Steam game missing file privileges – What to do

Steam is a well-known platform for distributing PC video games. The platform has its own application, which can be downloaded using their website.

You can use the Steam app to purchase and install various Steam games. Usually, Steam games should download successfully with no issues.

However, errors can occur during the installation process. One of the most common is the ‘missing file privileges’ error. This error can also occur when a Steam game attempts to download any updates.

Steam missing file privileges – The cause

The first thing you should do if you’re getting this Steam error is to check that the files you’ve downloaded to your Steam client aren’t corrupted.

This can be a common cause of various different Steam errors, especially when you find that you’re missing file privileges.

Fortunately, there are a few ways to troubleshoot the ‘missing file privileges’ error. We’ll go through some of the solutions in this article.

Verify Integrity of Game Files

The first method for troubleshooting the error is by verifying the integrity of the game files. Doing so will allow you to check whether there are any corrupted game files that could be causing the error.

You can verify the game files using the Steam application. Open the Steam client, and click on the ‘library’ tab near the top of the screen. This should take you to your Steam library.


Next, find the game that caused the error to occur. You can either scroll through your games on the left side tab, or search for the game in the search bar.

Once you’ve found the game, right-click on it. Then, click the ‘properties’ option. The game’s settings should now appear.


Navigate to the ‘local files’ tab, and click ‘verify integrity of game files’ to begin verifying the files. Wait until the process is finished, and try installing or updating the game once more to see if the error still occurs.

Clear Download Cache

The error may be occurring because of an issue with your download cache. Download cache accumulates as you install games in Steam.

These cache files can sometimes become corrupt as time goes on. In order to fix this issue, you can clear your cache using the Steam client.

First, launch the Steam client, and click on Steam > Settings. Select the ‘downloads’ tab.


Next, click ‘clear download cache’ near the bottom to start clearing your cache. When your download cache has finished clearing, click ‘ok’ to confirm the changes. Then, exit the window.

Finally, try installing or updating the game again to see if the error still occurs.

Repair Steam Library Folder

The ‘missing file privileges’ error could be occurring due to an issue with your Steam library folder.

The folder may have become corrupted, which can cause installation errors. Luckily, you can easily fix this problem by repairing your Steam library folder.

First, launch the Steam client. Then, click on Steam > Settings to open up the Steam settings. Navigate to the ‘downloads’ tab.


Select the ‘Steam library folders’ option near the top. This should open up the Storage Manager.


Click the three dots on the far right, and select ‘repair folder’ to start repairing the library folder. Once the repair has been completed, try downloading or updating the game once more.

Alter Properties Settings

Another method for preventing the error from occurring is by altering the properties settings for the game.

Open the Steam app and click on the ‘library’ tab. Find the game that’s been causing the error, and right-click on it. Click the ‘properties’ option to open the game’s settings.


Click the ‘local files’ tab, and click the ‘browse’ option.


This should take you to the game’s folder in File Explorer. You can also manually go there by opening File Explorer, and going to This PC > Windows (C:) > Program Files (x86) > Steam > steamapps > common.

Find the game’s .exe file and right-click on it. Then, click the ‘properties’ option to open the properties settings.


Alternatively, you could right-click on the game’s desktop shortcut and click ‘properties’. This will also open the properties settings. Navigate to the security tab.


Look at the list underneath the ‘application packages’ section. Make sure that none of the listed items have a tick in the ‘deny’ column. If there are any ticks in the ‘deny’ column, alter that by clicking ‘edit’.


Check the boxes in the ‘allow’ column to make sure that none of the ticks are in the ‘deny’ column. Once you’re done, click ‘apply’ to confirm the changes. Then, click ‘ok’ to exit the window.

See: How to Uninstall and Reinstall Steam

Close all the windows and return to the Steam client. Try installing or updating the Steam game once again to see if the issue has been resolved.

Run Steam as Administrator

Another method for solving the ‘missing file privileges’ error is by running the Steam client as an administrator.

This will ensure that the program has access to all the admin privileges it needs in order to successfully install the game.

In order to run the Steam client as an administrator, you must first open the app’s properties settings. You can do so by right-clicking on the Steam desktop shortcut, and selecting ‘properties’.


If you don’t have a desktop shortcut for Steam, you can right-click the Steam .exe file in File Explorer instead.

Open File Explorer, and go to This PC > Windows (C:) > Programs (x86) > Steam. Find the Steam .exe file and right-click it. Then, select the ‘properties’ option to open the properties settings.


Once you’ve opened the properties settings, click on the ‘compatibility’ option near the top.

Next, click the box beside the ‘run this program as an administrator’ option. This should check the box. Once you’re finished, click ‘ok’ to finalise the alterations.

Now, you can attempt to download or update the Steam game once more to see if the error still occurs. This should also fix the Steam game closed but still running error, which is also fairly common.


In conclusion, the ‘missing file privileges’ error can occur when you trying to install or update a Steam game.

This error may be due to some corrupt files found within the game files or download cache. In order to fix this problem, you can either verify the game files or clear your cache.

Related: Steam Service Error Fix

Or, if such methods don’t work in solving the error, the issue may lie within Steam’s admin privileges. You can select “repair library folder” within your settings to try and fix this in most cases.

If you have administrator privileges, you can try altering the program’s properties settings or running the app as an administrator. If nothing works in getting rid of the error, try reaching out to Steam Support for guidance.

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I love reading, writing, drawing, and other creative pursuits. I wish to travel more and do extreme activities, such as bungee-jumping and skydiving. I'm a casual gamer with an affinity for narrative-driven games and unique art styles. I like watching a variety of different media, but I particularly enjoy animations and musicals. My favourite genre, for both books and visual media, is psychological-thriller.

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