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For gamers who love speed, nothing’s worse than when Steam takes too long to open! It’s not only time-consuming but ruins the mood.

There’s no one solution to make Steam faster, but there are a few fixes that you can try if Steam takes too long to open. For each person, a different solution works according to the reason behind the issue. Try all solutions discussed in the list, until you find one that works for you.

In this article, we will discuss the reasons why Steam takes too long to open and all fixes to resolve the issue.

Reasons Why Steam Takes Too Long to Open on My Computer?

For different users, Steam takes too long to open for various reasons. After analyzing diverse user feedbacks, we concluded the following reasons why Steam takes too long to open.

  • Administrative privileges: Steam requires permissions to read and write on system directories. That requires administrative privileges. When Steam is not running as an administrator, its launch gets delayed and Steam takes too long to open.
  • Compatibility mode: sometimes, Steam takes too long to open when the application is not compatible with the operating system. It’s an easy fix, and we’ll be discussing it below.
  • Cookies and cache: cache and cookies are often slowing down various processes. In Steam’s case, if the browser cache and cookies are corrupted, it will take Steam too long to open. It’s easily generated at startup, so don’t worry about losing data.
  • Background applications: some applications are known to not work well with Steam. Also, if too many background apps are running, it can slow down the computer and in extension, Steam.
  • Third-party antivirus: Steam takes forever to open when third-party antivirus software is interrupting. Uninstall or disable the application for a smoother ride.
  • Family sharing feature: if you have the family sharing feature enabled, then Steam will take too long to open. It needs to verify additional details, which slows down the process.
  • Proxy settings: in trying to mask your location, proxy slows the processes. If you have the proxy enable, then it’s why Steam takes too long to open. Disable the proxy settings to make Steam faster.

Fix 1: Clear Steam Browser Cache and Cookies

Steam has its own browser integrated within the Client. The browser is used to open and view web pages (when you click on a link) or display advertisements.

The major cause when Steam takes too long to open is when there’s too much data in the browser cache and cookies. It means that there’s too little space left, which is leading to an unexpected behavior like running slowly. You can delete the Steam browser cache and cookies to resolve the Steam takes too long to open issue.

To clear Steam browser cache and cookies:

  1. Right-click on the Steam shortcut, and select run Steam as administr
    ator.
  2. In the Steam Client window, click Steam from the navbar at the top-left corner, and select Settings from the menu.
  3. Navigate to the Web Browser tab in the left panel and open it.
  4. In the Web Browser tab, click Delete Web Browser Cache and Delete Web Browser Cookies buttons one by one.
  5. Confirm deleting web browser cache and cookies in the following prompt, and press OK to proceed.
  6. After clearing cache and cookies, press Ok to save changes and exit Steam.

Open the Task Manager to end Steam tasks, and restart the Steam Client. If this fix doesn’t work, then try clearing the download cache.


Fix 2: Clear Download Cache

If there’s one thing common in all gamers, it’s curiosity. They love to explore new games and are always downloading them. Excessive download data in Steam can also cause the Steam Client to lag.

When you download something on Steam, it accumulates the Download cache. To make Steam run faster, clear the Steam download cache and see it resolves your issue.

To clear the download cache:

  1. Right-click on the Steam Client shortcut, and select Run as administrator.
  2. In the application window, locate the Steam dropdown at the top-left corner, and select Settings from the menu.
  3. In the Settings window, open the Downloads tab from the left panel.
  4. In the Downloads tab, scroll down and click on Clear Download Cache at the bottom of the window.

Confirm your settings and wait for the process to complete. Once it’s done, save settings and exit Steam. End all Steam processes in the Task Manager and restart Steam to see if it’s running properly.


Fix 3: Enable Automatically Detect Settings

If your computer has an active proxy connection, then it’s probably why Steam takes too long to open. It causes Steam to put in extra work to run a simple process. This means that sometimes it works, and at other times, it shows an error.

