[Full Repair Guide] Solving the Steam Disk Write Error

[Full Repair Guide] Solving the Steam Disk Write Error

/ James Masterson

What Causes Steam Disk Write Error?

Steam Disk Write Error is a common problem faced by Steam users. This error occurs when Steam cannot save files to the designated location on the user’s hard drive.

The error message usually states that “An error occurred while updating [game name] (disk write error).” The causes of Steam Disk Write Error may include:

  • Insufficient Disk Space: If your hard drive runs out of space, Steam may be unable to write files. This is a common issue for users with many games installed on their computers, as the games take up a significant amount of space on the hard drive.
  • Corrupted Game Files: If the game files are corrupted, Steam may be unable to update or save the game. This can happen for various reasons, such as a power outage during an update, a virus attack, or a problem with the game’s installation files.
  • Permission Issues: Steam may not have permission to write files to the designated location on your hard drive. This can happen if you have restricted access to certain areas of your hard drive or your computer’s security settings are high.

14 Easy Ways to Fix Steam Disk Write Error

There are several methods to fix this error, listed below:

Restart Steam

Close Steam and then restart it. Sometimes, Steam may encounter a temporary issue that can be resolved by restarting the program. This is an easy method to try and may work for you. Follow the steps below to restart Steam:

Step 1: Launch the Steam app or open it via Taskbar

Step 2: On the upper right column, click Steam; a dropdown menu will show

Step 3: Click Exit

Step 4: Pay attention to any additional pop-up instructions or notifications and acknowledge them

Step 5: Once you’ve exited from Steam, relaunch the app

exit steam

Restart your PC

If shutting down and relaunching Steam does not solve the problem, restarting the computer may resolve it by ending any running processes that could be causing conflicts with Steam. Do the steps below to restart your PC:

Step 1: Click the Start button or press the Windows key on your keyboard to open the Start menu.

Step 2: Click on the Power button located in the bottom left corner of the Start menu >> Click on Restart.

Step 3: Wait for your PC to shut down and restart.

Alternatively, you can press the Ctrl + Alt + Delete keys on your keyboard and then click on the power icon in the bottom right corner and click on restart.

restart computer

Remove Write Protection From the Drive

Remove Read-Only Attribute

Write protection prevents a computer from making changes or adding files to a specific folder or storage device. If the Steam folder has been set as read-only, then the whole directory is protected from modification. To fix this, go to the properties of the Steam folder and ensure the read-only option is not selected. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Right-click on the Steam folder located in its directory >> Select Properties

steam folder properties

Step 2: On the General tab >> Click Attributes

Step 3: Make sure the Read-only attribute is unchecked

uncheck read only steam

Step 4: Click OK to save all changes

Run Steam as an Administrator

Right-click on the Steam icon and select “Run as administrator.” This will give Steam the necessary permissions to write files to your hard drive. To do this, here are your steps:

Step 1: Locate the app shortcut on your desktop

Step 2: Right-click on the shortcut >> select Properties from the dropdown

Step 3: In the Properties window, go to the Compatibility tab

Step 4: Under Settings, check the box labeled Run this program as an administrator

run program as administrator

Step 5: Click Apply to save the changes >> Select OK to close the window

Delete Corrupted Files

If Steam encounters an error while downloading a game, it may result in creating a damaged file that leads to a Steam disk write error. To resolve this, follow these steps:

Step 1: Navigate to the main Steam folder >> open the steamapps

Step 2: Look for a file with the same name as the game you are trying to play but with a file size of 0KB

Step 3: Delete it and try downloading or relaunching the game.

delete steamapps folder

Check the Integrity of Game Files

Go to the game’s properties in your Steam library, navigate the Local Files tab, and select Verify Integrity of Game Files. This will check all the game’s files for any issues and download any missing or corrupted files.

verify game integrity

Clear the Download Cache

This will remove any temporary files Steam may have stored on your hard drive. This can help free up space on your hard drive and fix any issues that may have arisen due to corrupted files. Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Go to Steam >> Settings >> Downloads

Step 2: Hover to Clear Download Cache >> Click OK.

clear steam download cache

Move the Game to Another Location on Your Hard Drive

Users may choose to move Steam games to another drive for various reasons. Still, two of the most common are: [1] The storage capacity of the drive on which Steam is installed is insufficient, causing a shortage of free space; and [2] to improve game performance, users may opt to transfer their Steam games to a Solid State Drive (SSD), which offers faster loading times and enhanced overall speed. To move the game to another location, follow these steps:

Step 1: Right-click the chosen game in the Steam library >> Select Properties

Step 2: Navigate to the Local Files tab >> Click Move Install Folder

move install folder steam
confirm move content steam

This will change the location of the game’s files on your hard drive, which can help to resolve any issues with permissions or disk space.

