Steam Content File Locked? Check these 5 ways to fix this error!

You can play your favorite games because of the error Steam content file locked? Check this tutorial to learn how to fix this common issue.

Sometimes when you want to play a Steam game, the following error appears before your eyes:

“An error occurred while updating (content file locked)”

Sometimes that message appears when you first install the game. But what means that message? Well, Steam can’t access some part of the game files due to some error in the data or because the file is indeed locked by some third party app or by the OS itself.

So, if you want to fix this content file locked error on your PC, check the next methods.

Note: This process will work with any games so follow the same steps for CS: GO, Dota or other.

Before #0: Administrator Rights

As I said above this error occurs because Steam can access some part of the game itself, so to give proper rights to the software to access your game data, the first thing you can do is run Steam with administrator rights.

1. Rightclick on the Steam shortcut.
2. Select the option Run as Administrator

steam content file locked

Finally, try to update or play your game again, if the error persists, continue with the following solutions.

Method #1: Disable Antivirus

This is the easiest way to fix the error content file locked on Steam and works almost in all cases. So you only need to disable your installed Antivirus while updating or installing your game.

If you want to do that, you only need to find your Antivirus icon in the taskbar and right-click on it. Then find the option Disable shield, Disable Protection or something like that.

avast disable antivirus

If you don’t use an Antivirus in Windows, you may have enabled Windows Security, so try to disable it.

To do that, open the Windows Settings pressing the key combination Winkey + I.

Now click on Update & Security, there on the left select Windows Security and the right click on Virus & Threat Protection.

steam content file locked

Finally, click on the switch Realtime Protection and try to update or install your game again.

disable windows security

Method #2: Verify Game Integrity

From here, the methods become slower, but you can try one by one to fix the error content file locked.

First, open Steam and go to your Games Library. There right-click on your game with problems and click on Properties.

On the new window that opens, go to the LOCAL FILES tab and click on the button: VERIFY INTEGRITY OF GAME FILES.

verify game data steam

Now you only need to wait for the process to end and try to open your game again.

Method #3: Move Game to a New Folder

One thing that you can try to fix the error content file locked is to move your game data folder to another location.

1. Open Steam and open the menu and click on Settings
2. Go to the Downloads tab
3. On the right, click on the button STEAM LIBRARY FOLDERS
4. Now click on the button ADD LIBRARY FOLDER
5. On the new window that opens, you need to locate or create the folder where you will move your game contents.

add new library

Once you add a library folder you need to move your game data to that folder, for that follow these steps:

1. Open Steam and navigate to Library > Games
2. Rightclick on your name’s game and select Properties.
3. Go to the tab LOCAL FILES
4. Click on the button MOVE INSTALL FOLDER and select the new location that you set before.

Finally, restart your computer to see if the error has been fixed.

Method #4: Reinstall your Game

If the methods above don’t work, you can reinstall your game to fix the error content file locked.

If you want to uninstall a game, you will need to open Steam and go to your Games Library. Right-click on your game to uninstall and select the option: Uninstall.

Now, you only need to install the game again to fix the error.

Method #5: Scan Windows

If you can fix the error with the methods above, you may have some corrupted data on your system, so to fix the error I recommend you to make a scan of your files.

1. Search the word cmd in Windows
2. Rightclick on Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator
3. Once on the Command Prompt type the following command: chkdsk c: /f
4. Wait for the process to end and finally restart your computer.


Remember if you Windows installed in another drive change C: to your drive letter.

Wrapping Up: Steam Content File Locked

The error Steam content file locked is annoying because it doesn’t give you clues about what you need to do to fix it. Hopefully, with some of the methods, I show you above you can play your favourite Steam games again.

Must read: How To Enable DirectPlay For Old Games in Windows 10

If you have a question or comment about this tutorial, let me know below! Thanks for reading 🙂

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