Fix: Could Not Connect to Steam Network

While launching the Steam client, you may experience an error that says that it could not connect to the Steam network. It usually occurs when a user tries to log into the client. As always, you can re-install Steam but we should keep that as a last resort and focus on basic troubleshooting techniques.

Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers

Before moving on with the solutions, make sure Steam servers are not down. Also, log-in to the Steam website and if it logs in fine, then you are not banned from Steam. Moreover, power off your system and network equipment, disconnect all the peripherals (mouse, keyboard, monitor and etc.) and then power on and connect the keyboard and mouse when required and after the system has started, check if the problem is solved. Also, try to use Steam in offline mode and then switch to online mode to solve the problem.

Solution 1: Change Steam’s Internet Protocol

Steam originally uses the UDP (User Datagram Protocol) for the transmission of data. We can try changing it to TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). As we all know TCP is more reliable whereas UDP is mostly faster. If we encounter an error, we can try changing protocols to see if they are the problem.

  1. Launch your Task Manager by pressing ⊞ Win + R button. This should pop-up the Run. In the Run box type “taskmgr” to open the task manager.
    Run Task Manager
  2. End all Steam related processes starting from the process ‘Steam Client Bootstrapper’.
    End Steam Client Bootstrapper in Task Manager
  3. Create a shortcut of steam in your steam folder. The default location for your steam folder should be
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam
  4. Press ⊞ the Win + R button. This should pop-up the Run application. In the dialogue box write
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam

    Or if you installed Steam in another directory, you can browse to that directory and you can proceed with steps mentioned below.

    Run C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam
  5. Now to ensure nothing bad happens to your default Steam.exe file, we will make a shortcut of your steam.exe file and paste it into your steam folder. It should look something like this:
    Create a Shortcut of Steam.exe
  6. Now that you’ve got your shortcut set up, you’re going to right-click it and go to its properties.
  7. In the target dialogue box, write “-tcp” in the end. So the entire line looks like:
    “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\Steam.exe” –tcp
    

    Please remember to give a space after the default line in the target dialogue box.

    Add -TCP at End of C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\Steam.exe” in Target box of the Shortcut
  8. Apply the changes and close the window. Launch Steam using the shortcut and it will work as expected.

Solution 2: Delete/Alter ClientRegistry.blob

We can try and see if ClientRegistry.blob is giving you the trouble.

  1. Completely exit Steam and end all tasks as mentioned in the solution above.
  2. Browse to your Steam directory. The default one is
    C:\Program Files\Steam
  1. Locate ‘ClientRegistry.blob’.
    Locate ClientRegistry.blob
  2. Rename the file to ‘ClientRegistryold.blob’.
  3. Restart Steam and allow the file to be recreated.

Hopefully, your Client will run as expected. If it still doesn’t work, follow the steps listed below.

Solution 3: Troubleshoot the Internet Connection

Before re-installing Steam client, we should thoroughly check whether our internet connection is working normally or not. Open your browser and see if your computer can connect to the internet normally. You should also check if your network adapter is functioning properly. Below are the steps to check and verify.

  1. Press Win + X A menu will pop up and you will select “Device Manager” from this menu.
    Open Device Manager
  2. A window will come forth consisting of different entities. Search for “Network adapter” and expand it. Here you will find your WiFi/LAN adapter along with its official name.
    Expand Network Adapters in Device Manager
    • –  This icon means that your network adapter is currently enabled and working as expected.
    • –  This means that your network adapter is currently disabled. To resolve this issue, right-click on the network adapter and click “enable”.
    1. To check if your network adapter is working properly, right-click on that adapter and select “Properties”. Here you will see a window displaying “This device is working properly” if there are no issues.
      Check Device Status

    If the problem persists, we can proceed with the troubleshooting. Please note that if you made any recent changes to your network/wifi settings, you should revert.

    Now we will try to reset some network settings. Below are the steps mentioned which will guide you to flushdns etc.

