How To Fix Steam Content File Locked

Sometimes while updating a steam game, an error occurs forward. The window displays:

An error occurred while updating the game (Content file locked)

This indicates that Steam can’t write update files to the hard disk. There may be several solutions for this error. The most powerful one is to uninstall Steam and everything the local game content and reinstall it from scratch. Although this helped many users, it is a rather time-consuming task, and it also consumes a large amount of data. Before resorting to the stringent measures mentioned above, we will try troubleshooting for small problems that may be involved.

How to unlock a content file steam?

These are the solutions to unlock a content file steam.

Repair Corrupt System Files – Steam Game Content Files Locked

Download and run Restore to scan for defective files from here. If files are corrupt and missing, repair them and then check if it fixes the issue. If not, then proceed with the Solutions listed below.

Solution 1: Check Antivirus – Content File Locked Steam

In several situations, your antivirus may be creating the problem. It is not uncommon for it to mark Steam files as possible viruses and quarantine them. Below are listed several ways to disable the antivirus until you can update your game.

McAfee Antivirus – Steam Error Content File Locked

McAfee has no way to exclude individual files from its real-time scanning. The single way is to disable the antivirus entirely until the game is updated. To do this, open McAfee and choose “Virus and Spyware Protection”. Here you get the option of “Real-Time Scanning”. Tap that button and turn it off.

Then follow the subsequent instruction to check the integrity of game files.

  1. Restart your PC and relaunch Steam.
  2. Head over to the library locality and right-click on the game, which is producing you problems.
  3. Click on its properties and choose the local files tab.
  4. Tap the verify integrity button of the game files option, and Steam will test it in a few minutes.

Hopefully, after completing the above steps, your Steam won’t give any issue.

ESET NOD32 – Steam an Error Occurred While Updating Content File Locked

NOD32 tends to mark some application files as malicious and will most presumably quarantine them. This often occurs in an error while updating a game. Go to your current Steam directory and copy the address. The standard location for the Steam directory is C:\Program File\Steam\SteamApps\common.


Next, copy the address, open ESET NOD32 and paste the location, excluding real-time scanning.

Follow the ‘verify integrity of game files’ process listed above, and you will be all good.

Kaspersky AV – Steam Download Paused Content File Locked

Kaspersky may seldom flag Steam as an intruder and disable it from making any hard drive changes. To fix this, go to ‘threads and exclusions’. Go to ‘trusted zone’ and add Steam.exe as a trusted application. Make sure to change the settings to Do not restrict application activity and Do not scan opened files.

Follow the ‘verify integrity of game files’ process listed over and restart your computer.

Solution 2: Reset Winsock – Steam Game Content File Locked

Another problem that may cause the failure to update is the Winsock catalogue. We can perform the command to reset it, and in turn, it will roll back to the standard settings.

  1. Hold the Win (windows) + R key to make up the Run window (ensure to run it as Administrator).
  2. In the dialogue box, type ‘netsh winsock reset’ (omitting the quotes).
  3. Perform the command and restart your computer.

Solution 3: Repair Corrupt Files – Content File Locked Steam

If these two techniques don’t work for you, we can troubleshoot which file went wrong or missing and try re-download the complete file again.

  1. Exit steam and continue to your Steam directory (C:/Program Files (x86)/Steam). If you have taken a custom location for the installation, go there.
  2. Go to the folder ‘logs’ and open ‘txt’.
  3. Go to the foot of the text file and search for recent errors.


An example of an error is this: Steam Error Content File Locked

[2017-04-12 12:47:31] [AppID 346110] Update canceled: File commit failed: failed to move unchanged file “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\workshop\content\346110\570371714\LinuxNoEditor\NPC\Female\Assets\Nude\Nude_Human_Female_Body_D.uasset.z.uncompressed_size” (Disk write failure)

The number printed first in the URL is your APPID; in this case, (346110) is the AppID for ARK Survival Evolved.


