How To'sWindows

Fix: Steam client running slow

Steam is one of the most popular gaming distribution platform in the world. It has more than 30 million users which are active. Steam traces its origins back to September 2003. The first game which required a Steam client was Counter Strike 1.6. After that, third-party game developers started distributing their game on Steam and the popularity increased until it is what it is today.

Despite being updated frequently and having “bug fixes” updates all the time, Steam also comes up with many problems. One of them being the Steam client operating so slow that it is near to impossible to play your games. It may also consume a lot of your CPU resources and memory causing the system to heat up. This is a very common problem with a lot of fixes available. There is no specific “one” fix for this solution as the software and hardware configuration of the user may vary. We have listed down a number of steps and techniques to ensure that your problem goes away.

Solution 1: Clearing your Steam browser cache and cookies

It may be the case where your Steam browser accumulates so much data in its cache and cookies that there isn’t much space left. This can cause it to have unexpected behavior i.e. running slow. As we all know, Steam has a separate browser integrated within the client itself. It is used to view web pages in the client when you click any link or it is used to display heavy advertisements. Follow the steps listed below to clear your Steam browser’s cache and cookies.

  1. Launch your Steam client by right clicking on it and selecting the option Run as administrator.
  2. Once in the client, click on the tab of Steam present at the top left corner of the screen. From the drop-down box, click on Settings.

  1. Once in the Settings, navigate to the Web Browser tab present on the left side of the screen. It will be the second last option on the left.
  2. Once in the Web Browser options, you will see two buttons i.e. Delete Web Browser Cache and Delete Web Browser Cookies. One by one click both the options and let Steam do the work.

  1. A prompt will come forward asking you to confirm your decision. Press Ok to continue. After clearing both, Press ok to save changes and exit.
  2. Restart Steam after ending all processes using the task manager.

Solution 2: Clearing Download cache

It may be the case where your Steam Downloads have excessive download data present in the cache that it is starting to make a problem for you. Whenever you download something on Steam, it accumulates in the Download cache. We can try clearing the download cache and check if it helps in speeding up your Steam client.

  1. Launch your Steam client by right clicking on it and selecting the option Run as administrator.
  2. Once in the client, click on the tab of Steam present at the top left corner of the screen. From the drop-down box, click on Settings.

  1. Once in the Settings, navigate to the Downloads tab present at the left side of the window.
  2. Here you see an option of Clear Download Cache present at the near bottom of the screen. Click it. Now Steam will ask you to confirm your action. Press Ok and wait until the process is completed. Now save changes and exit the client.
  3. Restart Steam after ending all Steam related processes using the task manager. Check if your problem got solved.

Solution 3: Enabling Automatically Detect Settings and Disabling LAN settings

Having a proxy active on your computer can cause Steam to do extra hard work. A proxy induces a tunnel through which your internet data flow. While sometimes it may work, many times Steam produces an error or shows unexplained behavior. We can disable your proxy settings and check if Steam improves its performance or not.

First of all, make sure that suspicious search engines are uninstalled and there are no “extra” programs present on your PC.

Method 1: Chrome

  1. Open Chrome browser and click on the Chrome menu (top right) upon opening.
  2. After the drop down comes, click on Settings.

  1. Once the Settings page is opened, type “proxy” in the search dialogue bar present on the top.
  2. From search results, select the result which says “open proxy settings”.
  3. When the settings are opened, click on “LAN Settings” in the Connections tab, present in the bottom.

  1. Check the line which says “Automatically detect settings”. And uncheck the line which says “Use a proxy server for your LAN”. Save changes and exit. Restart Steam.

Method 2: Through Network Settings

  1. Press Windows + R button to bring up the Run application.
  2. In the dialogue box, type “inetcpl.cpl”.

  1. The internet properties will open. Navigate to the Connections tab and click on LAN settings.
  2. Once in the LAN settings, check the line which says “Automatically detect settings”. And uncheck the line which says “Use a proxy server for your LAN”. Save changes and exit to re-launch Steam.

Solution 4: Granting Steam administrative privileges

 There may be another problem where Steam might not be having administrative privileges. Steam requires these to ensure that it can function without any obstacles involved. Steam requires a lot of changing to its files and also requires a lot of resources to perform at its best. Some of these tasks require these privileges. To ensure that your client doesn’t get slow because of this, grant Steam and its entire directory administrative privileges. You read the guide how to from here.

Solution 5: Repairing Steam

Another thing you can try before refreshing Steam files is to repair Steam using the Run application. The repair Steam option checks for corrupt Steam files and replaces them accordingly. Do note that this process may require administrative privileges.

  1. Press Windows + to bring up the Run application.
  2. In the dialogue box, type the address of your Steam directory, followed by bin, then the exe and finally followed by a space and a “/repair”.

The final command will look something like this:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\bin\SteamService.exe /repair

You can replace “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam” by another address if you have Steam installed elsewhere, for example, if you have it installed in local disk E, the command will become E:\Steam\bin\steamservice.exe /repair

 

  1. After you run the program, it will launch a command prompt and start repairing. Don’t cancel the operating until it exits itself. You may see nothing in the command prompt, don’t worry that is normal.

  1. Now launch Steam and check if your client started to work properly or not.

 

Solution 6: Verifying integrity of game files

It may be the case that your game files may be corrupted or may have some missing game files. Because of this, your Steam client might not be working properly. Your library files can also be in the incorrect configuration which may lead to a bugged Steam overlay.

  1. Open your Steam client and click Library present on the top. Here all your installed games will be listed. Select the game in which Steam overlay fails to open.
  2. Right-click on the game which is giving you the error and select Properties.
  3. Once in the properties, browse to the Local Files tab and click on the option which says Verify Integrity of Game Files. Steam will then start verifying all the files present according to the main manifest it has. If there is any file missing/corrupted, it will download that files again and replace it accordingly.

  1. Now navigate to your Settings by pressing the Settings option after clicking Steam present in the bottom left corner of the screen. Once in the Settings, open the Downloads tab present at the left side of the interface.
  2. Here you will see a box in which it is written “Steam Library Folders”. Click it

  1. All your steam content information will be listed. Right-click on it and select “Repair Library Files”.

  1. Restart Steam and check if the client starts working normally.

Final solution: Refreshing game files

Now there is nothing left except to reinstall Steam and see if that does the trick. When we refresh your Steam files, we will preserve your downloaded games so you won’t have to download them again. Furthermore, your user data will also be preserved. What refreshing Steam files actually do is delete all the configuration files of the Steam client and then forces it to install them again. So if there were any bad files/corrupt files, they will get replaced accordingly. Do note that after this method, you would need to log in again using your credentials. Don’t follow this solution if you don’t have that information at hand.

You can follow how to refresh/reinstall your Steam files through this guide.

Note: If you are having a connection error where your entire Steam client refuses to connect to the internet, refer to this guide.

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Fix: Steam client running slow

If the issue is with your Computer or a Laptop you should try using Reimage Plus 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 Reimage by clicking the Download button below.

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