Disk Write Error Steam

Have you been facing the disk write error when you try to install or update any game that you bought on Steam? If yes, then no need to panic because it is a common problem and can be fixed easily.

The Steam displays “An error occurred while updating/installing [game name] (disk write error)” when it is not able to save data on your computer’s hard drive.

Steam will also display this error if you try to open a game that requires an update.

Now, that we have known why Steam shows this error let us see different methods through which we can fix this error.


Introduction to Steam:

Steam is a digital video game platform where you can buy and play games that you like. But note that the games bought on Steam cannot be played outside Steam.

Steam was initially launched in September 2003 by Valve as a standalone software client as a way to provide automatic updates for their games because the Patch method of providing an update to a game resulted in a decrease in the daily online users for Valve.

Another reason why Valve decided to build Steam is to counter the game’s piracy and cheating in the game. However, later Valve upgraded Steam and started to include games from Third-party publishers.

The steam store has more than 37000 free as well as paid games for its users to play. It is one of the largest digital distribution platforms for gaming PC.

The Steam client application is available for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS operating systems.

In 2017, Steam sold approximately 18% of the global PC games sold that year and made a whopping revenue of $4.3 billion.

Steam also contributed to education by introducing a function-limited version of itself known as Steam for Schools. It was released support to Valve’s initiative of gamification of learning.

There are more than 90 million monthly active users that play games on the Steam client.

Recently, Valve introduced a beta version of Steam cloud play that allows users to enjoy the cloud gaming service on Steam client.

With all the updates and features comes the errors and the bugs. Some of the common errors that all Steam users face are steam error code – 118, Steam disk write error, etc.

Hopefully, there are easy solutions to these errors and can be eliminated in a few simple steps


What are the causes of Steam disk write Error?

As we all know that Steam displays a disk write error when it fails to write or save a game file on the computer. But what makes Steam display this error.

Here are the possible reasons that can cause Steam to display the error:

  1. The drive on which the Steam is installed or the Steam folder is write-protected.
  2. The antivirus or firewall on your computer is blocking Steam from saving the data on the computer.
  3. There are corrupted or outdated files in the Steam directory.
  4. There is some problem with your computer’s hard drive.


How to fix Steam disk write error:

Here is the list of methods that you can try to fix the disk write error on Steam:

  • Restart your computer and the Steam client application
  • Run as Administrator
  • Remove write protection from the drive.
  • Delete corrupted files
  • Delete the 0KB File
  • Clear the Steam download cache.
  • Move Steam to a different drive.
  • Check the drive for errors.
  • Disable the antivirus software
  • Repair library folder
  • Change Download region
  • Verify the Integrity of Steam game files
  • Contact Steam for help

Let us see all the methods in detail


Restart the computer and Steam Client application:

Restarting the computer is the simplest thing that you can try to solve this error. It is not a must-do method but sometimes the apps misbehave and are fixed by just restarting the system.

Before restarting your computer try fully closing the Steam client application by clicking on End Task from the Task Manager if it is running in the background. And restart the application again if the problem is solved well and good otherwise, try restarting the whole computer.

Run as Administrator:

Running Steam as Administrator solves the disk write error for man users. To run Steam as Administrator follow the below steps:

1: Go to the location where the Steam files are located i.e. C:/program files(x86)/Steam or press the key combination Windows + R on your keyboard and type %program files(x86)% and hit enter. Right-click on the Steam client application and go to properties.

2: In properties go to the compatibility tab and tick the check box that says “Run this program as Administrator” then click on apply and after that click on OK

3: Now run the Steam application again and this time Steam must not show the error.

4: Note that If you have saved the Steam client shortcut on the desktop then you don’t need to go to the program files folder just right-click on the app icon and click on Run as Administrator to run Steam as Administrator.

Steps to run as administrator

Remove the write protection from the drive:

If the drive is write-protected then it will be restricted from adding or altering any folder on the entire drive. So, if the Steam folder is located on this drive then Steam will not be able to update or install any update.

So it is better to remove the write protection from that drive. If disk writes protection is the problem in your case then follow the below steps to remove write protection from your hard drive.

Note that you need administrative rights to do this trick.

step1: Press the key combination Windows + R and type cmd and hit enter. Or go to search >>type cmd and hit enter to open the command prompt.

step2: Now type the following commands in their respective order:

  1. Open the command prompt >>type disk part and hit Enter.
  2. Diskpart window will appear. In that type list disk and hit Enter. It will display all the disks on your computer.
  3. Select the disk on which the Steam is installed by typing select disk (disk_number) and hit Enter.
  4. Now type attributes disk clear read-only and hit enter.
  5. Lastly, restart your computer and open the steam application and see if the disk write error is gone.

If the error persists then try deleting the corrupted files:


Delete corrupted files in the logs folder:

Another fix to the Steam disk writes error is deleting the corrupted files in the log. Follow the below steps to delete them:

1} Open your file explorer and go to program files(x86) >>Steam >>logs >>content_log or just copy the path C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\logs. In the logs, folder search for file content_log and double click on the file to open it.

2} After you open the content_log file scroll down to the bottom of the file and look for the “failed to write” error. You will find the file mane and the path of the file in front of the error.

3} Follow the path and delete the corrupted file. After that open, the Steam application and again try to update or download the game and see if it still displays the disk write error.


