To Mod or Not To Mod?

Modding

Modding your game server can be a painful process, but it doesn’t have to be.

Our servers are setup in what is referred to as a “Vanilla” state.  This means there is a basic configuration in place to get you playing.  There are no Mods/Plugins installed.

If you choose to add Mods/Plugins (going to simplify this to just Mods, from here on in) to your server, there are literally thousands of them available.  Choose wisely…. Take a few minutes and read on…..

 

Why would I want to add Mods/Plugins to my server?

  • Administration
  • Improved functionality
  • Additional features
  • Security
  • Statistics/Reporting
  • Fun stuff

Things To remember About Mods

  1. Some Mods are very old, and are no longer updated and/or supported. They may not work with the version of the game you are running, but still exist in the multiple repositories/websites/forums/workshops/collections (call them what you will)….so be careful adding them.
  2. No all Mods are not compatible with other Mods. You will not know this until you start adding mods and things do not work.
  3. Some Mods rely on other Mods. In this case, the order in which they are listed in your server configuration file may be important.
    • For example: DayZ – @CF (Community Foundations) is required by several other Mods and is required to be loaded before the other Mods.
  4. The more Mods you add to your server, the more resources (disk space, cpu, and memory) will be used. This can impact both server and client performance, and load times.
  5. Mods may require additional configuration to either their own configuration files or to your server configuration file(s) before they work’  Like, setting of permissions.
  6. Some games allow you to add Mods to the server and when you (or a player) connect to the server, your local PC/laptop will initiate a download of the Mod from the server  or other appropriate source ( example Steam Workshop) making it easier for players to join without having to know what Mods you have installed.

Mod Installation/Update Checklist 

  1. *** Always read the Mod documentation before you start *** if there is any.  
    • You may have to go hunting for it.
    • If the Mod has preinstallation requirements, ie: other mods needed.  That they are installed and configured first.
    • Take note of: (make sure you  remember this post installation):
      • additional files/folders that have to be created/copied/moved.
      • special instructions regarding permissions and server configuration file changes.
      • information required from external sources ( Example; special content downloads, Steam64ID).
  2. Backup your server (configuration and data) before you install any Mod(s).
  3. If you are going to add multiple Mods, add a few at a time.
    • Adding 30+ mods all at once makes troubleshooting a nightmare when your server won’t start.
    • No matter how good your technical skills are or how good your Tech Support is, troubleshooting 30 mods is still going to boil down to working with a few mods at a time.   Testing as you go, until you have the whole list done, assuming they all work together.
  4. If you have already installed Mods, and then remove them:
    • they may leave ‘stuff’ behind, and/or break things, so be prepared to wipe your server.
  5. The newest mod you installed broke things…
    • Make sure you read the documentation and did not miss any steps.
    • Remove it and test again without it.
    • Make sure it is that mod and not something else that ‘updated’ in the process, like the server itself or another mod.
    • Research the issue(s). Look at the log files, and search the forums.