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Old 04-14-2012, 12:34 PM   #1
DirtyHarry50
 
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Backing up and Restoring Steam library of Games

I'm getting a new computer and need to backup and restore about a terabyte of Steam games. I have a USB external hard disc I can backup the entire Steam folder to but I am anticipating some issues as many games invoke DirectX, PhysX, Visual C++ Runtime, etc. installers when they are first run. The new system will need this stuff for the games to work. What I am wondering about is if I run Verify Cache on all the games after the restore to a fresh Windows 7 install drive, will Steam notice this stuff is missing and rerun the first time setups after?

I do not want to redownload a terabyte of stuff! So I hope there is some better way to deal with this.

The other thought is to run the generic DirectX installer from Microsoft but I don't know if this will include all the various specific DirectX DLLs various games require. Likewise, I'd just grab the Visual C++ runtimes and install them as well as the latest Nvidia PhysX. This would probably work for a lot of stuff but maybe not everything?

Lastly, some games seem to install on first run some other odds and ends, Dragon Age Origins Ultimate comes to mind. I think EA installs some service or something when that game first runs.

How does one properly backup and restore a very large Steam installation?
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Old 04-14-2012, 12:37 PM   #2
GamerVer05
 
 
 
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By doing exactly like you said copy paste.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:17 PM   #3
TeKraken
 
 
 
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Yup copy and paste.
Be sure to revoke any DRM that can be revoked before uninstalling any games that have it.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:08 PM   #4
Kanucmee
 
 
 
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https://support.steampowered.com/kb_...7418-YUBN-8129

Regarding your question about the games: All of the required installation files are located on your hard drive. If you move everything over, nothing is needed to be downloaded, as it will install from the files in your steamapps folder.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:41 PM   #5
DirtyHarry50
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanucmee View Post
https://support.steampowered.com/kb_...7418-YUBN-8129

Regarding your question about the games: All of the required installation files are located on your hard drive. If you move everything over, nothing is needed to be downloaded, as it will install from the files in your steamapps folder.
Thank you for the link but I'd already read that. It does address moving a Steam installation but it does not address moving it to a new computer that wouldn't have any of the supporting files a given game might need installed, already in place, such as misc. runtimes, DRMs, specific DirectX DLLs, etc.

I did poke around and noticed all this stuff does seem to be installed with each game within the Steamapps folder so I suppose you could install it manually per game if there's no better solution.

I'm still confused about whether or not copying a Steamapps folder into a newly installed Steam, on a new computer, would result in the first time setups occurring for each game as you fired each one up for the first time on the new computer.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:44 PM   #6
TeKraken
 
 
 
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When you copy Steam over to a new PC, then you run steam (which sorts out steams registry entries etc in windows), then when you start each game it will go through the first run sequence and do all the dx/.net/c+ stuff it needs to. For only the game you are starting, 1 at a time.

Some games that use the new content delivery system seem to have some trouble with this method, I dont think there are to many of these games, and hopefully as more games use it someone will fine tune the back up procedure.

Last edited by TeKraken: 04-14-2012 at 02:47 PM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:46 PM   #7
schnitzeljaeger
 
 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DirtyHarry50 View Post
I'm still confused about whether or not copying a Steamapps folder into a newly installed Steam, on a new computer, would result in the first time setups occurring for each game as you fired each one up for the first time on the new computer.
AFAIR the first time setups get executed again.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:45 PM   #8
MADDOGGE
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schnitzeljaeger View Post
AFAIR the first time setups get executed again.
And if you managed to find your saves and copy them over as well,( only the Lord knows where all of them are hidden by these idiot developers), then you should be able to pick right back up where you left off on the old rig.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:56 PM   #9
GamerVer05
 
 
 
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As far as save games copy My documents My Saved Games and App Data (normally hidden) there are save games all over those three folders.
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Old 04-14-2012, 05:55 PM   #10
DirtyHarry50
 
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Thanks guys! That is awesome news and will be much easier than I was starting to expect. I don't currently have any saves I care about. So it's just a matter of downloading everything over these next few months, moving it all to the USB drive and restoring it to the new computer before the move. Yay! I appreciate the info.
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