“Synchronizing Steam Cloud” is Taking Forever

Published by Nyau Wai Hoe - Updated on

Steam Cloud, a feature of the renowned gaming platform Steam, provides gamers with the capability to save their games and related data to the cloud. This tool significantly contributes to the gaming experience by allowing game progress, configurations, and settings to be accessed from different devices. However, some users have been faced with a daunting issue – Steam Cloud synchronizing taking forever. This article aims to explore the causes of this issue, offer solutions, and propose best practices to minimize the occurrence of this problem.

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Synchronizing Steam Cloud is Taking Forever

What is Steam Cloud Synchronization?

Steam Cloud is a feature offered by Steam, the prominent digital distribution platform for video games. The feature enables users to store their game data and personal configurations on a cloud server. It is instrumental in maintaining your game progress consistent across different devices. However, sometimes the synchronization process may seem to take forever. Before we delve into the potential reasons and solutions for this issue, it’s vital to understand how the process works.

When you finish playing a game on Steam, the client initiates the synchronization process, saving any new data or changes to your existing game files to the Steam Cloud. It ensures that the next time you play the game, either on the same or different device, you can pick up right where you left off.

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Steam synchronizing cloud forever

What causes slow syncing of Steam Cloud?

If you’ve noticed that your “Steam Cloud Sync” is taking longer than usual, it could be due to several reasons:

  1. Network connection problems: A sluggish or unstable internet connection is one of the most common causes of a slow Steam Cloud sync. The speed of synchronization is directly proportional to your internet connection speed.
  2. Large game files: Sometimes, the size of the game files can be a hurdle. Games with large save files or those that store a significant amount of data can take longer to sync.
  3. Local disk errors: Disk errors on your local system can hinder the synchronization process. If your game files are located on a part of your hard drive with bad sectors or disk errors, it can slow down the synchronization.
  4. Server issues: Occasionally, the problem might be on Steam’s side. If their servers are down or undergoing maintenance, this could affect the synchronization process, making it seem like it’s taking forever.

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Solutions to Steam Cloud Sync taking forever

Here are a few steps you can take if your Steam Cloud synchronization is taking longer than it should:

Checking your Internet connection

Begin by diagnosing your internet connection. You can perform a simple speed test using online tools like Ookla’s Speedtest. If the speed is subpar, try resetting your router or modem. Disconnect it from the power source for a minute and then reconnect it. If the issue persists, contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) for further assistance.

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Internet Connection Speed Test

Disable and re-enable Steam Cloud Synchronization

A seemingly drastic yet effective solution can be disabling and re-enabling Steam Cloud synchronization for the specific game. However, exercise caution as this method could result in losing unsynchronized game progress.

  1. In your Steam library, right-click on the problematic game and select “Properties”.Open Steam Game Properties
  2. Navigate to the “General” tab, where you will find the option “Keep games saves in the Steam Cloud for [game]”. Uncheck this option.Disable Steam Cloud Synchronization
  3. Exit and restart Steam for the changes to take effect.
  4. Repeat the steps but this time, re-enable the Steam Cloud synchronization by checking the box.Enable Keep games saves in the Steam Cloud

Remember, it’s recommended to back up your game files before trying this method.

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Disabling Steam Cloud Synchronization entirely for a game

If you’re finding the synchronization issue too persistent for a particular game, and you don’t necessarily need the game data to be stored on the Cloud, you might want to consider disabling Steam Cloud synchronization for that game altogether.

This process would stop the game from syncing to the Steam Cloud, effectively eliminating the synchronization delay. Follow the same steps as mentioned above, but instead of re-enabling the Steam Cloud synchronization, leave the box unchecked.

However, be aware that this method would mean you won’t be able to access your game progress or files from other devices, as they won’t be stored on the Cloud. It’s also important to save any unsynced progress or important game files to a safe location before disabling synchronization, as this process might risk losing any unsynchronized data. This method should be seen as a last resort for games that consistently experience sync issues.

Verifying integrity of game files

Verifying the integrity of game files checks for any local disk errors or corruption in your game files, which might be hindering the sync process. To do this:

  • Navigate to your Steam Library.
  • Right-click on the game that is causing the issue and click on “Properties”.
  • In the Properties window, select the “Local Files” tab and click on “Verify Integrity of Game Files”.Verify integrity of game files on Steam

Steam will then initiate a process of checking all the game files against its master set on the server and will repair or replace any corrupted or extra files.

Check if Steam servers are down

Sometimes, the issue is out of your hands. If Steam’s servers are down or experiencing high traffic, you may encounter syncing delays. You can check the status of Steam’s servers on various websites such as steamstat.us. These platforms provide live updates on server statuses, helping you understand if the problem is a general one or specific to your account.

Check Steam Server Status

Final thoughts

Maintaining your gaming progress is crucial and issues like Steam cloud synchronization taking forever can interfere with that. However, proactive measures can mitigate such issues with Steam Cloud.

Always ensuring a stable internet connection is vital as it promotes smooth data transfer during synchronization. Initiating a synchronization process requires a stable connection to facilitate a smooth and swift data transfer. A fluctuating or weak connection can result in slower synchronization or, worse, data loss.

Proactive management of save files can also help, by regularly deleting unnecessary or old saves, you can prevent excessively large files from slowing down the synchronization process. Lastly, regularly verifying the integrity of your game files can help to identify and rectify any corrupted files which may interfere with synchronization.

Nyau Wai Hoe
Nyau Wai Hoe is the Founder and Chief Editor of WindowsDigitals.com. With a degree in software engineering and over 12 years of experience in the tech support industry, Nyau has established himself as an expert in the field, with a primary focus on the Microsoft Windows operating system. As a tech enthusiast, he loves exploring new technologies and leveraging them to solve real-life problems.

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