‘SteamController procedure entry point could not be located in STEAM_API DLL’ Fix on Windows 7/8/10

The error “The Steam Controller procedure entry point could not be located in the dynamic link library” in Windows 7/8/10 is caused by a corrupted, damaged or incompatible DLL file.

The error is synonymous with gaming, but it is actually present in a host of other applications as well.

The core of the error is that the application in question (in your case, Steam) will not be able to load a particular DLL, which will cause the system to crash with the error cited in your message. For any of the variants of this error, the problem lies in having a DLL that does not have the valid functionality required for the application to function properly.

The error will be displayed with the following message:

  • [x].exe – Entry Point Not Found
  • The SteamController procedure entry point could not be located in the dynamic link library steam_api.dll

Causes

The problem you’re experiencing is the result of calling a DLL, but it doesn’t have a function available from within.

While many people will simply tell you to replace the DLL (which is a valid strategy), there may be deeper issues with Windows or the application causing the error. Therefore, in order to properly resolve the issue, you must be absolutely certain that you have fixed any of the possible errors that may be causing it to display, which may be with Windows or other applications on your system.

The main cause of the error is that another program overwrote the DLL that your application is trying to access.

This may be due to an accident or the other program might have been designed to do it (in the case of antivirus applications). In either case, the solution is to make sure that your underlying system is working properly and then that any DLLs/settings your computer has are also working properly. The following should help you fix the various errors you are experiencing.

To be more specific about the steam_api.dll error itself, every time you use a Steam-enabled game, you have to connect to Steam through its “API”. An API is an application programming interface, which in technical terms refers to a set of hooks/actions that can be invoked by another program, for a stand-alone application.

For example, if you try to load COD and log in with Steam, COD will use the Steam API to log in to their service. Ultimately, what it means is that even though the error cites Steam, it is *not* likely that Steam is the problem. The biggest problem is that your game overwrote the original steam_api.dll with one that didn’t work as well. Either way, the fixes are listed below…

Solution

  1. reinstall steam

    The first step is to reinstall Steam

    While I mentioned that Steam is not the problem, the core issue is that your game will have overwritten steam_api.dll. As such, you need to make sure you can get back to the original version, which means reinstalling it. Doing this is quick and simple:

    – Press “Windows” + “R” keys on your keyboard

    – Type “control.exe appwiz.cpl” and press “OK”

    – From the displayed list, select “Steam”, right click and select “Uninstall”

    – Wait for the uninstall to complete and restart your PC

    After a system reboot, you should be able to download and install the latest version of Steam. To do this, simply head over to the Steam website and download the latest version of the client.

    Download it and install it. After doing this, reboot your system again and try to load the game. Since the reinstall replaces all Steam files, steam_api.dll must be replaced with the latest version.

  2. Reinstall the affected software

    If you don’t have Steam, or the reinstall doesn’t work, you’ll need to reinstall any affected programs.

    The error you are experiencing is usually displayed when you are running a game (which is based on Steam). As such, the best way to ensure that you don’t have any corrupted files or settings is to simply reinstall said game. This is done by following these steps:

    – Press “Windows” + “R” keys on your keyboard

    – Type “control.exe appwiz.cpl” and press “OK”

    – From the displayed list, select the game, right click and select “Uninstall”

    – Wait for the uninstall to complete and restart your PC

    Once restarted, you’ll want to try reinstalling the game, preferably by downloading a fresh copy from the internet. After doing this, reboot again and see if the error persists. If so, continue with the next steps.

  3. windows update

    The next step is to update Windows.

    This may seem trivial, but the number of people running dangerously outdated systems is remarkable (see WannaCry for proof of this). Updating Windows is free and, for me at least, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t want to do it. The process is very simple and ensures that any potential errors within your system are properly resolved…

    windows 7

    – Click the “Start” button (bottom left)

    – Click “Control Panel”

    – Click “System and Security”

    – Under the “Windows Update” heading, select “Check for updates”

    – Download and install any updates you find

    windows 10

    – Right click on the “Start” button (bottom left taskbar)

    – Select “Settings”

    – Click “Update & Security”

    – Click “Check for updates”

    – Let the system download and install any updates it requires

    This may require a reboot.

    And honestly, it probably won’t fix your error… but it should ensure that the system runs as smoothly as possible (fixing most of the bugs that could cause it to show up). The next step should resolve the error if it is still displayed.

  4. Download and replace steam_api.dll on your system

    Finally, you will want to download and replace steam_api.dll on your system.

    Most tutorials will recommend this from the start. While it’s fine, there may be other issues at play, which is why we try to reinstall it first. It is much better to get the “official” file from the software vendor by installing the software than simply downloading a DLL file from the Internet. Since they didn’t work, we’ll need to follow the steps outlined here to replace the DLL on your system:

    – Go to Google and search for “steam_api.dll” download

    – There will be a number of sites listed at the top (usually dll-files.com or similar)

    – Choose one and then search to download the applicable steam_api.dll for your system (be careful to choose the correct x86/x64 version)

    – Once you find a good site, download the ZIP to your hard drive

    – Open the ZIP and extract the DLL contained within

    – Right click on the DLL and select “Copy”

    – Go to c:/Windows/System32, right click on a blank space and select “Paste”

    – If prompted to overwrite an existing file, select “OK”

    – From here you need to press “Windows” + “R” keys on your keyboard

    – At the “Command Prompt”, type the following, pressing “Enter” after each one: regsvr32 /u steam_api.dll + regsvr32 /I steam_api.dll

    This should display a “success” message. After doing this, reboot your system and try to play the game again.

If you still experience the error, it suggests that you have more specific issues with your system.

Since this is an internet article, I don’t have access to any potential specs your system may have.

Instead, I’d recommend going to a resource that *does* give you the ability to fix any of the issues that may be contributing to more errors. To do this, you may want to consider reviewing various types of resources…

First off, you *could* take the system to a local repair tech, but in all honesty, it’s going to cost you money for a service where the tech will basically just do what’s here. Second, it has various online resources, namely “question/answer” communities and live online support.

For this type of error, it would be best to go to an online support community, either Microsoft Answers or SuperUser, which may give you the ability to receive feedback specific to your system.

This can be done by clicking through to any of the aforementioned sites, signing up for free, and then “asking” a question. Put the full error message as the title and the description of how it loads as the message and then you will have to wait (usually around 2/3 hours) for any response. MA responses are generally quite generic; Replies from superusers are more specific, but entirely dependent on the guys sending them (most of whom aren’t very good).

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