Modding:Installing SMAPI on Windows

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Player's guide to using mods SMAPI mascot.png

This page explains how to install SMAPI (the tool which lets you use mods) on Windows. See also:


Option A: use SMAPI's installer

See also unofficial video guide.
  1. Run the game without SMAPI at least once (so it can do first-time setup).
  2. Download the latest version of SMAPI.
  3. Extract the .zip file somewhere (but not in your game folder!).
  4. Double-click install on Windows.bat¹, and follow the on-screen instructions.
  5. See Launch SMAPI through Steam or GOG Galaxy for the final steps.

¹ To install manually instead, see instructions in the installer's readme.

Option B: use ModDrop

ModDrop is a mod manager which supports SMAPI. It can install SMAPI, keep it updated, and simplify installing/updating mods.

  1. Install ModDrop and open the client.
  2. In the top-right corner, click Install SMAPI or Update Available.
  3. A window should appear that says something like "A new version of SMAPI is available." Click the Install button and follow the on-screen instructions.

Option C: use Vortex

Vortex is a mod manager by Nexus Mods. It can install SMAPI, keep it updated, and simplify installing/updating mods.

  1. Log into a Nexus Mods account.
  2. Install and launch Vortex.
  3. Click the Log In or Register button in the upper-middle part of the Vortex main screen. A web browser should open asking whether to authorize Vortex to sync with your Nexus Mods account. That enables the Mod Manager Download buttons on Nexus mod pages. Accept the authorization.
  4. Set up Stardew Valley in Vortex by clicking the left-hand games tab, finding Stardew Valley, and clicking it. You may wish to set up the download folder locations as well in the left-hand Settings tab.
  5. Click the notification bell in the upper-right hand corner, which will prompt you to download and install SMAPI.
  6. After SMAPI is installed in Vortex, click enable and you're done!
  7. See Launch SMAPI through Steam or GOG Galaxy for the final steps.

Update SMAPI

Option A: use SMAPI's installer

Just install the new version; the installer will automatically clean up previous versions. (You don't need to configure Steam again.)

Option B: use ModDrop

If you use the ModDrop mod manager:

  1. Click Update Available in the top-right if it appears.
  2. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Option C: use Vortex

If you use the Vortex mod manager:

  1. Go to SMAPI's mod page and download it using the Mod Manager Download button.
  2. Click Open Vortex when the popup appears.
  3. Click the Vortex window, and the notification bell will appear with a notification in the upper right. Click install and then enable.


  1. Run run the installer again, but choose uninstall to remove SMAPI.
  2. If you configured Steam or GOG Galaxy to launch SMAPI, undo your changes:
    • Steam: in the Steam client: right-click on Stardew Valley, choose Properties > General > Set Launch Options, and blank the launch options textbox.
    • GOG Galaxy: in the GOG Galaxy client: click on Stardew Valley, click the settings icon next to the 'Play' button, click Manage installation > Configure, and clear the Custom executables / arguments checkbox.

(If you want to play without mods temporarily, you can just launch Stardew Valley.exe directly or rename your Mods folder instead.)

Launch SMAPI through Steam or GOG Galaxy

If you use Steam or GOG Galaxy, and want them to track your achievements and game time, you can configure them to launch SMAPI.

If you don't care about achievements or tracking game time, you can just launch StardewModdingAPI.exe in your game folder to play with mods.


You can launch SMAPI through the Steam client to enable the overlay and achievements.

  1. Keep SMAPI's installer window open.
    (If you already closed it, just run it again. No need to uninstall first.)
  2. Copy the text in the installer window that looks like this (see how to copy text):
    Modding - installing SMAPI on Windows - installer Steam text.png
    Make sure you copy the entire line, including both quotation marks " and the %command% part.
    Your final path should look something like this: "Your path here" %command%
  3. In the Steam client, right-click on Stardew Valley and choose Properties:
    Modding - installing SMAPI on Windows - Steam 1.png
  4. Click the textbox under Launch Options:
    Modding - installing SMAPI on Windows - Steam 2.png
  5. Replace anything in the textbox with the text you copied from the installer.
    To paste text, click in the box and press CTRL and V.
  6. This text should consist of "Your SMAPI API Filepath" %command%
  7. From now on, just launch the game through Steam to run SMAPI with the Steam overlay and achievements.

GOG Galaxy

You can use SMAPI through the GOG Galaxy client to track your play time. The steps below tell GOG Galaxy to launch a batch script, which in turn launches StardewModdingAPI.exe. This is because telling GOG Galaxy to launch StardewModdingAPI.exe directly causes the SMAPI console to be invisible, which can hide important errors and warning messages.

  1. Open Notepad and paste in the following: start "" "C:\Program Files (x86)\GOG Galaxy\Games\Stardew Valley\StardewModdingAPI.exe" If Stardew Valley and SMAPI are not installed at C:\Program Files (x86)\GOG Galaxy\Games\Stardew Valley\, (the default location for most people), replace that location with the location of where you installed Stardew Valley.
  2. Click on File, then Save As...
    Save batch script.png
  3. Navigate to your Stardew Valley installation folder and change the file type from Text Documents to All Files as shown below and then click Save.
    Choose batch extension.png
  4. Then type start.bat for the file name as shown below
    Name batch script.png
  5. In the GOG Galaxy client, click on Stardew Valle' and then the settings icon on the right-hand side of the 'Play' button, then hover over 'Manage installation' and click 'Configure...' as shown below.
    Gog galaxy configure.png
  6. A new menu will appear. Check the "Custom executables / arguments" box.
    Gog galaxy custom launch.png
  7. Then click 'Add another executable / arguments'
    Gog galaxy add exectuable.png
  8. Select start.bat in the window that appears and then click Open.
    Select batch file.png
  9. Finally, click the circle next to 'Default Executable' underneath File 2, then click OK.
    Gog galaxy select default executable.png
  10. From now on, you can launch Stardew Valley through GOG Galaxy and both the SMAPI console and game will load as expected!


"Oops, couldn't find the game automatically"

If the installer shows that message, you can help it find the game folder. To do that:

  1. Exit the installer.
  2. Find your game folder.
  3. Move the installer folder into the game folder. (Make sure you move the whole folder, not just the files inside it!)
  4. Run the installer again and it should auto-detect the game folder now.

You can safely delete the installer folder when it's done.

Issues with SMAPI or mods

See the troubleshooting page for help with issues after installation.