Steam mainly focuses on providing a friendly experience to those looking to download and play games with just a few clicks. Undeniably, it has one of the best social concepts compared with any other gaming-related platform.
And when you think of the best way to unite gamers, you think of Steam.
With that being said, when your Steam Friend Network is down and displays an error, the experience on this platform becomes a lot less enjoyable, especially if you prefer playing games for the social factor.
The good news? This issue is common, easy to solve, and the guide below has all the solutions you need.
Fix 1: Modify Steam’s Shortcut Properties
Since there’s been no official answer from Steam regarding this issue, users have experimented and developed solutions of their own.
One of the most efficient methods to solve the Steam friend network down error is to modify the shortcut properties, and here’s how you can do that.
- Right-click your Steam Shortcut and click on “Properties” in the menu that shows up.
- In the panel that’s now on your screen, find “Shortcut” and click it.
- Now in the field where it says “Target:” type in “-nofriendsui” without the quotation marks.
- Don’t forget to click Apply and then OK to save the settings.
Please note that you shouldn’t delete anything in the field. Just add the “-nofriendsui” as a separate function. The image below is an example of how the final result should look.
A Reddit user found this solution, and you can see the original thread here.
Now, according to the comments in the Reddit thread, if adding “-nofriendsui” doesn’t solve the issue for you, adding “-nochatui” along with it might help.
Make sure to add them as separate functions, with a “Space Bar” in-between.
Fix 2: Clear Steam’s Cookies And Cache From Within The Client
According to Steam users, this method is a viable solution for the problem you’re experiencing. You can clear Steam’s browser cookies and cache by following the steps below.
- Start Steam on your PC and log in with your credentials.
- Then, in the top-right corner, click on Steam and then choose Settings from the menu.
- On the left side of your screen, select Web Browser to open the required panel.
- Here you’ll see two options, Delete Web Browser Cache and Delete All Browser Cookies.
- Clearing both of them should help you solve the problem. Then, restart Steam to see if it did.
If you are still getting the Friends Network Unreachable error, check the remaining solutions in this guide.
Fix 3: Opt Out Of Steam’s Beta Mode
The beta version of Steam is known to have some bugs and errors, which is quite normal as it is not considered a “stable” version of the client.
Beta versions are for users who want the privilege of experiencing the new features and changes before other users do. But, of course, they do so with the possibility of experiencing a few issues here and there.
If you are currently using the Beta Version of Steam’s client, it may be a good time to opt-out of it to fix the Friends Network Unreachable Error.
Here’s how you can do that.
- Log into your Steam account and navigate to the Steam button in the top-right corner.
- Click on Steam and then on Settings. The panel will open, and you should click on Account.
- Under the Beta participation tab, select “NONE – Opt-out of all beta programs.”
Save the changes and exit the program. Restart Steam and the problem should now be gone.
Fix 4: Use A VPN To See If The Problem Is Related To Your ISP
If none of the above methods solves your issue, you should use a VPN to see if the problem is related to your ISP (Internet Service Provider).
It’s not uncommon for ISP’s to block certain services in some countries. Even if this might be temporary, knowing whether or not the problem is on your ISP’s end will save you a lot of time and stress.
If you’re unsure which VPN to choose, we have a buying guide that expertly covers the topic in detail.
VPNs can help you stay secure on the internet and ensure you have a better connection to game servers in some locations.
The methods above should help you solve the Steam Friends Network Unreachable problem. While there’s no official answer from Steam about this particular issue on their platform, there’s an amazing, hard-working community that often manages to bring brilliant new ideas and solutions to the table.
Please note that the problem may sometimes be on your end, so be sure to check your internet connection before attempting to fix the issue!