Steam is a renowned video game distribution service that allows users to easily access popular games. This app has been around for over two decades now, and it has about 120 million active monthly users. However, even with all its popularity, Steam isn’t perfect as it sometimes disappoints users with random connectivity issues. If you are here, you have probably encountered the recent “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
This error mostly appears when trying to log in to your Steam account, preventing you from accessing any game. Luckily, you can apply a few proven methods to fix the problem. In today’s post, we will show you how to eliminate this Steam network connection error in Windows 10.
What Causes the “Steam Is Having Trouble Connecting to the Steam Servers” Error?
Below are the most likely reasons why you may be experiencing this error on your Windows PC:
- Lack of administrative permissions
- UDP protocols
- Misconfigured or broken internet connection settings
- An outdated network adapter driver
Thankfully, the tips below will help resolve the error irrespective of the cause.
How to Fix “Steam Is Having Trouble Connecting to the Steam Servers”
Before applying any complicated methods, we suggest you first restart your PC. Doing so refreshes your apps and gets rid of corrupt temporary files that may trigger issues. If that does not work, you can proceed to the provided tactics below.
Fix 1: Restart Your Wi-Fi Router
If your internet connection is poor, you will likely experience issues when launching Steam. Restarting your Wi-Fi router can help clear its memory and boost your Wi-Fi speeds, enabling you to easily connect to the Steam servers.
These steps will guide you through restarting your Wi-Fi router:
- Unplug the router from the socket.
- Wait for about one minute for the device to cool down.
- Then plug it back in.
- Reconnect your computer to Wi-Fi and then check for the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
Fix 2: Check Whether Steam Servers Are Down
Steam schedules its maintenance on Tuesdays, especially in the afternoons, to add new features and resolve bugs. Therefore, if you try to log in to your Steam account during this time, you might face the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error. To check if this is the case, visit this site.
If the servers are down, you just have to wait for the maintenance to be over and then log in. Luckily, the maintenance takes less than 20 minutes. However, if the servers are up and running, then the issue is on your side. So, try the next method below to continue troubleshooting.
Fix 3: End Steam Background Operations
Ending background operations has also been observed to help Steam start with a clean slate, thereby eliminating the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
To perform the procedure, follow these steps:
- Use the Windows logo key + X combination to bring up the Quick Access menu.
- Choose Task Manager.
- When a new window opens, scroll down the list and locate all Steam services that you can see. To end a task, right-click on it and select “End task” at the bottom.
- Do the same for all the other Steam services on the list.
- Once done, close the Task Manager.
- Now launch Steam and check if the error in question will reappear.
Fix 4: Run Steam as an Administrator
Like other programs, Steam also needs access to crucial system files to function properly. When the app doesn’t have the permission to use these files, it is likely to act up, thus displaying the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
To prevent this from happening, run Steam as an administrator. Use this procedure to do so:
- Right-click on Steam’s desktop shortcut.
- Select Properties.
- Switch to the Compatibility tab and then head to the Settings section.
- Select the “Run this program as an administrator” checkbox.
- Click on the Apply button and then choose OK to save the modifications.
- Launch Steam.
Fix 5: Update the Network Adapter Driver
Your network adapter driver is usually responsible for the seamless communication between the computer and your network connection. If this adapter is corrupted, outdated, or missing, you’ll likely encounter connection problems when logging in to Steam.
You can update the network adapter driver via these two ways:
We will discuss both approaches below so that you can choose the most suitable one for you.
Here is how to manually update this driver:
- Hit the Windows logo key + S to open Search.
- Type “device manager” (no quotes) into the Windows search box. Then select Open on the right side of the window.
- When the Device Manager opens, expand the “Network adapters” section.
- Right-click on your network adapter and select “Update driver”.
- Click on “Search automatically for drivers”.
- Wait for the process to complete, and then restart your Windows PC.
- Open Steam and check if your issue has been solved.
To automatically update your network adapter driver, you need a reliable automatic driver updater. Most Windows users prefer this method due to its reliability and simplicity.
You can use a professional driver updater such as Auslogics Driver Updater for this. Driver Updater automatically scans your computer and then provides a detailed report on all the discovered outdated and corrupted drivers. This enables you to quickly tell which drivers need attention and fix them in advance to avoid random errors. What’s more, this unique tool backs up your device drivers before updating them. Doing this allows you to easily restore previous driver versions if need be.