Important: Before moving forward, make sure to uninstall all unwanted/extra programs and search engines from your computer.

Here, we will enable automatically detect settings from chrome and through network settings.

Enable Automatically Detect Settings in Chrome

To enable automatically detect settings in Chrome:

  1. Open the Chrome browser window.
  2. Locate the menu (three dots) on the top-right corner and select Settings.
  3. In the settings tab, press the Ctrl+F, and type proxy in the search bar.
  4. From the search results, click on Open your computer’s proxy settings.
  5. In the following window, toggle on the Automatically detect settings.

Enable Automatically Detect Settings through Network Settings

To enable automatically detect settings through network settings:

  1. Press the Windows key + R, type >inetcpl.cpl in the dialog box, and hit enter.
  2. In the Internet Properties window, open the Connections tab and click on LAN settings.
  3. In the LAN settings window, check Automatically detect settings and uncheck Use proxy for your LAN.

Relaunch Steam after enabling the automatically detect settings option. If Steam still takes too long to open, then try the next solution.


Fix 4: Run Steam as an Administrator

Steam needs to make frequent changes to various. For which, it requires administrative rights to work properly without obstacles. To ensure seamless performance, you should run Steam and its directory with administrator privileges.

To run Steam as an administrator:

  1. Close the Steam Client window (if it’s already running).
  2. Locate the Steam Client shortcut on your Desktop, right-click, and select Run as Administrator.

Alternatively, you can also search for Steam on your computer and grant administrative rights. To do that:

  1. Press the key with a Windows icon to open the start menu.
  2. Now, type Steam in the search bar.
  3. In the search results, right-click on Steam, and select Run as Administrator.

Note: to move forward, make sure that your user account has administrative privileges.

If running Steam with Administrative privileges helps, then save the settings. To do that:

  1. Right-click on the Steam shortcut, and select Properties in the dropdown.
  2. In the Compatibility tab, check Run this program as Administrator, and click OK to save the settings.

Fix 5: Repair Steam

Steam offers a repair option that checks for corrupt files and repairs them. Before refreshing Steam files, you should try the repair Steam option.

To repair Steam using the Run application:

  1. Press Windows + R keys, type the address of your SteamService.exe file followed by a space and a /repair and hit enter.

    Note: the default address of Steamservice.exe is C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\bin. The address may be different if you installed Steam in a different location.

If you’re unsure about where Steam is installed, here’s what you do:

  1. Right-click on the Steam shortcut on your Desktop and select Open file location from the options menu.
  2. Copy the directory address from the address bar at the top of the screen.
  3. The repair command will launch a command prompt (CMD) window to start repairing immediately.

Important: don’t be alarmed if you don’t see anything in the CMD panel. That is perfectly normal.

Once the process has been completed, relaunch Steam and see how fast it’s working. If Steam Client takes too long to open, then try verifying your game data files.


Fix 6: Verify The Integrity of Your Game Files

Steam takes too long to open when it’s game file’s integrity is compromised. Your game files might be corrupt missing or the library files may be in the incorrect configuration. To make sure that there’s no issue with the files, we need to verify the integrity of your game files.

To verify the integrity of your game files in Steam:

  1. Launch Steam and click on the library in the top navigation bar.
  2. In the Steam library, right-click on the game that’s showing an error, and select Properties from the menu.
  3. In the Properties window, open the Local files tab, and click on the Verify Integrity of Game Files option.

This prompts Steam to open a new window where it will scan your game data. Any corrupted or missing files will be downloaded and repaired with faulty components. The process may take a few minutes, but once it’s completed, relaunch and see if Steam takes too long to open.


Fix 7: Disable Unwanted Extra Programs

The games running on Steam often require a lot of resources. Another third-party application or a Windows service running in the background may be preventing Steam from utilizing the required resources. If an application (besides Steam) is hogging resources, you should notice a high CPU, GPU, or DISK usage in the Task Manager.

