[RESOLVED] Tranfering Steam files onto external hard drive??
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Thread: [RESOLVED] Tranfering Steam files onto external hard drive??

  1. #1
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    Thumbs up [RESOLVED] Tranfering Steam files onto external hard drive??

    Hi all, I will try to sum this up the fastest way I can. My son is in Afghanistan right now, very little is available to him where he is, some Wifi but cuts in and out a lot. Issue is the hard drive on his 3 month old Hp Envy M6 died. Hp is mailing him a new one as we speak but the problem is he is a gamer and its close to being his whole life. He spent 2 weeks before he deployed downloading games off steam so he would have them in Afghanistan. So since the hard drive died, all his games are lost. He can not download them with the wifi over there as it would take weeks to do just one game. So I am looking for solutions. Can I order a external hard drive and download his games on them and then send him the hard drive? I am a ignorant newb to steam. Someone told me I could download the files that are in his cloud onto the external hard drive and that should work, but geek squad from best buy said no it wouldnt.
    Any ideas? The poor kid is just distraut....

  2. #2
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    No one? Should I post this somewhere else?

  3. #3
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    It should work, here's a procedure to move Steam game files : https://support.steampowered.com/kb_...7418-YUBN-8129

    Basically, you'll need to install Steam, log in with your son's credentials, download the games he wants and then copy the Steam folder on the external hard drive. He'll then just need to transfer the Steam folder on his new hard drive (running straight from the external will be too slow) and log in with his account.

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  4. #4
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    Thank you for the response. According to the link you gave me it says not to transfer to external hard drive for performance issues, do you think this is if you try to play the game from the external? Also, my sons laptop has windows 8 and we do not have any computers at home that are windows 8, is there any issues with this?
    This is my understanding, he has downloaded tons of games thru steam, there is a cloud that contains them all. There is a file thru steam that I can grab and transfer onto the external hard drive and then send this hard drive to him. Or will I need to install all the games on a different computer and then transfer those files to the external?

    I guess I better get on line and order the external hard drive and just go from there. If this does not work, then he will just have to mail me the laptop and I will install everything from my house and mail him back the laptop.

    I appreciate the help very much!

  5. #5
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    If the external HDD is usb 3.0 compliant and 7200 rpm's, you shouldn't notice performance issues imo. It sounds like your son has a pretty recent laptop. I use Steam all the time, but I am not sure how much they save to the "cloud". All my games are stored locally; maybe the game's settings are stored in the cloud?

    It's kind of disturbing our government can't give our soldiers better internet access. I know they are in the middle of nowhere, but come on...
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  6. #6
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    Thank you for the response. According to the link you gave me it says not to transfer to external hard drive for performance issues, do you think this is if you try to play the game from the external?
    Yes, I guessed from your post that he had a new drive in the laptop, so he can copy the games to it from the external drive and keep it as a backup. Running games directly from an external drive would be doable but possibly slower, and with USB3 you might get higher CPU usage.

    Also, my sons laptop has windows 8 and we do not have any computers at home that are windows 8, is there any issues with this?
    It should not cause issues. Steam has its own structure inside its folder in Program Files, and it's probably the same for all Windows OSes.

    This is my understanding, he has downloaded tons of games thru steam, there is a cloud that contains them all. There is a file thru steam that I can grab and transfer onto the external hard drive and then send this hard drive to him.
    There isn't really a "file" containing all games he has, it's a separate download for each game. Basically, the games you have bought are shown in a list, and you download/install the ones you want when you want to play them, and can uninstall them later when you are finished with them or want to free space on your drive. What is referred as Steam Cloud is a service to keep game saves and screenshots on the cloud so they are available across multiple computers from the same account. Games themselves are downloaded individually and stored inside the Steam folder, which is the one you'll need to transfer.

    Or will I need to install all the games on a different computer and then transfer those files to the external?
    Yes, that was basically my procedure in my previous post Mailing the laptop would work as well, but I'd take precautions as USPS had a ban about shipping Lithium battery-equipped devices to APOs. The ban was apparently recently lifted but there still might be some restrictions in place.
    Last edited by equinoxe3d; March 28th, 2013 at 08:41 PM.

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  7. #7
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    Thank you for that response, I am sorry I never got notice that you sent it. I was just coming back on to ask one more question and found this.

    I have never used the external hard drive myself. I was looking at a drive called Advantek, it has a waterproof and drop proof case for protection. It states operating systems supported up to windows 7. I was told that windows 7 and 8 are basically the same, except 8 allows touch screen?

    Also, I can not find a 7200 rpm drive, most with the 2.5 format are 5200rpm. Big difference here? Since he will only be transfering files and not playing off of it, that should not be an issue right?

    Lastly, just to show my ignorance here, you do not load the operating system onto the drive right? I did find where people were trying to use the external as a replacement for a system hard drive, but that is not what I need this to do so I just wanted to veryify this.

    I really appreciate your responses, nice to have a place to go where experts are willing to share there knowlegde!

  8. #8
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    I was told that windows 7 and 8 are basically the same, except 8 allows touch screen?
    Yep, that's pretty much it. Most modern OSes (XP and above) will recognize external hard drives.

    Also, I can not find a 7200 rpm drive, most with the 2.5 format are 5200rpm. Big difference here? Since he will only be transfering files and not playing off of it, that should not be an issue right?
    For transfer it will do just fine, 5400 RPM drives tend to run cooler and quieter which makes them the best candidates for consumer external drives.

    Lastly, just to show my ignorance here, you do not load the operating system onto the drive right? I did find where people were trying to use the external as a replacement for a system hard drive, but that is not what I need this to do so I just wanted to veryify this.
    Nope, once you have downloaded the games you just need to copy the SteamApps folder and Steam.exe (which are by default in C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\) as mentioned in the procedure above. Nothing else is needed; your son will just transfer the content from the external hard drive to his Steam folder on his new laptop. Just send him the link of the procedure and he should be good to go.

    Hope it helps

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