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.
Part 1: install SMAPI
  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! (nor the windows %TEMP% folder)).
  4. Double-click install on Windows.bat¹, and follow the on-screen instructions.
    The installer will detect your game and add SMAPI for you.
  5. If you use Steam, continue to the next section. Otherwise just run StardewModdingAPI.exe in your game folder to play with mods.
Part 2: configure Steam
You can use SMAPI through the Steam client to enable the overlay and achievements. This requires a few more steps.
  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 General > Set 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
  6. Click OK to save your changes.
  7. From now on, just launch the game through Steam to run SMAPI with the Steam overlay and achievements.

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.

Part 1: install SMAPI
  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!
Part 2: configure Steam
See Part 2: configure Steam under Option A: use SMAPI's installer.

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 install.exe and choose uninstall.
  2. Blank the Steam launch options (if you changed them).

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