How to run rFactor as a Windows Service with FireDaemon Pro.

What is rFactor?

rFactor is a racing simulation game. The dedicated server component can be run as a Windows Service using FireDaemon Pro, which lets you start the application automatically at boot prior to login, start multiple instances of the application and more. This HOWTO will show you how to set it up. You can also use Fusion to manage FireDaemon and other Windows services via a web browser.

rFactor Dedicated Server Setup Under FireDaemon Pro

First download and extract SteamCMD. The download is small (< 2 MB).

Download the rFactor server files via Valve’s content servers. First before you can download the files, go to the directory where you installed SteamCMD and create a shortcut to "SteamCMD.exe". Next edit the properties of the shortcut and in the target box, at the end of it (with a space before the following), put:

+login anonymous +force_install_dir "C:\Rfactor" +app_update 346570 validate +quit

The target box should now look something like:

C:\SteamCMD\steamcmd.exe +login anonymous +force_install_dir "C:\Rfactor" +app_update 346570 validate +quit

Now run the shortcut you created to download the rFactor server files via Valve’s content servers. It might take a few hours to update everything. You should also stop your server and run the shortcut every week or so to grab the latest server updates.

You need to set up a profile for each server you wish to run. Launch rFactor Dedicated.exe normally, using the Dedicated Server profile. Configure the server to suit your preferences and then start the game.

Once you've started the game to suit your preferences, exit the server and navigate to the UserData folder within the rFactor folder. Make a copy of the Dedicated Server folder and paste it back into the UserData folder. Rename this folder to the name of your choice, e.g. NewServerProfile. Rename the DedicatedServer.PLR file to the same name as your renamed folder, e.g. NewServerProfile.PLR. Repeat this process for each profile you want to create.

If you want to make changes to one of your new profiles, launch the dedicated server and select the profile you wish to change. Edit and launch the server and then exit. You may also edit the .PLR file, multiplayer.ini, and Dedicated<season>.cfg files within your dedicated server's folder.

Download and install FireDaemon Pro into the directory of your choice, typically C:\Program Files\FireDaemon.

Next start the FireDaemon GUI from the desktop shortcut. Click on the "Create a new service definition" button in the toolbar (or type Ctrl+N) and enter the information into the fields as you see below. Adjust the paths to suit your installation. Note the required parameters.

  • Executable: The path to your rFactor Dedicated.exe file. The default path in this HOWTO is C:\rfactor\rFactor Dedicated.exe.
  • Working Directory: The directory containing your rFactor Dedicated.exe file. The default path in this HOWTO is C:\rfactor.
  • Parameters:+profile "NewServerProfile" +oneclick
    • +profile "NewServerProfile" - specifies the profile to load
    • +oneclick - tells the server software to launch without your interference

Now click on the Settings tab. If you DON'T want to see your dedicated server running, uncheck the Interact with Desktop check box & select "Hidden" from the "Show Window" dropdown. You can optionally run rFactor as the user you installed it as. In the Logon Account field type your username (eg. Administrator) and then enter the user's password twice in the Password and Confirm fields. You can change the Process Priority to allocate more CPU time to the dedicated server or specify which CPU or core the dedicated server will run on (in the case of multi-processor, hyperthreaded or multi-core CPUs).

Now click on the Lifestyle tab. Uncheck Graceful Shutdown as rFactor doesn't respond to it.

Now click OK to finish setup and start your rFactor server!