How To Set Up & Make One

Want to grind through Valheim in peace? There’s nothing worse than playing in a public server, only to find all the good resources are gone, your main encampments ransacked, and having to invite your friends separately each play session. Fortunately, there’s a way to set up a Valheim dedicated server so everything is done your way, from playing solo to inviting friends. Let’s get into it!

How to Set Up Valheim Dedicated Server

Setting up a dedicated server in Valheim is a fairly lengthy process, so you’ll need to set aside a good chunkof time to get it done properly. Fortunately it’s completely free, so follow our instructions to get going.

Firstly, download and install the Valheim Dedicated Server program on Steam. You get it automatically when you purchase Valheim, so it should sit right alongside the game in your library. Then go into your PC files outside of Steam, finding where you installed the server program. Run it, and it’ll prompt you to either select an existing world, or to create a new one. That choice is yours.

This is where things start to get a bit complicated. Paste the world files that you’ve selected into the server folder. Next, head into the Valheim Dedicated Server folder and locate a file called ‘start_headless_server’. That script shows a few variables you need to change, including the name and password for the server. Just type in what you’d like them to be within the file – making a note of them (it’s important later!) – and save. Then make a clean copy of that newly updated file, because you need two on your PC for it to work properly.

Image Source: Iron Gate AB

Now, you need to alter your firewall settings via your server PC’s router to ensure other people can join in. Look for host port numbers 2456 and 2458, and toggle to open them. This is a crucial step, because without it nobody else can join.

From there, things are much more straightforward. Ensure those router settings are saved on the host PC and run the headless_server file once more. With that running in the background, your dedicated server should now be bubbling away as expected. Depending on whether you toggled for the server to appear on community pages on Steam, or if it’s completely closed off, people can now join.

How to Join a Friend’s Valheim Dedicated Server

If a friend has set up a Valheim Dedicated Server and you want to join, there are two options. These depend on whether they’ve added enhanced privacy settings, hiding it from the community tab. If not, it should be easily searchable using the server name they chose during setup.

Otherwise, you’ll need to ask for the password the server host set up when first creating the server. Then boot into Valheim and go to the Join Game tab, pasting in that password. If everything’s gone to plan, you should load into the server in no time!

That’s all for our guide on how to set up a Valheim Dedicated Server. For even more on the game, check out our guides below.

About the author

Luke Hinton

Luke Hinton is a video games journalist currently working as Senior Guides Writer and Associate Editor at Twinfinite. He has undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Journalism, Media, and Culture, and previously specialised in entertainment writing.

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