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Steam's big library update is now live for everyone

(Image credit: Valve)

The updated Steam library that went into beta testing in September is now live for everyone. Valve announced today that the latest update to the release version of Steam incorporates the dramatically overhauled game library, and also makes the new Remote Play Together beta client available to everyone.

The Steam library update is really impressive: It looks better, makes information like playtime and achievements more clearly visible, and offers more organization and customization options than the old joint. More of the changes are related to Steam's social aspects than its storefront—making it easier to see what your friends are playing, for instance, and making in-game events easier to keep up with—but even if you use Steam almost exclusively as a launcher, it's a huge improvement over the old layout. 

I don't bother with many of Steam's more advanced features, but simply being able to get clear eyes on exactly what's installed, and how much space it's taking up, has made managing my sometimes painfully-limited drive space a lot easier than it used to be. And as Wes said when the new layout first went into beta testing, the new Collections feature is a huge boon for users with an itch to organize.

Remote Play Together remains in beta, but the beta is open to everyone following this update, rather than being restricted to those taking part in the Steam client beta. Remote Play Together enables Steam users on remote PCs to play local multiplayer games together: It supports up to four players, and possibly more "in ideal conditions," although that's obviously hit-or-miss depending on the quality of your connection. 

To access it, just fire up the game you want to play (Valve put together a handy list of games supporting local multiplayer), then bring up your Steam friends list, right-click the person you'd like to play with, and select the Remote Play Together option. It's simple, and as we said last week, it works surprisingly well as long as everyone playing has a good connection.

The update also fixes bugs, the full assortment of which you can dive into below:

General:

  • One-time reset of Steam Skin selection when receiving this update. This avoids un-updated skins causing failures when opening the new library.
  • Updated embedded Chromium build in Steam to 77.0.3865.90
  • Fixed find in page dialog on the store or community tabs displaying after navigating away from those tabs.
  • Free to Play games will now remain in your Steam Library when uninstalled. You can remove these titles by right clicking on the game’s entry in your library.
  • Fixed an occasional crash at launch when the user has a pending gift.
  • Fixed Steam client potentially becoming unresponsive for several seconds after exiting a game or after uploading a screenshot.
  • Reduced client hitching for users with large libraries when adding or removing games.

Remote Play:

  • Decreased stream latency and reduced frames dropped due to host CPU load
  • Fixed launching VR games from the Steam Link
  • Fixed rare Steam client crash when running the network test
  • Added support for Wake on LAN over wireless connections with properly configured wireless adapters
  • Remote Play Anywhere now runs over the Steam Datagram Relay network, which ensures that the best route over the Valve backbone is always used. Also, connections are rerouted dynamically to avoid maintenance disrupting the connection.
  • Fixed steam client crash under certain combinations of remote play with non-Steam apps, or on the second launch of SteamVR.
  • Fixed rare hang in the host Steam client when starting a session
  • Fixed “Streaming Launch” dialog when streaming from another computer that you’re logged into.

Steam Input:

  • Reduced Steam Input’s overall CPU usage when active.
  • Start showing the last edited configuration in the personal configuration section of the configuration browser.
  • Improve automatic conversions when applying configurations to different controller types – Steam Controllers will get grip bindings based on the A/X buttons, and PS4 Controller trackpads will get bindings based on the option/share buttons.
  • Add a Screenshot binding to the Switch Pro controller capture button in the default templates – when applying a configuration from another controller type this binding will also be automatically be added.
  • Added support for Power-A Fusion Xbox/Playstation 4/Switch Pro fight pads.
  • Fixed several bugs around action set layer switching.

SteamVR:

  • Added playtime tracking for SteamVR workshop items and for SteamVR itself.
  • Titles that are hidden in the Steam Library will now be hidden in the recently played UI in SteamVR Home.
  • Changed Desktop tab in SteamVR to prefer input from the physical mouse over virtual input from the laser mouse. To switch from the laser mouse to the physical mouse, move the physical mouse. To switch back to the laser mouse, click in the desktop tab.
  • Deleting screenshots taken in VR now also deletes the stereo version from the local disk and the cloud. Note that cloud deletion only applies to screenshots uploaded in the future, not existing shared screenshots.

Linux:

  • Help > System Information now runs several tests to check for common problems with your Steam Runtime environment. Make sure to include it in your bug reports!
  • Steam Linux Runtime updated (0.20190927.0):
    • Merged i386/ and amd64/ directories for better layout and space savings.
    • Disable obsolete SSLv3 in libcurl, fixing a libcurl problem on Arch
    • Disable LDAP in libcurl
    • Update SDL2
  • Merged i386/ and amd64/ directories for better layout and space savings.
  • Disable obsolete SSLv3 in libcurl, fixing a libcurl problem on Arch
  • Disable LDAP in libcurl
  • Update SDL2
  • Added support for enabling the Big Picture overlay when using controllers with the desktop client
  • Fixed a problem where the screen could go to sleep while using a controller
  • Fixed cases where the on-screen keyboard would steal focus
  • Fix titles depending on SDL_image not working on distros that use SDL2 2.0.10
  • Fix GPU crashes and overlay corruption with games that use Vulkan async compute, such as DOOM 2016
  • Fix mouse problems with in-game overlay

MacOS:

  • Update app launch error dialog on MacOS 10.15 to show if error was due to the application being 32-bit only
  • Games that no longer run on MacOS 10.15 Catalina will show an incompatibility warning.

Steamworks SDK:

  • Improved parsing of localized “steam_display” strings in SteamFriends()->GetFriendRichPresence()
Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.