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Article name

I think it would be better, if this article would be renamed to Game Cache File, because GCF is only the abbreviation. --King2500 09:16, 1 Jul 2005 (PDT)

Game Cache File is only an assumption, and it's never referred to be that name outside GCFScape. --TomEdwards 09:25, 1 Jul 2005 (PDT)


"When a GCF is created or updated, the disk space required for it is reserved and content is subsequently downloaded to fill it. This process ensures there is no defragmentation"

I'm guessing the author meant that the purpose of reserving space is to try and prevent framentation, not the file being able to be defagmented. Can anyone confirm? --Rcat5 01:31, 12 Jul 2005 (PDT)

No need to. ;-) --TomEdwards 03:02, 12 Jul 2005 (PDT)
I don't see how this is true at any level, surly smaller files have less of a chance of being fragmented in any filesystem. That said, within GCF files there can be, and often is, fragmentation. The files are probably allocated at their full size because resizing them as they are populated is computationally expensive and to ensure that the user has the necessary disk space.--Nem 18:29, 2 Nov 2005 (PST)

Misc. Questions

I have a GCF file in my folder but i cant install the game into steam

That would be because you don't own it. --TomEdwards 00:18, 17 Jul 2005 (PDT)

In this article it sounds like these are to store all game files to simplify distribution management and protect from user customization. Does this mean they are only accessed for updating (then extracted appropriatley over the regular directories) or are they used every time you use one of the games?

How else is data loaded? --TomEdwards 00:36, 24 Jul 2005 (PDT)


Gazelle??? WTF?? From where is this information? --King2500 05:23, 9 Oct 2005 (PDT)

Gazelle was the project name for the Steam network protocol and has nothing to do with the game cache files --Wunderboy 12:00, 9 Oct 2005 (PDT)

Oops. It's Grid Cache File, not Gazelle. Gazelle was the first codename, Grid was the second, Steam was the third. I should have checked my facts before posting. My memory ain't what it used to be. This info is from a dev. --Lunchtimemama 18:10, 9 Oct 2005 (PDT)

I still think for the sake of simplicity they should be called Game Cache Files. Certainly makes more sense and is a lot more logical. Just mention the "Grid" as a historical note. I can't imagine telling someone to extract a file from the Grid Cache File and getting "The what now???" as a response. --Wunderboy 12:18, 10 Oct 2005 (PDT)


Is this maner of distributing content really the best ? Because I heard some rumors that extracting GCFs to the hard disk would make the loadings way much faster in the games. The extraction of the needed files from a 2 GB archive is inevitably heavy, doesn't it ? --NykO18

Extraction makes no difference unless your GCFs were fragmented. You might possibly be thinking about the old virtual drive used for some third party games, but that isn't around any more. --TomEdwards 13:16, 24 Aug 2006 (PDT)

Creating a GFC.

How can i make a GFC for my Mod? --No Return Production 03:38, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

You can't create GCF's, mods put their content under a folder in SourceMods. Solokiller 07:15, 17 November 2010 (UTC)
It's possible actually, I've done it. It's not a very good idea though as it isn't meant to be done. --Omnicoder 22:12, 17 November 2010 (UTC)