[How to Fix] Windows Cannot Find Steam.exe Error?

[How to Fix] Windows Cannot Find Steam.exe Error?
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There are times when you open Steam from its shortcut or its installation file, you only get the error message box saying “Windows cannot find steam.exe”. If this the case you are struggling to find a solution, then you are on the right page. Learn why you step into the steam.exe missing issue and how you can fix it.

Windows cannot find steam.exe

Why Windows Cannot Find Steam.exe?

Usually, Steam.exe missing is mainly caused by malware and Avast program.

Malware: This is the main cause for Windows cannot find steam.exe, and by now a lot of users have reported that they just fixed this issue by scanning their computers and then killing the virus and malware found by antivirus.

AVAST: AVAST is not friendly to Steam. By default, Steam is detected as unsafe program and will be added to the risky list. To get Steam work properly, make Steam the exception from the risky list.

Now get the how-to guide below on how to fix Windows failed to find steam.

Method 1: Scan and Remove Virus/Malware

In case that the steam.exe missing error is caused by virus or malware, you can first of all download and install anti-virus software on your computer, then use it to perform a full scan for your computer and remove the potential threats.

Recommended antivirus protection: McAfee, Norton, Kaspersky, ESET, Malwarebytes.

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Method 2: Trust Steam in AVAST

AVAST usually interfere with the Steam installation and running. Run AVAST and you will see the Steam client has been flagged by AVAST. You can fix Windows cannot find steam.exe by adding Steam to the list of exception in AVAST.

Here is what to do:

  1. Open AVAST.
  2. Go to Menu > Settings > General > Exception > Add Exception.
  3. Click Browse and then navigate to the folder where Steam will be installed or is already located.
  4. Select that folder and then click Add Exception to add Steam to the exception list.
add exception in AVAST

At last, relaunch Steam and check whether you can successfully run it without the steam.exe missing error.

Tip: If adding Steam to the trusted list does not help remove the Windows cannot find steam.exe error, you can uninstall AVAST to have a try, for this can completely get rid of the conflict between AVAST and Steam.

Method 3: Delete a Certain Registry Value

The ultimate solution here is to edit a certain key in Registry. If your Windows failed to find steam, you need to consider deleting a certain registry value. Be aware that you should be very careful when deleting a registry value. If you have some concerns, you’d better back up that registry in advance.

Then, follow these steps to delete:

  1. Press Win + R to invoke the Run dialog box.
  2. Type regedit and press Enter to get into the Registry Editor.
  3. From the Registry Editor window, navigate to this location: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options.
  4. Open Image File Execution Options and find the Steam.exe entry. Then, right-click on it and select Delete from the context menu.
  5. Exit the Registry Editor.
delete steam registry value

Now check if you are able to run Steam without any errors.

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