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Windows 7: Tutorial review

06 Jan 2013   #1

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 
Tutorial review

Hi,

I was going to write a review on how to backup steam games without the backup utility, but i wanted to submit it for review first, to be 100% sure that everything there is absolutely correct.


1 - First off, you want to compress the game's folder. Here's how, using the window's built in software. I recommend winrar for this. We're going to use Skyrim as an example.

I'd go to the steam's installation folder/steamapps/common and compress the elder scrolls v skyrim folder and copy it to my hard drive. Step 1 is entirely optional, the only purpose this serves is to save disk space.
The best way to backup is on a fresh download. What i do is, as soon as it's finished, i'll start the game once to finish the installation and backup the game right away.

Now let's assume you formatted your PC, and re-installed steam.

2 - You'll now start your game's installation and stop it and make sure no file is downloaded for best results. After that, you want to close steam so it doesn't interfere with step 3.

3 - Now, we're going to fool steam into thinking it downloaded all of the files. Extract the compressed files and move them to the download folder of the game, that is located on steam's installation folder/steamapps/downloading
4 - Open steam again, and finalize the game's installation. You're probably thinking, why don't i simply backup the steamapps folder instead of doing step 2, 3 and 4? Well, by doing step 2, 3 and 4, you ensure the proper installation of the game, that includes the registry files, the uninstaller entry, among other things.

5 - Now you'll want to verify the game's integrity cache by right-clicking the game, and hitting verify integrity game's cache (in steam). This ensures the game's 100% there (it's normal that on some games, steam will ALWAYS redownload 1 file, regardless of corruption)

Voilà , you're finished!


What do you guys think? Did i write it well, or is there a confusing part?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Jan 2013   #2
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Alex,

You might include a few more details on how to compress (compress or ZIP?) the folder, and add some screenshots to help avoid any confusion.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #3

Windows 8.1 Pro
 
 

It also helps if you explain why you're doing certain things. Example: why am I doing steps 2-4? Am I to assume those steps fools steam into thinking the game is fully downloaded and doesn't need to further download an otherwise large file?

Also you might add that if you've not touched the drive main drive where the games are actually installed, all you need to do is install the main steam app, point it to the main folder where the games are, and walla, Steam is up and running with no downloading of games... saving valuable time, and bandwidth. You can even do the same when transferring the main folder to a different drive. I've done this a few times so I know it works.

On the other hand, if you wipe the main drive or have a crash, that's where your tutorial could come in and save time I suppose.

At any rate let people know what to expect at certain steps so they know if they've encountered an issue.

And yeah, Brinks suggestion definitely should be included since you're telling people to compress files.

My two cents
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Jan 2013   #4

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Ok, i edited, what do you guys think now?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #5

Windows 7 professional X64
 
 

I don't see the point.
In most steam games, the save files and .ini are located in the ''my games'' folder. THAT is what I would backup to restore my save sessions, and the configurations for the game.
That's what I did now that I backed up my files before performing a clean install. I have no problem downloading the games again. It's saves and preferences that worry me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #6

Windows 8.1 Pro
 
 

Well considering the My Games folder is inside the Document/My Documents folder, it would automatically be backed up if you backup up the main folder (Document/My Documents), which you should.

As for the point of the tutorial, well if you deleted the main directory with all the games, you'd have to re-download all of them again.... even if you have the save files, or Steam app. The tutorial, if it works the way he says, saves a ton of download time, and bandwidth.

If it doesn't work the way he thinks, than it could be pointless. I myself have never tried that trick so I can't say one way or the other.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #7

Windows 7 professional X64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by sygnus21 View Post
Well considering the My Games folder is inside the Document/My Documents folder, it would automatically be backed up if you backup up the main folder (Document/My Documents), which you should.

As for the point of the tutorial, well if you deleted the main directory with all the games, you'd have to re-download all of them again.... even if you have the save files, or Steam app. The tutorial, if it works the way he says, saves a ton of download time, and bandwidth.

If it doesn't work the way he thinks, than it could be pointless. I myself have never tried that trick so I can't say one way or the other.
I guess I don't have problems waiting 1 hour for a game to download =P
All I really care are my saves. And I like to start fresh to avoid as many issues as possible when it comes to installation.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Jan 2013   #8

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Well, considering that not everyone has a high speed connection, some people have bandwidth cap, and have lots of games.
I think i have approx. 200 gb of games, i really wouldn't like to re-download all of that in a 1.5 mb/s connection.
This tutorial saves me 37 hours of download.

By the way, i also like to start fresh to avoid as many issues as possible, that's why i recommend doing the backup as soon as you run the game for the first time. That's what i'm doing at least.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Jan 2013   #9

Windows 8.1 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AlexRD View Post
By the way, i also like to start fresh to avoid as many issues as possible, that's why i recommend doing the backup as soon as you run the game for the first time. That's what i'm doing at least.
Just to be clear, we all like to do fresh installs. I however, have my games on a separated drive so that when I do a fresh install of Windows my games drive isn't disturbed, thus I don't have to re-download my Steam games. All I do is install the Steam app, point it to the drive, and whalla... games are still there... with no re-downloading.

BTW I'm still curious about my question I asked in my first post?

Thanks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Jan 2013   #10

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by sygnus21 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AlexRD View Post
By the way, i also like to start fresh to avoid as many issues as possible, that's why i recommend doing the backup as soon as you run the game for the first time. That's what i'm doing at least.
Just to be clear, we all like to do fresh installs. I however, have my games on a separated drive so that when I do a fresh install of Windows my games drive isn't disturbed, thus I don't have to re-download my Steam games. All I do is install the Steam app, point it to the drive, and whalla... games are still there... with no re-downloading.

BTW I'm still curious about my question I asked in my first post?

Thanks.
I have updated the tutorial and it has the answer to your question, if the question you meant was concerned with steps 2 and 4.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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