Go Back   Steam Users' Forums > Steam Discussions > Help and Tips

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-03-2009, 07:58 AM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2009
Reputation: 0
Posts: 23
Problems with restoring from the Steam backup

Oh, Steam, how did you manage to fustrate me? Let me count the ways...

My System Configuration.... for whats it worth:
  • Intel Core 2 Duo 6600
  • Memory: 8 GB
  • Video Card: nVidsia nVidia 8800 GTS 320MB
  • Primary hard drive: The fun part since I use removable drive bays (KingWin KF-813-T-BK to be exact) to swap hard drives. This allows me to experiment with different operating systems without partitioning. Thus, I have the following:
    • 320GB XP (32-bit) Drive for work-related and programming purposes
    • 750GB XP (32-bit) Drive for games
    • 500GB Vista x64 drive (rarely used)
    • 200GB Windows 7 RC (32-bit) - Just installed
    • 320GB Windows 7 RC (64-bit) - Just installed
    • 1TB removable backup of my backup drive
    • One tray unused at this time
  • Secondary hard drive: 1 TB drive used to store backups and for migrating between systems. Ghost 2003 is my friend.
  • 3099 kbps down/270 kbps up ADSL connection
As you might have guessed, I like to try out different operating systems. With hard drives so cheap nowadays (I'm old enough to remember when 10MB cost over $1,000), it is much easier to swap between operating systems. So, my plan was to take my Steam backup, made on June 6th, 2009, and restore it on different drives.

UG! Not what I had expected. Who write the backup and restore routines.... the Heavy from TF2? ("In Russia, the backups own YOU!") Here is what I encountered:
  • You can only backup from the Steam client itself. You cannot restore... what's up with THAT?
  • Restoring from backup requires that you have pre-installed Steam already. I know that it's a 800KB download+updates, but still.... why?
  • On many occassions, when running the external restore routine, I click to restore.... then it goes into "Not Responding" mode. HUH?
  • So, the backup routime is linked up with the Stream client. Why can't it then go in and automatically deselect the games that I already have installed.
  • On the list where you select the games to restore, there is no Select All or Select None buttom to select/deselect all of the games.
  • Each time I select or deselect the games, there is a several second delay as the disk space is recomputed. Whats up with that? I would expect the game name and space required to be stored as an array. Apparently, it's not.
  • The actual restore process took hours longer than the backup in the first place. My expectation is that the game is restored from the backup, and then any needed updated needed to be performed. Considering my list of classic games, the only expected updates from my June 6th backup was for Left 4 Dead and Team Fortress 2. Yet, I counted 10 open connections from Steam.exe to various servers while downloading Half Life 2: Episode Two. Am I redownloading the entire game? Isn't that defeating the purpose of a backup.
  • And yet, during the restore of the above named game, I saw absolutely no progress from the progress window. I could have easily sworn that the restore process was locked up.
  • After completion of the restore, you have to restart the Stream client to get the games to be recognized.
I don't know about you, but restoring from a local copy should be extremely faster than from the net. Yet, what I endured was a weekend of fustration. If you really don't want us to keep backup copies, just say so, and remove the backup feature. I just want to play the games across several different Windows platforms without spending hours upon hours re-downloading. Thank goodness my ISP does not impose download caps.
Torchwood is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2009, 11:35 AM   #2
Join Date: Nov 2008
Reputation: 0
Posts: 21

Here, here... I fully agree with this post.

I have about 100G in games backed up, and I wanted to migrate my games to a new computer I just built. The restore process is very ugly and keeps hanging. I've wasted hours and when it stops responding, I'll go check task manager and see 0 CPU and 0 Drive activity for several minutes, then just kill the process. Should you not back up all your games as one set? Should you restore them one by one? Is it better now to pick "DVD file size" when backing up? What is the deal with this thing?
garrun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-30-2010, 05:56 AM   #3
Join Date: Oct 2008
Reputation: 6
Posts: 157
It is depressing that there is yet to be ANY improvement of this system...

No sorting of the list, no selection options, no removal of installed games, it's worthless...
Social-Pariah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-30-2010, 06:23 AM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2007
Reputation: 3249
Posts: 14,270
I never use steam backup for this Reason, I just WINRAR the whole steam folder!
Install steam, close it then un RAR straight over the top. start steam it does its update's if needed and walla, good to go.

