How to backup Steam games.

#1 Posted by Yukoei (1878 posts) -

I am changing computers and I dont want to download some steam games again (mainly big ones such as Fallout 3, Dead Space etc) 
 
How do I copy the steam games to an external hardrive so I dont have to download them again?
 
PS: Save files arent hghly needed but I wouldnt mine having them.

#2 Posted by DJ_Lae (629 posts) -

Copy your entire steamapps folder to the drive and then copy it over to the other computer. Steam should automatically repopulate your games list, although it might take a while as it trundles along and verifies them all. 
 
Alternatively you could use Steam's built-in backup function, but it would take a lot longer. 
 
Most saves should be in the steamapps folder, but also copy your CurrentUser/Documents folder as some games dump their save files there.
#3 Posted by Yukoei (1878 posts) -
@DJ_Lae said:
" Copy your entire steamapps folder to the drive and then copy it over to the other computer. Steam should automatically repopulate your games list, although it might take a while as it trundles along and verifies them all.  Alternatively you could use Steam's built-in backup function, but it would take a lot longer.  Most saves should be in the steamapps folder, but also copy your CurrentUser/Documents folder as some games dump their save files there. "
I only want to copy a few, what do I do then? I mean there are files all over the fucking place and they seem important.
#4 Posted by DJ_Lae (629 posts) -

If you just want a couple backed up, go to steamapps/common and pick and choose the folders you want. Then when you install Steam on the other computer just dump those back into steamapps/common.
#5 Posted by Yukoei (1878 posts) -
@DJ_Lae said:

" If you just want a couple backed up, go to steamapps/common and pick and choose the folders you want. Then when you install Steam on the other computer just dump those back into steamapps/common. "

How about the files sitting inside the steamapps file?
 
For eg:
 
 dead space content.ncf
 dead space english.ncf
 
are files sitting in my steamapps folder, if I wanted to get Dead Space working would I have to copy them to or only the folder in common?
#6 Edited by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -
@Yukoei: 
 
For convenience sake you can just backup the .gcf and .ncf files, so that when you reinstall Steam all you need do is put them back into your Steamapps folder and then Steam will automatically extract the games and their folders as necessary based on what you had already installed in your previously backed up Steam folder.
 
Also if you have a network or portable hard drive just copy your entire Steam folder from the old one place it anywhere you'd prefer it to be on your new PC.  Then download and install the Steam client on the new machine and tell it to install into the Steam folder you copied your backed up Steam on the new machine.  It doesn't have to be put in Program Files.  Steam will automatically recognise the files and folders and populate yours games list accordingly.
#7 Posted by Yukoei (1878 posts) -
@DJ_Lae said:
" If you just want a couple backed up, go to steamapps/common and pick and choose the folders you want. Then when you install Steam on the other computer just dump those back into steamapps/common. "
@SeriouslyNow said:
" @Yukoei:   For convenience sake you can just backup the .gcf and .ncf files, so that when you reinstall Steam all you need do is put them back into your Steamapps folder and then Steam will automatically extract the games and their folders as necessary based on what you had already installed in your previously backed up Steam folder. "
Thanks to the both of you =)
#8 Posted by Yukoei (1878 posts) -
@DJ_Lae said:
"If you just want a couple backed up, go to steamapps/common and pick and choose the folders you want. Then when you install Steam on the other computer just dump those back into steamapps/common. "

I am having a problem on my new PC. 
 
I downloaded Steam from the website but for some reason there is no Common folder only SourceMod and when in Steam I click on the my games tab and it freezes.
#9 Posted by IncredibleBulk92 (936 posts) -
@Yukoei: Start downloading one of the games, that should create a common folder.  Alternately create it yourself. It should be Steam/steamaps/common. One you've made it shut down steam, copy the files and then start steam back up.
 
I sounds like I  might be a bit late but the ncf files don't seem to be necessary.  I literally copied the game files over and everything worked fine, you just need to leave steam on for an hour or 2 while it checks the files.  If you're looking for save games remember that some are kept in mydocuments/mygames.  Most games store saves in their own directories though so you probably won't find many there.
#10 Posted by GetEveryone (4455 posts) -

Not entirely related, but: When I installed Windows 7 over XP, I opted to create a folder called windows.old, and it stored everything previously on my hard-drive. Problem is now, though, that the previous save I have on Borderlands seems to be corrupted. I can put it in the fodler, it appears on the load page, but as soon as the textures are loaded it hangs. Total pisser, because I'd put in a decent few hours work. My computer has also decided to not recognise the majority of tracks in MediaMonkey wheich is more than a hassle because I had 42 Gigs worth. Sometimes upgrading really just isn't worth it :(

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