Valheim Dedicated Server: Running Your Own Dedicated Server

Valheim Dedicated Server Hosting: Host Your Own Server

For Valheim players and gaming enthusiasts, a dedicated Valheim server offers improved performance which means smoother gameplay, fewer lags, and more seamless multiplayer connections.

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A Valheim dedicated server requires about 8 GB of RAM for a small group of players. For larger groups, or if you plan to add mods, more RAM up to 32 GB may be required.

The software to run a Valheim dedicated server is free. However, running it on your machine may increase your internet and electricity costs.

Alternatively, you may choose a web hosting service to run it for you. You control the game environment, set the rules, and accept players to join your server.

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  • Setting up a dedicated server for Valheim allows you to experience smoother gameplay, reduced lag, and better overall performance
  • With a dedicated server, you have full control over server settings, configurations, and mods, enabling you to tailor the gaming experience to your preferences
  • Hosting a dedicated server lets you play with friends, form gaming communities, or create private worlds, fostering a more collaborative and social gaming environment
  • You can customize the server according to your needs, such as adjusting difficulty levels, enabling PvP or PvE modes, and exploring various mods to spice up the gameplay
  • A dedicated server offers scalability to accommodate more players and handle increasing traffic as your Valheim community grows

How Does Valheim Dedicated Server Differ From Playing on a Regular Server?

A Valheim dedicated server operates independently from the player’s game, functioning 24/7 and providing exclusive control over gameplay, rules, and player access.

In contrast, a regular server is typically shared among multiple games or players, potentially causing lag due to traffic and offering less customization and control.

Here are some of the reasons why a dedicated server differs from a regular server:

Performance and Stability

A dedicated server devotes its full resources to your Valheim game, enhancing performance by ensuring smooth, uninterrupted gameplay.

Unlike a shared server that serves multiple players or games simultaneously, a dedicated server reduces lag by eliminating competition for resources.

With its 24/7 operation, a dedicated server also promises increased stability, ensuring a reliable gaming experience at any time.

Customization and Control

With a dedicated server, players wield unparalleled control over their Valheim gaming experience.

This control ranges from setting gameplay rules and player access to introducing mods and customization tweaks.

In essence, a dedicated server grants you the freedom to shape your game world, tailoring every detail to your preferences and enhancing your overall gaming experience.

Multiplayer Experience

A Valheim dedicated server is the ultimate gateway to a seamless and immersive multiplayer experience.

Its superior performance and reduced lag translate into smoother in-game interactions and collaborations with fellow players.

Whether adventuring with friends or forging alliances with new players, a dedicated server facilitates a vibrant, uninterrupted, and engaging multiplayer environment.

Resource Allocation

Dedicated servers empower players to allocate specific resources, such as CPU and RAM, exclusively to Valheim, optimizing the game’s performance.

This exclusivity means that these resources aren’t shared or impacted by other applications, allowing for an uninterrupted, high-quality gameplay experience.

The result is a smoother game with fewer lags and crashes, leading to a more enjoyable and engaging gaming session.

Privacy and Security

A dedicated server provides enhanced privacy and security for your Valheim gaming sessions.

With complete control over access, you can restrict entry only to trusted players, creating a controlled and secure gaming environment.

This exclusive access minimizes the risk of unwanted interference or disruptions, ensuring your game progresses smoothly and as planned.

What Are the Benefits of Running Your Own Dedicated Server in Valheim?

Benefits of Hosting a Dedicated Server for ValheimDescription
Full Control Over Gameplay SettingsCustomize gameplay settings fully by hosting a dedicated server for Valheim. Adjust world parameters, difficulty levels, and more, crafting your perfect Valheim experience.
Enhanced Performance And StabilityDedicated servers provide improved performance and stability. They minimize lag, ensuring smooth gameplay and uninterrupted adventures in the Valheim universe.
Persistent World AccessHosting a dedicated server offers round-the-clock world access. Collaborate with friends anytime, ensuring continuous progress and exploration within your Valheim realm.
Room for More PlayersValheim dedicated servers support larger player capacities. Host extensive multiplayer sessions, inviting more participants for epic adventures and vibrant gaming communities.
Leveraging ModsDedicated servers for Valheim embrace mods. These enhancements enrich your gameplay with new features, content, and experiences, crafting a truly unique and personalized saga.

