Downloading Steam games is easy, but choosing where to install them can be tricky if you are trying to manage your system’s storage space.
By default, Steam creates a directory where users can download all the files necessary to launch a game. Users can change this location or create an additional one if required.
This can be confusing if you have never done it before, but this guide explains it in detail. If you want to move your Steam games to a different drive, read on to learn more.
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1. Creating A New Steam Install Directory
To move your Steam games to another drive, you first have to create a new install directory. You will need to do this via the Steam client, so make sure it is on your PC before starting the process.
Follow the steps below.
- Open Steam on your PC and click on Steam, which is in the top-left corner of your screen, then Settings. Look at the image below if you can’t find them.
- In the panel that opens, choose Downloads, then click on the Steam Library Folders button on the right side.
- You will now see a configuration panel on your screen. Here, you need to click Add Library Folder to open the path-selection window.
- Choose your preferred location by using the path-selection tool and create the new directory. The panel is quite self-explanatory and doesn’t require any prior experience with Steam.
Note: Make sure you create the directory on a different drive, not a different folder on the same drive.
- When you’ve done this, the new directory will appear in your list of Steam Library Folders. The next time you start a game download, you will be able to choose this directory as your preferred installation location.
- You can now close the panels you opened during this process and move on to the next step, transferring the game files.
2. Moving Your Game Files To The New Library
Now that you have created your new Steam library folder, it’s time to start transferring your games. You can do that by following the steps below.
- Open the Steam client and click Library on the top menu.
- Right-click the game you want to move to a different drive and select Properties.
- The General tab will open. Select Local Files from the left-side menu and then click Move install folder, which should be the last option on the list.
- Select your preferred location from the dropdown menu and confirm your choice by clicking the Move Folder button.
Wait a few moments, then repeat the process for any other games you want to transfer to a different drive.
Note: The speed at which the process completes depends on your system’s performance, mainly the CPU and disk.
Reasons To Move Your Steam Games To A Different Drive
Other than the obvious storage-saving reasons, there are other benefits to transferring your Steam games to a faster drive, such as an SSD.
Games with longer loading times will benefit greatly from faster disk drives. You might also see better in-game performance if you have previously noticed textures loading slowly while playing.
Examples of such games include:
- Call of Duty: Warzone
- GTA V
- The Witcher 3
- Cities: Skylines
- Civilization VI
If you look closely at the list of recommended system requirements, at least for some of the newer titles, you will notice that the developers suggest installing the game on an SSD (Solid State Drive) instead of a regular HDD (Hard Disk Drive).
Moving your Steam games to a different drive can have clear benefits and also helps to reduce the overall load on your main system partition.
Now that you know how to do this, you can feel free to install a new SSD or HDD in your system, without worrying about wasting time and bandwidth re-downloading your Steam library.