Use Steam to Organize Some of Your Retail CD Keys

If you are a PC gamer then you have a huge collection of CD cases, paper inserts and manuals all for the express purpose of having your CD Key for the inevitable reinstall. I created a text file that has the keys for over 50 games and then I just copy and paste. All of my manuals and inserts are in a massive shoe box (good thing I wear size 13.) With Steam delivering more non-valve content there is a chance to reduce the paperwork, and to also decrease the time spent inserting CD 1, then CD 2, then CD 3 then CD 5, then back to 2 followed by 4 then back to 1.

From your library click the ‘+ ADD A GAME…’ link on the bottom right. Select ‘Activate a Product on Steam’ from the menu. Follow the wizard directions entering the CD Key when prompted. This will tie the CD Key to your Steam account so like with all other Steam Games you currently have (ie: Half Life Series) you just install Steam and then pick the games you want to install. The content delivery system does the rest, even patching the game when there is a release.

Steam has limited support at the moment for which games you can do this with. For example, I was going to do it for Heroes of Might & Magic V, which can be bought on Steam. It would not accept my key and didn’t explain that it was for a non-supported game. I then searched and found a list of games linked here. Below is the full list from Steam as of today. Be sure to read the list even if you see your game on here as some have quirks (like replacing O’s and 0’s with Q’s)

Valve CD Keys
AI War
Aliens vs. Predator
Alpha Prime
Audiosurf
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
Commander: Conquest of the Americas
Cricket Revolution
Dark Messiah
Dawn of War II
Defense Grid
Empire: Total War
F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin
Football Manager 2009
Football Manager 2010
Global Agenda
GTI Racing
GTR Evolution
Just Cause 2
Killing Floor
King Arthur – The Role-playing Wargame
The Last Remnant
Lost Planet: Extreme Condition
Lost Planet: Colonies Edition
Metro 2033
MLB Front Office Manager
Mount & Blade
Mount & Blade: Warband
NBA 2K9
Napoleon: Total War
Order of War
Prey
RACE – the WTCC Game
RACE 07
Ragdoll Kung Fu
Railworks
Red Orchestra
Rogue Warrior
SiN Episodes: Emergence
Saint’s Row 2
Serious Sam HD
Shattered Horizon
The Ship
Silent Hill Homecoming
Sniper: Ghost Warrior
Space Trader
Speedball 2 – Tournament
Star Trek: D-A-C
STCC
Supreme Commander 2
Torchlight
Unreal Tournament 3
Velvet Assassin
Worldwide Soccer Manager 2009
X3: Terran Conflict
Zeno Clash
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