Steam is one of the most popular platforms for multiplayer online games where gamers and games connect together. To play a game that is available on Steam, you need to install Steam client software on your PC first, sign in to Steam account and then download the game via Steam to play it with your friends. However, when you download Steam software on your PC, it provides you a little installer program which actually downloads all Steam installation files to the disk. That’s why you see the message “Stream is updating” even for new installation. The small web installer is typically 1 or 2 MB where the total size of Steam installation is nearly 300MB which are downloaded from internet. This means Steam installer needs internet connection to install Steam completely.

Steam offers online installer rather than an offline installer merely to keep everyone with the latest update, no matter from where someone got the setup file. But in some cases you or your friend may need to quickly install steam on PC where internet connection is temporarily down or very slow. In such situation, an offline setup comes in handy. But there’s no way to achieve any offline installer of Steam from internet as Valve (creator of Steam) itself doesn’t provide it at all. So the only way remaining for you is to create a backup of Steam installation of offline or later installation0. Here’s a visual guide on how you can create a backup and later install it offline.

 Guide to Creating a Backup of Steam (Without Game Files)

  1. First, completely close Steam. You might need to hunt Task Manager or right-click on the Steam icon on Windows System Tray to exit it fully.
    Exit Steam
  2. Now locate the Steam folder  at C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files (x86). This is where Steam installation files are located. Enter into the folder.
    Find out Steam Folder
  3. As we need to exclude the game files, select all folder and only deselect SteamApps folder.
    Ignore SteamApps
  4. Now use an archiving tool like 7-Zip or use built-in Windows Zipper to create a ZIP/archive file of the selected folders and files.
    Add to Zip
  5. Your newly created ZIP file is the file you can treat as “Steam Offline Installer”. Alternatively you can just copy all those files and folders to another location except SteamApps to create a backup. But Zipping is better.

You can now share this file with your friends to help install Steam without internet connection.

Question 1: How to install the backup?

Answer: Just extract the zipped/archive file wherever you want your Steam to get installed.

Question 2: I didn’t sign out before creating the backup. Will anyone able to sign in to my account who Installs my backup?

Answer: No! Steam will automatically detect a new computer and ask authentication code that requires signing in to Email.

Note: Steam will update itself forcefully once it runs and finds an available update. However at post-installation update, it wouldn’t download the whole installation, rather the parts which got updated. Steam wouldn’t download all files if you install it from previously created backup.

If you have more questions, checkout official support page about moving Steam installation.


Jaber is a Programmer and Tech Enthusiast Geek from Dhaka, Bangladesh. He is the founder and Chief-Editor of TechGainer. While he is away from his keyboard, either he's fishing or messing with wildlife. In case, you can contact him at rijans[at]techgainer[dot]com.