Server Hosting

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Revision as of 17:30, 10 August 2022 by Lou Montana (talk | contribs) (Add "no Xbox-exclusive server" infobox (due to Xbox Requirements))
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Server Hosting is the fact of hosting a game instance accessible over the network to other players.

As of Arma Reforger v0.9.5 two very important aspects of public server hosting are:
  • Set and keep fastValidation to true
  • Limit Server's max FPS with the -maxFPS startup parameter in order to save performance

Player-Hosted Server

Also known as Listen Server, a Player-Hosted Server is a server with a local client that plays on it too.

Arma Reforger does not allow for Player-Hosted Server as of v0.9.5.


Dedicated Server

A Dedicated Server is a server without any game instance launched; it purely processes game information and network synchronisation.

Ports

Protocol Port Description
UDP 2001 Game port
UDP 50000..65000 Steam communication ports
UDP 17777 Steam Query protocol used to provide Steam with server status (amount of players, scenario name, etc)

Startup Parameters

See Arma Reforger:Startup Parameters - Hosting and the Configuration section below for more information.

config

The Server exe uses the -config startup parameter to target the configuration file.

ArmaReforgerServer.exe -config ".\Configs\Campaign_SWCoast.json"

In above example, Campaign_SWCoast.json is expected to be locted in Configs folder next to the exe.

maxFPS

As of 0.9.5 it is heavily recommended to use this startup parameter, set to a value in the 60..120 range; otherwise, the server can try to use all the available resources!
ArmaReforgerServer.exe -maxFPS 60

Others

Below Startup Parameters are optional but may prove useful upon some cases:

  • logStats - allows to log server's FPS every x milliseconds
  • logLevel - sets the log detail level
  • listScenarios - logs available scenario {{|.conf}} file paths on startup

Configuration File

Parameters inside the JSON file are case-sensitive!

Arma Reforger uses JSON configuration format to run. A configuration file looks like this:

{
	"dedicatedServerId": "",
	"region": "EU",
	"gameHostBindAddress": "",
	"gameHostBindPort": 2001,
	"gameHostRegisterBindAddress": "",
	"gameHostRegisterPort": 2001,
	"adminPassword": "changeme",
	"game": {
		"name": "Server Name - Mission Name",
		"password": "",
		"scenarioId": "{ECC61978EDCC2B5A}Missions/23_Campaign.conf",
		"playerCountLimit": 32,
		"autoJoinable": false,
		"visible": true,
		"supportedGameClientTypes": [
			"PLATFORM_PC",
			"PLATFORM_XBL"
		],
		"gameProperties": {
			"serverMaxViewDistance": 2500,
			"serverMinGrassDistance": 50,
			"networkViewDistance": 1000,
			"disableThirdPerson": true,
			"fastValidation": true,
			"battlEye": true,
			"missionHeader": {
				"m_iPlayerCount": 40,
				"m_eEditableGameFlags": 6,
				"m_eDefaultGameFlags": 6,
				"other": "values"
			}
		},
		"mods": [
			{
				"modId": "59727DAE364DEADB",
				"name": "WeaponSwitching",
				"version": "1.0.1"
			},
			{
				"modId": "59727DAE32981C7D",
				"name": "Explosive Goats beta",
				"version": "0.5.42"
			}
		]
	},
	"a2sQueryEnabled": true,
	"steamQueryPort": 17777
}

Values are strings, unless mentioned otherwise.

dedicatedServerId

Used by the "Favourite" system. If not provided, the backend will provide a new ID and save it to the config file. It is recommended to server administrators to store this ID safe to ensure to keep their playerbase in case of a server migration or a config accident.

Common ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 values:
Code Country
US USA
DE Germany
CN China
CZ Czech Republic
FR France
GB United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
RU Russian Federation
JP Japan
AU Australia
region

ID / name of region - it is needed when the server registers the launched game in the Lobby. ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code can be used in this field. Usual Nitrado values:

  • "EU-FFM"
  • "US-LA"
  • "US-MI"
gameHostBindAddress

IP address which server socket will be bound to. In most cases, this should be left empty. It can be used to restrict connections to particular network interface. When left out or empty, 0.0.0.0 is used, which allows connections through any IP address.

IPv6 is not supported by Arma Reforger v0.9.5.
gameHostBindPort

number value, range 1..65535, default: 2001

UDP port to which the server socket will be bound.

gameHostRegisterBindAddress

IP address registered in backend. This should be set to the public IP address to which clients can connect in order to reach the server (either IP of the server itself or IP of the machine that will forward data to the server). When left out or empty, an attempt is made to automatically determine the IP address, but this will often fail and should not be relied upon as the server might not be reachable from public networks.

IPv6 is not supported by Arma Reforger v0.9.5.
gameHostRegisterPort

number value, range 1..65535, default: 2001

UDP port registered in backend. If the server itself has a public IP address, this should be the same value as in gameHostBindPort. Otherwise, this is the UDP port that is forwarded to the server.

adminPassword

Defines the server's admin password, allows a server administrator to login and control the server, to access this either open the chat input box by pressing C in the lobby or Enter ↵ in-game followed by: #login [the admin password]

game

Define the server's settings - see the game section below.

