How to Factory Reset Steam Deck

If you are facing technical difficulties with your Steam deck and you are here to find out how to factory reset Steam deck or how to hard reset Steam deck you need to be aware of what you stand to lose.

But before delving into that, when should you perform a factory reset on your stem deck?

A factory reset Should be performed on a Steam Deck as a last resort step to restore your gaming device to its original state after a technical glitch.

Doing this can be quite effective in resolving issues if you’ve tried deleting proton files, forcing compatibility with all proton versions, desktop launch, or removing third-party plug-ins, but there are no positive results.

However, one thing you need to be aware of is the fact that factory resetting your Steam deck gives your device a fresh start by deleting all of the content on your deck, including any games, applications, and settings that you have added.How to Factory Reset Steam Deck

Therefore, it is important to back up any important files or data prior to resetting your device.

Since you’ve visited this website to figure out how to factory Reset a Steam Deck, We will be providing detailed instructions on how to perform the reset, discussing the reasons why it is a good idea, and giving some tips on how to back up your data.

How to Factory Reset Steam Deck

There are two ways to reset a Steam deck. These are:

  • Soft reset
  • Hard reset.

We will consider how to soft and hard reset a Steam in this guide.

How to Soft Reset a Steam Deck

There are a few things you ought to do before deciding on performing a factory reset. A factory reset clears out all your games and saved preferences and returns your stem deck to its default state.

This might not sound like something you want to do now, but if you are still facing a technical issue with your Steam Deck, one of the things you ought to try is a soft reset.

A soft reset also solves technical glitches, but it is not as effective as a factory reset.

However, performing a soft reset means you don’t have to worry about your games or saved settings being deleted.

That being said, here is how to go about it.

  • Turn on your Stem Deck device.
  • Hold down the power button for at least 11 seconds.
  • Make sure your console is idle while you wait for around five minutes.
  • After waiting, hold down the power button to turn on your Steam Deck.
  • After doing all this, your steam deck will soft reset itself without clearing any of your files.

How to Factory Reset Steam Deck

If a soft reset does not clear the glitch you are facing, you might have to perform a factory reset.

A factory reset resolves most technical glitches and also helps you get back into Steam when you’ve forgotten your password.

However, a factory reset will completely erase all the data and apps you installed on Deck.

It is better to back up your data and apps to any of your external storage devices.

Having said that, here is how you should perform a factory reset.

  • Hold down the power button on your Steam Deck.
  • Sign in to your Steam Deck account with your credentials.
  • Now Back up the data on your Steam deck onto any external storage device, such as a USB drive, external hard drive, or SD card.
  • Get your deck and hit the Steam button.
  • Select Settings from the context menu list.
  • Scroll down and select System at the bottom of the panel.
  • Afterwards, navigate to the Advanced section.
  • Now, click on the Factory Reset button under Advanced.
  • Now select the Factory Reset button again to confirm your decision.

After doing this, your steam deck will begin to reboot while the data starts clearing off until it turns back to its default state.

How to Reset a Steam Deck with Recovery Options

Another way to perform a factory reset on your Steam deck is by doing it with the restore option to get your files.

There are different ways to go about this when it comes to saving your delivery file since the tools you will be using on a Windows system are different from those on a Mac.

Having said that, here is how you should go about it.

  • Download a special recovery image from the Steam Store to your computer.
  • Ensure you have a formatted USB stick with a minimum of 8GB of storage space,
  • For a Windows computer, you’ll need to use the Rufus utility.
  • For Rufus, choose the recovery file and put it on your USB. Then choose “Close” and eject the drive.
  • For Linux or Mac, you can use Balena Etcher to put this recovery file onto your USB.
  • For Mac, it is straightforward. However, if you are using Linux, here is how you should go about it.
  • Locate the file in the downloads folder:
  • cd: /home/USERNAME/Downloads
  • Paste “Sudo Isblk” to find your USB drive’s name.
  • Get and paste the recovery file code:
  • bzcat steamdeck-recovery-1.img.bz2 | dd if=/dev/stdin of=/dev/sdX oflag=sync status=progress bs=128M
  • Now, set /dev/sdX to your USB.
  • Insert the boot disk into your Steam Deck by using a hub or USB-C adapter.
  • Now, hold down the Volume Down and Power buttons to power off your streaming deck.
  • Release the buttons when you hear a chime.
  • Now you will be in the Boot Manager menu.
  • Afterwards, boot your device from the EFI USB drive.

Over here, you will get four options.

  • Re-image the Steam Deck: It deletes all the user information and the factory resets the device completely.
  • Clear local user data: This removes applications, downloaded games, and all personal data from your device. In addition, it reset the system configuration and home partitions.
  • Reinstall Steam OS: This will reinstall the Steam OS without deleting any information.
  • Recovery tools: You can recover the data and applications from the Steam Deck boot partition dialogue box.

Pick any of these options to reset your device.

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How to Retrieve Your Steam Deck Files

After performing a factory reset, one of the things you will want to do is retrieve your saved files when you reset your stem deck account.

If you do not know how to go about retrieving it, follow the steps listed below.

  • Power on your Steam Deck while still holding the power button.
  • Now choose the Switch to Desktop option from the menu.
  • Next, start the Steam app on your device.
  • Click on the “Steam” tab in the top left corner of the screen.
  • Select the Settings option.
  • Next, click on the Downloads option on the left-side panel.
  • Navigate to the Steam Library Folders
  • Click on the Plus icon next to the Internal Drive.
  •  Afterwards, type in this command to open the SD card.
    • Run/media/mmcblk0p1.
  • Now, open the folder and reinstall the games on your Steam library.
  • In a scenario where you cannot locate the games, get a file manager such as Dolphin File Manager to access your SD card.
  • Finally, send the Steam Apps folder to the Steam Library and install them again on SteamDeck.


By following this guide on “How to Factory Reset Steam Deck” your Steam Deck should be back to its original factory settings and you can start using it like a brand-new device.

Factory resetting your Steam Deck is an effective way to start fresh and remove any unwanted applications, files, or settings. It can also help you troubleshoot any technical issues you may have been experiencing.

If you decide to factory reset your Steam Deck again, make sure you back up any important data first.

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