Fix: Steam Not Enough Disk Space Error

Can’t download or update a game due to Steam’s “not enough disk space” error? It makes sense if your computer has very limited free storage, but as reported by many players, they have plenty of available storage and are still getting the error. This is annoying as you won’t be able to download a new game via Steam. Fortunately, there are a couple of easy fixes to the Steam not enough disk space error. We have jotted them down in this article.

Steam Not Enough Disk Space Error

Steam is the most popular video game digital distribution service. It has millions of games including popular ones such as Counter-Strike, Dota 2, PUBG, Apex Legends, and GTA V. Despite being the favorite gaming distribution platform, there are plenty of bugs that keep bothering Steam users. Steam “not enough disk space” is a common issue that does not seem to have a permanent fix from the developers.

If your PC has plenty of free storage but you keep seeing the error, probably the game files are corrupted. The issue could also surface if your PC has a partial game download. Steam shows the “not enough disk space” error when there’s something wrong with the file where Steam downloads are stored.

To fix the Steam not enough disk space error, restart your PC first. You may have heard about it multiple times before. This is like a common remedy to all issues on your Windows PC. Although restarting your PC may sound pretty basic, it works many times. Hence, we recommend performing a system reboot.

If restarting your PC does not work, try the more effective solutions we’ve mentioned below.

How to Fix Steam Not Enough Disk Space Error

Try these solutions one by one until the problem is fixed. I don’t think you will need to scroll this page too much as the first solution has done the trick for a lot of users. However, If you get unlucky, there are more solutions for you.

Solution 1: Set a Default Download Folder

Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Open the Steam app on your computer.
  2. Tap on Steam in the top-left corner and click Settings.
  3. Select the Storage tab on the left sidebar.
  4. Set a default download folder (if it’s not set already)
  5. If the default download folder is already set, you should see “C:\PROGRAM FILES (X86)\STEAM”. If it’s not set, right-click on it and set it as the default folder. This should resolve the issue.

Close Steam and launch it again. Now, download a game to check if the problem is sorted out.

Solution 2: Clear Steam Download Cache

The Steam app may be throwing the “not enough disk space” error because it has some corrupted cache. You should clear the downloaded cache to check if it’s actually causing the problem.

Clearing the Steam download cache won’t remove any of your important data. Your game files and their data will remain intact. So, there’s no need to worry.

  1. Launch the Steam client on your Windows.
  2. Tap on Steam in the top-left corner.
  3. Select Settings from the drop-down options.
  4. Go to the Downloads tab.
  5. Click the Clear Cache button next to the Clear Download Cache option.
  6. Restart Steam.

When you download a game or update it on Steam, it is initially stored in the download cache to optimize the installation process. Clearing this folder therefore can be an effective approach to fix the not enough disk space error.

Solution 3: Run Steam With Administrator Rights

Due to limited permissions, Steam may be facing issues that could be causing issues with storing game files. Running Steam as an administrator gives the app more permissions. With more access to permissions and resources, Steam should be able to download all the games.

To run Steam as an administrator, right-click on the Steam icon on your desktop and tap on Properties. Now, go to the Compatibility tab and check the Run this program as an administrator box. Click Apply and then press the OK button.

If your desktop does not have a Steam shortcut icon, type Steam in the search box at the bottom, right-click Steam in the search result, and select Run as administrator.

Solution 4: Repair Steam Library Files

If there’s a problem with the Steam library files on your computers, Steam can fix them. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Launch the Steam client on your PC.
  2. Tap on Steam in the top-left corner.
  3. Select Settings from the drop-down options.
  4. Go to the Storage tab.
  5. Tap on the three-dot icon and select Repair Library Folder. (The icon should be located next to the storage bar)

Relaunch Steam and download any game to check if the problem is fixed. If it didn’t work out for you, perhaps there are some unfinished game downloads on your PC. You must clear them by applying the steps mentioned in the next solution.

Solution 5: Delete Partially Downloaded Game Files

  1. Make sure Steam is closed.
  2. Press Windows + X buttons together and select Task Manager.
  3. Right-click on Steam-related services and select End task.
  4. Repeat the above step for all Steam processes.
  5. Go to the Steam folder on your PC. It should be located at C:\Program Files (X86) \ Steam.
  6. Inside the Steam folder, find the Steamapps folder and tap on it.
  7. Go to the downloading folder.
  8. Clear the folder that could be causing the problem. If you are not sure about which one to remove, press Ctrl + A and click Delete to remove all.
  9. Restart your computer.

If you can’t delete contents inside the downloading folder, the folder may be read-only. You need the folder to have write permission too. Here’s how to do it:

1. Type CMD in the Windows search box at the bottom.

2. Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator.

3. Type the following and press the Enter button:

cd c:/program files (x86)/Steam

4. Now,type the following and hit Enter:

attrib -r /S *.*

The Steam folder should be writable now. Go to the downloading folder and delete the required files.

After deleting contents inside the downloading folder, restart your computer. Now, launch the Steam app and start downloading your favorite games.

Solution 6: Verify Integrity of Game Files

If any of the game files has problems, it could affect other game files and new downloads as well. Thus, you would want to make sure that your PC has no problematic game files.

To check and repair corrupted game files, you can use the Verify integrity of game files option within the Steam app. Run it for all the games on Steam.

  1. Launch the Steam app on your PC.
  2. Go to the LIBRARY tab.
  3. Right-click on a game and select the Properties option.
  4. Go to the Installed Files tab in the left sidebar.
  5. Tap on Verify integrity of game files.

Wait for the process to finish. Repeat the above steps for all the games as you don’t know which game could be causing the problem.

Solution 7: Select a New Download Location

If your PC has multiple storage partitions (drives), you need to make sure that the location where Steam downloads will be stored has a lot of free storage. By default, Steam downloads are stored in the C drive. Make sure it has at least 200GB of free storage.

If the problem persists, you can create a new download location for Steam by following these steps:

  1. Launch Steam on your PC.
  2. Tap on Steam in the top-left corner and select Settings.
  3. Go to the Storage tab.
  4. Tap on the “+” icon to add a library folder.
  5. You must select a drive with a minimum of 200GB of free storage. (Don’t select the same drive that has already been used).
  6. Click OK to finish.

Restart the Steam app. Now, Steam won’t show you the annoying “not enough disk space” error message.

Solution 8: Reinstall Steam

If you tried all the above solutions but to no avail, try reinstalling the Steam app. A fresh installation should resolve all the issues.

Removing Steam will also remove all the download games from your PC. You’ll need to download them again.

To remove Steam, follow these steps:

  1. Type Control Panel in the Windows search box and press Enter.
  2. Set View by to Small icons.
  3. Tap on Programs and Features.
  4. Right-click on Steam and select Uninstall.
  5. Click Uninstall again to confirm.

Restart your PC. Now, go to the Steam download page and click INSTALL STEAM to download the latest version of the app on your PC.

Final Thoughts

It’s frustrating when your much-awaited game has been released and you can’t download it because of the Steam “not enough disk space” error. There are many reasons, from a minor software glitch to a corrupted Steam folder. Fortunately, you do not have to worry much as many effective ways to troubleshoot the problem exist.

To fix the Steam not enough disk space error, you can delete partially downloaded files, repair Steam library files, clear downloaded cache, and other solutions mentioned in this article. We hope one of the solutions will surely do the trick for you.

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