They really need to fix this though..
borg_7_of_9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2010, 11:47 AM   #5
Join Date: Feb 2007
Reputation: 0
Posts: 82
Originally Posted by borg_7_of_9 View Post
I never use steam backup for this Reason, I just WINRAR the whole steam folder!
Install steam, close it then un RAR straight over the top. start steam it does its update's if needed and walla, good to go.

They really need to fix this though..
i noticed that steam under win 7 dont wants to restore my steam backups from win xp. for the next time i do the same like you!
SK-Semih_44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-2010, 05:24 PM   #6
Posts: n/a
I wish I'd seen this thread earlier. Steam backup has given me nothing but problems this time around. It has completely frozen twice, once during TF2 and once during Titan Quest. Besides that, it seems to be going slow as tar (when as you have said, a local restore should be dramatically faster than re-downloading all 150GB)
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-08-2010, 04:26 PM   #7
Posts: n/a
Such a painful experienceeeeeeee. >..<

Anger rising......
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2010, 06:54 AM   #8
Logan Wulf
Join Date: Nov 2009
Reputation: 0
Posts: 2
Indeed... I'm really banging my head on the wall for not backing up myself the steam game folders...
Logan Wulf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2011, 01:27 PM   #9
Join Date: Jul 2009
Reputation: 5
Posts: 57
I find this insane. How hard is it to get this right? But their restore process starts a few gigabytes worth of downloads, which can not be paused.

What is going on?

warren_toronto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2011, 02:52 PM   #10
Join Date: Oct 2010
Reputation: 137
Posts: 107
Hey guys I have actually never used the backup/restore, but I just burned like 15 dvds of backups. I hope it works.

In the past what I did to make things easy ( I had read somewhere) was just copy the steam apps folder, the huge folder with most of the data. On my new OS or clean install, I would just install steam, and then plunk that huge steam apps folder into the directory from my external hard drive, and it would work sweet every time. (don't forget your save files in diff areas that aren't saved in steam cloud)
vanman420 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2011, 05:32 PM   #11
Posts: n/a
I had the same problem. I wanted to do a complete windows reinstall and backed up the games using steam. They took up a lot of space so i thought that it will simply be a matter of copying from the backup drive back to local.

The restore lasted for hours and more than 50 GB of download from steam servers.

Does the Winrar alternative work? Is it the only one?
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2011, 12:44 PM   #12
Join Date: Jul 2008
Reputation: 0
Posts: 16
It's a crap but it works...
I have just only one problem.If i burn the backups to a dvd and the game uses more than one dvd, and i start installing from disk 1 which is on a dvd and then when it finishes, steam asks for disk 2 of course which is on a separate dvd...Its ok so far but steam cant find the needed files on the second dvd because maybe just the folder structure on the dvd i dunno...

Why you folks didnt yet made us able to browse the files after the restore process finishes disk 1 and asks for disk 2????!!?!!!! If you do this i easily can restore my games that uses more than one dvd!

Now im just stuck restore back lego harry potter and i need to copy the dvd contents to my hd and start over the whole restore process....
Gandalf-lotr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2011, 08:29 AM   #13
Join Date: May 2011
Reputation: 109
Posts: 1,828
I back up each game to individual folders...makes it easier and more organized....you cant do a bulk restore, but I tend to install games as I play them anyway.
gentlefury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2011, 09:33 AM   #14
Join Date: Jan 2009
Reputation: 49
Posts: 223
Steam will recognize games already installed and won't restore them even if they're checked in the restoring process. But it is a lot easier to just copy/paste the steamapps folder.
Kaisonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-07-2011, 10:59 AM   #15
Join Date: Nov 2003
Reputation: 9
Posts: 834
Originally Posted by borg_7_of_9 View Post
I never use steam backup for this Reason, I just WINRAR the whole steam folder!
Install steam, close it then un RAR straight over the top. start steam it does its update's if needed and walla, good to go.

They really need to fix this though..
im going to try this been having problems backing up steam games
DarkVenom is offline   Reply With Quote

Go Back   Steam Users' Forums > Steam Discussions > Help and Tips

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:19 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Site Content Copyright Valve Corporation 1998-2015, All Rights Reserved.