Wondering how you can fix ‘Manifest Unavailable’ Steam network error?
Running your favorite game after an update only to find that you’re running into a ‘Manifest Unavailable’ error? Steam is one of the world’s most famous video game distributor platforms on the market.
With Windows, Mac, Linux, and even console compatibility, there’s no reason for you to not be familiar with Steam if you’re an avid gamer. Unfortunately, like all major platforms, Steam does have its fair share of hiccups and software bugs.
The ‘Manifest Unavailable’ error is probably due to a network error that’s causing your connection to mess up. In this article, we’ll be going over the methods that you can use to try and fix this problem. Here’s how to fix ‘Manifest Unavailable’ Steam network error.
Let’s get started!
- 1. Change Your Download Region.
- 2. Clear Steam’s Download Cache.
- 3. Disable Any Third-Party Antivirus Software.
- 4. Whitelist Steam To Your Firewall.
- 5. Flush Your Steam’s Config Files.
- 6. Flush Your Network DNS.
- 7. Reinstall Steam.
1. Change Your Download Region.
Since this error is probably due to a network problem with the server you’re downloading your game from, changing your download region should fix this issue. Additionally, you don’t have to compromise speed since Steam has a lot of servers across the entire world so finding one near you shouldn’t be a big problem.
Changing your download region means you’ll be connecting to another Steam server that isn’t compromised, congested, or giving you problems. This is pretty easy to do and doesn’t affect anything other than the download speed and location of the server you’re downloading from.
Here’s how you can change your download region:
- First, open up the Steam app and click on the Steam button at the top-left corner of your screen.
- From there, click on Settings and navigate to the Downloads tab.
- Under Download Region, you should be able to change the server you’re downloading from by selecting another server that’s relatively close to you.
- After changing your server, just click on OK to complete this method.
With that out of the way, try updating your game or running it to see if that fixed and downloaded any new updates to your game.
2. Clear Steam’s Download Cache.
While this might fly over the head of most people, have you ever browsed through your Steam folder and checked through the sizes of the files? You should notice that some files are bigger than others. Now how does Steam download such large files when you’re downloading at 5mbps?
Steam has a download cache where it downloads and stores incomplete files. When one huge file is complete and ready, the data is then combined into one big file and that’s what you see on your Steam folder.
By clearing Steam’s download cache, we’ll be deleting and flushing out any incomplete or corrupted files that have been compromised due to a faulty network connection. Compromised files can hinder Steam from finishing the download or from downloading additional data.
Here’s how you can clear Steam’s download cache:
- Start by opening up the Steam app on your computer and navigating to the Steam button at the top-left corner of your screen.
- After that, look for and click on Settings then go to the Downloads tab to proceed.
- Once you’re there, look for the option to Clear Download Cache to clear and flush out your download’s cache files.
You should be required to log back into your Steam account, simply do this since restarting Steam is also a great way to fix additional software issues. Once that’s done, try to see if that helped fix ‘Manifest Unavailable’ Steam network error.
3. Disable Any Third-Party Antivirus Software.
Since Steam is primarily an online game distribution platform, it’s inevitable that the program will need access to network features on your computer. These can be due to downloads, connecting to different servers, or even hosting your own server that your friends can connect to.
Regardless, these activities can be suspicious and cause your antivirus software to restrict Steam’s network settings. In this method, you’ll either need to disable your antivirus software for a bit or at least add Steam to the whitelist of your AV.
Unfortunately, since third-party antivirus programs are all unique and interfaced differently, we are unable to provide a general set of steps to guide you through this step. We can, however, explain what whitelisting is so you can be familiar with the concept.
Adding a program to an antivirus whitelist simply means giving that program, in this case Steam, the freedom to fully use the required parts of your system. In other words, whitelisted programs will not be fully restricted by your antivirus software, which should help apps like Steam connect to networks and download files to your computer.
4. Whitelist Steam To Your Firewall.
Moving on to another similar method, we’ll be whitelisting Steam to your firewall. Your Windows or Mac firewall is probably joked about a lot, especially if you’re a Windows user. Unfortunately, this poor program gets a lot of slack for being extremely misunderstood.
Your firewall isn’t responsible for keeping viruses off of your computer, since that’s the job of your antivirus. Instead, your firewall actually monitors malicious network activities and safeguards you from potential attacks or network vulnerabilities.
While this is good and all, installing, downloading, hosting, and so on are all network features that Steam utilizes to be able to function properly. In this method, we’ll remove the restrictions that your firewall might be putting on Steam for both Windows and Mac operating systems:
Before you proceed, you will need administrative privileges to access these settings.
