Friday, March 19, 2010


How To Download Unmetered Content From Steam

This is a bit off-topic but I know a lot of developers like to play games (and why not, after all that’s what computers are for!)

If you buy and download games via Steam using the Steam client, you can do this so that the downloaded content does not add to your download limit (i.e. as an unmetered download). Why use Steam? Well, games are often cheaper than the shelf price, you can get pre-release content, and they often have great specials on older games.

The precise details will vary slightly depending on your location and which ISP you are with. The instructions here will be for Australia and Telstra, but they will work for other ISPs such as iinet and westnet etc. I’ll note the points at which you will need specific information.

Step 1: Download and install the Steam Client. You obviously need to do this if you want to use this service!

  • You will obviously need to create an account if you wish to purchase games through Steam.
  • After installing the Steam client, you will need to opt in to the beta client program (to get the version that allows changing the preferred content server).
  • * Goto View->Settings->Downloads and set your download region to ‘Australia – NSW (Telstra)’

NOTE: If you are with another ISP, then this needs to be set accordingly (for westnet use ‘Australia – WA (3FL)’, not sure about others. Contact your ISP). NOTE: just performing this step alone won’t guarantee content is downloaded unmetered.

  • You may have to delete (or rename) the ClientRegistry.blob file located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam and log back in again.
  • Exit Steam.

Step 2: Download and install SteamWatch 3 (ignore the fact that the page title is SteamWatch 2!). Choose the GameArena servers (doesn’t really matter as we will be editing the config anyway)

  • SteamWatch watches process ‘Steam’ on port 27030 and blocks all access except to those IP address contained in it’s ‘white list’. We need to use SteamWatch because just setting a preferred content server (in the step above) does not prevent Steam deciding to use other servers as well as/or instead of your preferred server.
  • Right-click the SteamWatch tray icon and select ‘Edit SteamWatchSettings.xml’
  • * Change the list of allowed Steam content server IP addresses to (NOTE: this will obviously depend on your ISP):
  • <!--List of IP addresses to allow-->
    <!—GameArena servers (for Telstra) -->

NOTE: The 3FL content server IP addresses are - -

Then re-start Steam. It’s best to start a download and then pause it and then check to make sure the download is unmetered.

[One thing to note; the local Steam server obviously has to have the content on it. Also, you may find that connections are more reliable at off-peak times.]

I also added the following ports to my router's firewall:

  • 27000-27050 TCP
  • 4380 TCP


Powered by Blogger