To deal with the ‘Steam takes too long to open’ issue, we must isolate and disable the application causing it. We also need to prevent that application from automatically starting again.

To disable unwanted programs on your computer:

  1. Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC keys together to open the Task Manager.
  2. In the Processes tab, scan through the applications list (currently running on your computer), and check the CPU, GPU, and DISK usage for each application.
  3. Now, click on CPU (make sure that the arrow is facing downwards) to sort CPU usage by each application from high to low.
  4. If an application is consuming an abnormal amount of resources, right-click on it, and select End Task.
  5. Next, follow the same procedure and click on GPU and DISK options successively and eliminate applications with high usage.

After eliminating applications that were hogging CPU, GPU, and DISK, it’s time to check if Steam is running smoothly. If it is, then we also need to make sure that the issue doesn’t happen again.

To disable unwanted programs from automatically starting again:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys, type msconfig in the Run prompt, and hit enter.
  2. In the System Configuration window, open the Services tab, and uncheck the Hide all Microsoft services option, and then click Disable all. This will prevent the services from automatically launching at the startup.
  3. Next, open the Startup tab, select the Open Task Manager option.
  4. In the Task Manager’s Startup tab, disable all application launching at startup and close all windows.

Restart your computer, and relaunch Steam to see if it’s still taking too long to start. If it’s working properly, then an application was probably the culprit. Otherwise, move on to the next solution on the list.


Fix 8: Update Device Drivers

If your computer does not have the latest driver installed, then Steam takes too long to open.

Note: We don’t encourage you to download 3rd party commercial driver scanners, as some of them may bloat your computer. Although it is likely there isn’t a driver problem, you can check here how to manually scan and update your current drivers Update drivers in Windows 10.

We will update this section with proper ways to fix driver issues without using commercial driver scanners.


Fix 9: Change Power CFG

When it comes to gaming software, they need the best hardware! In the case of an unresponsive Steam Client, it may have been triggered because the computer is not providing enough power to the application. This results in resource dispensation and thus, an unresponsive Steam Client. We can change the computer’s power settings to resolve this issue.

To change power CFG:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys, type control in the dialog box, and hit enter.
  2. In the control panel window, press the P key on your keyboard, and select Power Options.
  3. In the following window, select the High Performance option to let the computer use the high-performance profile.

After selecting the power plan, close the control panel window to apply the changes. Relaunch the Steam client to see if the performance improved.


Fix 10: Test The Compatibility Settings

If Steam is taking too long to open on your computer, then the compatibility settings may be to blame. It means that Steam is having issues with certain aspects of your operating system. If compatibility settings are the issue, then we will employ Windows features to text various compatibility settings.

To check the compatibility settings:

  1. Right-click on the Steam executable file, and select Open file location from the menu.
  2. In the Steam directory, right-click on the main Steam executable file, and select Properties from the options menu.
  3. In the Steam Properties window, open the Compatibility tab, and check the ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for’ option.
  4. Next, select different operating system versions from the dropdown. Try each operating system consecutively until you find one that provides the best performance.
  5. Click Apply to save settings, then Ok to confirm and exit the application.

If Steam works better in the compatibility mode, then save the settings and enjoy your game. Otherwise, moving on to the next solution on Steam takes too long to open the issue.


Fix 11: Change The Priority Settings

If Steam takes too long to open in your system, then it may because another application is the priority. This results in Steam being unable to use the required resources.

Steam is usually lagging in one of the two ways:

  • Steam Client application is slow
  • Steam games are running slowly

If Steam Client itself is slow, then you can resolve the issue by setting its priority to High or Realtime. If the issue is with the Steam games, then you need to set Steam Client’s priority to low and the game’s priority to High or Realtime.

To change the priority settings:

  1. Press the CTRL + SHIFT + ESC keys collectively to open the Task Manager.
  2. In the Task Manager windows, open the Details tab to see each process running on your computer.

Now you can set Steam Client’s priority to high or Steam game’s priority to high depending on whether Steam is slow/unresponsive or the games.

