Host Your Own Dedicated GMod Server and You’ll Be the King of the Sandbox


By Tim Brown

Chances are, you like the Garry’s Mod (or GMod as it is popularly called) sandbox game for one main reason: With no true objective—and clearly no winners or losers—it’s all about the game play. And what better sandbox way to control the game play that to build your own GMod dedicated server. Yes, there are plenty of GMod server hosting providers out there. But why give them your hard-earned money when you can do it yourself for free? If you have 10GB of free space on your hard drive and are as comfortable behind the Command Prompt as you are behind the trigger of a physics gun, you should have no trouble going from generic gamer to GMod god.

Get Organized

Benjamin Franklin wisely warned us to measure twice and cut once. That sage advice remains true whether you are building a house or setting up your own server for the first time. While there are a number of different server configurations, the basic premise of the GMod setup is generally the same across the board.

Start by downloading the GMod server files (StreamCMD is a very reliable source). Once you have them on your computer, make sure to update the tool commands. Keep in mind that you will need to update them on a regular basis (at least twice a month) as part of your administrative and maintenance duties. More often than not, there will be some source engine conflicts that will need to be rectified during this process, so be on the lookout for those. After that, you’ll enter your internal IP address in the srcds folder, adjust the maximum number of players allowed in the sandbox at any one time, and create a desktop shortcut for the main file folder.

Get Configured

You are well on your way to building the best GMod server host. Open the “orangebox” folder and then the “garrysmod” subfolder. From there, open the “cfg” folder and find the “server” file. That is the configuration file which will allow you to establish some server settings. You can give your server a name and then create a password. Next, you’ll need to port forward (have your internal IP address handy for this) so that your gaming buddies have access to your router. The ports that are used vary depending on router model and TCP or UDP configurations.

Get Playing

At this point, your pretty much ready to pick up the controller and start spawning ragdolls. There are just a few final items to attend to. As an experienced GMod player, you’ve undoubtedly come across some of your favorite add-ons. Now is a great time to download a bunch so that you can incorporate them into your game play. Then, make it official and run your new GMod server. Click the shortcut and verify the secure mode is activated. Once secure, you can invite your friends by having them enable the developer console on their end. At that point, gear up and get playing!

Interested in learning more about hosting your own gaming server for GMod or other popular online games? Check out our helpful gaming guide.

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