the new Steam Controller driver breaks it on Steam

Bug #1798583 reported by liamdawe on 2018-10-18
This bug affects 4 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
linux (Ubuntu)
Nominated for Cosmic by Anthony Wong
Nominated for Disco by Kai-Heng Feng

Bug Description

===SRU Justification===
New steam-hid driver breaks Unity games.

Quote from the commit message:
"With this commit, when a HID client starts, the input device is removed;
when the HID client ends the input device is recreated."

A guy from Valve comfirms the backport works.

[Regression Potential]
Low. This fix is specific to hid-steam, which is a new driver introduced
in v4.18.

===Original Bug Report===
The new hid_steam driver in kernel 4.18 breaks the use of it within Steam.

Games either:
- Crash
- Don't detect it at all
- Only pick it up as player 2

To get it working as normal, it needs blacklisting currently.

See here:

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 18.10
Package: linux-image-4.18.0-10-generic 4.18.0-10.11
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 4.18.0-10.11-generic 4.18.12
Uname: Linux 4.18.0-10-generic x86_64
NonfreeKernelModules: nvidia_modeset nvidia
ApportVersion: 2.20.10-0ubuntu13
Architecture: amd64
 /dev/snd/controlC2: liam 2492 F.... pulseaudio
 /dev/snd/controlC0: liam 2492 F.... pulseaudio
 /dev/snd/controlC1: liam 2492 F.... pulseaudio
CurrentDesktop: ubuntu:GNOME
Date: Thu Oct 18 12:49:44 2018
InstallationDate: Installed on 2017-10-18 (364 days ago)
InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 17.10 "Artful Aardvark" - Release amd64 (20171017.1)
 lo no wireless extensions.

 enp5s0 no wireless extensions.

 eno1 no wireless extensions.
MachineType: ASUS All Series
ProcKernelCmdLine: BOOT_IMAGE=/boot/vmlinuz-4.18.0-10-generic root=UUID=2a8676f3-0045-4e66-9cd1-186ffc6a8c2a ro quiet splash vt.handoff=1
 linux-restricted-modules-4.18.0-10-generic N/A
 linux-backports-modules-4.18.0-10-generic N/A
 linux-firmware 1.175

SourcePackage: linux
UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to cosmic on 2018-10-18 (0 days ago) 08/10/2015
dmi.bios.vendor: American Megatrends Inc.
dmi.bios.version: 1901
dmi.board.asset.tag: To be filled by O.E.M. SABERTOOTH X99
dmi.board.vendor: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC.
dmi.board.version: Rev 1.xx
dmi.chassis.asset.tag: PCS
dmi.chassis.type: 3
dmi.chassis.vendor: To Be Filled By O.E.M.
dmi.chassis.version: To Be Filled By O.E.M.
dmi.modalias: dmi:bvnAmericanMegatrendsInc.:bvr1901:bd08/10/2015:svnASUS:pnAllSeries:pvrSystemVersion:rvnASUSTeKCOMPUTERINC.:rnSABERTOOTHX99:rvrRev1.xx:cvnToBeFilledByO.E.M.:ct3:cvrToBeFilledByO.E.M.: ASUS MB All Series
dmi.product.sku: All
dmi.product.version: System Version
dmi.sys.vendor: ASUS

liamdawe (liamdawe) wrote :

This change was made by a bot.

Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed

Did this issue start happening after an update/upgrade? Was there a
prior kernel version where you were not having this particular problem?

Would it be possible for you to test the latest upstream kernel? Refer
to . Please test the latest
v4.19 kernel[0].

If this bug is fixed in the mainline kernel, please add the following
tag 'kernel-fixed-upstream'.

If the mainline kernel does not fix this bug, please add the tag:

Once testing of the upstream kernel is complete, please mark this bug as

Thanks in advance.


Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Incomplete
liamdawe (liamdawe) wrote :

The issue is at stated, the hid steam driver in Kernel 4.18.

There is a patch available here from the creator of the driver to fix it:

I don't know if that's included in any Kernel builds yet, users commenting here: note that the patch does fix it, so it would be good if Ubuntu could pull the patch in.

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

there is a patch on lklm but it's not merged yet, the bug still exists in the current kernel version

tags: added: kernel-bug-exists-upstream
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Incomplete → New
status: New → Confirmed
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
importance: Undecided → Medium
status: Confirmed → Triaged
tags: added: kernel-da-key


This bug [1] in the Valve github tracker seems to be caused by the hid-steam driver, written by me, introduced in 4.18.

With this driver there is a new input device, which is disabled when the Steam client is running. That is usually harmless, but some games go nuts with that extra device.

I have written a patch, that instead of disabling the device, removes it when Steam is running, and recreates it when Steam is closed.

I have submitted it to LKML a few days ago [2], but it looks like it went through the cracks... It would be great is someone could check it.



Changed in linux:
importance: Unknown → Medium
status: Unknown → Confirmed

Any updates on this? I still experience the problem on 4.19.3-041903-generic

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

There has been no change on the bugzilla report/patch it seems :-/

Will Cooke (willcooke) wrote :

Kernel team are addressing this in bug:

This might be able to be marked as a dupe.

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

The issue should be fixed in that disco update,

" .
   * Disco update: 4.19.6 upstream stable release (LP: #1806909)
     - HID: steam: remove input device when a hid client is running."

Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Triaged → Fix Released
kisak (kisak) wrote :

Hello Kai-Heng Feng, on Ubuntu 18.04.1, I grabbed and your build. With 4.18.20 mainline I can confirm Rocket League's main menu can not be navigated via the Steam Controller, and can be with your test build. No game play was tested and only one game was tested. Game was launched from Steam's Big Picture Mode.

Kai-Heng Feng (kaihengfeng) wrote :

kisak, in addition to the fix, do you think backport the hid-steam driver to Bionic's v4.15 kernel useful to the users?

description: updated
kisak (kisak) wrote :

I'm not going to make a recommendation one way or another.

While Steam is active, Steam's input subsystem takes care of the controller. This sounds like something to ask Mr. Costa from the upstream kernel bug report.

Kai-Heng Feng (kaihengfeng) wrote :

Ok, I'll ask Mr. Costa about the question.

Thanks for your response.

Will Cooke (willcooke) wrote :

I would like to see this prepared for Bionic too. While a lot of gamers go for the latest release, the LTS has a massive user base. I'd like to see Steam controllers working in Bionic.

Kai-Heng Feng (kaihengfeng) wrote :

Seems like it already works under Bionic as a generic HID device. It depends on how many new features hid-steam brings to justify whether backporting it is a good idea or not.

Will Cooke (willcooke) wrote :

As I understand it, while this currently works on Bionic with 4.15 it will _stop_ working on Bionic when the new 4.18 HWE kernel gets released, without this patch applied.

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