Steam Preallocating Slow (3 Ways To Fix)

steam preallocating slow
steam preallocating slow

Preallocting issues on steam are not so uncommon and we might go through them once in a while. These are some issues like connectivity or speed that might cause your experience to not go as you want it to be. There are certain ways that you can opt to troubleshoot these issues and make sure that this never happens again. But, to understand that, first you need to have a good knowledge of what Steam is and how preallocating works.


Steam is a software to put it in simple words. But for gamers, it is the greatest blessing who is not a fan of console gaming and wants to have a fully customizable and over the edge experience with PC gaming. Steam is a video game digital distribution service launched in 2003 by the valve and it still stands as the best and most used platforms to download and play online games on PC. It is a cloud-based library of tons of computer games.

The best part is that Steam is free to sign-up for and use so you don’t have to pay anything for it. However, you might need to buy games that are published on the platform by developers.

How does it work?

Steam holds access to thousands of games that you can download for your PC. It also allows you to play these games online on a centralized portal like your PlayStation or Microsoft account for Xbox. Steam also provides you storage on the cloud network so you can access these games without using much memory on your hard drive and have the best possible gaming experience for yourself.

Steam Preallocation

Steam is the best downloading platform for gaming as it optimizes your disk storage and allows you to have a better experience. Steam reserves (allocates) the space required to download a certain game on your PC and optimizes the files to avoid fragmentation. It checks the disk space that is available before processing the download and reserves the required space from that.

The download would not start, or not work in the perfect manner if there are some issues with allocation or it fails. The process is not the same for all as it depends on several factors like Speed of your internet connection, what type of hard disk you are using, and what PC specifications you might have. To put it in simple words, since games need large data amounts to be downloaded, the required space is reserved beforehand so no other application can access that.

Steam Preallocating Slow

Steam assesses your hard disk performance, optimizes the files on your disk to ensure there is no fragmentation for these files and reserve space for your game to be downloaded. This process can take some time depending on several factors and if you are facing some issues with the preallocating process of steam like it is working slow, or your process bar is stuck at a certain point, you can take the following measures to make it right and work faster for you.

1) Check your Internet Speed/Increase if possible

There are high chances that you might be getting slower internet speed than usual. Since steam is a cloud-based service and preallocating requires you to have active internet connectivity, you might need to have a look at your internet speed if it is fine. If it is the same speed as you get usually. You will need to have your internet speed increased by contacting your ISP.

2) Upgrade to SSD

If you are gaming on a PC and you need to have a truly remarkable experience, you should upgrade to SSD from an HDD. SSD is fastest for larger memory options amongst hard drives and you will get all the speed issues fixed by upgrading your hard disk to an SSD drive. It will optimize not only your gaming speed but overall PC performance and the slow speed on preallocating on steam will be fixed by it.

3) Might depend on the game size/your processing power

You need to consider the fact that the larger a game is, the more time it will take if you have the lower processing power, and RAM memory. So you might need to give it some time if you are downloading a considerably large game, or your PC specs are not up to the mark.

1 thought on “Steam Preallocating Slow (3 Ways To Fix)”

  1. It seems to me like this is an issue with the Disk Utilization speed of the user’s hardware. Even with a high-end rig the hard-drive may not be as fast as you think. I notice my SSD hard drive maxes out the disk utilization during pre-allocation at about 6 MB/s. That’s my own hardware’s limitation (not a super fast hard drive, but lots of space), and nothing to do with steam.

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