10 Ways to Fix Steam Not Detecting Controllers on Windows

Xiaobai Software  2023-06-29 18: 25  read 1,641 views

althoughSteamMany games on the .However, ifSteamWithout your controller being detected on Windows, you may not be able to enjoy these games.

Don't worry though, it's possible to get Steam to detect your controller with a few quick and easy troubleshooting tips.let's see.


1. Troubleshoot controller issues

Your first course of action is to rule out any issues with the controller.To do this, try disconnecting the controller from the computer and then reconnecting it.If it's a wireless controller, make sure it has enough power.

Another thing you can do is test your controller with another computer to see if it works.If you can, it's time for some more complex fixes.

2. Make sure Windows recognizes your controller

Next, you need to make sure Windows recognizes your controller.This should help rule out any issues caused by inappropriate settings.

Press Win + R to open the Run dialog.Type joy.cpl in the text box and hit enter.In the Game Controllers window that appears, check that your controller shows up.If it does, make sure its status is OK.


3. Exit and re-enter Steam's Big Picture Mode

Another solution to consider is to exit Steam's Big Picture mode and then re-enter it.If the problem is caused by a temporary glitch, this should fix it and let Steam detect your controller on Windows.

You can exit Big Picture Mode in Steam by simply pressing Alt+Enter.Then, tap the big picture mode icon again to see if that gets the controller working.

4. Enable controller configuration support

If you haven't configured your controller correctly, Steam may not be able to detect it.To fix this, you need to look at the controller settings in Steam and make sure controller configuration support is enabled.Methods as below:

1. Open the Steam client on your computer.

2. Tap the Big Picture Mode icon in the upper right corner.

3. Tap the menu option in the lower left corner.

4. Select Settings.

5. Switch to the Controller tab.

6. Under "External gamepad settings", use the toggle to enable configuration support for the controller you are using.


After completing the steps above, unplug your controller and plug it back in to check that Steam recognizes it.

5. Enable Steam overlay

Another workaround to get Steam to recognize your controller is to enable Steam Overlay.This feature provides access to the game interface while playing a game and helps improve controller compatibility in Steam.

To enable Steam Overlay, use the following steps:

1. Launch the Steam client on your computer.

2. Click the Steam menu in the upper left corner and select Settings.

3. Select the "In-Game" tab from the left sidebar.

4. Turn on the toggle switch next to the "Enable Steam Overlay in Game" option.


Restart the Steam client after this and check if the problem persists.

6. Run Steam as administrator

Insufficient permissions can also cause this issue with the Steam client on Windows.To avoid this, you can try running Steam with administrator privileges.To do this, right-click on the Steam application shortcut and select Run as administrator.


If doing this ends up allowing Steam to detect your controller, you can configure Steam to always run as administrator on Windows as a more permanent solution.

7. Configure Application Options for Steam Controller

If Steam detects your controller, but it doesn't work in your game, you can try following the steps below to modify the controller application options in Steam.

1. Open Steam on your computer.

2. Tap the Big Picture Mode icon in the upper right corner.

3. Click Menu Options and select Library.

4. Use the left pane to switch to Installed and select the game in question.

5. Select the Manage Games option.

6. Select the Control option under Steam Input.

7. Under Steam Input Settings for each game, click the drop-down menu and select Force Close.

8. Click "OK" to save your changes.


8. Update your controller driver

Outdated or malfunctioning drivers on your PC can also hinder Steam's ability to recognize your game controller.If this is the case, updating the controller driver should help.Fortunately, if you need help, we have a guide on how to find and replaceOutdated Windows Driversguide.

9. Check for updates to the Steam client

It is possible that Steam cannot detect your controller on Windows due to a bug in the application.Luckily, Steam is regularly updated to fix issues like this and improve performance.So it's a good idea to make sure you're running the latest version of Steam on Windows.

To check for updates from Steam, click on the Steam menu in the upper left corner and select Check for Steam Client Updates.


10. Opting out of the Steam Beta

While participating in Steam's beta program can give you early access to new and upcoming features, it can also cause problems.If none of the above solutions work, you might consider quitting Steam's beta program in favor of the stable version of the app.To do this, use these steps:

1. Click the Steam menu in the upper left corner and select Settings.

2. In the "Account" tab, click the "Change" button under Beta Participation.

3. Click the drop-down menu and select "None"--exit all test items options.

4. Click "OK" to save the changes.


Restart Steam after this and it should automatically install the necessary updates to switch to the stable version of the application.

Navigate the Steam world with your controller once again

Using a game controller with Steam can provide a more comfortable and familiar gaming experience, especially for those who prefer a traditional console setup.Hopefully one of the above tricks has worked and Steam is able to detect your game controller on Windows.

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