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Is it possible to limit the download rate/bandwidth used by Steam in some way? When I am downloading a game it greatly slows down or even blocks all internet activities in my house.

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Drake, please update your accepted answer now that this is possible. –  Keavon Aug 5 at 23:21
    
@Keavon Did it, thank you for notifying me. –  Drake Aug 6 at 8:40

4 Answers 4

up vote 14 down vote accepted

Yes as of May 2013. http://store.steampowered.com/news/10548/

Added rate-limiting of Steam game downloads, via Settings -> Downloads

AT LAST

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I don't believe Valve provide an option to do that. The Connection Type setting that Corv1nus mentions appears to have no effect.

You may find it easier to install a piece of software able to rate limit other programs than to use QoS. I just tested NetBalancer (free version) with Steam on Windows 7 and it works flawlessly. If you too are using Windows 7, you can safely ignore the warning about unsigned drivers; at least you can if you trust the software publisher.

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Thanks a lot @Call that software is great! it works very well, problem solved! –  Drake Jul 23 '10 at 19:35
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Is it known whether NetBalancer has unwanted side-effects? E.g. noticeably slowing down your PC or your overall internet speed, or any bugs ("<program> does not work anymore!")? –  mafu Dec 25 '10 at 13:53
    
@mafutrct I used this software for more than 1 year and I never noticed any strange slowdown or other odd behaviors. –  Drake Jan 4 '12 at 13:06
    
1: NetBalancer crashed my system. Installed, restarted, crashed every time upon login. Had to go to safe mode and uninstall. Win 7 x64 2: Setting steam connection type is only for steam info, doesn't change anything. 3: Setting a bandwidth limit on your pc (which won't work for most people anyways because only certain routers have that option) is pointless as your limiting the bandwidth anyways, and steam will still use all the available bandwidth on that computer. –  user19495 Feb 5 '12 at 23:34
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Comment continues: "The only situation for this is if you have 2 computers to use, and you don't want to use all the bandwidth. In which case, I'm sure people with that situation figured it out anyways. Damnit steam, let us set up a bandwidth max. ):" –  Mana Feb 6 '12 at 1:18

The consensus of a somewhat rude thread on the Steam Forums is that you can't rate limit Steam from within Steam. Your options seem to be:

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You can go into Settings >> Downloads >> Connection Type and say it is something lower than it is but, I don't know if that will limit it. You would be better off putting a bandwidth limit on your PC at the router and set up QoS.

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