Only one scenario can be defined - Arma Reforger does not allow for mission rotation as of v0.9.5.
a2sQueryEnabled

bool value, default: false

Enable Steam Query protocol

steamQueryPort

number value, range 1..65535, default: 17777

Change Steam Query UDP port on which game listens to A2S requests

game

name

length 0..100 characters

password

length 0..x characters

Password required to join the server.

scenarioId

The scenario's .conf file path is defined here. See the listScenarios startup parameter to list available scenarios and obtain their .conf file path.

gameNumber

number value, range 1..9999

Add a suffix to the server's name, if more servers hosted by script (typically in data centers) - e.g "Server Name - 56"

playerCountLimit

number value, range 1..256, default: 127

Set the maximum amount of players on the server.

autojoinable

bool value, default: false

Set if the session can be selected through the auto join feature.

visible

bool value, default: true

Set the visibility of the server in the Server Browser.

supportedGameClientTypes

array value, default: ["PLATFORM_PC"]

Define the platforms which the server accepts, allowing crossplay.

A server cannot be Xbox-exclusive.

Values can be:

Key Value
PLATFORM_PC PC
PLATFORM_XBL Xbox console
gameProperties

Define the scenario's settings - see the gameProperties section below.

mods

The list of mods required by the client. They will automatically be downloaded and activated on join.

modID

GUID of the mod. It can be obtained from i.e. Workbench options when mod is running or directly from gproj file

armareforger-server-hosting-guid.png

name

This parameter doesn't do anything and is only used as sort of comment, with human readable name of the mod.

version
The version mod parameter is optional. If it missing, the latest mod version will be used.

gameProperties

serverMaxViewDistance

number value, range 500..10000, default: 1600

serverMinGrassDistance

number value, range 0 / 50..150, default: 0

Minimum grass distance in meters. If set to 0 no distance is forced upon clients.

fastValidation

bool value, default: false

Validation of map entities and components loaded on client when it joins, ensuring things match with initial server state.

  • true (enabled) - minimum information required to make sure data matches is exchanged between client. When a mismatch occurs, no additional information will be available for determining where client and server states start to differ. All servers that expect clients to connect over internet should have fast validation enabled.
  • false (disabled) - extra data for every replicated entity and component in the map will be transferred when new client connects to the server. When a mismatch occurs, it is possible to point at particular entity or component where things start to differ. When developing locally (ie. both server and client run on the same machine), it is fine to disable fast validation to more easily pin point source of the problem.
Always keep this value to true for a public server!
networkViewDistance

number value, range 500.5000, default: 500

Maximum network streaming range of replicated entities.

battlEye

bool value

true to enable BattlEye, false to disable it.

disableThirdPerson

bool value, default: false

Force clients to use the first-person view.

missionHeader

This property overwrites the scenario's SCR_MissionHeaderCampaign.

Template

{
	"dedicatedServerId": "",
	"region": "",
	"gameHostBindAddress": "",
	"gameHostBindPort": 0,
	"gameHostRegisterBindAddress": "",
	"gameHostRegisterPort": 0,
	"game": {
		"name": "",
		"password": "",
		"scenarioId": "",
		"playerCountLimit": 0,
		"visible": true,
		"gameProperties": {
			"serverMaxViewDistance": 0,
			"serverMinGrassDistance": 0,
			"networkViewDistance": 0,
			"disableThirdPerson": false,
			"fastValidation": true,
			"battlEye": true
		},
		"mods": []
	}
}


Linux Server

The game server will by default use Docker container's IP for server browser registration and client connection which will cause failure during client connection attempt.
To avoid it use:

  • Run the "ipconfig" command in cmd to list the local IPs
  • "IP Connect" option in the server browser and insert one of the server's local IPs
  • Custom server config (.json file) with "gameHostRegisterBindAddress" and "gameHostRegisterPort" parameters set to one of the local IP:Port combinations

Example:

-config "./My_Config.json"
ClientConnectAddress 192.168.39.98

Docker Setup

This Docker configuration is adapted to Ubuntu. Other distributions such as Fedora or Arch Linux may store their certificates at the following location: /etc/pki/ca-trust/ - be sure to edit the configuration accordingly.
A community Docker image is available on GitHub: https://github.com/acemod/docker-reforger
  1. Install the latest Docker download link:
    1. Enable Hyper-V in Windows if it is not already
    2. Assign HW resources in Docker/Settings/Resources/Advanced:
      1. CPU: 4 cores
      2. Memory: 6 GB
  2. Download Ubuntu 18.04 image via batch or powershell cmd: docker pull ubuntu:18.04
  3. Run Ubuntu image:
    1. mount volume with server data
    2. expose client connection UDP port
    3. Example: docker container run -t -d -p 2001:2001/udp -v D:\server_data\linux_packed:/home/packed --name ubuntu_test ubuntu:18.04
  4. Connect to bash console: docker exec -it ubuntu_test /bin/bash
  5. Install necessary software:
    1. libcurl4 - required by server app
    2. net-tools - for debug purposes (enables ifconfig etc)
    3. Installation:
      1. apt-get update
      2. apt-get install libcurl4
      3. apt-get install net-tools
      4. apt-get install libssl1.1
  6. Create logs directory, e.g: mkdir /home/profile
  7. Run server:
    1. server executable needs proper execution/access rights:
      1. cd server_root_folder
      2. chmod +x ArmaReforgerServer
    2. Example: ./ArmaReforgerServer -gproj ./addons/data/ArmaReforger.gproj -config Configs/ServerConfig/Campaign.json -backendlog -nothrow -profile /home/profile