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For many steam game users, it is not uncommon to come across a “Disk Write Error” while updating or installing the game. Many users have encountered this error and have found solutions.

Fortunately, you can fix it quickly using the solutions described below. 

Before we go through the solutions, we are going to explore some of the basic understandings regarding the Steam Disk Write Error.

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What Is The Steam Disk Write Error?

You are likely to experience this error when updating or installing a Steam game such as Dota 2, Fallout 4, or Team Fortress. 

Steam is a platform that offers video games to its users. Users can download, update, install, and play several games.

You will also have access to extra features on the platform, like communicating with fellow gamers using voice chat. You can play the Steam games from your Linux, OS X, iOS, and Windows systems.

However, only Windows systems experience the Steam Disk Write Error.

What Causes The Steam Disk Write Error?

The Steam Disk Write Error is caused by various reasons. The causes of the error are dependent on the system you are running and the types of games you have installed.

Nonetheless, the following are some of the most common causes of the problem:

  • Device is running out of storage space.
  • Internet connection times out.
  • Drivers are corrupt.
  • Computer system is infected by malware.
  • Device is write -protected. 

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How to Fix the Steam Disk Write Error

Steam support provides some basic troubleshooting mechanisms for Steam Disk Write Error. They include:

  1. Restart Your Computer and Network Hardware

This is the very basic solution that you can apply to sort out the issue. First, restart your computer and check whether the error is fixed.

If the error is still there, check whether your computer is connected to the internet. If your computer is connected to the internet and you are still experiencing the error, restart your network hardware.

When restarting the hardware that is connecting you to the internet, don’t use the restart or reset buttons. Using these buttons could lead to a factory reset process. 

The best way to restart your router or modem is to unplug it. Wait for one minute, then plug it back in. 

If a poor connection was the cause of the error, this method might fix it. But, if the error persists, try the next solution. 

  1. Clear Download Cache

Another simple solution offered by Steam’s support is to clear your download cache. Follow the procedure below:

  • Open Settings panel from your Steam client by choosing Steam> Settings from the menu at the top left corner.
  • Select the Downloads panel from the Settings panel. 
  • At the bottom of the panel, you will see the Clear Download Cache button. Click on it.
  • Next, click on the OK button to confirm that you will have to log in to Steam once more. 

Check whether the problem is sorted. If not, move on to the next solution.

  1. Change Steam Installation Path

The drive in which the Steam installation is located could be causing the error. As a result, Steam Support suggests that you should move the installation to another location.

By default, games are installed in the following location in your computer:

C:\Program Files \ Steam (x86) \ SteamApps \ Common

However, you can create an alternate location on any drive. You can select this location in the future when installing games.

Use this procedure to change Steam’s installation path:

  • Go to your Steam client Settings menu. 
  • From the Downloads tab, choose Steam Library Folders
  • Here, you can see your default installation path. You can also create a new path by choosing the Add Library Folder
  • After you have created this new path, all installations in the future can be done here. 
  1. Move Your Existing Steam Installation

You can also sort out the Steam Disk Write Error by moving your installation. Before you perform this procedure, you should:

  • Make sure you have your Steam login credentials.
  • Ensure that you link your Steam account to your email address to be able to reset your password, if necessary.
  • Avoid installing Steam in an external hard drive as you might experience performance issues. 
  • Create a backup of the SteamApps folder.

Once you have taken the points mentioned above into consideration, you can now proceed to move your existing installation:

  • First, close the Steam client application.
  • Then, navigate to the Steam installation folder for the Steam installation you want to move. The default location is C:\Program Files\Steam. Delete all the files and folders apart from the SteamApps and Userdata folders and the Steam.exe file. 
  • Cut the whole Steam folder and paste it in the new location. For instance E:\Games\Steam
  • Launch Steam and log into your account. 
  • Steam should be able to update successfully.

Apart from the simple solutions suggested by Steam Support, you can also use the other solutions outlined below. 

  1. Verify the Integrity of Steam Game Files

If you continue encountering problems with a particular game, verify the integrity of the Steam games files. 

Follow these steps:

  • Restart your computer system and then open Steam
  • From here, select the LIBRASY tab.
  • Under the LIBRASY tab, find the game that sends the disk errors and right-click on it. 
  • Select Properties from the context menu.
  • Then, move to the LOCAL FILES tab. 
  • Here, look for VERIFY INTEGRITY OF GAME FILES button and click on it.
  • Steam may take a few minutes to verify the game files. It is important to note that some files may fail to verify but, it is normal for most Steam games. 
  • Once all the files are validated successfully, try installing the updates once again. Check whether the disk error is removed.
  1. Clear Disk Write Protection

If the game is located in a write-protected disk, you cannot modify it. This is another common cause of the Steam disk write error.

You can use the disk part command to clear the write protection and fix the problem. 