How Can You Set Up a Valheim Dedicated Server on Your Own Machine or Using a Hosting Service?

Here are step-by-step instructions for setting up a dedicated server on your local machine, including downloading the Valheim dedicated server files, configuring server settings, and launching the server.

Step 1: Setting Up a Dedicated Server on Your Local Machine

To download and install the Valheim dedicated server files, first navigate to Steam’s dedicated server tool list within the Steam client, locate “Valheim Dedicated Server,” and install it.

  • Once installed, you’ll find a ”start_headless_server.bat” file in the installation directory
  • Edit this file using a text editor to configure server settings, including the world name under the “world” parameter and password under “password”
  • Save and close the file when you’re done

To launch the server, simply double-click the “start_headless_server.bat” file. The command line window that opens up should show the server running.

For the server to be accessible to other players, ensure that port 2456 is open in your router’s settings and forwarded to the computer running the server. This allows players on your local network or online to join your server and partake in your Valheim world.

Step 2: Using a Hosting Service for Your Dedicated Server

Several popular hosting platforms support Valheim dedicated servers, including GameServers, Host Havoc, and PingPerfect. These platforms offer features like DDoS protection, automated backups, and 24/7 customer support.

  • To sign up for a hosting plan, you’ll need to visit your chosen platform’s website, select the ‘Valheim’ option, and choose your desired server specifications, such as RAM and storage
  • Make sure to consider the number of players and potential mods when making your choice
  • The next step involves choosing a payment plan, usually monthly or annually, and completing the payment process

Once you’ve signed up, the hosting platform will guide you through deploying the Valheim dedicated server, typically through a user-friendly control panel.

The server will be ready for use once deployed, and players can access it using the given IP address and port number, which you can share with those you want to join your Valheim world.

Step 3: Managing and Administering Your Dedicated Server

Managing a dedicated server involves periodic updates of server files to ensure compatibility with new game patches, which can be done by revisiting the Steam client and updating the Valheim dedicated server tool.

  • It’s also important to occasionally review your server configurations for optimization, which is done by editing the ‘start_headless_server.bat’ file
  • Setting server rules and managing player permissions is crucial to create a fair and enjoyable gaming environment; this can be done directly through the server’s interface or via in-game commands
  • In terms of troubleshooting, familiarity with common issues like server connectivity or lag can be handy, and many solutions can be found in Valheim’s community forums
  • Lastly, regularly backing up server data is paramount for preserving your world’s progress; most hosting platforms offer automatic backup services

Remembering these practices, you can maintain a secure, stable, and engaging gaming environment on your Valheim dedicated server.

Step 4: Optimizing Server Performance and Settings

Optimizing server performance can make a significant difference to your Valheim gaming experience.

  • Adjusting the server tick rate, which is the server’s update frequency, can enhance gameplay smoothness
  • Bandwidth settings should be tweaked to match your internet speed, preventing server congestion
  • Resource allocation, such as CPU and RAM, should align with the server’s needs, accounting for player numbers and installed mods
  • Speaking of mods, managing them effectively by installing, updating, and removing as needed can enrich gameplay and customize the server experience
  • When the server load increases due to a rise in player numbers, scaling resources is essential. This can be done by upgrading your server plan or ensuring your self-hosted server has additional resources available.

Regular monitoring and adjusting of these parameters will ensure your Valheim dedicated server runs optimally, providing all players a seamless and immersive gaming experience.

Step 5: Securing Your Valheim Dedicated Server

Protecting your dedicated Valheim server from unauthorized access and maintaining a positive gaming environment are vital tasks.

  • Begin by setting up firewalls that allow only necessary connections and enabling password protection to restrict server access to trusted players
  • To prevent Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, which can overload and crash your server, utilize services that offer DDoS protection
  • Enabling server authentication can provide an extra layer of security. Regularly implementing security updates is crucial to guard against new vulnerabilities and threats.
  • When it comes to managing player behavior, setting clear server rules and enforcing them consistently can help maintain a positive and enjoyable gaming environment
  • Consider employing tools or mods for administrative control to monitor and manage player behavior effectively, ensuring everyone has a fun and fair Valheim experience

Step 6: Backing Up and Restoring Your Server

Regular backup of your Valheim dedicated server data is crucial to prevent data loss and allow for smooth recovery in case of server issues.