Setting Steam Client Priority to High

Setting Steam Client’s priority to high is useful when the application is lagging. Otherwise, set go for Setting Steam games priority to high.

To change Steam’s priority to high:

  1. In the details tab, scroll down to find the Steam.exe file. Right-click on it, and then Set Priority > Realtime.

Setting Steam Games Priority to High

If the Steam application is running smoothly, but games are lagging, then set Steam game’s priority to High and Steam Client’s priority to Low.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. In the details tab, scroll down to find the Steam.exe file. Right-click, and Set Priority > Low.
  2. Now, for the game that’s running slowly, right-click and Set priority > High.

After configuring the priority settings, close the Task Manager window. Next, relaunch Steam Client, check if Steam takes too long to open or if it’s running smoothly now.


Fix 12: Switch from Integrated GPU

Most PC games require powerful graphic cards to process their game’s graphics. Steam often slows down when a computer has an NVIDIA GPU and an integrated graphic card. You can resolve the issue by preventing the dedicated graphic card from being used for the games.

To switch from integrated GPU to the NVIDIA graphic card:

  1. Right-click anywhere on your Desktop and select the Nvidia control panel from the dropdown menu.
  2. In the NVIDIA control panel window, select Manage 3D Settings from the left panel and Program Settings from the right panel.
  3. In the Program Settings tab, open the dropdown menu, and select Steam.exe from the list.
  4. From the Preferred Graphics Processor dropdown, select Nvidia High-performance GPU or the GPU that you installed from the list.
    Note: This setting is available in laptops with Nvidia Optimus, that have both high-power GPU and a low-power GPU. The low-power GPU is often used for programs that don’t require a gaming GPU, so the laptop can save power and extend battery life. You are not likely to see this option on a desktop:

  5. Select Nvidia GPU for all other games too and click apply to save the settings.

Open Steam again and see if Steam is running without delays.


Fix 13: Delete HTML Cache

For most people, Steam starts working smoothly after clearing the browser cache and cookies. However, for some, the issue returned after some time. To avoid that, we need to delete the cache folder from the computer and Steam.

To delete the HTML cache:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys, type %temp% in the dialog box, and hit enter.
  2. In the Temp folder, press CTRL + A to select all files, then SHIFT + DELETE to remove them from the computer.

After clearing the cache from the computer, we need to delete it from Steam. Here’s how you do that:

  1. Right-click on the Steam.exe file, and select Open file location from the menu.
  2. In the Steam installation folder, open the App Cache folder, and delete the HTTP cache folder.
  3. Next, press the Windows key + R again, type %appdata%, and hit enter.
  4. Click AppData in the address bar at the top.
  5. Navigate to Appdata/local/Steam and delete the HTML cache folder from there too.

Once you’re done with deleting the HTML cache from the computer and Steam, launch the application. Wait for it to download files and afterward, check if Steam takes too long to open.


Fix 14: Disable Family Sharing

Among its many features, Steam also offers a feature called family sharing. It allows family members to share games while having separate accounts.

If you have the Family sharing feature enabled in Steam, then it may cause the app to slow down. Family sharing needs to verify some additional details, which results in latency. Turning off the family sharing feature may result in a faster loading time for the application.

To disable family sharing in Steam:

  1. Click on the Steam button at the top-left corner of the screen, and select Settings from the dropdown.
  2. From the left panel, select Family and uncheck Authorize library sharing on this computer option.

Save the settings, and relaunch Steam. If family sharing was causing the issue, then Steam should not take too long to open now.


Fix 15: Repair Steam’s Library Folder

An issue with the Steam library folder can also cause Steam to take too long to open. We can resolve the issue by repairing Steam’s library folder.

To repair Steam’s library folder:

  1. Open Steam Settings by clicking on the Steam option at the top-left corner of the page. In the dropdown menu, select Settings.
  2. In the Settings window, open the Downloads tab from the left panel.
  3. Click Steam Library Folders in Content Libraries.
  4. In the following window, all your Steam content information will be listed. Right-click and select Repair Library Folder.

