Steam Not Opening? Here is How To Fix It.

If you are a PC gamer or have been one, then you must have used or are currently using Steam. Steam is the ultimate online games distribution platform for PC gamers. The company that owns Steam is Valve. And it is for Valve’s contribution that the PC gaming platform has strived so much. With the help of Steam, you can buy games, play games with your friend, share game screenshots, participate in the forums and various Steam Sales, and so much more. No wonder Steam is the undisputed leader when it comes to online gaming, beating its competitors like Uplay, Origin,, and others as well.

But, it should be kept in mind that, even the best things can have their worst days, and that is why we’re here to solve. Sometimes, Steam can throw out random errors, and would not open. While there can be many reasons for Steam not working, and we’re going to touch every single solution that you can try to make Steam open and work again. Some of the procedures can be tedious, and some of them can be just as simple as they go by. So, be sure to read till the end of the whole list, if you can’t open Steam.

Why Is Steam Not Opening? The First Job Is To Reinstall

The first simple job when some software is not working is to reinstall. It is one of the necessary steps to follow when troubleshooting, and therefore you can follow either of the following steps:

Procedure One

  • You can use Windows inbuilt uninstall feature. Head over to Control Panel, and then Add or Remove Programs, and then proceed to uninstall Steam.
  • Then head over to and download the new EXE file. Click on install, and let it do its work.

Procedure Two

  • You can also proceed to head over to the drive partition of your computer where Steam is installed, and find the folder for Steam. In that folder, delete everything except your Steam.exe file and steamapps folder.
  • After deleting the files, double-click on Steam.exe again, and start with the reinstalling process.

How To Fix Steam Not Opening? Force Stop The Steam Background Process

Steam operates on the PC not just via only one process, but a host of other processes as well. One controls the Steam client, while others control in-client browser windows, in-game chats, etcetera. Therefore, a lot of times the process can be running in the background and not showing up on the desktop. You will try to open it many times via double-clicking, but it will not open at all. This is where you need some extra techniques.

  • Press CTRL + ALT + DEL all at the same time, and bring out the Task Manager in Windows.
  • Now head over to the Processes tab, and find all the processes related to Steam. This includes WebHelper, Client Service and Bootstrapper.
  • Right click on all of those processes, and select End Task.
  • After ending the relevant tasks, relaunch Steam.

Facing The Steam.dll Error

Failing to load the Steam.dll error is one of the common problems faced by Steam’s user base when Steam not starting. It is an error when the program fails to load one of its most important DLL files. Therefore, in order to solve this problem, you have to be a little more creative than traditional methods.

  • The first thing to do is to find the hard drive partition on which Steam is installed. Let’s say it’s the C: Drive. Then head over to the Steam main folder. You can find the folder under Program Files (x86) folder.
  • Find the Steam.exe file and then right-click on it, and create a shortcut.
  • Then you should right-click on that shortcut, and head over to the Properties tab. Then in the Target Box, add the following line -client data client_candidate

The whole command line – C:\Steam\Steam.exe -client data client_candidate

  • Click on Apply. From now on, use the above configuration, and you will be good to go.

Deleting The Appcache Folder Inside Steam Directory

Sometimes even deleting the simple things can prove to be a step in the right direction. And this is what we’re going to do in this process when Steam won’t open. This includes deleting the appcache folder inside Steam’s directory. This folder takes care of what you do every day on Steam and remembers everything. Just like cookies in a web browser. This ensures that you can use Steam seamlessly every time. Thus, sometimes this remembering process of things can go haywire and may result in Steam not opening. For this you need to follow the procedure as below:

  • Head over to the Steam directory via Program Files (x86) folder inside the installation hard drive partition. Then located the appcache folder.
  • Backup the folder to another location, and then delete the folder from the main directory.
  • After that, restart Steam, and let the appcache folder be created again. If all goes well, you can delete the previous backed-up appcache folder.

Checking The Steam Servers

If everything of the above solutions fails, then it’s time for the final straw. This includes checking whether the Steam servers are up and running, or down for scheduled maintenance. While Steam has very advanced server support that doesn’t even bog down during heavy traffic, there will still be times when due to any DDOS or malware attack, the servers maybe be down and Steam not launching. Therefore, the best way to check the status of the Steam servers is to head over to the following website –

The given website provides all the detailed information about server traffic and load. It will also show you which servers and up and running, and which ones are not. So, if you see your area or regional servers having issues, then you just have found the missing link to the puzzle. Basically, you have to wait till the servers are up and you can reconnect to Steam servers again — happy gaming.