How to Fix the Steam Corrupt Disk Error on Windows?

The Corrupt Disk error in Steam usually occurs when users are trying to download the game they have just purchased or to update a game already installed on their computers. It often appears if something interrupts the downloading process such as a BSOD or a power outage but it can often simply appear out of nowhere.

Steam Corrupt Disk Error

Steam games can’t be played unless all updates are installed, which makes this problem quite serious. However, you should be relieved to hear that the problem can be resolved by many different methods listed below. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully.

What Causes the Steam Corrupt Disk Error on Windows?

There are several things which might have gone wrong and caused this problem to appear. We have chosen the most common ones among users to help you find out about your scenario and the best way to resolve the problem. Check out the list below:

  • Corrupt download files – If your downloading process was interrupted by a BSOD, a power outage, or something similar, it’s quite possible that the file being downloaded went corrupt. In that case, it’s good to reset the files being downloaded and start again.
  • Hard drive problems – It’s quite possible that your hard drive has run into problems and you should check for errors using the built-in error-checking tool.
  • The hard drive is being turned on – There is an option to turn off the hard drive after some time of inactivity to save power and it’s possible that this caused the problem. Make sure you disable this setting.

Solution 1: Rename the Downloading Folder

This problem often occurs if a file being downloaded becomes corrupted all of a sudden due to various reasons such as system crashes or random computer shutdowns. If that is the case, the download can’t proceed beyond the corrupted file and the Corrupt Disk error message appears. Follow the steps below to restart all downloads by renaming the “downloading” folder.

  1. Navigate to your Steam installation folder. If you haven’t configured any changes during the process of installation regarding the required installation folder, it should be Local Disk >> Program Files or Local Disk >> Program Files (x86).
  2. However, if you have the Steam program’s shortcut on the desktop, you can simply right-click on it and choose the Open file location option from the context menu which will appear.
Opening Steam.exe’s location
  1. Locate the steamapps folder in the main folder, open it, and locate the downloading folder inside. Right-click on it and choose the Rename option from the context menu which will appear. Change the folder’s name to something like old.
Renaming the “downloading” folder
  1. Reopen Steam and you should see that all downloads have been reset. Check to see if the problem still appears when trying to download or update the have which was giving you problems!

Solution 2: Clear Download Cache

The second method is similar to the first one but this one looks to clear download files which are no longer necessary and which won’t interrupt the downloading process. It’s not as effective as the first method but it has also helped plenty of users.

  1. Make sure you start the Steam client by double-clicking it on the Desktop or by searching for it with your Start menu open and clicking on the first result.
  2. Click the Steam option from the menu at the top of the client’s screen and choose Settings. In the Settings window make sure you navigate to the Downloads tab and check the bottom of the window for the Clear Download Cache.
Clearing the Steam’s download cache
  1. A new window should open prompting you to confirm your choice and all unnecessary download files should now be deleted.
  2. Click the Steam option at the top left part of the Steam client and choose Exit to exit Steam completely (don’t just click the x button at the top right corner). Reopen Steam, relaunch the download, and check to see if the Corrupt Disk error appears.

Solution 3: Run the Error Checking Utility

Running the Error Checking utility for the drive where your game is installed does wonders for this error message as it manages to fix file errors and resolve drive issues when it comes to file management. Resolving these errors for the drive where the game is located should resolve your problem immediately.

  1. Open your Libraries entry on your PC or open any folder on your computer and click on This PC option from the left side menu. If you are using an older version of Windows (Windows 7 and older), simply open My Computer from your Desktop.
  2. Right-click on the drive where your game is installed and choose the Properties option from the context menu which will appear.
Running the Error checking tool on the game’s drive
  1. Navigate to the Tools tab in the Properties window and click the Check button under the Error-checking Follow the instructions which will appear on-screen and the process shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. Check to see if the problem still appears.

Solution 4: Change Power Settings

The problem may be caused by hard disk problems when the HDD is turned off at the wrong moment, just enough to corrupt the file being downloaded. This causes the Corrupt Disk error and it prevents the file from downloading further. Try disabling the option to turn off the hard drive to save power in Power Options!

  1. Right-click on the battery icon located in the system tray and click on Power Options. If you are not using Windows 10, click on the Start menu and search for Control Panel. Change the View by option to Large icons and click on the Power Options.
Power Options in Control P
  1. Choose the power plan you are currently using (usually Balanced or Power saver) and click on the Change plan settings In the new window which opens, click on Change advanced power settings.
  2. In this window, click the small plus button next to the Hard disk entry on the list to expand it. Do the same for the Turn off hard disk after Change the Setting option to Never by clicking on it.
Disable hard disk turning off
  1. Do the same for all active battery plans since your computer will sometimes switch between them automatically. Check to see if the Corrupt Disk error still appears on your computer.

Solution 5: Reinstall Steam

Reinstalling Steam is one of the least popular methods and there is a reason why it’s placed so low on our list. The method has solved the problem for so many users but it should be a last resort as there are plenty of simpler methods you should try out before doing this.

  1. Make sure you backup every library folder you wish to preserve on your computer and take note of their proper locations so that you can add them back once Steam is reinstalled.
  2. Click on the Start menu and open Control Panel by searching for it. Alternatively, you can click the cog icon to open Settings if you are using Windows 10.
  3. In Control Panel, select 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 app, clicking on Apps should immediately open a list of all installed programs on your PC.
  2. Locate the Steam entry on the list and click on it once. Click on the Uninstall button above the list and confirm any dialog boxes which may appear. Follow the instructions on-screen to uninstall Steam and restart your computer afterward.
Uninstalling Steam in Control Panel
  1. Redownload the Steam client by navigating to this link and run the downloaded executable on your computer by locating it in the Downloads folder and double-clicking on it. Follow the instructions on the screen to install Steam again and check to see if the same problem appears on your computer again!

Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.