Question Steam Download issues

Oct 25, 2022
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So I have 1GB fiberoptic internet, and a fairly good PC (I think). I'm really struggling to download anything at all on Steam, though.
When I start a download it will begin at well over 100 MB/s download speed, and will continue at that speed for a minute or two. After the initial minute it will start to pause for a few seconds or even longer at a time and my download speed will drop tremendously. I've also noticed during this time that my disk usage will be at 100% consistently. A 30GB download can end up taking several hours.
My PC specs are: i7 11700KF, NVidia GeForce 3060ti, 36 GBs of 3600Mz ram, SN570 1TB m.2 SSD, and a 2TB WD HDD that I only use for storing non gaming files.
Any help in fixing this issue would be greatly appreciated. Please keep in mind that I'm fairly new to PCs and I'm not too knowledgeable when it comes to most of the stuff yet.

View: https://imgur.com/a/G7w3qPx
 
How is the download speed in other game clients, and web browsers in general ? Can you properly download other files/apps from the internet ? First off, try changing the hard drive/SSD storage location for your games. You can try installing STEAM games on some other HDD/SSD and check whether this helps or not.

If not, then there might be other issues. Are you using a VPN by any chance. If yes, then try without VPN. You can also use one of the numerous speed testing sites available online such as Speedtest or DSLReports to test your connection speed.

If need be, disabling your antivirus and Windows Defender may also sometimes help improve your internet speed, though not always. I would recommend trying the following workarounds.

Clear the Download Cache in Steam.

Like many apps, Steam keeps temporary download data in a download cache. If it gets clogged up, it can affect Steam performance, block the app from running properly, and slow down your downloads. Thus, clearing it might speed up your downloads again.

However, be careful; if you've downloaded any mods, performing this step will erase them. As such, you might want to skip this if you've downloaded mods recently.

To clear Steam's download cache, follow the steps below:
  1. Launch Steam.
  2. In the top-left corner, click on the Steam tab and select Settings.
  3. From the left-sidebar, select Downloads.
  4. On the right-hand pane, click Clear Download Cache
  5. Upon completion of the process, relaunch the app.


Next up, ensure Steam isn't limiting its own bandwidth.

Steam allows users to limit its bandwidth to give more room for other apps to use the internet. Although it's convenient, you should turn off this limit if you want to speed up the download.

Follow the below steps to remove Steam's bandwidth limit:
  1. Launch Steam.
  2. In the top-left corner, click on the Steam tab and select Settings.
  3. From the left-sidebar, select Downloads.
  4. In the right-pane, untick the box for Limit bandwidth to.

Ensure Steam Has Adequate Bandwidth.

To begin with, you should allocate as much bandwidth as possible to the Steam app. You can do that by temporarily closing other downloads running in parallel, closing resource-hogging browsers, double-check that you're not streaming any content, and shutting down any apps that use the internet.

You can use the Task Manager (CTRL + Shift + Esc) to identify which processes are taking up the most network resources. Look in the Network column and close any non-essential apps that are taking up a lot of data. Furthermore, ensure that Efficiency mode isn't enabled for Steam, which makes it a less-priority process.

Another issue with bandwidth that causes slower downloads is too many open tabs, browsers, and apps on your computer. Closing unnecessary apps and browsers can speed up your download.

Disable download throttling.

The Steam app throttles downloads if you've set it to do so when streaming, allowing you to stream at the best speed. This means you'll get good performance at the expense of slow download speeds. If your downloads are getting too slow, this might explain the problem.

To disable download throttling, follow the below steps:
  1. Launch Steam.
  2. In the top-left corner, click on the Steam tab and select Settings.
  3. From the left-sidebar, select Downloads.
  4. Untick the box for Throttle downloads while streaming.


If need be, try to disable Windows' metered connection.

Windows offers a metered connection option for users to limit their own bandwidth usage. Even though it helps save data if you're under a data cap, it can limit how apps use the available bandwidth. As such, a metered connection might slow down your downloads on Steam.

To ensure it is not enabled, follow these steps:
  1. Right-click on the Windows Start button and go to Settings.
  2. In the left-sidebar, select Network & internet.
  3. Click on Wi-Fi.
  4. Click on your Wi-Fi connection.
  5. Turn off the toggle next to Metered connection.


Change the Download Server Location.

The speed of Steam's downloads is greatly affected by the location of the server that you get them from. By default, Steam connects you to the nearest server to provide you with a better connection, but if it's cluttered with traffic, it may not offer the best speed rate.

With the help of a global traffic map on the Steam download stats website, you can see which servers are closest, have less traffic, and offer good download speeds. Once you've decided on a server, follow the below steps to switch the region in Steam:
  1. Launch Steam.
  2. In the top-left corner, click on the Steam tab and select Settings.
  3. From the left-sidebar, select Downloads.
  4. In the Download Region dropdown, select your preferred region.
 
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Reactions: emitfudd
Oct 25, 2022
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So I've checked all of the things that you listed and found nothing wrong. My download speeds on most every other launcher that I can think of has been great. Crystal Disk has my SSD at 100% health and my read/write speeds are in the 3000s (Mb/s). When I'm downloading from steam my read speeds on my ssd is usually in the kb/s range and my write speeds very rarely exceeds 100Mb/s. I've tried testing it in Safe Mode w/ Networking and the problem still persists.
 

emitfudd

Honorable
Apr 9, 2017
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So I've checked all of the things that you listed and found nothing wrong. My download speeds on most every other launcher that I can think of has been great. Crystal Disk has my SSD at 100% health and my read/write speeds are in the 3000s (Mb/s). When I'm downloading from steam my read speeds on my ssd is usually in the kb/s range and my write speeds very rarely exceeds 100Mb/s. I've tried testing it in Safe Mode w/ Networking and the problem still persists.
8 mb = 1 MB. Your internet speed is in mb and Steam downloads are displayed as MB. I pay for 400 mb internet. When I download games from Steam I consistently get 60 MB. That means I am actually getting 480 mb/sec dowload through Steam.

If you are seeing 100 MB/sec that means you are getting 800 mb/sec which is pretty close to your gig speed.

How big are the games you are downloading? I can download a 60 to 80 GB game in less than 1/2 hr.
 

Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
8 mb = 1 MB. Your internet speed is in mb and Steam downloads are displayed as MB. I pay for 400 mb internet. When I download games from Steam I consistently get 60 MB. That means I am actually getting 480 mb/sec dowload through Steam.

If you are seeing 100 MB/sec that means you are getting 800 mb/sec which is pretty close to your gig speed.

How big are the games you are downloading? I can download a 60 to 80 GB game in less than 1/2 hr.
Did you look at the screenshot in the original post?
OP is maxing out at 48MBps, and consistently dropping far below that as the disk is writing.
This is not a matter of bits vs bytes.
 

emitfudd

Honorable
Apr 9, 2017
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Did you look at the screenshot in the original post?
OP is maxing out at 48MBps, and consistently dropping far below that as the disk is writing.
This is not a matter of bits vs bytes.
Whatever. No need to downvote my attempt at helping. Everything I stated is fact. OP says he gets up to 100 MB/sec. The screenshot shows what he was getting at that moment.

And 48 MB/sec is still a download speed of almost 400 mb/sec.

I used to have problems with my Steam download speed fluctuating and dropping significantly. For the past year I have never had it drop below the upper 50 MB/sec range.
 

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