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Portal/IDB/logo_portal.png Welcome to the Debian gamepad portal!

Portal/IDB/icon-game-32x32.pngThis article talks about gamepad installation and setup. The two stages of configuration are often driver installation, and device configuration. Many devices have support integrated into the kernel and will work as soon as they're plugged in. Others can be more difficult.

Generic configuration

Given that the majority of devices have their necessary drivers built-in, the only thing most people might need to do is calibrate their controller afterwards. Many desktops have built-in configuration modules to select any connected gamepads and calibrate them. The process in the KDE Plasma desktop is documented here but the instructions are near-universally applicable.





There are many useful games in the Debian repositories for verifying that your gamepad works as expected, but supertuxkart is especially recommended due to its fantastic gamepad support.

Specific devices

Xbox and PlayStation controllers

Xbox, Xbox 360, and Xbox One controllers, including many knock-offs, should work out-of-the-box with no issues. This includes both wired and wireless variants, whether by using official wireless receivers or through Bluetooth. This also applies for the DualShock 3 and DualShock 4 controllers commonly used by the PlayStation consoles.

Steam Controller

Support for the Steam Controller is provided through the steam-devices package. By default, it works in "desktop mode" where it emulates mouse input. It will act as a proper controller only for games launched through Steam.

There's a project developing a user-mode driver for the Steam Controller that allows it to emulate an Xbox controller in any game without need for the proprietary Steam client. It is not officially supported in Debian however, and it will require extra configuration of its own:

Nintendo Switch Pro Controller

While support is not integrated into Debian yet, Steam implements its own driver and it should theoretically be usable with Steam games only. An official kernel driver is in-progress.

CategoryPortal | CategoryHardware | CategoryGamepad