  1. Please go to the root folder of the mod; in this instance, it is 570371714. It has no particular file size as the root folders of various games may vary.
  2. Restart Steam and proceed to the downloads folder. Here you will see that Steam will be requesting an update for the game. Update the essential files, and you’ll be good to go.

Solution 4: Relocate Steam-Installation and Game Files – Steam an Error Occurred While Updating Content File Locked

If the more straightforward techniques didn’t work for you, we must relocate Steam Installation and Game files. This process is split down into two parts. We try to relocate Steam and believe that it will launch and run as anticipated in the initial part. If, during the launch, a fault occurs, we need to reinstall Steam. The complete process is listed below. Please note that any delay during the copying process may damage the files; hence you must resort to reinstalling the client again.

  1. Go to your Steam client and click settings.
  2. Choose ‘Downloads’ and click on ‘Steam Library Folders’.
  3. Tap on ‘Add Library Folder’ and choose a new path where you want Steam to be located.
  4. This will determine a future path for all the installations to take place. Now we will go to move existing Steam files to the path you chose.
  5. Exit the Steam client.
  6. Go to your current Steam directory (default is: C: \Program Files \Steam).
  7. Remove all the files and folders, excluding SteamApps and UserData folders. Also, don’t remove exe.
  8. Cut all the folders and paste them to the new directory you chose above.
  9. Launch Steam and re-login.

If you face any difficulties while launching it, move the steam folder or follow the steps noted below.

  1. Close your Steam.
  2. Browse to the location wherever you relocated Steam.
  3. Relocate the ‘SteamApps’ folder of that directory to your desktop.
  4. Uninstall Steam (this is made to remove your old Steam settings from your PC).
  5. Install Steam again to the first location that you chose.
  6. Move the SteamApps folder in the latest Steam directory. This will copy all your game content, your saved games and settings.
  7. Launch Steam and reenter your credentials.
  8. Check the integrity of Steam game files, and you will be ready to play.

Solution 5: Check Disk Scan – Steam Download Paused Content File Locked

It is probable that the Hard Drive that includes the game installation has been damaged or includes terrible sectors. If a Hard Drive comes with “Bad” sectors, it lags down, and some areas of the hard drive can’t be accessed. Hence, you can decide to run a “Disc Check” scan to check the drive for bad sectors. For that:

  1. Press the “Windows” + “R” keys together.
  2. Write in “cmd” in the dialogue box and hold “Enter“.
  3. Write in “chkdsk c: /f” and press “Enter” to initiate it.
  4. Press “Y” to approve the scheduling of a disk check scan.
  5. Ready for the Disk Check scan to make and check to see if the issue persists.

Solution 6: Run as Administrator – Steam Error Content File Locked

In unusual cases, Steam needs special permissions to access specific folders and files. If the specific permissions are not granted, it may be blocked by Windows from reaching the folder, and the “Content File is Locked” information may show up. Hence, in this step, we will be running “Steam” as Administrator. For that:

  1. Right-click on the Steam icon and choose the “Properties” option.
  2. Click on the “Compatibility” tab and verify the “Run as Administrator” option.
  3. Tap on “Apply” and then on “OK“.
  4. Run Steam and verify to see if the issue persists.

What does the content file locked-mean on Steam?

Content file locked on Steam means that Steam cannot update or write files on your computer’s hard disk. This results in the prohibition of you from playing the latest version of any game. This is one of the most common and widespread issues that occur for everyone. But most people think that this issue is very complicated and cannot be solved. If you follow small steps, you can solve this error.

How do I fix content locked on Steam?

Follow these steps:

  1. Stop the antivirus that blocks you from writing files to your hard drive.
  2. Modify the location of the Steam installation and the game files.
  3. Reset Winsock.
  4. Check your challenging drive health.
  5. Run Steam as Administrator.

How do I clear my Steam cache?

