When you launch your game through Steam, you may sometimes face Steam error code 51 along with an error message, Game failed to start. This is a common error that occurs in all sorts of games like Skyrim or Dota. This error code 51 steam issue most commonly occurs on your PC when you are using an outdated version of Steam and an outdated game. If this happens to you, you are at the right place! We bring a perfect guide that helps you fix the discussed issue.
- How to Fix Steam Error Code 51 in Windows 10
- Method 1: Basic Troubleshooting Methods
- Method 2: Run Steam as an Administrator
- Method 3: Flush Steam Configuration
- Method 4: Update Steam
- Method 5: Update GPU Drivers
- Method 6: Roll Back Graphics Driver Updates
- Method 7: Reinstall Graphics Driver
- Method 8: Update .NET Framework
- Method 9: Update DirectX
- Method 10: Disable Antivirus Temporarily (If Applicable)
- Method 11: Modify Windows Defender Firewall Setting
How to Fix Steam Error Code 51 in Windows 10
If you are vexed by error code 51 Steam in your Windows 10 computer, here are a few possible reasons why you must analyze them carefully to sort out the problem.
- PC does not meet the basic requirements of the game and you are using the administrative version of Steam.
- Some other background program is interfering with the game.
- You are using an unverified version of drivers.
- The graphics settings of the game are misconfigured.
- Presence of malware and viruses.
- The .NET framework and operating system are not updated to their latest version.
- DirectX version is not up-to-date.
- Any misconfigured or corrupt installation files of the game also causes the problem.
- The Microsoft C++ redistributable files are not compatible with the game and PC.
Here are a few possible troubleshooting methods that will help you fix error code 51 issue. Follow them as demonstrated in the same order and if you are lucky, you may attain a solution for your problem within the first few steps itself!
Method 1: Basic Troubleshooting Methods
Before you try any other troubleshooting methods, implement some basic methods that will help you fix the error code within a few simple clicks.
1A. Stop Overclocking
Every high-end computer is built with the option of Overclocking which helps in outputting more juice than your specifications that you already have. Running the graphics card or processor faster than the default speed refers to overclocking. When this happens, your computer will reach the maximum temperature after a particular time. The computer detects this and adjusts the clock speed to the normal speed until it is cooled down. The clock speed is increased again after they cool down. This increases the performance of your computer and is a great help if you don’t have a powerful computer.
1B. Close Unwanted Background Processes
Several background processes running on your PC may interfere with Steam processes. These programs may contribute to the error code 51 on Steam issue. Follow our guide How to End Task in Windows 10 to exit from all background processes.
1C: Change Steam Game Priority
The preference of an application or process tells the computer the importance and if it should be given preference over the others while allocating the resources. The priority of every application is normal except the system processes, by default. Steam might trigger some error codes if it didn’t get enough resources.
1. Choose Task Manager after right-clicking on the Taskbar.
2. Now, search for Steam process.
3. Then change the priority to High or Realtime and check if this works.
Note: Change the priority with great caution as changing the priority of the process carelessly could make your system extremely slow or unstable.
4. Close the Task Manager and reboot your computer and check whether the discussed issue is solved.
Also Read: Fix Steam Image Failed to Upload
1D: Set High Performance
You can also optimize your game when setting your high-performance power plan settings. These power plans are developed to manage the power settings on portable settings. Follow the below-mentioned instructions to use high-performance power plan settings on your computer.
1. Press the Windows + I keys together to open Windows Settings.
2. Now, scroll down the list and click on System setting.
3. Now, select the Power & sleep option and click on Additional power settings under Related settings.
4. Now, choose the High-performance option under High additional plans as shown in the below picture.
Now you have optimized your system, check if you have attained how to fix error code 51 Steam.
Likewise, it is always essential that your game run at its latest version to avoid any conflicts. Until your game is updated, you cannot log in to the game servers successfully. To update your game, follow the below-mentioned steps.
1. Launch the Steam app and navigate to LIBRARY.
2. Now, click on HOME and search for your game.
3. Then, right-click on the game and select the Properties… option.
4. Now, switch to the UPDATES tab and check if any updates are pending in action. If so, follow the on-screen instructions to download the latest updates.
