Steam on an SSD

llmercll

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Helllo!

I recently installed a crucial m4 64gb, and would like to keep the steam app on the ssd, but my games on a secondary hard drive. From what I've read this is impossible, and I would need to move the entire steam folder to the alt drive.

Does anyone know of a method around this?

http://www.traynier.com/software/steammover

I found this but it has some limitations and hasn't been updated in a year.

http://maketecheasier.com/move-a-steam-game/2011/11/12

I also found this, but am unsure of how stable it will be. Will I likely be encountering crashes and errors using one of these methods?

It's too bad steam doesn't allow you to move the game files =/

Any help would be appreciated, thanks!
 

baldrik

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I use steammover and it works great. I actually installed steam and all of my games on the HDD and then use steammover to move individual games to the SSD. Steam creates massive .ncf and .gcf files for steam games that are not in the games' folders - I've got 40GB worth in my steam folder. Putting that on most peoples SSDs is just not an option.
 

syncore

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I have the Steam app in Program Files on my SSD (C drive) but all my games are on one of my mechanical drives (F drive). I simply created a directory on F: called "Steam Games", then moved all of the steam games to that directory, then I created junctions using Link Shell Extension so it looks like the games actually reside on C:

Edit: That Steammover tool above does the same exact thing, just in a lazy (easier) way
 

GoldenTiger

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I have the Steam app in Program Files on my SSD (C drive) but all my games are on one of my mechanical drives (F drive). I simply created a directory on F: called "Steam Games", then moved all of the steam games to that directory, then I created junctions using Link Shell Extension so it looks like the games actually reside on C:

Edit: That Steammover tool above does the same exact thing, just in a lazy (easier) way

Was about to post this and read it right as I was about finished typing :p. I move any rarely-played games to the junctioned directory, keeping the bulk of them on my SSD.
 

Zinn

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Was about to post this and read it right as I was about finished typing :p. I move any rarely-played games to the junctioned directory, keeping the bulk of them on my SSD.

yea same here. works wonders. :p
 

Starcrossed

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SteamTool won't work for all games -- games that are not contained in an individual folder, that is.
 

Stiler

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Steam mover does EXACTLY what you want.

I just did it yesterday.

I am running on a 128 GB M4 SSD and I wanted to have it so that I could place my newer steam games on the SSD, and have the older/bigger games on my other huge 1TB HD.

Steam mover is super easy, you simply install it, then it comes up with your entire installed steam gaming library. Then you simply check the arrow on whichever game you want to move to the new hdd and it does it.

The best of all with Steam mover is that it lets you use your same steam program to launch the games, so you don't have to install steam to each hdd like some other work arounds. It's the simplest/easiest way I've found to do this.
 

TheOneKnownAsMe

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I have Steam installed on my SSD, and I just use Steam Mover to transfer all of my least-played games over to my mechanical drive. However, looking back, I wish I had done it the other way around, because- as another user mentioned- Steam creates a ton of different files for each game that don't reside in the game folders themselves, so they don't get transferred with SteamMover, thus bloating my SSD.
 

Stiler

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I have Steam installed on my SSD, and I just use Steam Mover to transfer all of my least-played games over to my mechanical drive. However, looking back, I wish I had done it the other way around, because- as another user mentioned- Steam creates a ton of different files for each game that don't reside in the game folders themselves, so they don't get transferred with SteamMover, thus bloating my SSD.

Wouldn't you rather have your newer games that you play a lot on the ssd, an dth eolder least played ones that are taking up spac eon your bigger hd? Regardless of the other m isc data files.
 

FiZ

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Follow the guide posted on the Steam forums, which makes use of MKLINK. It is a fairly painless and easy way to split your Steam games up onto different HD's, without the need for any 3rd party software. Here.
 

TheOneKnownAsMe

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Wouldn't you rather have your newer games that you play a lot on the ssd, an dth eolder least played ones that are taking up spac eon your bigger hd? Regardless of the other m isc data files.