  • This process involves copying the ‘worlds’ folder located in the server data directory at regular intervals, ensuring all your world data is safely duplicated
  • In case of an emergency or server issue, restoring your server from a backup is as simple as replacing the current ‘worlds’ folder with the backup copy
  • It’s recommended to store these backups securely, both on a local machine and a separate, preferably offsite, location for redundancy
  • Cloud storage services like Google Drive or Dropbox are effective options for secure and accessible offsite backup storage

Ensuring regular, secure backups will safeguard your Valheim world’s progress and allow for quick and efficient data recovery when necessary.

Step 7: Server Maintenance and Troubleshooting

Regular server maintenance and monitoring are paramount to the smooth operation of your Valheim dedicated server.

  • These practices not only ensure optimal performance but also help in the early identification of potential issues, preventing server crashes and lag
  • For common server issues like connection problems, ensure that your ports are correctly forwarded, and your firewall isn’t blocking necessary connections
  • In the case of crashes, check the server’s error log for clues about the cause, and consider adjusting server configurations or updating server files as needed

Identifying and promptly fixing server-related errors are essential steps in providing a seamless and enjoyable gaming experience for all players.

What Are the System Requirements and Technical Considerations for Hosting a Valheim Dedicated Server?

Here are the system requirements needed to host a dedicated server effectively, including CPU, RAM, and storage specifications:

  1. System Requirements for Hosting a Valheim Dedicated Server

For running a Valheim dedicated server, the minimum system requirements include a 2.6 GHz dual-core CPU, 4 GB of RAM, and 35 GB of storage space.

However, the recommended specifications for an optimal experience are a 3.2 GHz quad-core CPU, 8 GB of RAM, and 35 GB of SSD storage.

The host system’s hardware capabilities directly affect server performance and player capacity; more powerful CPUs and increased RAM can handle more players, reduce latency, and improve overall server responsiveness, providing a better gaming experience for all connected players.

  1. Network and Internet Connection Considerations

A connection with high upload speed is particularly important, as the server needs to transmit game data to each player efficiently.

The quality of the connection directly impacts gameplay performance for all players, affecting elements like lag, load times, and overall responsiveness.

For seamless gameplay, you’ll need to set up port forwarding correctly; Valheim uses port 2456 by default, which must be open in your router’s settings and directed towards the computer running the server.

This will enable players to connect to your server from your local network or over the internet.

  1. Hosting Options: On-Premises Vs. Third-Party Hosting Services

Hosting a Valheim dedicated server on a personal machine gives you full control over server settings and costs, as you’re only limited by your own hardware and bandwidth.

However, it requires technical knowledge for setup and maintenance, and your machine’s resources will be divided between the server and other tasks.

On the other hand, using third-party hosting services removes the need for technical expertise and ensures dedicated resources for your server, with benefits like technical support, easy scalability, and automated backups.

While more expensive, third-party hosting services can be a worthwhile investment for larger player groups and those seeking a hassle-free hosting experience.

  1. Software And Tools For Setting Up And Managing The Server

To set up a Valheim dedicated server, you’ll need certain software and tools, notably the SteamCMD tool, which allows you to download the server files, and server management software such as LGSM (Linux Game Server Managers) for a smoother management experience.

The installation process starts with downloading SteamCMD, after which you log in as anonymous and use the command ‘app_update 896660 validate’ to download the Valheim server files.

After the server files are installed, configure the server by editing the ‘start_headless_server.bat’ file, where you can specify your world name, password, and other parameters, before launching the server through this .bat file for players to join.

  1. Server Administration and User Access

Managing server administration and user access in a Valheim dedicated server involves setting up server administrators and controlling player permissions.

