Steam access denied: You’ll say thank you for this guide

Tashreef Shareef
by Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
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While using the Steam client, the users may face different types of errors. One such error is the Steam access is denied error when trying to save changes to your profile, checking inventory or open the friend’s list.

This error is not new. However, Steam hasn’t provided any go-to solution for this error. If you are struggling with the same error, here are a couple of solutions to troubleshoot the accessed denied error on Steam.

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Steam access denied on this server? Here’s how to swiftly fix this

  1. Flush DNS Cache
  2. Change the DNS Server
  3. Verify Integrity of Files
  4. Disable VPN and antivirus
  5. Wait for Valve to Fix It

1. Flush DNS Cache

If the problem is due to the CDN (Content Delivery Network), flushing the DNS cache may fix the error. Flushing the DNS cache removes all the information stored in the cache, forcing the computer to find new DNS information.

You can Flush the DNS cache using the Command Prompt. Here is how to do it.

  1. Press “Windows Key + R” to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type cmd and hit enter to open the Command Prompt.
    cmd Flush DNS
  3. In the command prompt, enter the following command hit enter.
    ipconfig /flushdns
  4. If successful, you should receive a success message.
  5. Close the Command Prompt and launch Steam and check for any improvements.

Note: If your Internet Service Provider offers dynamic IP address, simply disconnect and reconnect to the network to change the IP address.


2. Change the DNS Server

At times, a bad DNS server may cause network related error or create conflict with the Steam client. You can try to change the DNS server to see if that resolves the error as some users affected by the error have said that changing the DNS server has resolved the error.

Here is how to change the DNS server on Windows 10.

  1. Press “Windows Key + R” to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Type control and press enter to open the Control Panel.
  3. Click on Network and Internet.
    network and internet cpl
  4. Click on Network and Sharing Center.
  5. On the left pane, click on “Change adapter settings”.
    Change adapter Settings - Network and sharing center - Network and internet - Windows 10
  6. Right-click on your currently active network and select Properties.
    Network Card Properties - Network and Sharing Center - Change Adapater Setting
  7. In the Properties window, locate and select “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4).
    Internet Protocol Version 4 TCP-IPv4 - Properties
  8. Click on the Properties button.
    Custom DNS Server
  9. Select “Use the following DNS server addresses:” and enter the following values in the given field.
    Preferred DNS Server: 8.8.8.8
    Alternate DNS Server: 8.8.4.4
  10. Click OK to save the changes and close other Properties window.

You can use any third-party DNS server. The above one is from Google, and it works just fine.

Alternatively, you can also download a little utility called DNS Jumper. It allows you to select and apply third-party DNS servers automatically.

DNS Jumper also has a Flush DNS option just in case you don’t want to use the command prompt to do the same.


3. Verify Integrity of Files

If the error is occurring while accessing a specific game, you may want to verify the integrity of files to check if the files are installed correctly. Steam offers a built-in solution to do the same. Here is how to do it.

  1. Launch Steam and sign into your account.
  2. Click on Library and select Games.
    Steam - Libraries - Games - Properties
  3. Right-click on the affected game and select Properties.
  4. In the Properties window, click on the Local Files tab.
    Steam - Game Properties - Local Files - Verify Integrity of game files
  5. Click on “Verify Integrity of Game Files”.
    Validating Steam Files - Success
  6. Steam will scan the files and try to validate them. If you receive a success message, your game files are correctly installed, and the issue is not with the game files.

4. Disable VPN and antivirus

The Steam developers strictly against the use of VPN (Virtual Private Network). Steam may block the account in case any VPN use is detected. While access denied error does not occur in case of suspended accounts, try to disable the VPN and check if that resolves the error.

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Your antivirus can create conflict with the Steam games when trying to access the internet by blocking the connection.

First, disable your Antivirus temporarily. Launch Steam and try to access the game again. If it goes through, then you may need to add that game to your Antivirus exception list.

Quit Malware Bytes Antivirus


5. Wait for Valve to Fix It

If none of the solutions seems to be working, you can try to uninstall and reinstall the Steam client. Uninstalling the Steam client does not uninstall the game data as you can take a complete backup of the game data.

However, there is no point in Uninstalling Steam if the problem is caused by the Steam’s server.

We recommend that you wait for a day or two (if possible) to see if the error goes away on its own.

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