How to enable family sharing steam?

HotbotBy HotBotUpdated: July 10, 2024

Introduction to Steam Family Sharing

Steam Family Sharing is a feature provided by Valve's Steam platform that allows multiple users to share their game libraries with family and friends. This feature is particularly useful for families with multiple gamers, as it enables them to play each other's games without having to purchase multiple copies. However, there are specific steps and requirements to enable this feature effectively.

Prerequisites for Enabling Family Sharing

Before diving into the steps, it's important to ensure that you meet all the prerequisites for enabling Steam Family Sharing:

1. Active Steam Account: Both the lender and borrower must have active Steam accounts.

2. Steam Guard Security: Steam Guard must be enabled on the lender's account.

3. Internet Connectivity: Both parties need an active internet connection during the initial setup.

Step-by-Step Guide to Enable Family Sharing

Enabling Family Sharing on Steam involves a few straightforward steps. Below is a detailed guide to help you through the process.

Step 1: Enable Steam Guard Security

Steam Guard is a necessary security feature that must be enabled to use Family Sharing.

1. Open Steam and log into your account.

2. Click on your username in the top-right corner and select "Account Details."

3. Under the "Account Security" section, click "Manage Steam Guard."

4. Choose either "Get Steam Guard codes from the Steam app on my phone" or "Get Steam Guard codes by email" to enable Steam Guard.

Step 2: Authorize Shared Computers

To share your library, you need to authorize the computers that will have access to your games.

1. Open Steam and log into your account on the computer you wish to authorize.

2. Click on "Steam" in the top-left corner and select "Settings."

3. In the settings menu, go to the "Family" tab.

4. Check the "Authorize Library Sharing on this Computer" box.

5. Select the accounts you want to share your library with from the list of accounts that have logged into this computer.

Step 3: Request Access to a Shared Library

Once the lender has authorized the computer, the borrower needs to request access to the shared library.

1. Log into your Steam account on the authorized computer.

2. Navigate to the "Library" section.

3. You should see a message indicating that games from another user’s library are available for sharing.

4. Click the "Request Access" button. The lender will receive an email requesting authorization.

Step 4: Grant Access to the Shared Library

The final step involves the lender granting access to the borrower's request.

1. The lender should open the email they received and click the "Authorize Library Sharing" link.

2. Log into the Steam account if prompted.

3. The borrower will now have access to the shared library.

Managing Shared Libraries

Once Family Sharing is enabled, you may want to manage or adjust settings for various reasons.

Revoking Access

You can revoke access to your shared library at any time.

1. Open Steam and go to "Settings."

2. Navigate to the "Family" tab.

3. Uncheck the box next to the accounts you wish to revoke access from.

4. Alternatively, you can click "Manage Other Computers" to view and manage all authorized devices.

Usage Restrictions

There are several restrictions to keep in mind:

1. Simultaneous Play: Only one user can access a shared library at a time. If the lender starts playing a game, the borrower will be prompted to either purchase the game or quit.

2. Game-Specific Restrictions: Some games may not support Family Sharing due to technical limitations or licensing agreements.

Advanced Tips and Troubleshooting

Here are some advanced tips and common troubleshooting methods to help you get the most out of Steam Family Sharing.

Multiple Borrowers

You can authorize up to 10 devices and share your library with up to 5 Steam accounts.

Connectivity Issues

Ensure both accounts have a stable internet connection during the setup process. If you encounter issues, try restarting the Steam client or re-authorizing the computer.

Check for Updates

Ensure that both Steam clients are up-to-date. Sometimes, bugs and issues are resolved in newer updates.

Enabling Steam Family Sharing can be both a practical and enjoyable way to maximize your gaming experience. By following the steps outlined, you can seamlessly share your game library with family and friends while keeping security intact. Explore the feature, troubleshoot as needed, and enjoy the enhanced flexibility that comes with Steam Family Sharing.

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