    1. Press Win + R In the dialogue bar, type “cmd”. This should launch the command prompt.
    2. In the command prompt type the following commands and press enter after each line:
      ipconfig/release
      
      ipconfig/all
      
      ipconfig/flushdns
      
      ipconfig/renew
      
      netsh int ip set dns
      
      netsh winsock reset
    3. After executing the following commands, restart your computer and check if Steam is running properly.

    Solution 4: Update Network Card Driver

    Network drivers are the main components that communicate between the network hardware and the operating system. An outdated/corrupted/non-compliant network driver may cause Steam to show the current error. In that case, updating the driver to the latest version (or rolling back to the previous version) may solve the problem. You can also try unplugging the network hardware physically after uninstalling the driver and placing it back in.

    Solution 5: Temporarily Disable Antivirus/Firewall

    As Steam could not connect to its servers, the problem may be caused by your antivirus/Firewall that could be blocking the communication between Steam and its servers. In that case, disable your antivirus or turn off your Firewall. These applications usually block access to Steam’s servers because of a false positive.

    Warning: Disable your antivirus/Firewall at your won risk as this step will make your system more vulnerable to threats like viruses, malware, and malicious attacks, etc.

    Solution 6: Use Another Network

    Non-communication between Steam and its servers could be caused by your ISP as ISPs deploy different techniques to safeguard its users and control web traffic, and in this process can block a vital service for Steam. In that case, using another network may solve the problem. If no other network is available, then you can use your mobile phone’s hotspot to rule out this possibility. If you are using a VPN or proxy, then disable the VPN/proxy and check if Steam is functioning properly.

    Solution 7: Update Windows

    Outdated Windows can cause a lot of problems for a user and the cause of error under discussion may already have been rectified in the latest Windows update version. In that case, updating Windows to the latest version may solve the problem. Make sure that you have an active internet connection and keep the computer on till the updates are finished.

    1. Press Windows key and type updates. Then in the resulting list, click on Check For Updates.
      Check For Updates in Windows Search
    2. Then in the updates window, click on Check for Updates.
      Check For Updates in Windows Update
    3. If any updates are available, then download and install all the updates.
    4. After updates are installed, check if the problem is solved.

    Solution 8: Rename/Move Some Steam Folders

    Corruption of some Steam folders can result in non-communication between Steam and its servers. In that case, renaming these folders might solve the problem instantly. When Steam launches and doesn’t find the required directories that it is looking for, it will automatically create new folders with default values. This will ensure that we have fresh configuration files and caches.

    1. Exit all Steam processes.
    2. Now navigate to the Steam install directory, usually, it is:
      C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam

      or you can browse to your install directory.

    3. Now find the following folders
      • userdata
      • servers
    4. Now rename these folders.
    5. Now navigate to the folder
      %steam%\config\htmlcache\

      and clear all its contents.

    6. Now navigate to the folder
      Steam\userdata[your_steam_id]\config\
    7. Now search for localconfig.vdf and rename it.
    8. Now launch Steam and check if it is functioning properly.

    Solution 9: Reinstall Steam After Deleting Its Files

    Exit all Steam applications before starting this solution. Please note that this won’t delete your gameplay data.

    1. Launch your Task Manager by pressing ⊞ Win + R button. This should pop-up the Run In the dialogue box write “taskmgr”. This should open up the task manager.
    2. End all Steam related processes starting from the process ‘Steam Client Bootstrapper’.
    3. Press ⊞ the Win + R button. In the dialogue box write
      C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam

      Or if you installed Steam in another directory, you can browse to that directory and you will be good to go.

    4. Locate the following files and folders:

    Steamapps                          Folder (This is where all your games are located)

    Userdata                              Folder (This is where the progress of your games is saved)

    Skins                                     Folder (This is where your steam skins are located)

    Steam.exe                            Application (This is the launcher for Steam)

    Ssfn files                               They may be more than one and each one may have a number in front of it (Keep it so you don’t have to wait 7 days for trade cooldown).

    1. Delete all the other files except the ones mentioned above and launch steam from the launcher. Steam will download some files and update itself. After completing the installation, it will prompt you to enter your credentials. After you successfully log in, the client will work as expected.

    Related Articles:

    Steam Connection Error

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Fix: Could Not Connect to Steam Network

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