Resolve PC Issues with Driver Updater
Unstable PC performance is often caused by outdated or corrupt drivers. Auslogics Driver Updater diagnoses driver issues and lets you update old drivers all at once or one at a time to get your PC running smoother
Fix 6: Allow Steam Through Your Firewall
Windows Defender usually filters network traffic to and from your device. It then blocks communication from any program it deems harmful. Doing so helps keep your device secure from malicious apps. However, Windows Defender might sometimes block the operations of Steam, triggering the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
Whitelisting Steam in Windows Defender can enable it to run without further limitations.
Use this simple guide to do that:
- Press the Windows logo + R keyboard combo to open the Run dialog box.
- Type in “control firewall.cpl” (without the quotes) and then hit the Enter key.
- Under Control Panel Home, click on the “Allow an app or feature through Windows Defender Firewall” link.
- On the next screen, scroll down the “Allowed apps and features” section and locate “Steam”.
- Select the “Private” and “Public” checkboxes.
- Click on the OK button to save the changes.
- Then check if the error has been removed from your device.
Is the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error still hindering you from accessing Steam? Don’t panic. The next tip might help.
Fix 7: Flush Your DNS and Renew Your IP
When you visit a certain domain, your PC stores its IP address and other unique information about it. Your computer then uses the cached data to help speed up the process of reopening that domain. However, this stored info gets corrupted over time, causing strange issues, such as the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error.
Clearing your DNS cache could help your machine initiate a better connection with the Steam servers, thus resolving your problem.
Here is how to go about it:
- Press the Windows logo key and type “cmd” (no quotes) into the search box.
- Right-click on “Command Prompt” and choose “Run as administrator”.
- Select Yes in the UAC (User Account Control) confirmation box.
- Once the Command Prompt opens, type in “ipconfig /flushdns” (without quotes). Then press Enter.
You also need to renew your IP. You can do so by following these instructions:
- Press the Win + R shortcut to bring up the Run dialog box.
- Type in “cmd” (without quotes) and then press the Ctrl + Shift + Enter combination.
- Select Yes in the UAC prompt and type “ipconfig /release” (no quotes) into the CMD window. Then hit Enter.
- Finally, type in “ipconfig /renew” (without quotes). Then press Enter.
- Once you are done, open Steam and check if the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error has been resolved.
Fix 8: Reset Winsock
Winsock is a Windows API (Application Programming Interface) that enables Windows programs to easily access the internet. This catalog might sometimes contain corrupted entries, which may trigger the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error on your machine. Resetting Winsock and its related registry settings could resolve your issue.
This guide will show you how to reset Winsock on your computer:
- Press the Windows logo key + S combination to bring up the Windows search bar.
- When it opens, type in “cmd” (without the quotes).
- Then select “Run as administrator”, which is located on the right side of the window.
- Choose Yes in the confirmation box and then type “netsh winsock reset” (no quotes) into the Command Prompt window.
- Then hit the Enter key.
- Next, type in “netsh winteep reset proxy” (no quotes) and then press Enter.
- Exit the CMD window once you are done.
- Check for the error in question.
Fix 9: Modify Some Steam Properties
According to some users, TCP protocols are more reliable and secure than UDP protocols. They add that using TCP protocols allows them to easily access their Steam accounts and play their favorite games without much hassle.
You can also try this method by following this quick procedure:
- Press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc combination to open the Task Manager.
- Go to the Startup tab. Here, you need to disable all enabled startup programs.
- To do so, right-click on every startup app and then click on the Enable button at the bottom.
- Reboot your Windows PC.
- Next, right-click on Steam’s desktop shortcut and choose Properties.
- When the Properties window opens, switch to the Shortcut tab.
- Go to the Target field and add a space at the end. Then type in “-tcp” (without quotes).
- Choose Apply and then click on the OK button.
The “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error should now be gone from your computer. However, if it is still giving you a headache, try the last method below.
Fix 10: Reinstall Steam
If none of the above troubleshooting methods has removed the “Steam is having trouble connecting to the Steam servers” error from your device, then you have no choice but to reinstall Steam. Doing so helped most people in the same situation eliminate the issue, and we hope it’ll work for you as well.
Here is how to apply this solution:
- Use the Win key + I combo to launch the Settings application.
- Go to Apps.
- Scroll down the Apps & Features window and locate Steam.
- Select it and click on the Uninstall button.
- Follow any further instructions to complete the process.
- When the app is completely uninstalled, reboot your computer.
- Now, to reinstall Steam on your PC, visit the app’s download page. Then click on the INSTALL STEAM button.
- Locate the downloaded file in your downloads folder and double-click on it.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation. You should now be able to access your Steam account and play games without further issues.
If you came here wondering how to connect to a Steam server in Windows 10, we hope this article has helped you. However, if you have further questions or suggestions, feel free to comment below. Also, remember to check out our blog for more Windows 10 tips.