Experiencing slow download speeds on Steam can be quite frustrating, especially after buying a game you’re excited to play as early as you can.
Unfortunately, Steam users often deal with a bug causing download speeds to drop to 0 bytes, resulting in unfinished downloads and a lot of wasted time.
To help with this, we researched and tried many potential solutions and selected the most effective ones for overcoming this problem. The even better news? We’ll tell you all about it in the guide below.
Let’s jump right in.
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The Problem Explained
When your download speed drops to 0 bytes, the problem that needs solving is already obvious. But, what often leaves users confused is that the download starts with the expected download speeds, then sharply drops to zero, and remains like that until the bug is resolved.
Users often blame themselves for doing something that causes the download speed to drop so quickly. This leads to them searching for the cause of the problem in the wrong place when it’s usually just a bug on Steam.
The image below is what users see in their Steam downloads dashboard when dealing with the Steam 0 bytes download problem.
With that said, let’s take a look at the solutions and solve this problem so you can successfully download and enjoy your favorite games on Steam once more.
Things To Do Before Attempting The Fixes
If the problem is on your end, there are a few quick things to check before moving on to the more complex solutions. This will help you save time if one of these ends up fixing the problem for you.
Here’s what you should try:
1. Check Your Bandwidth Usage
Make sure you (or other people) are not using your bandwidth for a different purpose (such as downloading a movie, watching a live stream, or downloading another game simultaneously).
This is especially important if you share your network with multiple people, such as roommates or family members who use the internet frequently.
2. Test Your Actual Connection
Check if other websites/services are working as intended, and test your connection’s performance using SpeedTest or Fast. If other services or websites also feel sluggish, then the problem is likely related to your connection rather than Steam.
3. Restart Steam
Lastly, you should also restart Steam and see if it makes any difference. Then, restart your router, wait five minutes, launch Steam and then try again. See if this changes anything.
If none of these actions resolve the problem, continue with the fixes listed below.
Fix 1: Clear Steam’s Download Cache
Multiple users confirmed this to be a simple yet effective solution for the 0 bytes Steam download problem.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Open the Steam client on your PC and sign in to your account.
- In the top-left corner, click on Steam, then choose Settings to open the main settings panel.
- From the menu on the left, choose Downloads.
- Click on Clear Download Cache at the bottom.
Below the button for clearing Steam’s download cache is a tip from Steam saying that this action can resolve issues when downloading or starting apps.
This is the easiest solution that has a high probability of success, which is why we recommend trying it first before the others.
If it doesn’t work for you, there are still a few more methods you can try.
Fix 2: Execute The “wpr-cancel” Command
At first glance, this seems like a complicated solution, but it’s really as easy as typing a few lines in the command prompt, which is all that’s required.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Open the Windows search bar and type in “Command Prompt.” Right-click the first result and select Run as Administrator.
- When the Command Prompt starts, type in: sc config” DiagTrack” start=disabled and press Enter on your keyboard.
- Then, type: sc stop “DiagTrack” and press Enter on your keyboard again.
This will solve the issue and enable you to keep downloading your games at a regular pace. Nonetheless, remember that the solution is temporary, and you will have to repeat it whenever you open Steam if the problem happens again.
Hopefully, you won’t encounter this problem too often.
Fix 3: Change Your Steam Download Region
It’s really easy to change your Steam download region, yet it can help you solve the problem that is preventing you from downloading your games with ease.
Here’s how to do it:
- Open Steam on your PC and sign in to your account.
- In the top-left corner, click Steam and then Settings.
- Once the panel opens, choose Downloads from the menu on the left side.
- Change your download region to a different one, but try to keep it as close as possible to your real location.
Steam automatically picks the nearest server location. However, if you are experiencing issues, feel free to change the download location manually by following the steps above. This isn’t a permanent change and you can switch back and forth as many times as you want.
Fix 4: Use A VPN
In some cases, using a VPN to mask and re-route your connection can help you regain the ability to download your steam games at normal speeds. Although the download speed will vary greatly based on your VPN provider’s server performance, you can still give it a try, and any speed is better than 0 bytes per second.
If you are unsure which VPN to choose, we have a helpful guide covering this topic thoroughly which should prove useful.
Using Steam via a VPN is perfectly safe and won’t get you into any trouble.
You now know how to fix the issue with Steam downloads dropping to 0 bytes. Although all these methods are easy-to-follow and don’t take much time, sometimes the problem is simply on Steam’s end, in which case they won’t be able to change anything.
It is rarely the case, but if the problem is with Steam’s servers, the only thing you can do is wait until it’s all resolved and the servers are back up and operational again.
To clarify, you can use Steamstat.us to check whether Steam’s services are performing as intended.