Users of the online gaming client Steam often run into trouble if their Internet is filtered through a proxy server. To open ports on a proxy server, you must open these ports on the router that the server uses to connect to the Internet. Those using the proxy server do not need to shut down their computers during this process. Fortunately, opening these ports isn't a daunting task, and it doesn't require more than a few minutes to complete.
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Type the default IP address for your router into the URL bar of your Internet browser. If you do not know the IP address for your router, find your router model at the Port Forward website (see Resources).
Type in the username and password for your router. Again, these will depend on the model of your router and can be found listed within the Port Forward website (see Resources.) Once your login is successful, your browser will open the user interface for your router's settings.
Open the "Settings" tab that contains the "Port Customization" menu. This tab can also have many different names, including "Access," "Ports" or "Gaming." You may need to open several tabs before finding the correct menu.
Type each of the Steam ports into the fields provided, using a list of port numbers that is available by accessing the Steam Support Reference link if needed (see Resources.) Some routers may allow you to name these ports as well, so you can easily distinguish them from other open ports. You may need to check a box or button that reads "Open" or "Enable." Once all the ports have been entered, click "Apply" or "Save."
Additionally, some routers may require that all computers on the proxy server are set to a static IP address. If so, you will need to enter the computers' IP addresses into the router's port settings as well. Text fields for the addresses should be provided alongside the port fields.
Launch Steam. If all the ports have been entered in properly, Steam should have no trouble connecting to the Internet. If Steam is still displaying connection errors, then you will need to verify that all the port settings have been accurately entered into the router and then try to launch Steam again.
Tips and warnings
- Restarting Steam and power cycling your router -- turning off your router, counting slowly to ten and then turning the router back on again -- may be necessary in order for the setting changes to take effect.
- If you are not the administrator of the proxy server you are networked to, there is no way to alter these settings from your own computer. Contact your server administrator to request these changes.
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