Follow these instructions to clear the steam cache:

  1. Go to Steam and open the settings option.
  2. In the settings option, go to the downloads tab.
  3. After opening the downloads tab, click on the option called clear download cache.
  4. Select OK to perform this activity. Make sure that after clearing the cache, you need login using your details.

Why is my steam download so slow?

There are many reasons why your steam download is so slow. Some of them are:

  1. There are many games and titles included in the library of the steam app.
  2. The download server is not working correctly.
  3. Outdated network driver.
  4. Unstable network connection.

These are some of the issues that make your Steam download slow.

Can you copy steam games to another Hard Drives?

The answer to this question is YES. You can copy or transfer the games on your Steam to another Hard Disk to free up space or the Steam partition.

How do I fix missing files privileges on Steam? 

The error Missing file privileges will occur when you don’t have full permissions to Steam. First, make sure to verify the game integrity when this error message occurs. There are some solutions to fix this error message. Let’s look deeper into them.

Close the igfxEm module from the task manager

  1. First, give a right-click on the taskbar and then select the task manager. You can also do this by pressing the Ctrl + Alt + Del and selecting the task manager.
  2. Now click on the more details option that is present at the bottom of the window. This will help you to show a detailed view of the processes that are running on your computer.
  3. Please search for the igfxEm module and then select it and now click on the end task button.
  4. Now relaunch Steam and check if the issue persists.

Modify the download regions settings

  1. Open the Steam that you usually open. Now click on the steam option and then select the settings option present there.
  2. Now go to the downloads option and then click on the modify download regions.
  3. Now click on OK and retry the game. This method will work for some people.

Repair steam library folder

  1. First, restart your computer and then run Steam.
  2. Click on the steam button that is at the top and then go to settings.
  3. After going to settings, click on the downloads option there and then click on steam library folders.
  4. Now right-click on the folder that appears there and now click on repair library folders.
  5. Now retry the game and check whether the issue is gone or not.


Verify if the game gives you the error is not corrupted

  1. Open the Steam and then click on the library option that is at the top of the window.
  2. Now right click on the game that is not working, and then click on the properties.
  3. After going to the properties, now click on the local files option.
  4. There you will find Verify the Integrity of the game cache. Click that option.
  5. The process will start, and it takes a few minutes to complete the process.
  6. Retry the game if this works.

How do I fix Steam download errors?

There are two methods to fix these errors. One is with Basic Troubleshooting, and the other is by using Advanced Troubleshooting options.

Basic Steam Troubleshooting

These are the following fixes that will help you resolve this issue. This will require you a minimal amount of technical knowledge.

  • Restart your computer
  • Clear download cache
  • Repair library folder
  • Verify local files
  • Change download region
  • Reinstall Steam
  • Move game folder

Advance steam troubleshooting

Even after performing the fixes mentioned above doesn’t solve the issue, then you need to perform some advanced troubleshooting methods that will help you to resolve all the issues. This will require some technical knowledge, and if you don’t have any technical knowledge in this area, it is advisable to go to the Local support specialist to deal with the issue.

  • Refresh Local Network Hardware
  • Update System and Drivers
  • Investigate Firewalls
  • Investigate Anti-virus Software
  • Investigate other programs and services
  • Disable Overclocking
  • Test Online Connectivity
  • Check the Hard Drive for any errors
  • Check RAM for any errors

How to Fix Battle Brothers Content File Locked – Battle Brothers Content File Locked

If you are facing this issue, you can try these steps. These steps worked for many users. Before starting this process, you can try other methods like resetting your netsh Winsock cache. If these steps are not working, then try the following:

  1. Firstly press Windows key + X.
  2. Then choose the command prompt and run it as an administrator.
  3. Type netsh Winsock reset.
  4. Press enter.
  5. Now shut the command prompt and restart your computer.
  6. Hurray! Your issue has been solved.


I hope this article helps you to fix this content file locked error. All these steps provided here will work for some and won’t work for some. If one doesn’t go for you, the other may work. You must be patient in finding the solution to your problem.



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