Fix 16: Restart AMD External Events Utility (AMD Users exclusive)

If you’re an AMD user, then the AMD external events utility can slow down Steam on your computer. You can restart the service to make the application work smoothly.

To restart the AMD external events utility:

  1. Press the CTRL + SHIFT + ESC keys together to open the Task Manager and go to the Services tab.
  2. Scan the list of programs, right-click on the AMD external events utility service, and pick restart from the menu.

If the AMD external events utility service are responsible for the ‘Steam takes too long to open’ issue, then it should be resolved. If it’s not, then try scanning your Windows computer for corrupted files.


Fix 17: Scan for Corrupted Files

In Windows, a utility called SFC (System File Checker) scans the computer for corrupt files and repairs them. You can run the sfc /scannow command to scan all protected system files and replace the corrupted ones with a cached copy.

To scan the computer for protected system files:

  1. Press the Windows key on your keyboard and type cmd in the search bar.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator.
  3. Type the following command in the CMD window.

sfc/scannow

The SFC utility will scan your computer for corrupt protected files. Once the process completes, launch Steam again and see if the ‘Steam takes too long to open’ issue persists.


Fix 18: Disable Third-party Antivirus Software

If you have a third-party antivirus installed on your computer, then it’s likely causing Steam to slow down. The software actively scans the Steam directory taking up too many resources leaving Steam with only a few. You can disable or uninstall the third-party antivirus software to resolve the ‘Steam takes too long to open’ issue.


Fix 19: Refresh Steam Game Files

If you’ve tried all solutions and Steam is still running slowly, then try refreshing Steam game files. It will preserve the downloaded games, and user data, so you don’t have to download those again.

All we do is delete Steam Client’s configuration files forcing it to install them again. Installing the configuration files will replace any damaged or corrupt files.

Important: after deleting the Steam configuration file, you will need to log in again. Make sure that you have the credentials at hand.

To refresh Steam game files:

  1. Navigate to the Steam directory. The default location of the Steam directory is C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam.
  2. In the Steam directory, locate the following files and folders:
    1. Userdata (folder): contains your gameplay data.
    2. Steamapps (folder): contains game files.
    3. Steam.exe (file): Steam executable file.

Delete all folders in the Steam directory except the ones mentioned above

DO NOT delete the Userdata file. In the Steamapps folder, locate and delete the ONLY games with which you’ve had a problem. If all games are not running properly, then delete all game folders in Steamapps.

Now, relaunch Steam as an administrator. It will start updating and refreshing all files. Once the update completes, Steam should run as expected without any issues.


Fix 20: Reinstall Steam

If refreshing game files didn’t help, then the last resort is to reinstall Steam. Here, we will delete all files (except Steamapps) and uninstall Steam. Reinstalling Steam Client will make the application run smoothly.

To reinstall Steam Client:

  1. Go to the Steam directory. Scroll down to locate and copy the Steamapps folder.
  2. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run prompt. Type appwiz.cpl and hit enter.
  3. In the Programs and Features window, Right-click on Steam and select Uninstall.
  4. Now, go to Steam’s official website and Download the latest Setup.
  5. Double-click on the Steam setup files and install it following the on-screen instructions.
  6. After installing Steam, copy the Steamapps folder and paste it into the Steam directory.

Important: the old Steamapps folder will replace the new one in the Steam directory.

Launch Steam Client, and see if it’s running easily.


Did You Fix The Issue?

One of the solutions above should have resolved the Steam working slowly issue. If afterward Steam takes too long to open, then the issue may be the hardware.

Most games need powerful hardware to run the graphics. If your computer hardware is not equipped to handle the load, then it will cause Steam to slow down. Also, check if there’s enough space in your hard drive. Overfull or old hard drives also tend to slow down the computer and in extension, Steam.

Categories: How To