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How to Back Up Your Steam Game Data

Steam is one of the most popular pieces of digital distribution software. It is run by Valve, developer of popular titles such as Half-Life and Team Fortress. A lot of PC gamers use the platform to buy their games. As much as being tied into the Steam ecosystem brings cloud saving for some games, there is still the need to manually back up your game data occasionally. Luckily, it is a relatively easy process to back up that sort of stuff. This guide will talk you through those steps.
There are two different approaches that can be used. The first is most suitable if you wish to back up one or multiple games. If, however, you just want to make a copy of your whole library, then a different process is better. Let’s start with the former.
Load up Steam and navigate to your Library. Then right click the game you desire to backup and select ‘Backup game files’. You can select multiple games at this stage, but note that they all have to be up to date in order for them to appear on the list. Also, as mentioned prior, if you want to back up the whole library then use the different approach below. One you have selected the games, click ‘Next’ and select a destination for the copies. This should, preferably, be on a different drive. Besides, if the main drive fails then it is likely that the backups will go down too. Name it, set the file size and then continue to begin the process.
If the time comes when you need to restore these backups, it is a fairly simple process. Log in to your Steam account and attach the storage where the backups are stored (be it a DVD or external hard drive). If the files were copied to a disc then the steambackup.exe process should run automatically. If it doesn’t, or if you’re not using a disc, you can load up the program yourself from the files. If the process isn’t there then you can download it manually from Steam’s website. Be sure to place it in the backup folder.
If you want to back up all of your games then there is a different method. By default, Steam installs to the folder C:\Program Files\Steam. If this is not where Steam is installed for you, simply do a search on your computer for the folder. Files for games installed on Steam will be stored in C:\Program Files\Steam\SteamApps (or whatever your file location is). Close Steam completely if you haven’t already. Now, simply copy and paste the entirety of the SteamApps folder to your backup location. The length of this will depend on how many games you have, but chances are it could take a fair bit of time.
Steam does save some of your data in the cloud, but not all of it. This process is very handy in times when your hard drive fails and all your games become uninstalled. Instead of downloading all your game files again on an internet connection that might be unstable or slow, you can just copy them all over from your backup files.


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