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Default Dealing with Steam

February 11th, 2012, 20:24
Skyrim is my first game that uses Steam. I struggle with the Steam client and come here asking for help and/or confirmation on what I am experiencing so far.

Do I understand correctly, I can't install a steam game wherever I want? All steam games must be installed in C:\Program Files\Steam\steamapps\common? I usually like installing my games on my D: drive but so far I seem to have no control where steam installs Skyrim.

My Steam preferences seem to go ignored. I check a box. Next day I notice Steam not starting up at the location I specified or some other oddity. Is it common that Steam preferences do not save or commonly revert back to default settings? I feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone sometimes.

Do I understand correctly that my Steam account has its own Username/Password, the Steam forums have yet their own Username/Password, and finally, Steam Support yet has their own Username/Password. Is that right? If so, just wow.

When Skyrim was patching via steam, all it says is 'downloading update.' Is there a way to specifically know what update is downloading? I hate being in the dark as to what is going on with uploads and downloads. Am I missing something? For example, I would like to see 'Downloding Skyrim Patch 1.4' or something of that nature rather than just 'downloading update.'

Does anyone else feel like it is difficult to find things on the Steam client? Or maybe it's just me? I'm pretty good navigating things but it seems like I'm having a difficult time finding whatever it is I'm looking for. Anyway, just wondering if it's me.

Thanks for any enlightenment you can share.

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February 11th, 2012, 20:36
I installed steam itself to my D:\Games folder, since I too like to have games on my d: disk. All games now install into the d:\games\Steam\Steamapps folder.

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February 11th, 2012, 20:48
\steam\steamapps\common

There you will find all your games. To manually move your steam directory, just copy the entire steam folder to where you wish it to be. Then uninstall steam via the Windows uninstall tool. And reinstall to the appropriate place. Unless they changed it, I dont think you can change the directory without either a registry edit or this aforementioned uninstall.

As for the auto-update stuff, I typically leave mine on except when I don't trust the developer patches (ie., Skyrim). You can disable individual game updates by going into your game library, right-clicking on the game, and selecting properties -> updates.
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February 12th, 2012, 02:18
Regarding the username/passwords, I don't recall having to create separate ones for the forums. As long as I have Steam running, I've always been automatically logged into the forums as well.

I have to admit that I find it hard to dislike Steam nowadays. For the most part, it's been very convenient, and the sales are hard to beat. I also like that they offer a lot of updated older titles that would otherwise be a pita to get running on 64 bit systems.
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February 12th, 2012, 04:16
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I have to admit that I find it hard to dislike Steam nowadays.
I'm not really disliking Steam. I've actually capitulated to the reality that the future of running single player games, now requires a middleware such as Steam, with a constant internet connection.

One thing I do enjoy, is not having to search out for my CD to play a game. If I want to play Skyrim, I can just play.

I'm just trying to play catch-up now, trying to understand this client. Seems like everytime I wonder how to find some piece of information, I'm stumped in that I cannot find it, or that it takes me so long to find it.

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February 12th, 2012, 04:54
Steam has an offline mode for already activated single player games.
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February 12th, 2012, 10:09
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I have to admit that I find it hard to dislike Steam nowadays.
Me too. Until yesterday. Yesterday it managed to make me hate it again .
I wanted to continue playing CoD: MW3 after a longer pause (two weeks… or three?), clicked the shortcut, "preparing to launch"… nothing for a loooong time… then "This game is currently not available" or some crap along those lines.
OK. Fine. Try again. The next couple of times there was just a long "preparing to launch" wait and no error message or anything happening at all.
So next I validated the game files which took a little while and made Steam download "something". It was a very quick download so if something was missing, it must have been very small. I do have automatic updates enabled so that can't have been the issue.
Finally, I was able to get back into the game but had major deja vu when my "last" checkpoint loaded. I was back at the beginning of the level instead of quite a few checkpoints later where I last quit the game. I lost approximately half an hour of progress to this Steam hiccup. So the first thing I did was disable the Steam cloud service which I had enabled for games that support it (MW3 does… well, theoretically) since I could very well imagine that there were some syncing issues at the root of all this.
On a whole not fun at all. This is the exact kind of stuff that just should never ever happen when a game requires a separate client to run…

When Skyrim was patching via steam, all it says is 'downloading update.' Is there a way to specifically know what update is downloading? I hate being in the dark as to what is going on with uploads and downloads. Am I missing something? For example, I would like to see 'Downloding Skyrim Patch 1.4' or something of that nature rather than just 'downloading update.'
You're not really missing anything. You can only check for downloads that occurred during the current Steam session so if you close the Steam client or reboot in between sessions the download history is gone again. From the download page you should be able to tell what Steam downloaded. For example, my Steam downloaded the CoD: MW3 dedicated server this morning. Not sure why since I'm not running a dedicated server but at least I can tell what it downloaded .

Do I understand correctly that my Steam account has its own Username/Password, the Steam forums have yet their own Username/Password, and finally, Steam Support yet has their own Username/Password. Is that right? If so, just wow.
I don't know about Steam support but as far as the client login and the forums are concerned, you need to create different accounts as far as I know (I had to at least) and it is definitely an excellent idea to keep the account name and the forum registration/handle separate in order to avoid brute force attacks on your account. A very recent news post and comments thread on a recent Steam breach can be found here with lots of comments from people who have unsafe account names and get obscure e-mail about account changing attempts (=hack attempts) regularly.
As long as no one knows your Steam account name, no one is going to try to brute force their way into it so it is a good idea to choose an unusual account name and to keep it strictly private.
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February 12th, 2012, 10:10
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
Steam has an offline mode for already activated single player games.
The offline mode still has problems. Its not a perfect example of playing without steam.

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February 12th, 2012, 11:20
Offline mode doesn't work for me.

And I put Steam on E:\. I have to run in by executing steam.exe from E:\Steam. If I run it from the shortcut from Windows Start -> Programs, it sometimes behaves as if it was looking at the C drive and tells me I have no games installed. Horrible software.
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