Steam is a video game digital distribution service that lets users buy, download, install, and play games. It also provides the user with installation and automatic updating of games, and community features such as friends lists and groups, cloud saving, and in-game voice and chats functionality. If when you try to install or update a game on Steam you encounter the Invalid Depot Configuration error on Windows 10, then this post may help you. In this post, we will identify the known likely causes that can trigger the error and then provide the possible solutions you can try to help remediate this issue.
You may encounter the Invalid Depot Configuration Steam error message on Windows 11/10/8.1/7 due to one or more (but not limited to) of the following known causes;
- Outdated Steam client.
- Glitched DNS address.
- Beta program participation.
- Permission issue.
- Steam Client Bootstrapper as a startup item.
- Corrupt or damaged appmanifest.acf file.
Steam Error – Invalid Depot Configuration
If you’re faced with this Invalid Depot Configuration issue, you can try our recommended solutions in the order presented below and see if that helps to resolve the issue.
- Update the Steam client to the latest version
- Flush DNS cache
- Force update Steam
- Opt-in/opt-out of the Beta program
- Run Steam client from the install folder location
- Disable the Steam Client Bootstrapper startup item
- Modify the app manifest of the game by deleting the MountedDepots configuration.
Let’s take a look at the description of the process involved in relation to each of the listed solutions.
1] Update the Steam client to the latest version
In some cases, you’ll encounter the Invalid Depot Configuration issue because you’re using an outdated Steam client version. Steam is fully capable of auto-updating but if the auto-updating feature is glitched and cannot update the client automatically, you’ll receive this error message.
In this case, you can get Steam to update automatically by simply restarting the app. You can also force the store to update by going to the ribbon bar at the top of the Steam client and clicking on Steam > Check for Steam Client Updates.
If this fails to resolve the issue, you can uninstall the Steam app and then download and install the latest version from the Steam website.
Note: To preserve game installations, move the Steamapps folder (under this location C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam) out of the Steam folder before uninstalling the Steam client or else you’ll have to reinstall all your games from scratch. Also, ensure you restart Windows before reinstalling Steam. Afterward, you can move the Steamapps folder back into the Steam folder.
Then try updating or installing a game and see if the issue persists, if so move to the next solution.
2] Flush DNS cache
If the Invalid Depot Configuration error message was caused by a network issue, flushing the DNS cache would probably resolve the issue.
To flush the DNS cache, do the following:
- Press Windows key + R.
- In the Run dialog box, type steam://flushconfig and then press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open up an elevated Command Prompt.
- Click Yes on the UAC prompt.
- Once you’re prompted by the Clear Download Cache dialog, click OK to clear your local download cache.
- Now, open Steam again and log in with your account once again.
Try updating or installing a game and see if the issue is resolved. If not continue with the next solution.
3] Force update Steam
To force update Steam, check the system tray on the taskbar and make sure that the Steam application is closed, then navigate your Steam installation folder (at this location C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam) and delete everything except Steamapps folder, Userdata folder, and Steam.exe file.
Once the Steam folder has been stripped clean, restart your computer.
When the next startup sequence is complete, launch Steam from the main executable. After the integrity verification, it will automatically download and install the latest version.
Thereafter, you can try to install/update the game that was previously triggering the Invalid Depot Configuration error and see if the issue has been resolved. If not, continue with the next solution.
4] Opt-in/opt-out of the Beta program
In this solution, depending on your current status, either opt-in or opt-out of the Steam beta program could resolve the Invalid Depot Configuration error.
- Launch the Steam client.
- Inside Steam, use the ribbon bar at the top to click on Steam > Settings.
- From the Settings menu, select the Account menu from the vertical menu on the right, then move to the right pane and click the Change button associated with Beta Participation.
- From the Beta Participation screen, change the Beta participation drop-down menu to the item that is not currently active.
- Click OK to save the changes.
- Restart Steam.
See if the issue is resolved. If not continue with the next solution.
5] Run Steam client from the install folder location
Some affected users have reported that running Steam from the install location (C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam) instead of a shortcut did fix the Invalid Depot Configuration error. To do so, check the system tray on the taskbar and make sure that the Steam application is closed, then navigate to your Steam installation folder and double-click on Steam.exe to launch the digital store.
Now try updating/installing a game and see if the issue is resolved. If not continue with the next solution.
6] Disable the Steam Client Bootstrapper startup item
In this solution, you’ll need to disable the Steam Client Bootstrapper startup item, then flush the download cache of Steam, and launch Steam from the installation folder.
- Press Windows key + R.
- In the Run dialog box, type msconfig and hit Enter to launch System Configuration.
- Inside the System Configuration window, go to the Startup tab and click on Open Task Manager.
- Inside the Startup tab of Task Manager, right-click on Steam Client Bootstrapper and choose Disable.
- Next, press Windows key + R to invoke the Run dialog box again.
- In the Run dialog, type steam://flushconfig and hit Enter to delete the download cache of Steam.
- When prompted by the Steam confirmation prompt, click OK to continue.
- Finally, navigate to the location of your Steam installation (default location is C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam), double-click on the Steam.exe file to launch Steam.
Now try updating/installing a game and see if the Invalid Depot Configuration error is resolved. If not continue with the next solution.
7] Modify the app manifest of the game by deleting the MountedDepots configuration
In this solution, you need edit the .acf file belonging to the game that is triggering the Invalid Depot Configuration error. By deleting the entire MountedDepots config part of the file, several affected users have reported that Steam validated the game (re-created the MountedDepots part) which ended up resolving the issue.
Do the following:
- Start by making sure that Steam is completely closed. Check your system tray on the taskbar to ensure that Steam is not running in the background.
- Navigate to the SteamApps folder at the default location (C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam).
If you installed Steam in a custom location, navigate there instead.
- Right-click on the first appmanifest.acf file and open it with a text editor – preferably Notepad++.
- Once you open the file with a text editor, press Ctrl + F to open up the search function.
- Then type MountedDepots and hit Enter.
- When you find the correct config part, select the entire section and click on Delete.
- Then, use the ribbon menu at the top to Save the configuration and exit the file.
- Next, return to the Steamapps folder and repeat the same action as above with the rest of the appmanifest.acf files that you have there.
Once the MountedDepots part has been stripped clean for every game, start Steam again and allow it to validate the game files that have been modified.
Now try to install/update the game that was previously failing and see if the issue has been resolved.
Hopefully, anyone of these solutions will fix the issue for you!