or workarounds to function properly. It’s always a good idea to do your research before purchasing any VR game on Linux.


So, to answer the original question: Does Valve Index work on Linux? Yes, but with some limitations and potential complications. However, with the right setup and some patience, Linux users can enjoy high-quality virtual reality experiences with the Valve Index headset.