Help installing Steam + Lutris

Hi,when i try to install steam + lutris i got the following message :

error: Package ‘steam’ in /home/zumaha/.nix-defexpr/channels_root/nixos/pkgs/games/steam/steam.nix:43 has an unfree license (‘unfreeRedistributable’), refusing to evaluate.

       a) To temporarily allow unfree packages, you can use an environment variable
          for a single invocation of the nix tools.

            $ export NIXPKGS_ALLOW_UNFREE=1

        Note: For `nix shell`, `nix build`, `nix develop` or any other Nix 2.4+
        (Flake) command, `--impure` must be passed in order to read this
        environment variable.

       b) For `nixos-rebuild` you can set
         { nixpkgs.config.allowUnfree = true; }
       in configuration.nix to override this.

       Alternatively you can configure a predicate to allow specific packages:
         { nixpkgs.config.allowUnfreePredicate = pkg: builtins.elem (lib.getName pkg) [

       c) For `nix-env`, `nix-build`, `nix-shell` or any other Nix command you can add
         { allowUnfree = true; }
       to ~/.config/nixpkgs/config.nix.
(use '--show-trace' to show detailed location information)

I’m new user of linux and Nix,so how to allow the unfree software?
I also want to ask is Nix based on any other linux distro?

You need to put this in some part of your configuration:

nixpkgs.config.allowUnfree = true;
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Sry for the noob question,but how to do that?

Nix might not be the best choice for your first Linux experience. It’s undoubtedly cool and amazing but it requires quite a bit of experience and self-drive (i.e. Google-fu) to use comfortably.

Are you on NixOS or a different distro + the Nix package manager?

Nix is not based on any other Linux distribution.

I’m on Nix OS 22.05 “Quokka”.

In that case, follow advice b) given in the error message.

If you’re new to Linux, I’d highly recommend using a more traditional Linux distro before diving into NixOS. It’s really not been fitted for people who are new to Linux yet and it’ll stay that way for the foreseeable future. The error message you got was actually one of the most user friendly ones in the Nix space IME.

Fedora, Pop!_OS or even Ubuntu would make for much better starting points. Once you’ve used traditional hacker distros like Arch for a while would be a good point in your Linux journey to consider giving NixOS a spin.
We’d love to be in a position where NixOS could be a distro that someone new to Linux could comfortably use but we’re still far away from that.

I only use the pc to play games/listen music.
And for the moment im facing only the problem with installing the unfree software.
As i know all distros you described above have software center’s,except Nix of course.

I wouldn’t say to not use Nix/NixOS as a starter linux. The issue has more to do with how you problem solve. I’d actually encourage on an ongoing basis more new OS users to learn the nix way first. In a lot of ways, a single configuration file (configuration.nix) instead of the need of familiarity with many moving parts and where the files end up-- much like most linux distros-- is an overwhelming amount of things to have to pick up. You’re telling OP to spend a few years with other OSs, work up to arch, then try nix.

Just start with a good basis for problem solving and learning and start with the Nix way instead.

I will say that this is also why there needs to be a streamlined entrypoint for everyone. Is OP using nix-env to install or using the configuration.nix? Time for nix-env to go away!

I’ve found a way to install them by tempotary allowing the unfree packages from terminal with this command :


If you want this setting permanent you can add the line suggested by brogos to /etc/nixos/configuration.nix. Don’t forget to open your text editor with sudo.
You are handy enough to have found this command. I think you can learn everything if you can give time to search for help, doing errors and recovering etc…

1 Like

Also linking to documentation can help: NixOS - NixOS 22.05 manual

The nix related docs are admittedly not the easiest thing to read if you’re starting from little experience, but having some description is better than none. Some people have started working on this, though, with some luck (or rather, dedicated effort) that might change in the coming months to years :slight_smile: