Backing up Steam games
Sooooo. I'm eventually at the point where I have enough large games in my Steam Library, that I don't want to keep them on my drive at all times, but I don't want to wait hours for them to download whenever I feel like playing them.
The integrated back-up seems slick enough, but I'm wondering whether it would be worth going through Steam's alternate procedure, using 7-zip to compress the game files instead of simply copying them over.
Any experiences you'd like to share?
I use the alternative method and it's working fine. When you restore them, shut down Steam, copy it back, start steam and tell it to install the game. It'll find the files and download any missing stuff (like updates that came out after you archived your game). At least, that's what I do and it's working fine.
I never knew there's an alternate method. good read here. will try this one.
Eventually I settled for the standard method, it does in fact compress backups although you might not notice it because a lot of games ship with their resources in a compressed form already, and it requires the least manual intervention.
The only thing I don't really like about it so far, is that you can't select several games at once and have them backed up separately, they all end in the same set.
best way is just to go to to c:/program files (or x86)/steam/steamapps/
copy the steamapps folder, paste onto portable hdd, this ensures steam copies all your personal files too rather than just the ones to install the game.
Be sure to look up save file locations of your most important games and back them up too!
Originally Posted by bigc90210
About a year back I copied my Steam library onto a portable HDD and then Symlinked my "normal" Steam directory to it - e.g. linking C:\Program Files\Steam\common\ to F:\Program Files\Steam\common - on two different computers (desktop and laptop), so that I could just plug the HDD in and use it with Steam on either. It worked better than expected - neither Steam nor Windows threw a fit if the external HDD was missing, so it was pretty flexible.
Steam does now support directories outside of C drive, though, so I've generally gone with that (though I still have to the Symlink to the now-internal F drive for when I forget to select the folder!).
(Symlinks just link one directory or file to another location - either just throw "symlink /?" at the command prompt or Google for some background info)