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How to build a dedicated Valheim game server on Windows

This guide is for all the gamers who want to manage their own dedicated Valheim server. Learn how to do it before the “Hearth and Home” update releases later this year. This is the first post to the new gaming section.

If you are looking for the Ubuntu-Linux version of this guide go here.


  • Windows Machine (best if separate machine)
  • Set a DHCP IP Reservation or static IP for the server
  • A router that allows you to port forward (so others can connect)
  • Your Own Domain (Recommended) for custom dynamic IP updates or similar service.

Section 1: Let’s get started

  1. Create a folder called “c:\steamserver” on the drive of your choice for the Steam server software
CMD PROMPT:  mkdir c:\steamserver
  1. Download SteamCMD (Server Software)
  2. Extract the contents of steamcmd.zip into the steamserver folder, it should look like this
  1. Open up command prompt and run the following to activate the steam console
CMD PROMPT:  cd c:\steamserver
CMD PROMPT:  steamcmd.exe
  1. Steam will begin to download and install the Steam server components
  1. Once this is completed you should see the following prompt. Keep this open we will use this for a bit.
  1. We will now install the Vahleim Game Server. At the “Steam>” console prompt, type
Steam Console:  login anonymous
  1. If you get prompted to allow access from your firewall, do so.
  1. At the same “Steam>” prompt, type
Steam Console:  force_install_dir c:\steamserver\valheim
  1. At the same “Steam>” prompt, type the below. The Valheim Game Server will begin to install or update. Once this fully completes you can close out of this window.
Steam Console:  app_update 896660
  1. Once completed, navigate to the following folder and edit the following file “start_headless_server.bat” with your favorite text editor.
    • Set and append “-public 1” if you want your server to be published to the Valheim Server listings directory. It can take up to 20 minutes for your server to be listed
#Edit this line with your own configuration
valheim_server -nographics -batchmode -name "My Server" -port 2456 -world "Dedicated" -password "secret"

#Modified Server Configuration
valheim_server -nographics -batchmode -name "BestValServ" -port 2456 -world "OdinsGate" -password "MySecret" -public 1
  1. Save the configuration, then start your server by going back to the folder “c:\steamserver\valheim” and double clicking on start_headless_server.bat
    • If you get prompted to allow access from your firewall, do so.
  1. Your server is now running and you will be able to connect to it locally.

Section 2: Configure Port Forwarding

  1. Valheim needs the following UDP ports open 2456,2457,2458.
  2. This is how it looks like for mine. I have to do a port forward for each port as I cannot select a range. I map 2456 to 2456 on local IP
  1. You can search the web with your Router Model for guides. E.g. “Port Forwarding on RT-AX58U”
  2. For more information check out this great resource.
  3. To test
    • go to “whatismyip.com
    • grab the ip, and try to connect to this address from Valheim

Section 3: Configure Dynamic IP DNS updates.

  1. Use a service like noip.com
  2. Create a custom hostname in the service such as bestvalheimserver.ddns.net
  3. Configure the application on your Windows server

Congratulations. Your game server is now live!

Now your users can connect with just the domain name bestvalheimserver.ddns.net instead of by IP.


  • How can you stop the server?
    • You can close the server by pressing “CTRL + C” at the same time while having CMD focus, you may need to give the server some time to respond. If it does not work keep pressing these keys over and over for it to respond.
    • “Terminate batch job” / aka Server. Type “y” then press enter to terminate it.
  • How can I update the server?
    • Open up cmd prompt
    • Launch SteamCMD by running c:\steamserver\steamcmd.exe
    • At the “Steam>” console prompt type the following
    • force_install_dir c:\steamserver\valheim
    • app_update 896660
  • Why does my server keep shutting down?
    • Make sure the power plan in Windows is set to highest-performance
    • Make sure the computer is never set to sleep or hibernate or go into a power save mode.
  • Should I take backups?
    • Yes you should
  • Where is the server game world saved?
    • Located: “C:\Users\UserName\AppData\LocalLow\IronGate\Valheim