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A quick (REAL quick) Linux Walkthrough

This will be a step-by-step walkthrough from signing up for service to having a working HL-engine based server (cstrike, tfc, etc.). We cannot provide instruction on how to use FTP, SSH, AdminMod, the internet in general, etc... some assembly is required, and we are expecting our customers to know the basics. We have included all relevant links to online resources from AdminMod page and online manual, Counter-Strike.net and its server site, etc.

For those of you with prior experience running Linux servers or general FTP/SSH knowledge, the short version will be all you need to know about how MartNet's particular system works. For the n00bs, be prepared to read a lot. You must be able to grasp these concepts and understand why you're typing what you're typing. Don't be intimidated, just print this page and refer to it a lot.

SHORT Instructions: Simply starting the server.
1) Log in to your shell account

1a)Note: if you asked for AdminMod, and haven't run the install_admin yet and/or haven't done this before, you're gonna need to go look here first. The server will run if you don't, but WON'T have AdminMod running.

2) Read the entire menu screen you're looking at. Note that PuTTY is resizable like any other window, so enlarge it if you have to. When you see the nifty MartNet ASCII art at the top, and "Enter the NUMBER of your selection:" at the bottom, it's big enough.
3) Hit "1" (number one), then ENTER.
4) Read the stuff on your screen. Now read it again.
5) Type "0" (zero) then ENTER to exit the menu. Read that stuff too.
6) Type "logout" then ENTER to log off your shell session. PuTTY will close.
7) Go play some Counter-Strike! Or TFC, or VALVE, or whichever you're running...


In addition to this comprehensive guide, further information including public forums (we cannot stress enough how important those are to getting help and info) can be found at Counter-Server.Net, which i STRONGLY recommend everyone goes and reads now. Especially, oddly enough, the links called "howto" and "linux."


By the end of this section you should have a basic familiarity (if you don't already) with:

  • SSH (Secure Shell) for logging in, starting/stopping the game, etc.
  • Basic Linux shell commands (ls, cd, text editing etc.).
  • FTP for moving files between your computer and our servers
  • A willingness to learn anything you don't already know.

Last Things First

I'm not kidding about willingness to learn part. If you give a brief glance to a few things on this page, then call up asking us to configure AdminMod for you, we're gonna know you slept through class.

Secure Shell: RIP, telnet.

Okay so there's this thing called "telnet" which back in the day was what you used to log into other machines on the internet. No web, no browsers*, no AOL - those were the days...

Telnet, unfortunately, does some really dumb things like sending your username, password, and every other darn thing you type in the clear. You don't want it, and we don't support it. So now the standard, secure way to connect to your shell account is SSH. .

Next step: Go get an ssh client now!

That will pop up in a new window, so go download PuTTY and come back here. It's a single .exe file of a few hundred K - painless download, no installer to run, just double-click on the thing you downloaded to run it

What the heck am i looking at?

Probably something like this.

First enter the name of the host you wish to connect to. Either the IP address (such as or the host name (such as Shockwave.martnet.com) will do. Enter thusly:

Then click on the SSH button. The Telnet button should vanish, and the port number will change from 23 to 22, thusly:

Finally, give a name for these settings in the appropriate box, then click "save," like so:

And Voila! Click "Open" to connect. From now on, when you start putty, click the connection name you want, then Load to load its settings, then Open. That's all.

Once you're in, typing just "1" (number one) then ENTER will start your server in a screen. This means you can now log out without the server going down (FYI, Screen is running in the background). Simple, easy, and intuitive, right?

To see the server commandline, be at the menu and type "3" then enter (from the shell itself, if you've exited the menu, the command is "screen -r hlds"). The server monitor is also in its own screen. You can reattach to that with screen -r monitor (see a pattern yet?), which is option "4" from the menu, but it isn't very exiting. You'll just see it counting down to 0 and re-checking to see if your server's dead and, if it is, defibrillate it (CLEAR!). Just to reiterate, right here's where you get PuTTY.

Click on the "putty.exe" link, it's small. When you run it, make SURE that you enter SERVERNAME.martnet.com (where SERVERNAME is the name of the server that hosts your game. It's part of your e-mail address too. ie: masterblaster.martnet.com or mb.martnet.com) as the host you're connecting to, and that the "SSH" and not "telnet" radio button at the top is selected. If you don't know the hostname, enter the IP address we gave you for your server. That will work too. If you don't know the server name OR IP address, you've got issues, and you should e-mail us and we can set you straight :D

And again, make sure you check of SSH in PuTTy. We don't support telnet - it's old, unencrypted, insecure, and generally sucks...

As for exiting the menu, after the disclaimer you will see:


In linux, "ls" = "dir" to see what's there. In my test directory, username nemesys, i see:


and when i type "ls" and hit enter, i see:

nemesys@shockwave:~$ ls
Admin customer-server-settings martnet-server-settings halflife

By the way, if you're outside the menu and want to start the server (after say taking it down and messing with AdminMod plugins) just type "start_server" to start your server. The monitor_server script will start itself when you run the start_server script. These scripts are installed systemwide (in /usr/local/bin/martnet for those of you who want to peek at them...). This is really for more advanced users so if i've lost you at this point, don't sweat it, just stick with the login menu.

Other useful Linux Stuff...

"cd" is the same "change directory" command you're used to. Wanna see something neat? You don't have to type the whole silly path. Type "cd ha" and then hit the tab key, and it will expand to

r0b@mb:~$ cd halflife/
...hit enter and you enter the directory. Now with "ls" you see something like:

r0b@mb:~/halflife$ ls
hlds_l pbsv956.tar.gz settings startme

Enter the hlds_l directory just like you did this one, and type ls. Half-Life Dedicated Server _ Linux, getit? You'll see:

r0b@mb:~/halflife/hlds_l$ ls
Admin cstrike hlds_run kver.kp sierra.inf HLTV-Readme.txt dmc hlds_run.dat libhlwon.so start auth engine_i386.so hltv linuxreadme.txt tfc core hlds_l hltv.cfg readme.txt valve

or something very like it. These are the guts of the Half-Life engine. If you have Adminmod, you'll see the Admin directory (and capitalization counts - "cd admin" will get you nowere!). All your cstrike files are in - wait for IT - the cstrike directory! And by now you should realize how to get there no sweat, so goahnwidyobadself.

HINT:The nifty thing about putty is that you'll see the files are color-coded. Green is executable - like a Win .exe file. Blue is a directory. That oughtta help you navigate. As in DOS, "." means "this directory right here" and ".." means "the one above it." That's why "cd .." takes to the directory "above" the one you typed it in.

More forthcoming!

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