Steam VR Opens By Itself: How to Fix It In No Time

Ensure there are no Steam processes running in the background

by Claire Moraa
Claire Moraa
Claire Moraa
Author
Claire likes to think she's got a knack for solving problems and improving the quality of life for those around her. Driven by the forces of rationality, curiosity,... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
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  • Sometimes, SteamVR may keep opening itself even after you close it several times without you launching the application.
  • This is abnormal behavior that can be caused by a virus infection or a bug in the latest Windows update.
  • A quick workaround would be to restart your PC or restart the VR service.

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SteamVR is a virtual reality software platform by Valve corporation. It allows users to access various games, videos, and other content. However, some users have reported that their Steam VR keeps opening by itself, particularly after updating Windows.

There are also many other SteamVR errors you may encounter while playing games. If so, then our article detailing these errors and their possible fixes will be a great place to find some reprieve.

Why does Steam VR keep opening by itself?

If you’re wondering why there’s a SteamVR pop-up that appears frequently on your screen, below are some possible reasons:

  • App has crashed – It is possible that the application has crashed and needs to be restarted.
  • Firewall/antivirus settings – Antivirus programs and firewalls can interfere with SteamVR when running in the background.
  • Background apps – If you have any background apps that are using Steam, the app will keep opening itself until you stop the background processes.
  • A Windows bug – If you have recently updated your OS, it may contain some bugs that are causing this behavior.
  • Permissions not granted – If some apps require Steam to grant permission, the pop-up will keep making an appearance until you fulfill this request.
  • Steam VR is part of Startup apps – If Steam VR opens automatically when your computer starts up, it is because it has been configured to do so. You can easily disable startup programs from Task Manager.
  • App conflicts –  There are some programs in Windows that can cause SteamVR to open automatically when you start your PC. 
  • Virus infection – A virus may have found its way to your system and made some abnormal changes causing problems with SteamVR. You’ll need a high-performance antivirus to come to your aid.

How do I stop Steam VR from opening by itself?

Before you try out any advanced troubleshooting, the following may be able to help:

  • Close any background apps.
  • Restart your computer to clear all the temporary files from the memory. Here’s what to do if your PC restarts automatically.

1. Close any Steam processes  

  1. Hit the Windows key, type Task Manager in the search bar then click Open.
  2. Navigate to the Processes tab, right-click on any Steam process, and End task.end steam process

2. Run SteamVR as administrator

  1. Locate the Steam shortcut or the launcher file. It should be on the installation location, or you can use search from the search icon on the Taskbar: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\SteamVR
  2. Right-click and choose Run as administrator.

The main reason is that it allows you to install and play games that require administrative rights. If you try to install them, Windows will ask you for permission and then automatically deny it. This is where running Steam as an administrator comes in handy.

3. Rename the OpenVR file

  1. Hit the Windows + E keys to open File Explorer.
  2. Type %localappdata% in the address bar and hit Enter.
  3. Locate the openvr file and delete it. The best option would be to copy the original file to a different location and then rename the file in the folder in case you’ll need it in future.

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According to users who went with this route, SteamVR stopped opening itself. The downside is that it makes it look like you have uninstalled SteamVR and you may be unable to launch some games. If you feel this is too invasive, you can forego this step and move to the next one.

4. Restart the VR service

  1. Hit the Windows key, type Task Manager in the search bar then click Open.
  2. Find the process called vrserver.exe and select it.ending vrserverexe task manager windows 11
  3. Click on End Task to quit this process.

5. Reinstall Steam VR

  1. Hit the Windows key and select Settings.settings windows 11
  2. Click on Apps then select Apps & features.
  3. Type Steam in the search bar, click on the three ellipses then select Uninstall.steam-uninstall could not connect to steam network
  4. Once the app is uninstalled, restart your computer and wait for it to startup.
  5. Visit the official Steam Download Page and download the latest version of Steam

If SteamVR is not working correctly, you may need to reinstall it. You may have installed an incompatible version, or it somehow got corrupted.

There you have it. That’s how to successfully stop SteamVR from opening itself every time you log in to your PC. Some users also reported issues where SteamVR opens when playing Roblox so as a workaround, you can try the above methods or switch to another browser.

To that effect, we have a cool recommendation of some of the best SteamVR web browsers that you should take a look at if you want to take your VR experience to the next level.

We’d love to hear about any other tips that helped you solve this problem in the comment section below.

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