Follow these steps to remove disk write protection:

  • Launch the administrative Command Prompt. Type Command Prompt in the search bar located at your Task Bar. Select Command Prompt to launch. 
  • Type the following commands in the Command Prompt and press Enter after each.
  • (Enter)
  • disk (Enter)
  • disk # (Enter) (# represents the number of the hard drive generating the disk error)
  • disk clear read only (Enter)
  • Exit command prompt and check whether the error has been fixed.
  1. Update Your Drivers

You might encounter the Steam Disk Write Error if the device drivers you are using are wrong or outdated. It would be best if you updated your device drivers and check whether it fixes the error.

There are several ways you can use to update your drivers. In this case, you are provided with a guide on how to do it using your device manager. 

To update your device drivers, follow these steps:

  • Press the Windows button on your keyboard. Type Device Manager on the Search Bar. Click the first result to open the tool.
  • Look for the branch with the hardware you want to update. 
  • Right-click the hardware and choose the Update driver alternative from the context menu.
  • Then, click the Search automatically for driver software option.
  • From here, the Device Manager will download and install the package automatically.
  • Run Steam as Administrator

Running Steam as an administrator could be another simple fix to your problem. Follow these steps to run Steam as administrator:

  • Navigate to the location where your copy of Steam is installed. Normally the default location is C:\\Progam Files (x86)\\Steam.
  • Look for the steam.exe file. Right-click it and choose Properties from the context menu. 
  • From the Steam Properties window, move to the Compatibility tab. 
  • Here, go to the Settings section and check the box next to Run this program as administrator
  • Now you can restart Steam to check whether the problem is sorted out. 
  1. Delete the 0 KB File

The 0 KB can also cause the Steam Disk Write Error. Therefore, confirm it is located on your computer and delete it.

Here is the procedure you should follow to delete the 0 KB file:

  • Press Windows + R keys from your keyboard. 
  • Then, on the Run dialog box copy and paste %ProgramFiles(x86)% and then press Enter
  • Navigate this path by double-clicking on each of the folders; Steam>sitemapps>common.
  • Next, scroll to the bottom of the Common folder. If you find a file that is 0KB in size, delete it.

Once you are done deleting the 0KB file, try downloading or updating once again and check whether the error is still there. 

  1. Set Steam Folder Security to Full Control

In some cases, the Steam Disk Write Error will happen because you don’t have the rights to run Steam.

To have full control, follow this procedure:

  • Close the Steam application completely. 
  • Press Window + R on your keyboard to launch the Run dialog box.
  • On the dialog box, copy %ProgramFiles(x86)% and paste it in the textbox. Click OK.
  • From the Program Files (x86) window, locate the Steam folder and right-click on it.
  • Then, select Properties from the context menu. 
  • Uncheck the box next to Read-only. This action will only affect files in the Steam folder. 
  • Next, move to the Security tab and click the Edit button.
  • In the Group or user names section, click your user account and check the box next to Allow Full control
  • Click Apply then OK buttons. 
  • Press the Windows key on your keyboard and type Steam
  • Right-click on Steam from the search results and select Run as administrator from the context menu. 
  • The steam disk write error should be sorted out.
  1. Disable Your Antivirus Program

Your antivirus program could also prompt the Steam Disk Write Error. To find out whether that is the cause of your current Steam Disk Write Error, disable the antivirus program momentarily.

If you disable your antivirus and the error persists, you should continue troubleshooting. However, immediately restore your antivirus program so not to leave your computer exposed to attacks from malicious programs.

In some cases, it might be necessary for you to add exceptions for Steam into your antivirus configuration. 

  1. Delete Corrupted Files in Log

The Steam Disk Write Error can be triggered by corrupt files in the Steam log. To resolve such an issue, check if there are any corrupt files and delete them.

To delete these corrupt files, follow these steps:

  • Press Windows + R keys on your keyboard. 
  • Copy %ProgramFiles(86)% and paste it into the Run dialog box and then click OK.
  • Go to logs by double-clicking on Steam>logs>content_log.
  • Navigate to the bottom of the content_log file and check whether there is a failed to write error
  • If there is, follow the name and path of the error and delete the corrupted file. If not, then close the windows.
  • You can now download/update and see if the steam disk write error is still there.
  1. Check Your Firewall 

Some firewalls might stop Steam from communicating with the servers. You can check your firewall by engaging the help of a tech expert if you cannot check it yourself. 

As per the result of the troubleshooting, it would be best if you added exceptions in your firewalls for Steam.

Last Word

With the solutions mentioned above, you are now well equipped to deal with the Steam Disk Write Error. In case you encounter the error, begin with the more straightforward solutions.

In the unlikely event that they don’t work, try the more complex solutions. It is also important to note that, before you begin following any procedure, read through them first.

This first reading will help you to gauge your capability to undertake the task at hand. If you find that the instructions are above your tech capability, please seek the help of a more knowledgeable person.

Sometimes, trying to navigate something you don’t understand can make the situation even worse. Otherwise, most of the solutions stated in this article should be done comfortably by users with very basic computer knowledge.