Ark is a brutal survival game with a tech oriented aspect surrounding the exploration and survival of a dinosaur infested world. You can find the articles we’ve written on how to use our Ark hosting services at the bottom of the page and some quick guides on how to get started with your ARK server below. Happy Dinosaur hunting!
Getting started with your ARK Server
ARK is a bit funky when starting, check out our article on the RCON Connection Process for information on what it's trying to do.
Setting your default/modded Server Map
ARK provides a number of default maps as part of the base game or DLC and you can also install 3rd party maps from the steam workshop using the Mods Startup Parameter then following the steps in our Installing ARK Mods article. The Server Map Startup Parameter is then used to select the map you want either by using the ID provided by the game, which you can find my hovering on the
I next to modal title, or by using the ID provided by the mod author.
Setting your Server Password
If you want to limit who can join your server you'll need to set a server password. This would be required every time a player logs into the server from the ARK client and would need to be shared with the players you want to be able to join your server. WinterNode uses the command line to define the server password and you can provide the password you want to use by editing the Server Password startup parameter located on the
Configuration → Startup Parameters tab and restarting your server.
Setting your Admin Password
The Admin Password is used to enable cheats in-game for players using the
EnableCheats <Admin Password> command and for connecting to the server's RCON server. The default password provided by WinterNode should be a randomly generated string and can be found in the Admin Password startup parameter located on the
Configuration → Startup Parameters tab. You can change your Admin Password for ease of use, if it gets leaked, or if you just want to by changing the value in the Admin Password startup parameter and restarting your server.
Disabling Battle Eye
Bys default, Battle Eye is enabled and required for players to log in to your server. This means that any player who wants to play on your server will also need Battle Eye Anti-Cheat installed and running when they connect. If you don't want to have that requirement, you can change the Battle Eye startup parameter located on the
Configuration → Startup Parameters tab to a
0 instead of a
1, then restarting your server. This uses the
-NoBattlEye command line argument to disable Battle Eye on the server and remove the requirement to have it installed locally when joining the server.
The WinterNode Game Control Panel provides a few easily configurable options under the
Configuration → Startup Parameters tab on your server page. These options make use of common command line arguments and are needed for the server to function as expected, but may be changed as needed using the fields provided in the modals.
The server password is required every time a player logs into the server from the ARK client. If left empty any player can join your server.
The admin password is used to connect to your server's RCON server as well as to enable cheats for players in-game using the
EnableCheats <Admin Password> command. Make sure that you choose a secure Server Password!
ARK provides a number of default maps either as part of the base game or as part of DLCs, you can also install 3rd party maps using the Mods startup parameter. The default map strings can be found by mousing over the
I next to the modal title, and 3rd party map IDs can normally be found as part of the workshop description.
The server name is what is displayed to players when they view the server in-game or in the steam server list.
The RCON Port is a port used internally to send commands to the server and confirm that it successfully started. You shouldn't need to change this under normal operation.
The Query Port is the port players used to connect to the server. You shouldn't need to change this under normal operation.
This value changes whether or not the server should self-update when it starts. If you want to update your server to the latest patch, change it to
1, otherwise leave it at
0 so that you don't get any unexpected updates that may break mods or settings.
The Battle Eye Startup Parameter enables or disables the requirement for the Battle Eye anti-cheat system to be installed and enabled on a player's client when they connect to the server. Set this to
0 if you don't want players to have to have Battle Eye, or
1 you want to enforce Battle Eye usage.
You can add additional startup arguments to the server using this field, making sure that they are valid arguments and will parse correctly.
You can limit the maximum number of players that can connect to your server by entering an integer into the Max Player field. There is no limit by default, but this can be useful for public servers.
📄️ How to Connect to your Ark Server
How to connect to your ARK Server hosted with WinterNode.
📄️ Configuring your ARK Server
How to configure your ARK Server using the server's configuration files.
📄️ Back up your ARK Server
How to take and manage backups of your ARK server.
📄️ Enabling Crossplay
How to enable EGS CrossPlay for your SteamCMD Based ARK Server.
📄️ Installing mods to your ARK server
How to manage mods on your ARK Server using the WinterNode Game Panel.
📄️ Waiting for RCON Connection
Why is my ARK Server waiting for an RCON Connection?