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Locally Hosted Server Regenerates Environment Upon Host Joining


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We're having issues with hosting a server on a player's device. When the player hosting the server joins, it appears to reset the entire world (population, vehicles, environment) besides from the areas that are already loaded by the presence other players already on the server. I've observed that the size of the world save folder ...\Saves\Multiplayer\servertest decreases significantly from immediately before to immediately after the host has joined.

To be sure the mods we're using aren't the issue, I ran the server with no mods applied and the issue persisted. I've attached both server console logs, the larger one being that in which the mods were applied.

server-console.txt server-console.txt

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Thanks for the logs, this issue seems similar to one that another player experienced recently, it does seem to be related to the nosteam function and how it handles users as far as I can see. The player posted a solution, so I can copy it here for you:

Alright, I think I've found a way to fix this issue based on the details I've gathered throughout the troubleshooting process. When using another PC to join the server, the issue doesn't occur and the world doesn't reset. I've come up with the case:

- There might be a conflict with files and processes when running the dedicated server and the game under the same PC USER account.

My dedicated server is started by running the StartServer64.bat file, which means that when I run it directly, it will run under the current user that I am logged in with, let's say "User1".
Then when I continue to start the game to play, the game will also run under User1. Therefore, I tried to make a copy of the entire game folder, add the -nosteam parameter (to run it without steam), then Shift+right click on ProjectZomboid64.exe and choose "Run as different user", then enter the login information for PC account User2 that I created earlier (Of course, all necessary mods, if any, must be manually copied into the Zomboid/mods folder of User2). The game starts and I was able to join the server without the world reset issue.

And that's how I figured out how to fix the issue of "world reset when hosting a dedicated server and playing on the same PC" or "world reset every time I join my dedicated server first" without completely deleting whole game progress and starting over again.
Of course, it's still recommended to regularly backup the save files on both the server and the client side and properly shut down the server to avoid any potential issues in the future.
I hope this information will help someone who encounters a similar problem in the future.

tl;dr: Create 1 more Windows user with password (You only need to login this Windows user account once on your computer), then run the game using that user account (Shift + Right Click on "ProjectZomboid64.exe" -> Run as different user), that seems to fix the problem.

Best regards!


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