Damage Control: What to Do When Your Gaming Server Crashes

"Oh! God, my gaming server is not working"

“Oh! God, my gaming server is not working”


It’s a fact of doing anything online: sooner or later, the server is going to crash. Just how this affects you depends on the nature of what you were doing. If you were shopping online, for example, you’d just wait around until it came back up or wander off and check in later. If you were in the middle of updating your social media status, you’d do the same. However, if you were in the middle of an intense Team Fortress 2 match and the server crashed, chances are good that you probably raged a little. If you’re running your own private gaming server, it’s going to be your main goal to keep that server from crashing. However, it’s inevitable that it will crash at some point, which means you need to know how to handle that situation when it happens so that everyone using your server will be kept relatively happy and won’t start looking for another server to go to.

Keep Users Informed

It’s absolutely vital that you keep all your users informed of what’s going on. Most people running public servers have a forum or message board where they can keep people updated on what’s going on. Even if all you’ve got is a Twitter or Facebook feed, it’s imperative that you update to let people know that you’re aware the server is crashed and, more importantly, that you’re working toward finding a fix. People will appreciate that you’re keeping them updated on what’s going on and will be less inclined to rage quit your server and go looking for another one.

Problem Solve

"Take some time to figure out what's going on"

“Take some time to figure out what’s going on”


If you’re operating/housing the server in your own home, it’s time to get to work figuring out what’s going on. Is it a DDOS attack? Is it something internal? This may take a while for you to figure out, but being as you’re in charge of the server’s maintenance, this task is up to you. You’re likely going to have your work cut out for you, but while you’re working remember to keep your server users informed of your progress to cut down on impatience and irritability.

Contact Customer Support

If your gaming server is hosted through a third party provider, you’re probably going to have to get in touch with customer support in order to figure why your server has crashed. This is where it becomes crucial that your provider actually has decent customer support. For example, tech support that’s available 24/7 is going to help you a lot more than tech support that has office hours. Make a point as being as specific as you can when talking with the support help so that they can work on pinpointing the issue and working it out with you. Remember to be patient; these people are here to help, not hinder. Being irritable with them isn’t going to help get the problem solved any faster. Additionally, being pleasant to the support team can actually incite them to want to help you more, so work on being as nice as you can so that the problem gets ironed out sooner.

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