After an update, check if the discussed error code on Steam is fixed.
1E: Disable Full-Screen Optimizations
Few users have suggested that disabling full-screen optimizations on PC has helped them fix error code 51 Steam issue. Follow as instructed.
1. Launch Steam and click on LIBRARY.
2. Now, right-click on any Steam game and click on Properties.
3. Now, switch to the GENERAL tab and click on SET LAUNCH OPTIONS… as depicted.
4. Now, a new window will be opened with an advanced user warning. To open the game in windowed mode, type the –windowed parameter.
5. Now, save the changes by clicking OK and exit from the Properties window.
6. Now, relaunch the game and ensure if it runs in windowed mode. Else, navigate to SET LAUNCH OPTIONS… again and type the following parameters instead of the last parameter.
–windowed -w 1024
7. Now, save the changes by clicking OK.
This parameter will set the game to be launched in windowed mode.
1F: Verify Integrity of Game files
We have seen many cases in which the game files are either missing or corrupt or it had incomplete installations. Users could also experience Steam error code 51 game failed to launch if they are interrupted by the update process or if the game files are being moved. In this method, you will be opening Steam and using the built-in function for verifying the integrity of the game. It will be replaced if the application finds something. Read our guide on How to Verify Integrity Game Files on Steam.
Note: You should perform similar steps if you are using different publishing software.
1G. Update Windows
Also, if there are any bugs in your PC, they can only be fixed after a Windows update. Microsoft releases regular updates to fix all these bugs thereby fixing Steam error code 51. Hence, ensure if you have updated your Windows Operating System and if there are any updates pending in action, use our guide How to Download and Install Windows 10 Latest Update
After updating your Windows Operating System, check whether you can access the game without any issues.
Method 2: Run Steam as an Administrator
Few users have suggested that when you run Steam as an administrator, Steam error code 51 can be resolved. So here are a few steps to run Steam as an administrator.
1. Right-click on the Steam shortcut on the Desktop.
2. Now, click on Properties.
3. In the Properties window, switch to the Compatibility tab.
4. Now, check the box Run this program as an administrator.
5. Finally, click on Apply > OK to save the changes.
Also Read: Fix Steam Error Code e502 l3 in Windows 10
Method 3: Flush Steam Configuration
You can try to resolve Steam error code 51 by using Steam flushing. You can follow these steps to perform this method.
1. Exit the Steam client completely.
2. Press the Windows + R keys simultaneously to open the Run dialog box.
3. Type steam://flushconfig and click OK.
4. In the prompt menu click on OK to confirm.
5. Now, reboot the PC.
6. Then, open file explorer by pressing Windows + E keys together.
7. Navigate to the following location path.
C:\program files (x86)\Steam
8. Here, locate the Steam or Steam.exe file and launch it by logging in again.
Method 4: Update Steam
If you use an outdated Steam application, you cannot access any games smoothly. Hence always make sure you use an updated version of Steam and Steam games before launching it.
1. Hit the Windows key and type Steam, then click on Open.
2. Now, click on Steam in the top left corner of the screen followed by Check for Steam Client Updates… as highlighted below.
3. If you have any new updates to be downloaded, install them and ensure your Steam client is up-to-date.
4. Now, relaunch Steam.
Also Read: How to Disable Steam Overlay in Windows 10
Method 5: Update GPU Drivers
Graphical drivers help heavy graphical images and video processing applications simplify their tasks. If you face any launching conflicts while launching the game, make sure you use an updated version of device drivers, as they serve as a link between the hardware and the Operating System of your PC. Many users have suggested that updating drivers have resolved how to fix error code 51 Steam. Read and implement the steps instructed in our guide 4 Ways to Update Graphics Drivers in Windows 10 to do so.
Method 6: Roll Back Graphics Driver Updates
Sometimes, the current version of graphics drivers may cause any launching conflicts and, in this case, you have to restore previous versions of installed drivers. This process is called rollback of drivers and you can easily roll back your computer drivers to their previous state by following our guide How to Rollback Drivers on Windows 10.
