Steam Content Still Encrypted [FIXED]

Fix Steam Content Still Encrypted by deleting your Appmanifest files, verifying your game files, clearing Steam cache, and disabling Windows firewall.

It’s quite common for Steam to run into issues sometimes. So, it’s no surprise that you, like other Steam users, ran into Steam’s content still encrypted error. This error creeps up when users try to launch any game, preventing them from playing it. This is because of various issues, including corrupted game files, Appmanifest files, or interference from firewalls, and other factors.

Steam Content Still Encrypted error states that “An error occurred while updating GAME NAME (content still encrypted).”
Steam Content Still Encrypted
Steam Content Still Encrypted (Image by eXputer)

But do not worry; I will guide you through the steps to troubleshoot this issue so you can get back to playing your favorite games.

Key Takeaways

Here are a few fixes you can implement for Steam content that is still encrypted:

  1. Delete the Appmanifest files and allow Steam to create new ones.
  2. Scan your hard drives for errors.
  3. Opt out of all beta programs.
  4. Change the PC’s date and time.
  5. Clear Steam’s download cache.
  6. Contact Steam support.

Delete The Appmanifest Files

This is one of the most effective methods for solving Steam content encryption errors. An Appmanifest file contains information about a game or application, including its installation directory, file structure, and configuration settings.

These files can, at times, get corrupted. By removing them, Steam can create fresh files that are free from errors.

  • Important: It is advised to be careful when handling the Appmanifest files, as they contain crucial information about your games.

Follow the steps given below to delete the Appmanifest files:

  1. Navigate to your Steam folder. In most cases, it is usually located in the Program Files of the C drive. Then go to Steam Library > Steam Apps.
  2. In the Steam Apps folder, select and right-click on all the Appmanifest files to cut them.
  3. Then, paste these files into some other folder or onto your Desktop to keep them safe. Do not delete these files. 
  4. Next, run Steam as administrator. To do this, right-click the Steam icon > Properties option.
  5. Then go to the Compatibility tab on the top left of the Steam Properties window.
  6. Then, check the Run as administrator option and click Apply.
    click the Run as administrator check box
    Mark the Run as administrator box (image owned by eXputer)
  7. Finally, launch Steam. It will recognize the Appmanifest files as missing and create new ones. After it’s completed, create new files and try to play your game to see if the issue has been resolved.

Scan Hard Drive Errors

Hard drives can develop bad sectors over time, which may result in data corruption. Scanning helps detect and mark these bad sectors, preventing the storage of important game files in compromised areas. So, you should simply scan and troubleshoot your hard drives for errors and resolve them.

  • My experience: Scanning the hard drive for errors is a good practice, and it can help resolve many errors. Therefore, I recommend scanning the hard drive for errors if you face any errors.

There are three main ways you can do this: through third-party software, through Windows CMD, or File Explorer.

I will go over the last two in this guide:

CMD Method

  1. Press the Windows+R keys > type CMD in the text box and hit Enter.
  2. In the CMD window, type the command “CHKDSK C: /f” or replace C with D if you want to scan the D drive. 
  3. After this, wait for CMD to provide its results, and then you can identify and repair your drive.

File Explorer Method

  1. Open your file explorer and navigate to This PC option on the left side of your screen.
  2. Then, right-click on the drive you want to scan and select Properties.
    Select drive properties to scan drive
    Drive Properties (image captured by eXputer)
  3. Then, navigate to the Tools tab from the top of your window.
  4. Finally, press Scan Drive under Error checking. This will scan your drive for errors and then identify and troubleshoot them as well.

Opt-Out Of All Beta Programs

Gamers can download beta versions of games to experience new updates before they are out officially. The only problem with this is that beta programs can come with many bugs and glitches, which may lead to the Steam content still encrypted error. So, it is wise to opt out of all beta programs.