Delete the 0 kb files:

0 kb files can also be the reason for Steam to display the disk write error. I’m saying this because many users claim that they solved the Steam disk write error by deleting all the 0 kb files from the Steam folder. To delete the files:

1. Go to Windows C then >>Program Files(x86) in that search for >>Steam folder then >>steamapps and lastly >>common

2. Now delete the files inside the common folder that are 0 kb in size.

3. Relaunch the Steam application and see if the error has disappeared

If the error persists then you must try clearing the Steam download cache to solve the error.


Clear the Steam download cache:

A corrupted Steam download cache can cause Steam to display the disk write error when you try to update or install anything. To clear the Steam download cache follow the below steps:

You can delete the Steam download cache using two methods:

Delete download cache from the Steam application:

Open the Steam application and go to Settings > then Downloads > and then click on Clear Download cache. In this way, you can clear the download cache from the Steam app

Delete download cache using the Run prompt:

Press the key combination Windows + R and type “Steam://flushconfig” in the Run prompt and hit Enter.

After then restart the computer and after the system, bools launch the Steam application and try to update the game and check if the Steam is still showing the error


Move Steam to a different drive:

If all the above methods don’t work out try changing the Library folder or moving the already installed games to a new location. Moving the Steam game folder helped resolve disk write errors for many users.

Change the Steam Library folder:

After you change the library folder Steam will install the new games to that location. To create a Steam library folder on a new drive follow the below steps:

1} Open the Steam client application and click on Steam on the top and then click on Settings.

2} Click on the Downloads option and in that click on Steam Library Folders.

3} After that click on Add Library Folder and select the new drive location for your Library Folder.

4} Now enter a name for the folder and click on OK

5} This will create a new Steam Library folder at a new location for Steam to install games

Move installed Steam games to a new drive:

After you create a new Steam Library folder to a new drive you can start moving the games that are already installed on the previous Library folder. Note that you can move only one game at a time. Here are the steps to do it:

1} Open the Steam application and go to the Library menu and click on the Games option.

2} Right-click on the game that you want to move and click on the properties option in the last.

3} A window will pop-up, go to the Local files tab on the top

4} In that click on Move Install Folderselect the location where you want to move i.e. the new Library folder, and click on Move Folder 

5} Repeat the same process for all the games to move them to a new drive location.


Check drive for Errors:

If moving the Library folder to a new drive does not fix the disk write error then there is some problem with the hard drive on your computer.

You can check for error using the Windows default tool, however, if you are not so good at it you can use the third-party tools for eg: Partition Wizard to ease the process.

Let us see how to use partition wizard to check for error in our computers hard drive

1} Download and install the partition Wizard application and launch it to the main page.

2} Now tap on the drive in which the Steam is installed and click on the check file system on the side taskbar.

3} Check File System window will pop-up, in that select Check & fix detected errors and click on the Start button

4} Wait for some time till it finds the error. If found it will try all the possible ways to fix it.


Disable the Antivirus software to Fix Steam disk write error:

Sometimes, the Antivirus installed on an individual’s computer identifies some programs as threats even though they are legit programs.

There may be a possibility that the antivirus installed on your system is identifying Steam as a threat and blocks it from saving games on the hard drive leading to the disk write error.

Also, some games use copy protection technology to restrict the users from copying the data which may appear as malicious software to the Antivirus.

Temporarily disable the Antivirus >>run the Steam application and try to update the game. If the disk write error is solved by disabling the Antivirus that means the Antivirus was restricting Steam from writing over the drive.

So go to your antivirus and make an exception for the Steam application.


Repair the Library Folder in Steam:

The Library folder in Steam is the folder that contains all the games that you downloaded on Steam. But sometimes the games won’t update and show the disk write error when you try to update it because the user permission of the Library folder was changed.

To repair the Library folder Open the Steam application and then tap on Steam >>then Settings >>Downloads >>after that Steam Library Folders >>Lastly right-click on the Steam Library folder and click on Repair folder.


Change Download region on Steam:

Steam can also show the disk write error when you try to download the game if the server from your region is slow or heavily crowded.

Steam automatically appoints you the nearest server based on your region. However, you can change the region if the servers the overcrowded or slow.

Do change the download region on Steam follow the below steps:

1} Launch the Steam application and click on Steam on the top and go to Settings.

2} Settings window will appear. In that, go to Download region. Click on the drop-down arrow in front of the Download region and click on the next nearest region.

3} Try downloading the game again if it still shows the error try another region.


Verify the integrity of the Steam game files:

Sometimes the game files can get corrupted due to software crashes, hardware problems, or the game files may get deleted mistakenly by the Antivirus due to which the Steam displays disk write error.

So you can fix this issue by verifying the integrity of the game files. Here are the steps to verify the integrity of the game files:

1} Open Steam and click on the Library tab on the top and go to games.

2} Right-click on the game that shows disk write error when you try to update it and go to properties 

3} Click on Local files on the top menu and then click on Verify Integrity of Game Files… 

4} Wait till Steam verifies the files. After the verifying process is complete close the Steam application and relaunch it.

5} Again try updating the files and check if the error persists.


Contact Steam for help:

If the disk write error persists even after try all the above methods to fix it then you must contact Steam support.

The Steam technical team support can guide you through all the other possible solutions for the disk write error.

You can talk with the real person on the Steam community forum to get the solutions for the error



In this above article, we have successfully covered all the possible methods to fix the Steam Disk Write Error. If you are facing the same error while you open Steam then read the above article for possible fixes. Also, mention the method that helped you solve the error in the comment box

Happy Gaming!!!


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