Fix: SMITE is Unable to Find Steam Installation

This SMITE error appears after downloading the game via Steam (not via the standalone launcher). After logging into the game by entering the username and password, the game simply reports that “SMITE is unable to find Steam installation”.

SMITE on Steam

This has been a problem which has occurred to many players and it even appears with other games from the same Hi-Rez studio such as Paladins. Since the problem is so popular, there are also many quality solutions and we decided to include the most helpful ones in our detailed article so make sure you follow it closely and resolve your problem!

What Causes the “SMITE is Unable to Find Steam Installation” Error?

The major causes for this problem are usually common for many users but there isn’t a single method which can be used to troubleshoot all problems. Still, here is the list of the most common causes:

  • Wrong installation directory being set for the game. This will fool the launcher to think that the game might not be installed at all. This can be fixed using the Hi-Rez troubleshooter.
  • The Hi-Rez Service might not be running properly and you should consider uninstalling it manually. It will reinstall after you launch the game and it will hopefully resolve the problem.

Solution 1: Change the Installation Directory

It’s quite possible that an error on Steam’s or the game’s end has changed the real location where the game is installed. If you installed the game using Steam, it should be in one of the libraries folders you have chosen. Follow the steps below in order to change the game’s installation directory using the Troubleshooter

  1. Open up your Steam client by double-clicking its icon from the Desktop or by searching for it in the Start menu or the round Cortana button ( or the search bar) next to it if you are a Windows 10 user.
Opening Steam via Start menu
  1. Navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window and locate Smite in the list of games you own in the library.
  2. Right-click on the game and choose the Play Game entry which will appear at the top of the context menu. If you have the Steam game shortcut on your PC, locate it and double click on it.
  3. Click the gear-like icon from the bottom left part of the Smite launcher window to open Settings. Click the Troubleshoot button and wait for the Hi-Rez Game Support Diagnostic Tool to launch.
    Locating the Troubleshoot button in SMITE launcher settings
  4. Select SMITE in the list of Installed Games and change the Game Installation Directory to the one you used to install SMITE. The default path is usually ‘C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Smite’.
Change the folder to where the game is actually installed
  1. Apply the changes and check to see whether the “SMITE is unable to find Steam installation” error still appears when launching the game.

Solution 2: Reinstall the Hi-Rez Service

Sometimes this service simply doesn’t install properly on people’s computers and they are unable to do anything with their installation of Smite, leading to this error appearing from the beginning. In other cases, the service appears to be corrupt and you should uninstall and let the game install it itself.

  1. Since you have installed the game on Steam, open up your Steam client and navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window and locate Smite in the list of games you own in the library.
  2. Right-click on the game and choose the Properties entry which will appear at the top of the context menu. Navigate to the Local Files tab in the Properties window and choose the Browse Local Files
Browse Local Files option in Steam
  1. Navigate to Binaries >> Redist and double-click to open InstallHiRezService.exe executable. If the service is installed, make sure you choose to uninstall it from within the executable. If it’s not installed, install it before reopening the game again.
    The location of the file you need to run
  2. The game should proceed to install the Service before launching so check to see if you are now able to play properly.

Solution 3: Re-run Prerequisites

This is an option which appears after you run the Hi-Rez Game Support Diagnostic Tool by clicking Troubleshoot in the game’s launcher settings. Running it has resolved the problem for many players and you should definitely try it out.

  1. Open up your Steam client by double-clicking its icon from the Desktop or by searching for it in the Start menu or the round Cortana button ( or the search bar) next to it if you are a Windows 10 user.
Opening Steam via Start menu
  1. Navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window and locate Smite in the list of games you own in the library.
  2. Right-click on the game and choose the Play Game entry which will appear at the top of the context menu. If you have the Steam game shortcut on your PC, locate it and double click on it.
  3. Click the gear-like icon from the bottom left part of the Smite launcher window to open Settings. Click the Troubleshoot button and wait for the Hi-Rez Game Support Diagnostic Tool to launch.
The Re-run Prerequisites option in the troubleshooter
  1. Locate the Re-run Prerequisites option at the bottom of the window and click on it. Wait for it to finish and try running the game again to check whether the “SMITE is unable to find Steam installation” error still appears.

Solution 4: Reinstall the Game

Reinstalling the game should be the last thing on the list but the good thing is everything is saved to your Steam account and you won’t have to start all over again. If you have a good Internet connection, the game should be reinstalled in no time and the error should now cease to appear.

  1. Click on the Start menu button and open Control Panel by searching for it or by locating it in Start menu (Windows 7 users). Alternatively, you can click on the gear icon in order to open the Settings app if you are using Windows 10 as the operating system on your computer.
  2. In the Control Panel window, switch to View as: Category at the top right corner and click on Uninstall a Program under the Programs section.
Uninstall a Program in Control Panel
  1. If you are using the Settings on Windows 10, clicking on Apps section from the Settings window should open the list of all installed programs on your computer.
  2. Locate Smite in the list either in Settings or Control Panel, click on it once and click the Uninstall button located in the Uninstall a program window. Confirm any dialog choices to uninstall the game, and follow the instructions which will appear on the screen.

Alternative for Steam Users:

  1. If you have installed the game on Steam, open up your Steam client and navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window and locate Smite in the list of games you own in the library.
SMITE in Steam Library
  1. Right-click on the game and choose the Uninstall button which will appear at the bottom of the context menu which will appear.
  2. Follow the instructions which will appear on the screen and confirm any dialogs prompting you to confirm your choice to uninstall the game.

You will need to download it again from Steam by locating in the Library and choose the Install button after right-clicking on it. Check to see if the “Smite is unable to locate Steam installation” message still appears.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

Expert Tip

Fix: SMITE is Unable to Find Steam Installation

If the issue is with your Computer or a Laptop you should try using Restoro which can scan the repositories and replace corrupt and missing files. This works in most cases, where the issue is originated due to a system corruption. You can download Restoro by clicking the Download button below.

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