To do so, follow the steps given below:

  1. Launch your Steam client, and from the top-left, select Steam and then go to Settings. 
  2. Go to Account Settings > Change.
    Change Beta Participation
    Change the Beta Participation option (image captured by eXputer)
  3. Then, under Beta Participation, select the drop-down menu > “NONE – Opt out of beta programs” > OK.
    Opt out of beta programs to solve steam content still encrypted error
    Opt-out of beta programs (image copyrighted by eXputer)

Change Your PC’s Date And Time

Sometimes, your game’s release counter isn’t configured properly, which can cause the Steam content to be an encrypted error. You can easily solve this by changing your PC’s date and time.

 When I faced this error, I changed my region and time settings, which worked for me. Hopefully, this fix will work for you too.

Follow the steps below to change your date and time:

  1. Press the Windows+I keys to open your Settings.
  2. Then click on the Time & Language option.
  3. Next, turn off the automatic time and time zone options.
    Turn off Automatic time and time zone
    Set Automatic time and time zone to off (image owned by eXputer)
  4. Then, select the Change option to set the time and date manually. Set your time and date to a year or two before the game was launched so the game can configure its release counter.

Clear Steam’s Download Cache

Clearing the Steam download cache has worked for some users when dealing with the content still encrypted error. It is also beneficial to do this in general as it can refresh and update old or corrupted files and resolve download and update issues, which can lead to Steam’s content still encrypted error. 

Many users have also reported that clearing Steam’s download cache solved this issue for them. So, make sure to clear your download cache on Steam.

Verify Game Files

Verifying your game files can be extremely helpful because bugs or missing or corrupted data can sometimes cause errors. So, I advise that you validate your game files. Doing this will recover and refresh your files and hopefully solve your problem as well. 

Noticing the reports from users across multiple forums, and verifying game files has been a successful method for them as well in resolving the issue.

Reinstall Steam

  • Warning: Reinstalling Steam will also delete all your installed games in your Steam Games Library. Best back them up before trying out this method.

This is more of a last-resort fix, but if all else has failed, it might be best to reinstall the entire Steam client. This is because by reinstalling Steam can add all of its components again, and so if any are missing, they’ll be installed.

This also includes new client files and other things that allow the Steam client to function properly. So be sure to reinstall Steam so that this and any other errors due to technical problems can be resolved.

Contact Steam Support

If all other fixes have failed to fix this error for you, then the best thing you can do is to submit a report to the Steam support team. Luckily, the support team is very active and always answers most of the reports they receive in due time. Hopefully, this error will be resolved for you soon as well.

My Thoughts On Steam Content Still Encrypted

The Steam content still encrypted error isn’t a general Steam error, and it occurs on a game-to-game basis. It’s possible that you may be encountering this error in one game while others work just fine. 

The internet forums are riddled with reports of this issue occurring for different Steam games. Some reports that caught my eye were on Steam Forums, Reddit, Fanatical, Nvidia Forums, ParadoxPlaza, and Shroud of the Avatar Forums.

Now, there haven’t been any posts regarding this particular error on Steam Support Twitter which indicates that the error might already have been fixed, or it’s still in the process of being fixed for all games. Until it gets fixed for every game on Steam, I suggest trying the fixes I suggested above to resolve it yourself.


Are Steam game files encrypted?

Yes. Each game file is split into smaller chunks and then compressed and encrypted with an AES 256-bit key.

How do Steam game downloads work?

You can access download and update settings via the download manager in Steam. Usually, downloads are handled manually, while updates are handled automatically by Steam.

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Ayyoun is a Senior Writer & Editor for Error Fixes, and Game Settings guides on eXputer. He’s been passionate about games and technology since he got his hands on the PlayStation 1. He has a software engineering background and loves to play games from a technical perspective. He has a knack for uncovering solutions for the latest games and presenting them in easy-to-follow guides for his audience. You can keep up with his gaming activity on his Steam profile.

Experience: 7+ years || Worked For VeryAli Gaming and IGN || Education: B.S Software Engineering, Editing Mastery from Udemy.

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