I think you misread my post. I would still keep my most-played games on the SSD, but I would place the core steam installation on my mechanical HDD.
 

MavericK

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Follow the guide posted on the Steam forums, which makes use of MKLINK. It is a fairly painless and easy way to split your Steam games up onto different HD's, without the need for any 3rd party software. Here.

Yep, that's what I use. Easy enough, though I guess if you have a lot of games to transfer it would be easier to use something like Steam Mover. Personally I only have an 80 GB SSD so I can only fit a few games, anyway. Not a big deal to just use MKLINK /D to put those on there.
 

baldrik

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I think you misread my post. I would still keep my most-played games on the SSD, but I would place the core steam installation on my mechanical HDD.

This, in my opinion, is the only way to go. Installing steam itself on your SSD is just not the way to go. Install steam on your large HDD and then use steammover or the like to move just the games you are currently playing to the SSD. This way you can install your entire steam library and not have to worry about the .ncf and .gcf files(which can be 1-2gb per game) tying up valuable SSD resources.
 
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Steam/Valve should seriously allow users to set where Steam should be installed, not at C:\Program Files by default would have been a better idea.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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Steam/Valve should seriously allow users to set where Steam should be installed, not at C:\Program Files by default would have been a better idea.

You can install it wherever you want... that's not an issue at all.
 

Tudz

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To move the bulk of my games, since I have quite a few, I used a program similar to what people are describing above. But it was limited in it couldn't move all games, like the ones which aren't located in their own folder. These games I just moved manually using symlinks, and now as I want games on and off the SSD I use symlinks manually. But for the initial move, yeah, use a program like described above.

I actually think itsfar less hassle to leave steam off the ssd, then move games onto and off of the ssd as you want them. If you suddenly want to install a huge 20gb game and steam is on the ssd and you don't have 20gb free, you won't be able to install it! At least not easily.
 

termite

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I have mine installed on a 256gb SSD. It limits the amount of games I have installed but I actually prefer that.

I ran Steam mover for a while and it does work very well.
 

Tudz

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I have mine installed on a 256gb SSD. It limits the amount of games I have installed but I actually prefer that.

I ran Steam mover for a while and it does work very well.

256GB and 60GB are two very different animals. By the time you install an OS, a couple of programs you might need and some random files, you barely have space for 1 or 2 games, and big games (isn't GTA4 around 25GB?) you might have issues even installing the game, and you need to install it before you can move it to another drive.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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256GB and 60GB are two very different animals. By the time you install an OS, a couple of programs you might need and some random files, you barely have space for 1 or 2 games, and big games (isn't GTA4 around 25GB?) you might have issues even installing the game, and you need to install it before you can move it to another drive.

You'd get away with it when you have more than 1 SSD. :)
 

termite

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256GB and 60GB are two very different animals. By the time you install an OS, a couple of programs you might need and some random files, you barely have space for 1 or 2 games, and big games (isn't GTA4 around 25GB?) you might have issues even installing the game, and you need to install it before you can move it to another drive.

No way! Steam is on it's own SSD drive, OS is on another 64Gb SSD, I previously had Steam on the same drive as my OS, hence the comment stating that I had used Steam Mover in the past with good results.

You'd get away with it when you have more than 1 SSD. :)

This.
 

dderidex

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FWIW, OP, if you have an Intel Z68 motherboard, you could always set that SSD + HDD combination with Intel's Smart Response Technology to create what appears to the OS as a single drive, but has the 'more frequently used things' cached on the SSD.

Nice thing about that is that it's totally hands-off. You don't have to worry about deciding which programs you use more than others - the system is doing it all for you, dynamically.
 

TheBuzzer

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i realized something after using ssd for a while, it seems like it isnt that fast or maybe i got used to it.

I bet if i go back to my older raptor drive it will feel slow .
 

twzTechman

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With fast SSD's dropping below $200 for a 120gb drive, I just got a 2nd SSD and moved my entire Steam folder and installation to the new SSD. Steam has instructions on how to move your installation and it worked fine for me.

