Steam Content File Locked Error (2022) [SOLVED]

Steam Content File Locked

You can troubleshoot the Steam content file locked error in a few minutes. Steam is a platform where you can play, buy, and create PC games. Steam will automatically update all games by default. However, while manually updating the game, you may receive a “Steam Content File Locked” issue. The error message indicates that Steam cannot write update files to the PC’s hard disc. However, with a few troubleshooting techniques, the error can be rectified.

Methods to Resolve the Steam Content File Locked Error

As previously stated, this problem occurs when updating games on Steam. Because of this issue, you cannot play the game’s most recent version. It is caused primarily by permissions on your machine. To resolve this issue, try the solutions listed below in the order listed.

Reboot your computer.

If the Steam Content File Locked issue appears while updating the game, restart your computer and try again. Restarting your computer will close any open apps, clear the cache, and free up some RAM. So continue your laptop and check Steam for an update.

Launch the Steam application as Administrator if the restart does not resolve the Steam Content File Locked problem.

Use the Steam App as Administrator.

1: Press the key and look for Steam.

2: Select Run as Administrator from the context menu of the Steam program.

3: Try updating the game via the Steam app now.

To grant permanent Admin access to your Steam account,

  • Select Open file location from the context menu when you right-click the Steam program.
  • Select Properties by right-clicking the Steam program.
  • Choose the Compatibility tab.
  • Check the box bar, “Run this program as administrator.”
  • It will grant the Admin permanent access to the Steam app.

Turn off Antivirus

The Steam content file locked problem can also be caused by antivirus software installed on Windows systems. So, please turn it off and then try updating the Steam files. To temporarily disable the antivirus, right-click the antivirus icon in the taskbar and select Disable.

If you use Windows security, exclude your Steam folder and files. As a result, it will not prevent you from updating the games.

1: Hold down the key and type Settings into the search bar.

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2: Navigate to Windows Security Settings.

3: Go to the Virus & Threat Protection tab.

4: Choose Manage settings and then Add an exclusion.

5: Include the Steam folder containing the file.

6: After adding the file to Windows security, launch the Steam app and see if the error reappears. If this is the case, try clearing Steam’s cached data.

Delete the Steam Content File Cache

Steam also keeps temporary files that can become corrupted by unforeseen causes. In such cases, you may encounter the steam content file locked error.

1: Launch the Steam app as Administrator.

2: In the top left corner, click the Steam menu.

3: From the menu, choose Settings.

4: Click the Downloads tab on the left.

5: Locate the CLEAR DOWNLOAD CACHE button at the bottom. Click on it.

6: Restart the Steam app to see if the error occurs again.

Winsock should be reset.

The Windows Socket is an application that handles internet connection settings. If this program does not function properly, it will impact file sharing and updating within the Steam application. We can fix this Steam Content File Locked by resetting Winsock.

1: Click the Start button and then type CMD.

2: Run the command prompt as Administrator.

3: Enter the netsh Winsock reset command and click Enter. P is for confirmation.

4: Reboot your computer to apply these changes.

5: Open the Steam app and verify that it is operational.

Check the Integrity of the Game Files

The integrity of game files is a critical function in Steam that checks game files for faults or corrupted files. There’s also the potential of a Steam Content File Locked issue. To ensure the security of Steam game files,

1: Open the Steam app and navigate to the file you wish to update.

2: Right-click it and choose Properties.

3: In the Properties window, go to the Local files tab.

4: Select VERIFY INTEGRITY OF GAME FILES at the bottom of the Local files tab.

5: Steam will now verify the file. If an error Steam Content File Locked is discovered, the file will be replaced with a functional one. Following that, you can attempt to update the file.

Configure the Firewall

The Windows Firewall is a program that safeguards our internet traffic so that we can browse safely and securely. Unfortunately, it occasionally refuses to allow the local network connection to our machine. The firewall will not enable your game to access a local and unknown network source. As a result, you must customize it.

1: Select the Start button.

2: Look for and launch Windows Defender Firewall.

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3: Select the Allow an app or functionality through Windows Firewall checkbox.

4: Change the settings near it.

5: Choose Allow Another App.

6: Navigate to the location of your game file and press Add.

7: Select the public and private check boxes for your game file in Allowed apps and features, then click Ok.

8. Exit the control panel, and your game will be able to connect to any network.

Transfer Steam Files to a New Location

When the content file error for your games appears on your old disc space, make a new disc and move all of your steam games to that location.

1: Launch the Steam app.

2: Go to Settings.

3: Select Downloads from the options menu.


5: Click the Add icon at the top and wait for a new pop-up to appear.

6: In the pop-up dialogue box, select a new disc, give it a name, and click OK.

7: Select Make default from the Settings menu. You can make the new disc the default storage location by clicking it.

8: Right-click on the game you wish to relocate in the main Library and select Properties.

9: Go to File > Local File > Move Install Folder. To move the game file to the new disc, navigate to the disc and click OK.

Perform a Disk Scan

A disc scan assists us in identifying any faults or corrupted files like Steam Content File Locked on your system.

1: Open Command Prompt as Administrator by clicking the Start button.

2: Type chkdsk c:f into the prompt and press the Enter key.

3: Press P to confirm the appointment.

4: Restart your computer to apply the updates.

Remove the Steam Game File

If the previous solutions did not resolve the Steam content file locked error, erase and reinstall the Steam game files.

1: Launch the Steam client and navigate to the Library.

2: Navigate to the game file, right-click it, and choose Properties.

3: In the properties window, pick Local Files and click the Browse button on the right.

4: Select and remove all of the files.

5: After you’ve deleted everything, click the Verify Integrity of Game Files button. It will reinstall your previously deleted game.


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If the problem of Steam Content File Locked persists, uninstall Steam and reinstall it on your PC. It will resolve all Steam-related issues. Alternatively, you can contact Steam’s support team, who will assist you in locating the essential solution.