Steam Corrupt Disk Error while downloading and updating games [FIX]

Tashreef Shareef
by Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
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While trying to download a game or updating an old game, you may encounter corrupt disk error on your Steam client. This is a common error and can occur due to several reasons.

The full error reads An error occurred while updating [your game] (disk read error) (disk corruption error), see the steam support site for more information. For those affected by this error, here is how you can troubleshoot this error on your Windows machine.


How to fix the Steam Corrupt Disk error

  1. Delete Active Download folder
  2. Reinstall the Steam client
  3. Verify Integrity of Game Files
  4. Repair Steam Library Folder
  5. Change Download Folder / Steam Library Folder

1. Delete Active Download folder

Before moving to advanced troubleshooting, consider temporarily disabling the Firewall and antivirus. Try again, and if that doesn’t help, move to additional troubleshooting steps.

Another reason for the corrupt disk error can be the corrupt game’s files. You can try to delete the game’s files that are downloading and then restart the download from the Steam client. Here is how to do it.

  1. Open “File Explorer” and navigate to the following location.
    C: -> Program Files -> Steam-> Steamapps-> Downloading
  2. Steam stores every game with a unique number. Open the first folder you see inside the downloading folder with a number. Check if it belongs to the problematic game.
  3. Delete the problematic folder.
    Steam Download Game Folder Delete
  4. Exit Steam if still running. Relaunch Steam and try to install the game again.

If that does not work and the problem persists, rename the download folder to something else and create a new folder named downloading.

  1. Locate the Downloading folder in Steamapps by navigating to Program Files (x86)>Steam>Steamapps.
  2. Right-click on Downloading folder and select Rename. Rename the folder as Downloading12.
    SteamApps fodler rename Downloading12
  3. Next, create a new folder in the Steamapps folder and name it as Downloading.
    SteamApps fodler rename Downloading12- Downloadibg
  4. Launch Steam and try to install the game that was giving the issue. You should be able to download and install the game now.

2. Reinstall the Steam client

As a last resort, you can try to reinstall the Steam client. Uninstalling your Steam client does not delete the game data and installed games but only the client. Once you reinstall the Steam client, it will pick up the game data and files from the folder.

However, just to be on the safer side, take a  backup of Steamapps folder by navigating to C: -> Program Files (x86) -> Steam folder.

Once the backup of Steamapps folder is ready, proceed with uninstalling the Steam client.

  1. Go to Control Panel > Program > Programs and Features. Select “Steam” select Uninstall.
    Steam Uninstall Programs and Features Control Panel
  2. Reboot your system and reinstall Steam from the official website. Launch Steam and you should have all the game data intact. If not, move the Steamapps folder from the backup drive to C: -> Program Files (x86) -> Steam folder.

3. Verify Integrity of Game Files

The corrupt disk error can also occur if the game files are corrupted or missing. Steam offers a built-in tool that checks and verifies the integrity of Game files within the client. Here is how to use it.

  1. Launch Steam. Click on Library and select Games.
    Steam - Libraries - Games - Properties
  2. Right-click on the problematic game and select Properties.
  3. Under Properties, click on the Local Files tab.
    Steam - Game Properties - Local Files - Verify Integrity of game files
  4. Here, click on “Verify Integrity of Game Files”.
  5. Steam will scan the game file for any corruption. If the verification is successful proceed with the next step.

4. Repair Steam Library Folder

If the problem is due to the default Steam Library folder, try fixing it using the Repair Steam Library Folder option. Here is how to do it.

  1. Launch Steam.
  2. Click on Steam and select Settings.
  3. Under Settings, click the Downloads tab.
    Steam app - settings- download - Steal library folder
  4. Under Content Libraries, click on “Steam Library Folders”.
  5. Right-click on the Steam Library Folder (or custom library folder) and select “Repair Steam Library Folder”.
    Steam Repair Library folder
  6. Steam will scan the folder and try to repair it if any problem is detected.
  7. Try to download the games and see if the error is resolved.

5. Change Download Folder / Steam Library Folder

The steam client allows you to change the Steam Library and set a custom location to download and install games. If the default Steam Library or the hard disk partition is corrupt, you can change the drive to fix the error.

  1. Launch Steam and click on Steam > Settings.
  2. Click on the Downloads tab.
    Steam app - settings- download - Steal library folder
  3. Click on “Steam Library Folder“.
    Steam - add library folder
  4. Next, click on “Add Library Folder” button on the pop-up dialog box.
  5. Select a different drive on your system and click Select.

  6. Close the Setting window and try to download and install the game with corruption disk error.


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