Save your changes and check if you got fix for error code 51.
Method 7: Reinstall Graphics Driver
If you still face Steam error code 51 after updating your GPU drivers, then reinstall device drivers to fix any incompatibility issues. You can easily reinstall Graphical drivers as instructed in our guide How to Uninstall and Reinstall Drivers on Windows 10.
Method 8: Update .NET Framework
.NET framework in Windows 10 computer is essential for uninterrupted service of modern apps and games. Many games have an auto-update feature for the .NET framework, and thus it will be updated automatically whenever an update is available. In another case, if an update prompts in your PC, you can manually install the latest version of the .NET framework, as discussed below, to fix Steam error code 51 on your Windows 10 PC.
1. Check for new updates for the .NET framework from the official Microsoft website.
2. If there are any updates, click on the corresponding/recommended link and click Download .NET Framework 4.8 Runtime option.
Note: Do not click on Download .NET Framework 4.8 Developer Pack as it is used by software developers.
3. Go to My downloads, double-click on the setup file to run the downloaded file, and follow the on-screen instructions to install the .NET framework successfully on your Windows PC.
Method 9: Update DirectX
To enjoy a seamless multimedia experience on Steam, you have to make sure whether DirectX is installed, and it is updated to its latest version. DirectX helps you improve the visual media experience for graphical games and applications especially. It is worth updating DirectX needed for this game. Follow our guide on How to Update DirectX in Windows 10.
Note: Ensure Check for WHQL digital signatures box is checked in System tab and in all tabs, check whether WHQL Logo’d is set to Yes.
Also Read: Fix Steam Keeps Crashing
Method 10: Disable Antivirus Temporarily (If Applicable)
Some incompatible antivirus programs installed in your computer will trouble you to resolve how to fix error code 51 Steam. To avoid conflicts, you must ensure the security settings of your Windows 10 computer and check if they are stable or not. To find whether the antivirus suite is the reason for rror code 51 on Steam issue, disable it once and try connecting to a network.
Read our guide on How to Disable Antivirus Temporarily on Windows 10 and follow the instructions to disable your Antivirus program temporarily on your PC.
If you have a fix for your problem after disabling the antivirus program in your computer, you are advised to uninstall the program completely from your PC. Read our guide Force Uninstall Programs which won’t Uninstall In Windows 10 to uninstall your antivirus program in your computer.
Method 11: Modify Windows Defender Firewall Setting
You will also face Steam error code 51 game failed to launch, due to an over-reactive or over-protective antivirus suite in your Windows 10 computer. This prevents the connection link between the game launcher and the server. So, to fix this problem, you can whitelist Steam in your Firewall settings or disable the problem temporarily.
Option I: Whitelist Steam
To allow Steam in your Windows Defender Firewall, follow our guide Allow or Block Apps through the Windows Firewall and implement the steps as instructed.
Option II: Disable Firewall (Not Recommended)
If you do not know how to disable Windows Defender Firewall, our guide on How to Disable Windows 10 Firewall will help you do so.
Option III: Create New Rule in Firewall
1. Hit the Windows key and type Windows Defender Firewall with Advanced Security, then click on Run as administrator as shown.
2. Now, in the left pane, click on Inbound Rules as depicted.
3. Then, in the right pane, click on New rule… as shown.
4. Now, make sure you select the Program option under What type of rule would you like to create? menu and click on Next> as shown.
5. Then, click on the Browse… button corresponding to This program path: as shown.
6. Then, navigate to the C:\Program Files (x86)\ Steam path and double-click on setup file. Then, click on the Open button.
7. Then, click on Next > in the New Inbound Rule Wizard window as shown.
8. Now, select the radio button next to Allow the connection and click on Next > as depicted.
9. Make sure Domain, Private, Public boxes are selected and click on Next > as shown.
10. Finally, add a name to your new rule and click on Finish.
All done! Check if you have fixed error code 51 on Steam or not.
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We hope that this guide was helpful and you could fix Steam error code 51 game failed to Launch on your Windows 10 PC. Let us know which method worked for you the best. Feel free to reach out to us with your queries and suggestions via the comments section below.