How to Fix Black Friend List Bug on Steam?

Steam users may occasionally encounter a temporary, yet frustrating issue where their Steam friends list and chat box black out, preventing them from chatting with friends or inviting them to games.

The issue usually occurs if there are some bugs or glitches in the Steam app, if the app is not updated, or if there’s too much cache buildup.

However, this issue is short-lived and has several solutions. Below, we will provide a brief overview and instructions for each solution.

How to Fix Black Screen on Steam Friends List?

  1. Re-Open Steam: Occasionally, a minor glitch in the application can be fixed simply by closing and reopening Steam. Please try this method before resorting to other fixes.
  2. Run Steam as an Administrator: When you run Steam as administrator, it will have additional access to your computer’s operating system. Once you do this, check if your friends list is still blacked out or not.
  3. Delete the ClientUI Folder: This folder contains the UI of friends list in Steam. Deleting it will force Steam to recreate it, thus making the list visible again.
  4. Clear Steam Download Cache: A bad cache buildup can not only black out your friends list, but it can also hinder the overall performance of Steam. Therefore, make sure you delete the download cache from time to time to avoid issues like these.
  5. Delete Everything in the htmlcache Folder: This folder contains all the junk files, and it is safe to delete them and clean the folder. If clearing the download cache didn’t work, clearing the HTML cache folder will do the job.
  6. Repair the Steam Service: This problem can also occur if the Steam Service Client is facing some issues. In this case, it is best to repair the client and then relaunch Steam.
  7. Re-login to Steam: This is a straightforward fix and requires you to sign out and then sign in to Steam again. It has fixed the issue for many users and can work for you too.
  8. Update Steam: Make sure your Steam is up-to-date and you are not using a very outdated version. Older versions don’t run properly often, and you will face many problems with them.

1. Run Steam as an Administrator

  1. Right-click on the Steam icon.
  2. Select Run as administrator.

  1. Check your friend list now.

2. Delete the ClientUI Folder

  1. Go to the download location of Steam. You can do so by right-clicking on Steam and selecting Open File Location. Usually, it will be C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam.

  1. Locate and delete the ClientUI folder.

  1. Now relaunch Steam.

3. Clear Steam Download Cache

  1. Open Steam and click on Steam’s logo or Steam in the top-left corner.
  2. Select Settings.

  1. Select the Downloads tab.
  2. Click Clear Cache next to Clear Download Cache.

  1. Select OK and log in to Steam again.

4. Delete the htmlcache Folder

  1. Close Steam.wwww
  2. Open the File Manager and go to: %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Steam\htmlcache
  3. Select every file in the htmlcache folder and delete it.

  1. Start Steam again.

5. Repair the Steam Service

  1. Right-click on Steam’s desktop icon and select Open file location.
  2. Copy the location path. The default path is: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\bin\SteamService.exe
  3. Now type cmd in the Start menu.
  4. Run it as administrator.

  1. Make sure you have Steam’s location path copied before typing in the following command:
    "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\bin\SteamService.exe" /repair

  1. Once done, relaunch Steam, and your friends list should appear as normal now.

6. Re-login to Steam

  1. Launch Steam.
  2. Click on Steam on the top-left.
  3. Select Sign out and confirm your decision.

  1. Afterward, open Steam again and log in to your account.

7. Update Steam

  1. Open Steam
  2. Now either click on Steam’s logo or Steam on the top-left.
  3. Click Check for Steam Client Updates.

  1. Steam will update automatically if there is a new update available.

If your Steam friends list is still blacked out, contact Steam support and let them know about this issue. They will suggest some additional fixes to overcome the problem.


Abdullah Iqbal

Abdullah is a Google IT certified Help Desk Technician with extensive experience in providing technical support to system users. He has a proven track record of effectively resolving IT issues, and is adept at working with tools like Jira and ZenDesk to efficiently manage support tickets. Abdullah is committed to staying up-to-date with the latest technological advancements and constantly seeks to improve his skills and knowledge through professional development opportunities.