Like many applications, Steam often ends up with problems when it attempts to update various games you may have on the system.
The issue with Steam is either that your “region” is not set correctly (leading to download issues), or that the files of your game are somehow corrupted beyond the ability of the system to rectify them.
The solution is to ensure that your system is able to download from the server, and then that the downloaded files have the correct integrity.
The message which shows with the error is typically as follows:
An error occurred when downloading [[game name]] (corrupt download)…
The solution can be followed here:
1. Change Your Download Region
The first step is to change the download region.
This basically changes which server your system will be attempting to obtain the update from, thus allowing for faster access to the files.
Whilst this may not seem like a major problem, it can cause what’s known as “packet loss” – essentially the corruption of downloadable files:
- Start the Steam application
- From the “Steam” menu, select “Settings” > “Downloads”
- Select a different – but still relatively close – download region
- Also click on the “Clear download cache” button
- Click “OK”
- When Steam suggests you “Restart Steam”, click the button
- Let the system reload
- Try letting the download run again
This should resolve the issue. If it doesn’t it likely means you either have application that’s throttling the connection, or your Internet is experiencing issues.
2. Ensure That Steam Is Permitted by Antivirus
The next step is to ensure that Steam is permitted by any security software you may have.
One of the more common causes of the “corrupt download” error is that Steam’s Internet access will be intermittently cut by the Antivirus system running on your PC.
To ensure this is not the case, you need to “exclude” the Steam application from any security software you have.
Obviously, there are a huge number of antivirus tools out there; I cannot possibly cover all of them.
I can give you general steps, and then obviously the “default” Windows setup:
- General Antivirus
- From the bottom-right area of the Windows taskbar, select the icon representing your antivirus
- Right-click and select “Settings” or similar (some may have Control Panel)
- When you load up the app proper, look for “exclusions”
- Add the following folder: “C:\Program Files\Steam”
- Restart your system and try running the Steam download again
- Windows Defender
- Press on Windows Defender’s icon in the bottom-right of the Windows taskbar
- Select “Virus & threat protection” from the left menu
- Click on “Virus & threat protection settings”
- Scroll down to “Exclusions”
- Add the folder “C:/Program Files/Steam”
3. Repair Local Game Files
Finally, you can use several inbuilt settings to repair Steam’s local files.
To do this, you can follow the steps below:
- Load up Steam
- Select “Library”
- Scroll down to the game causing problems
- Right-click on the game and select “Properties”
- Select the “Local Files” tab
- Click on “Verify Integrity of Game Cache”
- If any problems are identified, Steam will resolve them
- Try letting the game download again
- Restart your PC
- Try playing the game again
This typically resolves any instances of corrupted games within the Steam library (which often contribute to the corrupted downloads error).
If further instances of the error persist, you’ll want to go to the Steam forums to see if anyone else has a set of steps to follow.
If you need more specific help, you’ll want to look at Microsoft Answers (although they won’t be too helpful for specific application errors), or Reddit would also be beneficial. If you’re prepared to pay, you’ll find decent repair guys on the likes of Fiverr.