I can't keep all my Steam games there, but enough to give me a good variety. These days, even the biggest games will download in a few hours, so not a big problem.
 

blade52x

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Use junctions.

Install your game as you normally do. Then cut/paste the entire game folder over to another hard drive. Open up the command prompt and type the following:

mklink /J "old game path directory" "new game path directory"

Full Guide
 

Tudz

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You'd get away with it when you have more than 1 SSD. :)

Well the OP hasn't said he has 2 SSDs :p

For people who have steam installed on an SSD and have done comparisons... is it actually any faster? I considered installing steam on an SSD, but by observation most the time spent waiting for steam is waiting for the connection, not for the hard drive. It seemed far less effort to just install steam to the HDD and move games to the SSD as I want them rather than installing steam to the SSD and having to constantly do file management and move/link a huge number of GCF and NCF files around.
 

CrimsonKnight13

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Well the OP hasn't said he has 2 SSDs :p

For people who have steam installed on an SSD and have done comparisons... is it actually any faster? I considered installing steam on an SSD, but by observation most the time spent waiting for steam is waiting for the connection, not for the hard drive. It seemed far less effort to just install steam to the HDD and move games to the SSD as I want them rather than installing steam to the SSD and having to constantly do file management and move/link a huge number of GCF and NCF files around.

I have chosen not to install Steam on an SSD since I will only use a spare SSD to keep the best and/or newest games installed on it. My main HDD for Steam & other games is a WD Velociraptor 300GB. I noticed a big reduction in load times when I moved Skyrim & Arkham City from the 300GB HDD to the 64GB SSD. (C300) :) I'm sure that if someone used an SSD entirely for Steam, the performance wouldn't bring any complaints.
 

Tudz

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Yeah, I have steam installed on a 1TB WD caviar black, OS on an SSD and move certain games to the SSD as I want them. The Witcher was a game that benefited hugely from being on an SSD. I was just wondering if anyone had tried Steam itself on an SSD with games on a HDD and if it actually makes any appreciable difference to the operation of Steam or how long it takes to initially start games. It seems a bit pointless to me, you want it the other way around, steam on HDD and the game on the SSD ;)
 

Met-AL

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Follow the guide posted on the Steam forums, which makes use of MKLINK. It is a fairly painless and easy way to split your Steam games up onto different HD's, without the need for any 3rd party software. Here.

This is my method for keeping Bad Company 2 on my 160GB SSD and the other 250GB of games on my 1.5TB WD Black drive.
 

Ryom

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Well the OP hasn't said he has 2 SSDs :p

For people who have steam installed on an SSD and have done comparisons... is it actually any faster? I considered installing steam on an SSD, but by observation most the time spent waiting for steam is waiting for the connection, not for the hard drive. It seemed far less effort to just install steam to the HDD and move games to the SSD as I want them rather than installing steam to the SSD and having to constantly do file management and move/link a huge number of GCF and NCF files around.

Yoinks, don't do that. Install Steam on the SSD and junction link the ENTIRE steamapps folder to your platter drive. That is where all the game files and GCF/NCFs reside. Set it and forget it. I've done this and Steam takes up roughly 600MB on my SSD.

If you want a certain game on the SSD, just junction link that one game folder back onto the SSD somewhere. No issues with installing games that are bigger than your SSD that way either.

Steam is quite a bit snappier opening up the first time, and a bit faster loading my friends list on the SSD.
 
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RedTalon19

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^^ I'll probably do this myself. I'm using a 128 M4 myself and I don't have any issues with space... yet. But, I only have a few games installed at any given time and delete them as soon as I'm finished with them or find I haven't played it in a month or two. Using this method I won't have to worry about this anymore!
 

llmercll

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Thanks for the replies everyone, you've been a great help. I'll probably go with Ryom's solution. My friends list is huge and I always hear my HDD crunching away so will be glad once I get things going =)

thanks again!
 
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