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How do I install RetroDECK on the Linux Desktop?


  1. You need to have flatpak support installed on your Linux desktop.
    Follow the official flatpak guides on how to install it for your distribution:
    Flatpak Setup Guide

  2. We recommend that you have the steam-devices and/or game-devices-udev package installed as it comes with udev rules for many different controllers. You will have to check your distribution on how to install it.

  3. We currently recommend that you add and launch RetroDECK from Steam so you can utilize the Steam Input feature to change various aspects of the external controllers. We will be looking into other alternative solutions later for those that do not want to use Steam.

From the Desktop GUI

  • Go into your flatpak supported software manager in your desktop environment, this is different depending on what desktop you use. Example: for GNOME is often GNOME Software and for KDE it is KDE Discover.
  • Search for RetroDECK and press install.

From the terminal

  • Run the following command flatpak install Flathub net.retrodeck.retrodeck

First Run - Quick Start

  1. Start RetroDECK for the first time
  2. Choose where RetroDECK should create the roms folders Internal, SDCard or Custom.
  3. Put the BIOS inside ~/retrodeck/bios/ folder How to: Manage BIOS and Firmware
  4. Put the ROMS inside ~/retrodeck/roms/ folder.
  5. Add RetroDECK to Steam How to: Add RetroDECK to Steam
  6. Make sure you have enabled controller support in Steam How to: Enable Controllers in Steam
  7. Connect your controller to your Desktop.
  8. Launch RetroDECK from Steam and enjoy


Updates to RetroDECK are handled automatically via your software manager when there is an updated version released.

Or if you want to update from the terminal you can type:
flatpak update

I got a distribution that have implemented Steam Deck's Game Mode, can I utilize that?

Yes, you can.

Specific hardware requirements apply if you want Game Mode to work.

Game Mode on your PC will mitgate several issues with Steam Input that exists in various distributions and will probably give you the best RetroDECK experience and playing Steam Games with controllers out of the box.


Bazzite Webpage

Bazzite: Steam Game Mode

For Bazzite you install the HTPC / Steam Deck image on your PC.

Chimera OS

ChimeraOS Webpage

ChimeraOS Wiki