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How to Host a Team Fortress 2 Dedicated Server
How to Host a Team Fortress 2 Dedicated Server

Hosting your first Team Fortress 2 server via Hostinger's Game Panel

Updated over a week ago

With your own Team Fortress 2 server, you will be able to add your own custom maps, plugins, game modes, and so many other things. This article will show how to set it up with Game Panel.

Choosing the right VPS server

Team Fortress 2 Dedicated Game servers have quite low resource requirements, therefore this game can be hosted on basically all of our VPS plans. However, we'd recommend purchasing Game Panel 2 plan as it will give you a bit more breathing space whenever you'll want to increase your player slots.

Generating Game Server Login Tokens

Since 2019, Valve requires you to generate authentication tokens in order for your server to be public. Otherwise, it remains in LAN (Local Area Network) mode, meaning that no one can connect to that server. No need to worry though, it's super easy to generate this token, however, you need to make sure that your steam account meets the requirements:

  1. Your Steam account must not be community banned or locked

  2. Your Steam account must not be limited

  3. Your Steam account must have a qualifying registered phone

  4. Your Steam account must own the game for which you are creating a game server account

  5. Your Steam account may create 1000 game server accounts

If all of these requirements are met, you'll need to head to Steam Game Server Account Management Console. There, you'll see two fields that look like this:

In the top field, you just need to insert the ID of the game you want to create a token for. In this case, Team Fortress 2 ID is - 440. On the second field, name your token so you could distinguish what it was created for, I've called mine TF2 TEST.

This is how it's supposed to look once you generate the token:

Installing Team Fortress 2 server on Game Panel

Once you log in to the Game Panel, you'll have no instances. In this case, simply click on Create Instance and choose Team Fortress 2 from the dropdown list. If you did everything correctly, the instance creation pop-up should look like this:

This will create an instance or a container where your server files and configurations will be stored.

Now, click on the instance and choose the Manage option on the right side menu:

By doing this, you've opened a page where your Team Fortress 2 server will be located and managed. At this point, you just need to follow these simple steps:

  1. Head to Configuration > Source Server Settings. There, you'll be able to change the name of your server, map, add server password, enable or disable VAC Anticheat, change game modes. Simply change the options according to your liking. The important thing you need to do here is, paste your generated GSLT token:

  2. After you've done your initial server configuration, head back to the status page or console and click start. At first, it will give you an error as shown below. This is normal as server files are not yet installed, but right after showing this error, Game Panel will start downloading the required files automatically. You can see the progress in the console:

    Kindly note that the Team Fortress 2 server download might take up to 15 minutes to complete.

  3. Once the download is completed, you'll see this message in the console:
    Success! App '232250' fully installed.

  4. Now click Start once again, and it will start your first Team Fortress 2 Server! These messages below (can be seen in the console) means that your server is up and running, and you can now connect to it:

  5. Now you can open Team Fortress 2, open the console, and insert connect (instead of this IP and port, you should insert your own server IP and port). This will connect you to your Team Fortress 2 server.

    You can also use the community server browser to add your server as favorites so it would be easier to connect each time.

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