Steam is one of the world’s biggest gaming platforms right now, with more than 17 million concurrent users playing every day. Steam black screen error is one of Steam’s issues that has been around for a lot of years. Some of the effects of this error are that Steam client windows suddenly go completely black, not allowing gamers to access Library News, Friend list, Profile, and Store sections.
In this post, I’ve come up with eight methods to help you troubleshoot the black screen on the Steam Client for Windows in 2021. Before you jump to the fixes, make sure to download and install all the latest Windows updates and update and optimize your GPU drivers and settings.
Fix 1: Beta Participation ( Opt-in or Opt-Out)
On the top left side of your Steam Client, navigate to Steam -> Settings.
Now you should be in the Account tab. At the Beta participation option, click the Change button, and change the option from “NONE – Opt-out of all beta programs” to “Steam beta update“. If your default option was “Steam beta update” then change it to “NONE – Opt-out of all beta programs” and press OK.
You will be asked to restart Steam, press Restart, and check if the black screen on Steam is gone.
Fix 2: Disable GPU accelerated rendering
Navigate to Steam settings as we did on the first fix of this guide. Now instead of the Account tab, click on the Interface tab. In this tab, you can see many settings, untick “Enable GPU accelerated rendering in web views” and restart Steam.
Fix 3: Disable DirectWrite
Again, go to Steam settings -> Interface and look for the option “Enable DirectWrite for improved font smoothing and kerning” and make sure to untick it.
Fix 4: Add –no-cef-sandbox command to run when Steam starts
Find your Steam shortcut, right-click on it, and choose properties. On the target option, you should see the full path of the executable file. At the end of it, paste this command –no-cef-sandbox and click Apply and OK.
Start Steam again and check if it fixed the black screens that you were getting.
Fix 5: Clear the Steam Web Browser Cache
Navigate to Settings -> Web Browser, and you should see two options: DELETE WEB BROWSER CACHE & DELETE ALL BROWSER COOKIES. Press both buttons one by one, and once the processes are completed, click Ok and restart your Steam Client.
Fix 6: Disable Compatibility Mode
I suggest you apply the following instructions on both the Steam.exe file as well as the steamwebhelper.exe file.
Go to your Steam installation folder, which usually is under the path “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\” or right-click on the Steam shortcut and choose Open file location.
Right-click on Steam.exe and choose Properties.
Navigate to the Compatibility tab and uncheck any checked boxes.
Then click on Change settings for all users and uncheck everything there too—Click Apply and OK.
Now, considering you are on the steam folder, navigate to the following location: Steam -> bin -> cef -> cef.win7x64 . Look for steamwebhelper.exe and do the same process as you did on the steam.exe file above.
* Location of the steamwebhelper.exe may vary *Sometimes due to updates the location might be slightly different.
Open Steam again and see if it fixed your issue.
Fix 7: Uninstall and Reinstall Steam
There may be corrupted files or conflicts between files that may be causing a black screen on Steam. Uninstalling and Reinstalling Steam it’s quick and easy. If you’ve already tried this solution, then move to Fix 8 that has a twist on reinstalling steam that may eventually solve your issue.
Fix 8: Install Steam on a different location or disk.
If the previous fixes did not work for you, there is a good chance something is wrong with the location you are installing Steam. Let me break it out for you and give you some suggestions.
If you are installing Steam to a custom location, for example, “C:\MyGames\GamesIplayTheMost\Steam” , then you may consider reinstalling Steam but this time leave the default installation location that steam is suggesting. On the other hand, if your installation is on the default location then you may consider reinstalling Steam on your second disk or to a custom folder.
If this works for you and you installed steam on a different location, make sure to change the game’s path not to experience any errors while running your favorite games.
If after following this guide you still can’t solve your issues, you can book a PC Optimization appointment with me and I will be more than happy to help you out and solve all your problems.
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I am pretty sure one of these methods will fix your black screens on Steam and allow you to enjoy your favorite games.