Starting CS 1.6 HLDS Server

There are two ways to run CS 1.6 HLDS Server , through GUI or Console.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages.


If you are new to CS then GUI is the easiest way to start HLDS server.


  • Easiest way to start
  • Very easy to manage CVARs, Change maps, kick/ban players etc
  • Graphical stats for players, cpu usage, ping and FPS.


  • Consumes more CPU and RAM
  • Cannot be used in Service mode or in Windows Startup
  • Cannot use parameters


  • Go to your HLDS Directory(for eg. E:/HLDS/ or C:\Program Files\Valve\HLServer).
  • Double click the hlds.exe icon.
  • If you have steam installed , than you can start Dedicated Server from your Steam Games Menu.


Running HLDS via Console is best and most efficient way to start server


  • Consumes less RAM and CPU.
  • Can be used in Service mode and loaded on Windows Startup.


  • Difficult to use for beginners.


  • Right Click on hlds.exe and click “Create a Shortcut”
  • Now right click the created shortcut and click properties.
  • Enter Parameters of your choice after the Target Location(for eg. “E:/HLDS/hlds.exe” parameters)

Parametes/Console variables that can be used in HLDS are


Specifies to HLDS to run in console mode

-game <game name>

Specifies which HLDS game (mod) to run (for eg. -game cstrike)

-ip <ipaddress>

Specifies the IP address on which server will start

Which port to use

-sport <port>
Specifies the VAC2 port the server should use.

+hostname “SERVERNAME”
Specifies the name of the server. Replace “SERVERNAME” by your server’s name.

Specifies which map to start.

Specifies  maximum player slots in the server.

Specifies  HLDS to update itself.

Disables Valve Anti-Cheat technology

-pingboost <1/2/3>
Selects between optimized HLDS network code stack. Set this on 2 usually reduces latency toward 1ms without loss of activity input packets.


“E:\HLDS\hlds.exe” -console -game cstrike -insecure -port 27016 -pingboost 3 +sys_ticrate 1000 -heapsize 500000 +maxplayers 20 +map de_dust2

“C:\HLDS\hlds.exe” -console -game cstrike +ip +sv_lan 1 +maxplayers 22 +map de_dust2 -nomaster