To maintain server integrity and ensure a fair gaming environment, enforce clear rules about player behavior. You can:

  • Designate server administrators who have the ability to enforce rules and moderate player behavior by adding their Steam64 IDs to the ‘adminlist.txt’ file in the server folder
  • Control player access by setting a server password and using a ‘bannedlist.txt’ file to ban specific players if needed
  • Consider using administrative mods for enhanced control, and monitor the server regularly for any signs of cheating or disruptive behavior
  1. Mod Support and Server Customization

Mods allow you to introduce new game mechanics, adjust gameplay difficulty, or add fresh content, making your Valheim world more dynamic and engaging for all players.

To enable mod support on a Valheim dedicated server, you’ll need to:

  • Install the BepInExPack for Valheim, which is a modding framework
  • Download your desired mods and place them in the ‘BepInEx/plugins’ directory of your server’s installation folder

Server customization options, including the ability to modify server rules and settings or add mods, can significantly enhance the gaming experience. Remember, all players need to install the same mods to connect to your server successfully.

  1. Server Monitoring and Performance Optimization

Monitoring server performance is crucial in identifying potential issues; look out for CPU and RAM usage, network bandwidth, and player count through server management software or system task manager.

If you notice significant CPU or RAM usage, you might need to upgrade your server’s hardware, or if the player count is consistently high, consider increasing the bandwidth.

To optimize server settings, adjust the server tick rate to better match your hardware capabilities, reduce the view distance setting if you’re experiencing lag, and if you’re using mods, ensure they’re updated and not causing performance issues.

  1. Data Backup and Recovery

Regular data backup is crucial for a Valheim dedicated server, as it helps prevent data loss in case of server crashes or other emergencies, safeguarding your world and player progress.

You can manually backup server data by copying the ‘worlds’ folder in your server directory at regular intervals, or automate this process with server management software.

In the event of data loss, restore your server by replacing the current ‘worlds’ folder with the backed-up one, effectively recovering your game to the state at the time of the backup.

  1. Server Updates and Maintenance

Keeping your Valheim dedicated server up-to-date is crucial, as it ensures compatibility with the latest game features and improvements.

Regular server maintenance, including updates and performance checks, is important to provide the best gameplay experience, keeping the game smooth, stable, and secure for all players.

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Managing Your Valheim Server for an Optimal Gaming Experience

Here are some ways to manage the server settings, adjust gameplay variables, and implement mods.

Server Management and Customization Basics

Essential server management tasks for a Valheim dedicated server include starting the server, which can be done by running the ‘start_headless_server.bat’ file, stopping the server by closing the server window, and restarting by repeating the start process.

You can access and modify server settings through the ‘start_headless_server.bat’ file, where you can set the world parameters, password, and more.

Adjusting player limits and other gameplay-related options can be done within the server.cfg file, allowing you to customize the server to fit your preferred gameplay style.

Server Rules and Policies

Setting and enforcing server rules is key to creating an enjoyable gaming environment in Valheim; you can establish rules like no griefing, respectful communication, and shared resource use, and enforce them using administrator powers or mod tools.

You can communicate these rules to your players via the server description, in-game announcements, or a dedicated server rulebook.

Clear communication and comprehensive community guidelines are vital in maintaining a positive gaming experience, as they set expectations and provide a framework for resolving disputes, ensuring everyone enjoys their time in your Valheim world.

Modding Support and Customization

Enabling modding support on your Valheim dedicated server involves installing a modding framework like BepInExPack for Valheim, then adding the desired mods into the ‘BepInEx/plugins’ folder within your server’s directory.

Managing these mods entails ensuring they’re up-to-date and compatible with each other to avoid conflicts that might affect gameplay.

Popular mods players often consider include:

  • Valheim Plus, which adds quality-of-life enhancements
  • Terraheim, which overhauls the game’s armor and combat
  • Epic Loot, introducing a loot and enchanting system akin to games like Diablo

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Custom Maps and Worlds

Creating and uploading custom maps or worlds to your Valheim dedicated server involves generating the world file through the game client or a map generation tool, then moving the resulting ‘.db’ file to the ‘worlds’ directory of your server.

To upload a premade custom map, you download the ‘.db’ file from a reliable source, like the Valheim modding community on platforms like NexusMods or Thunderstore, and place it in the ‘worlds’ folder of your server.

