Steam in-home streaming will allow you to play a game on one computer when the game process is actually running on another computer elsewhere in your home. Through Steam, game audio and video is captured on the remote computer and sent to the player’s computer. The game input (keyboard, mouse or gamepad) is sent from the player’s computer to the game process on the remote computer.
Any two computers in a home can be used to stream a gameplay session and this can enable playing games on systems that would not traditionally be able to run those games. For example, a Windows only game could be streamed from a Windows PC to a Steam Machine running Linux in the living room. A graphically intensive game could be streamed from a beefy gaming rig in the office to your low powered laptop that you are using in bed. You could even start a game on one computer and move to a more comfortable location and continue playing it there.
The Steam In-Home Streaming feature is currently in limited beta, so you must have received a beta invitation via e-mail before you can use the feature.
Once you have received your invitation, you can start streaming in 3 easy steps:
We are collecting data during the beta to find out recommended system requirements for streaming. Please report your experience in the discussion group!
We are collecting data during the beta to find out recommended network requirements for streaming. Please report your experience in the discussion group!
To improve your streaming experience, you can go into your game settings and lower your resolution and turn off vertical sync.
In the In-Home Streaming settings you can change a number of things that can affect your experience. You can change the bandwidth, limit the framerate, and adjust the maximum resolution that will be captured.
You usually want to leave the bandwidth set to Automatic, which will adapt to network conditions, with a minimum bandwidth of 2.5 Mbit/s and a maximum bandwidth of 15 Mbit/s. The higher the bandwidth, the better the picture quality, but it also affects network latency, congests wireless networks, and takes more time to encode and decode. You almost never want set bandwidth to Unlimited, as this will cause very slow encode and decode times.
You usually want to leave the framerate set to Automatic, which will pick the best framerate that your setup can consistently maintain. If you find that the game feels very choppy at 60 FPS then your local hardware decoder may not be able to handle that many frames and you should try limiting the framerate. You might also want to limit the framerate if your network has limited bandwidth and you want to improve the picture quality at the expense of latency.
You usually want to leave the resolution set to Automatic, which will make sure that the game isn't captured at a higher resolution than your desktop resolution. If you're running into resolution related performance problems the best solution is to lower the resolution in the game.
Having a resolution limit will not affect the aspect ratio of the game, and the game will be shown with black bars if the aspect ratio doesn't match the local computer.
Yes, you can join the Steam In-Home Streaming community group and discuss the feature with thousands of other players.
Mac OS X:
SteamOS / Linux:
Make sure they are on the same subnet and no other program is using port 27036, which is used for the initial discovery protocol. If another program has bound this port, please report which program it is on the bug discussion group.
Check the account settings to make sure both computers are participating in the Steam Beta Update, and then go back and check for Steam client updates. Help -> About Steam should show a client dated January 10th or newer. Then try logging in with the same Steam account on both computers.
A number of bugs have been fixed in the latest video driver releases that may affect streaming. If you are getting poor performance, graphical glitches or black screens please make sure you have the latest drivers installed from your video card vendor's website.
If you are running on Athlon XP system, this is a known issue and will be fixed.
You can look in the streaming client log to get more details about what happened. On Windows this file is on the local computer in streaming_client.exe.log. On Linux this file is on the local computer in /tmp/streaming_client.log.
Please try updating your video drivers. If this doesn't fix it, please report which program it is on the bug discussion group.
If you are streaming from Windows XP, this is a known issue and will be fixed in a future update.
Otherwise, here are some troubleshooting steps:
You can look in logs\streaming_log.txt on the remote computer after you play a game to get a detailed breakdown of how much time was spent in each component of the streaming system.
While the game is running, you can hit F6 or the Guide button combined with the Y button on your game controller to turn on live statistics for the session. While the statistics are visible the game collects more detailed information which is saved in logs\SteamVideoTrace.txt and logs\SteamAudioTrace.txt at the end of the session.
While the statistics are visible, you can hit F8 or the Guide button combined with the X button on your game controller to save a screenshot and 10 seconds worth of stats to a zip file in the streaming directory in the Steam folder on the remote computer.
There is a good article on how to interpret the log information here: http://steamcommunity.com/groups/homestream/discussions/0/540733523404402134/