This is a guide on setting up and maintaining an Alien Swarm: Source dedicated server.


  • Download the Half-Life Dedicated Server from HLDS Update Tool and install in the directory of your choice.
  • Open a command line. (Start>Run>"cmd">OK)
  • Go to the directory where you installed HLDS.
> cd <directory>
  • Install Alien Swarm.
> HLDSUpdateTool -command update -game alienswarm
  • Grab a sandwich.


There are a couple ways of launching the server.

Run srcds.exeEdit

You could just double click the server executable and launch the GUI. From there, running the server is pretty straight forward.

Run it in the consoleEdit

You could also launch the server in the following manner:

  • Open a command window and go to the directory where you installed the server. (See Installing.)
  • Use the following command: [stuff in brakets is optional]

srcds.exe -game swarm -console +map <map> [-ip <address> -port <number> +hostname "My Alien Swarm Server"] This section is really just a stepping stone to the next one.

Use a batch scriptEdit

A batch script is a file that contains Windows console commands. This is where knowing how to launch the server from a command line comes in handy, because we can now automate the process. In windows, create a blank text document and name it alienswarm.bat or alienswarm.cmd (The file extension is the important part.) and place it, you guessed, it the directory with your server.

Here's an example script:

@echo off
   echo (%DATE% %TIME%) Starting server...
   start /wait srcds.exe -game swarm (etc, etc...)
   goto swarm

Here's what is does:

  • "@echo off " hides the prompt ("C:\>")
  • ":swarm" creates an execution point named "swarm". (Useful later)
  • "echo" prints the text after it in the command window. "%DATE%" and "%TIME%" are system variables containing the current date and time. (Useful for keeping track of when your server is launched.)
  • "start" opens "srcds.exe" in its own window. "/wait" tells start to wait until srcds.exe is finished (crashes) to continue executing.
  • "goto swarm" tells the script to jump back to ":swarm" which establishes a loop.

This script will launch your server and, if it crashes, relaunch it.

See alsoEdit

Console commands

External linksEdit

How ToEdit

Admin pluginsEdit

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