Always ensure you backup your existing worlds before adding a new one and inform your players about the changes, so they can prepare for the new adventures in the unique and exciting environment of your custom world.

Server Events and Activities

As a Valheim server owner, organizing events and activities, such as epic boss fights, creative building competitions, or thrilling treasure hunts, is an excellent way to engage your players.

These events promote interaction, cooperation, and friendly competition among players, enriching their gaming experience.

Such activities foster a sense of community and engagement, as players bond over shared experiences and memories, making your server an appealing destination for both fun and camaraderie in the Valheim universe.

Collaborative Building and Projects

Collaborative building projects are a great way to foster teamwork among your Valheim players, as they can unite to construct impressive structures and settlements, like sprawling fortresses or intricate Viking villages.

To coordinate these projects effectively, consider using in-game markers to plan out your structures, and a communication platform, like Discord, to discuss plans and delegate tasks.

Establishing clear objectives and encouraging players to utilize their unique skills or ideas can lead to rewarding outcomes, creating a vibrant, living world that every participant can be proud of.

Server Backups and Data Management

As a server owner, regular backups are critical to protecting server data and player progress, ensuring that hard-earned advancements won’t be lost in case of server crashes or unforeseen errors.

Regularly backup your ‘worlds’ directory, which houses the save files and player data, and keep multiple backup copies in separate locations for added security.

For managing server data, consider removing inactive player data and archiving older save files, which helps in maintaining optimal server performance and reducing clutter, while still keeping a history of the server’s evolution.

Server Security and Anti-Cheating Measures

Ensuring server security is paramount to protect your Valheim dedicated server from potential hacking or cheating, which could disrupt the gameplay experience and fairness.

Implement measures such as password-protecting your server, using firewalls, and monitoring login attempts to minimize unauthorized access.

Tools and plugins, like Valheim Anti-Cheat (VAC), can help detect and prevent cheating on the server by monitoring player behavior and enforcing server rules, thus creating a safe and enjoyable gaming environment for all participants.

Server Communication and Community Building

For server owners, fostering a sense of community is essential, and facilitating communication channels like Discord servers or in-game chat can greatly aid this process.

These platforms serve as hubs for players to discuss gameplay, strategize, share experiences, and even socialize outside the game.

Engage with players regularly, seek their feedback on server settings or events, and address any concerns promptly. This open and interactive approach not only enhances the gaming environment but also builds a loyal and vibrant community of players.

Regular Server Maintenance and Updates

Regular server maintenance is crucial for keeping your Valheim dedicated server at peak performance and ensuring the highest level of security.

This includes keeping your server software, plugins, and mods updated, which helps prevent bugs, improve stability, and counter security vulnerabilities.

To minimize disruption to players, establish a maintenance schedule—like weekly or monthly—and clearly communicate the timing of these planned outages, allowing players to plan their gameplay around these periods and maintain a seamless gaming experience.


Hosting a Valheim dedicated server, whether on your PC or via a hosting service, elevates the gameplay experience to an entirely new level.

Before setting up, ensure your PC meets the minimum requirements: at least 4GB of RAM for a small group of players, and more for larger groups or for modding.

Alternatively, consider reputable hosting services that offer scalable solutions, 24/7 support, and streamlined setup processes.

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Next Steps: What Now?

Further Reading – Useful Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

How many players can join a Valheim dedicated server?

The number of players depends on your server’s resources and settings, but it can typically accommodate anywhere from a few players to dozens of them.

Is it possible to use mods on a Valheim dedicated server?

Yes, you can install and use mods on a dedicated server to enhance gameplay and add new features to your Valheim world.

Can I switch between different Valheim worlds on my dedicated server?

Yes, you can create multiple worlds on your dedicated server and switch between them to explore different terrains and experiences.

How do I ensure the security of my Valheim dedicated server and prevent unauthorized access?

You can implement security measures such as strong passwords, firewalls, and regular updates to protect your server from potential threats.

Are there any recommended hosting providers for Valheim dedicated servers?

There are several reputable hosting companies that offer Valheim dedicated servers, but it’s essential to choose one that meets your specific requirements and budget.

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