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TS3:Downloading for Downright Dunderheads

Introduction  | Before you download  | Get Organized  | The Main Event  | Additional Info  


Step 1 - Get a RAR Extractor

First, you will need a program that can extract from both ZIP and RAR files.


We recommend WinRAR, which is "nagware". That means that you can use it for free for a period of 45 days, and after that you can continue using it free - it just nags you to pay for it, but you don't have to pay anything to use it. Download the installer and run it.


For OS X, the free utilities StuffIt Expander and The Unarchiver handle most any archive type. For .rar files in particular, you can also use UnRarX, a simple and efficient freeware tool.

Then, once your preferred de-archiving application is installed ...

Step 2 - Download/Extract Custom Content

Now you're ready to download the content you want.

  • You should already know how to do that - click the link to get the ZIP or RAR file and save it somewhere you can find easily.
  • Then extract from the ZIP or RAR file to get at the .Sims3pack files (Windows: right-click, Extract Here; OS X: double-click.).
  • If the file you downloaded is not zipped or rar'ed, just proceed on to Step 3.

Step 3 - Installing

If you want to install just one Sims3Pack, double-click on it (the Launcher will open so that you can install it from there).

To install more than one Sims3Pack at a time:

  • Place the Sims3Pack files into the Downloads folder in
    TS3 docs path.png
  • Start the Launcher.
  • Select the Download button on left.
  • Place a check beside each CC that is not installed. (These will NOT be grayed out and the status box will be blank).
  • Select Install.

Some notes

  1. Do NOT install hundreds of files in one go, do small batches that does not exceed 200MB. Launcher cannot handle too big a queue.
  2. Any files inside the DCCache folder, ending in .dbc ("DBC File" in the "Type" column) contain content that you have installed in .sims3pack format. There may be one or more. You can cut and paste these files temporarily to your computer's Desktop to remove the content from your game. This is an especially useful trick if you suspect the .dbc (or .ebc) is already corrupted and cannot accept new installs. The pre-existing content would then need to be reinstalled.
  3. Content in the Downloads folder in .sims3pack format is not read by the game itself, only the Launcher. So these files need to be Installed in Launcher before the content would show up in your game. It is also recommended to move these files out after a successful install so you have them as backup in case a reinstall is required. Keep only the current "going-to-be-installed" files in here.
  4. Clear caches and thumbnails: Game Help:Sims 3 Delete Cache Files
  5. If nothing works, do over. Follow Game Help:GCCTSU3 Start.

Step 4 - Play!

Hopefully, the above steps should have worked just fine, and you can go ahead and play with your new content in-game!

Related Reading

If it didn't work...

  • Did you place the files in Documents\Electronic Arts\The Sims 3\Downloads\? And install them in Launcher?
  • Did you get a red circular icon or an installed icon with the arrow in the Downloads tab of the Launcher?
  • Do you see the item in the Installed Content tab in Launcher?

If you have any issues in getting Sims3Pack content to show up, do the suggestions in Game Help:GCCTSU3 Start.