Check the Drive for Errors

Sometimes, this procedure can detect faulty areas on the hard drive and instruct the operating system to bypass them in the future. If the issue persists or deteriorates, it may be necessary to substitute the hard drive. To check your drive for errors, follow these steps:

Step 1: Click the Start button and open My Computer >> Right-click on the drive you wish to check

Step 2: Select Properties >> Tools

Step 3: Under Error Checking, click the Check button.

check drive

If you would like to complete a check of the hard drive for errors, select both options in the pop-up check disk window that appears, then click the Start button to initiate the process.If the drive has open files, a message stating that Windows can’t check the disk while in use may appear. In this case, click the Schedule disk check button. The computer will reboot and check the disk before Windows boots up.

Disable the Firewall

If turning off the firewall temporarily resolves the issue, adding an exception to the Windows firewall is recommended. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Search Control Panel and navigate System and Security >> Windows Defender Firewall.

select the windows defender firewall

Step 2: Select the option Turn Windows Defender Firewall on or off

windows defender firewall options

Step 3: In the new window, turn off Windows Firewall (not recommended) for private and public networks.

disable firewall options

Step 4: Click OK to save the changes. Please note this is not recommended, as it will leave you

r computer vulnerable to security threats.

Run the Steam Client in Offline Mode

Offline Mode is a feature of Steam that enables users to play games without an active internet connection. In Offline Mode, Steam does not need to reconnect to the Steam Network each time you launch a game, allowing for a seamless offline gaming experience. This can also help to resolve any issues with your internet connection that may be causing the error. To do this,

Step 1: Go to Steam >> Go Offline

steam go offline

Reinstall Steam

If none of the above methods work, uninstalling and reinstalling Steam may fix the issue. This will remove all the files associated with Steam from your hard drive and give you a fresh program installation.

To uninstall Steam,

Step 1: On Windows, go to Settings >> Apps

Step 2: On the Apps & features >> Select Steam and click Uninstall

uninstall steam

To reinstall Steam,

Step 1: Go to https://store.steampowered.com/ >> Click Install Steam

download and install steam

Step 2: This will prompt you to download the SteamSetup.exe or steam.dmg

Step 3: Once the download is finished, click on the file to launch the Steam Setup app >> Hit NextStep 4: After the application gets installed fully, click Finish

steam installation screen

Contact Steam for Help

The Steam technical support team can assist you in finding solutions to your specific issue; they can guide you through the process. Additionally, you can seek help from the Steam Community forum.

Resolve Steam Disk Write Error and Enjoy Gaming Again

In conclusion, Steam Disk Write Error is a common problem that Steam users face. It’s important to note that the solution to the Steam Disk Write Error may vary depending on the specific cause of the error. The above methods are general solutions that have worked for many users, and following them allows you to quickly fix Steam Disk Write Errors and enjoy a smooth gaming experience.

Frequently Asked Questions About Steam Disk Write Error

What Is a Disk Write Error on Steam?

A disk writes error on Steam indicates that the game files cannot be written to your hard drive. This can occur if the game installation folder or its contents have become corrupted or your hard drive is having difficulty writing data. This common and severe issue can prevent you from playing games on Steam.

How Do I Launch Steam Without a Disk Write Error?

Ensure you have the latest version of Steam installed on your computer. Check the official website for updates or run the game’s automatic update tool. This can often resolve Steam disk write errors if you ensure you’re up-to-date. If the issue persists, try scanning your computer’s hard drive for corrupt or missing files. If it finds anything, try to repair or replace the file.

What Are Steam Library Folders?

Steam Library Folders are a way to organize your Steam games. The folders can store and sort your titles by genre, platform, publisher, or other criteria. You can even create custom labels for the folders. This makes it easier to find specific games quickly and easily, so you don’t have to scroll through your entire library whenever you want to play something.

Why Can’t I Access Program Files on Steam?

The cause of this issue is usually related to a lack of permission in the Program Files folder. Every user account on Windows has its permissions, meaning that one user may have full access to a file or folder while another may not. Steam uses administrative privileges to install games, meaning it needs full access to the Program Files folder.

James Masterson
Meet the author

James is a software engineer and an information architect with a keen eye for detail. Among his key interests are enhancing the usability of our Windows 10 content, troubleshooting errors, and tech news.