Here’s how to whitelist Steam in Windows computers:
- Bring up the Start menu by pressing on the Windows key or clicking on the Windows icon at the bottom-left corner of your screen.
- From there, type in ‘firewall’ and select Firewall & network protection.
- A window should open up on your screen, look for Allow an app through firewall and click on it.
- You should see a list of all the currently installed applications on your computer. To access and configure this, you’ll need to click on the Change Settings button at the top-right corner of your screen.
- Finally, look for the Steam and Steam Web Helper app and check the boxes for both Private and Public options.
Congratulations! You’ve successfully whitelisted Steam on your Windows computer. Next, we’ll be tackling the same situation and set of procedures for Mac users. Here’s how you can whitelist Steam through your macOS:
- First, click on the Apple icon at the top-left corner of your screen and open up System Preferences.
- Now, click on either the Security or Security & Privacy icon and navigate to the Firewall tab.
- Next, click on the lock icon so you can access the settings. This is when your administrative powers will be needed.
- From there, click on the Firewall Options button and look for Add Application (+). Click on that.
- A window with a list of all installed programs on your computer should open up. Look for Steam and add the program to your whitelist by clicking on Add.
- Lastly, just click on OK to finish the entire step.
With that out of the way, restart your Steam program for the changes to fully take effect.
5. Flush Your Steam’s Config Files.
Moving onto a more practical and technical method, we’ll be clearing your Steam’s config files by running a command through the Run program. This method will clear your Steam’s cache files which should remove any corrupted or compromised files that are messing with your Steam program.
There are two ways that you can do this, but this specific way should work well enough for this purpose. However, you can also try the alternative way of clearing your web browser’s cache files just so you can be completely thorough.
Here’s how you can flush your Steam’s config files:
- We’ll need the Run dialog box for this method, so bring that out by pressing on the Windows key + R buttons simultaneously on your keyboard.
- In the text field, either copy and paste or simply type out the text below into the Run program. Hit Enter once you’re done.
This method should clear any browser or HTML-related files that are causing this problem. Additionally, we’ll also be flushing out your computer’s DNS settings in the next method.
6. Flush Your Network DNS.
Accessing a DNS server is a pretty underrated commodity that helps us navigate around the internet easily. Without a DNS server, you’d have to search for every website by connecting to their specific IP addresses which is quite the hassle.
However, these DNS networks can sometimes be under maintenance or simply glitch from continuous use. In this method, we’ll be flushing out your DNS cache files to refresh your DNS connection and hopefully fix ‘Manifest Unavailable’ Steam network error.
Here’s how you can flush your network DNS for Windows:
- Start by opening up the Start menu by pressing on the Windows key. From there, search for ‘cmd’ and open up the Command Prompt.
- Now, simply copy-paste or type in the command that’s displayed below and hit Enter.
Wait for a couple of seconds and that should flush your DNS cache files. Alternatively, here’s how you can flush the DNS cache files on your Mac:
- Bring up the Spotlight search by pressing on the Command + Spacebar keys simultaneously.
- Next, search for ‘Terminal’ and that should open the Terminal app.
- You can either copy and paste or simply type in the command below. Hit Enter when you’re done.
sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder
- Finally, you might be asked for an administrator password, fill this in and the process should continue.
Unlike the Windows Command Terminal, the Mac Terminal will not display a notification as to when your DNS has been completely flushed. However, this should only take a couple of seconds so you can go and get yourself a cup of water in the meantime.
7. Reinstall Steam.
If you’ve exhausted all the methods above with no luck, you might be tempted to completely reinstall Steam. While this might seem like a daunting task, reinstalling Steam isn’t that complicated.
Granted, however, that it does take a lot more effort to do than your average program. Steam literally stores all your Steam games in its folders, without being careful you may delete your games together with the Steam application.
For this method, we’ll be redirecting you to three sources. The first source will teach you how to backup and restore your Steam games, which will mitigate the hassle of having to download them from scratch after reinstalling.
Second, this link will be for Windows users who are trying to uninstall Steam thoroughly. Lastly, Mac users will have to be redirected to this timely yet thorough way of uninstalling Steam on your Mac.
These links have additional steps that help completely erase Steam from your computer, which does a much better job than just uninstalling the program. Steam unfortunately leaves residual files after being uninstalled, which is what the steps in those links will allow you to completely clear.
That about wraps up this article! Hopefully we’ve helped you fix ‘Manifest Unavailable’ Steam network error for your computer. If you have any questions or clarifications, feel free to leave us a comment down below.
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