How to Avoid the RUST Server Blacklist

RUST admins, learn how to avoid the RUST Server Blacklist

RUST server administration, at times, can feel like a zero-benefit proposition. Unless hosting yourself, you’re investing money each month to provide a service, often alone or highly understaffed. You muddle through setup, reading guides on how to make enhancements to attract a regular population.

Every decision you make or change comes under constant scrutiny, from altering server settings and convars to deciding whether to be listed in Community or Modded servers.

But what about decisions we make, either consciously or accidentally, that have consequences possibly impacting our ability to host? Many topics covered on this list aren’t typical considerations that a newer RUST admin might tackle or even know about.

Other topics we’ve decided to throw in are more player-centric and not wholly disclosed when you purchase the game. While we won’t explain directly how to engage in some of these taboo actions, the brief synopsis should provide a good measure of what not to do.

What is Blacklisting?

Blacklisting is usually defined as an access-restricting disciplinary consequence dispensed by an authoritarian body onto a ‘listed’ group of entities or individuals with a history of poor or inappropriate behavior against the authority. Blacklisting can be purposefully acquired or accidentally so, as well as having a duration, either temporary or permanent.

All servers are expected to abide by the developers’ Community and Hosting Guidelines, so silly things like using weird symbols or racist/homophobic slander as a server name won’t be covered.

Impersonations of ‘Official’ servers

Starting off pretty straightforward and seemingly obvious, this point cannot be said enough—don’t pretend you’re hosting an ‘Official Server.’ This type of behavior can take many forms, but a few common sense examples include:

1. Copy Cat Behavior

Creating a server that attempts to Copy Cat officially owned, Developer, or Affiliate-hosted servers by name or other advertisements.

2. Developer-Specific Convars

Utilizing developer-specific convar features not intended or sanctioned for Community or Modded server use. This can include things like allowing achievements to be obtained on non-official servers.

3. Violating Facepunch’s Intellectual Property

Violating Facepunch Studios’ Intellectual Property violates the rules outlined in their official Terms of Service.

Engaging in misleading or deceitful traffic tactics

Some might read this topic and be confused, aghast, or bewildered that such a thing occurs. There are certain ‘server owners’ that ‘host’ public, connectable RUST servers for alternate reasons. The motive behind this behavior isn’t relevant, but there are several indicators of a server engaging in this type of behavior, most observable from the RUST Server Selection GUI:

1. Spoofing & Inflating Population

Servers displaying ‘Spoofed’ or Inflated populations are often (when searched by player count) visible in noticeable clumps with other servers doing the same thing. These servers often have similar names and almost identical player populations and ping.

2. Advertising Fake Wipes

Servers doing ‘fake wipes,’ advertising ‘Just Wiped’ in their server name, and showing a very recent wipe time, usually within the last hour. Very usually noticeable alongside other servers doing the same thing.

3. Copy Cat Behavior

Copy Catting legitimate server names, often used in conjunction with population and wipe spoofing and redirecting connections to a different server.

4. Port Forwarding Servers

Use of port forwarding to redirect traffic from one server IP to another server.

5. Faking Pings

Utilizing services like A2S Caching to display incorrect or false latency and ping statistics intentionally.

Player Warning: When you connect to non-official RUST servers, you willingly’ reveal your IP address and general real-world location to the server’s owner and administrative team. You are revealing SteamID information to these same people. You should never connect to a server that you have reason to believe is untrustworthy. This could have serious, real-world ramifications.

Less nefarious or accidental reasons

We all make mistakes—some more than others. It is absolutely fair to assert that there is a lot that goes into setting up and hosting a RUST server, with a vast gray area often left to the server owner to navigate concerning rules and decorum. To help bridge this gap, in addition to our assortment of other guides already aimed at the topic, we have picked out a few of the most frequent infractions that can land a server in hot water.

1. Community or Modded (Plugin Abuse)

Probably the number one accidental or otherwise misunderstood setting that new server owners bungle is whether they’re allowed to remain under the Community tab or if they have features installed that mandate they be listed as a Modded. To clarify this, we have created a guide devoted to this subject.

2. Server Stalls

Accidental negligence isn’t a phrase used lightly, but sometimes it happens. There are instances of servers stalling in such a way that they appear online and function through several tool interfaces but, in fact, are frozen and unreachable by players. This phenomenon can be costly and devastating to a community. To make matters worse, the reporting agents used for population and ping can set off several red flags that could result in your server being smacked with the blacklist stick. If this happens, contact the Facepunch Studios Support team for assistance.

3. Misrepresenting Regions

While it might not result in a server being blacklisted, intentionally misrepresenting the geographical regionality of your server could lead to action being taken by the developer or the player base. Nothing is quite as disheartening as joining a server that you thought was based in the EU, only to find out later by checking your ping that it is, in fact, in Brazil.

How to tell if your RUST server has been blacklisted?

If a RUST server has been blacklisted, it will appear on the public manifest. We’ve included a link below. Search on the document for your server’s IP address to confirm whether or not it’s been blacklisted. If your server was added due to stalling, it should be automatically removed within 24 hours without any intervention; otherwise, you will need to open a ticket with Facepunch for further details and the next steps.

A note on players’ hardware choices

While deviating from the main topic, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention blacklisted devices that Facepunch has deemed off-limits while using their platform. Bloody / A4Tech branded mice are not allowed and are currently the only limited hardware. Check out the official Blacklisted Device link for the full scoop.

Final thoughts on the RUST Server Blacklist

Overall, Facepunch is very progressively motivated and driven to work with RUST server owners that make mistakes and happy to work with those that share their desire to expand the RUST community when they make mistakes. Hopefully, this guide can lend a hand towards cutting down on accidental mishaps that prevent players from connecting to their favorite servers and server owners from having to reach out for support desk help.

If there is a specific topic or subtopic in this article that you would like more elaboration or illumination on, please get in touch with us via our Discord, and we would be honored to expand on it. Be good to each other, always.

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About No Limit Llama

An aspiring woodworker and web designer. Father, husband, and Rust veteran. Llama has written op-eds and official game documents for over two decades. The earliest writings were on Asheron’s Call, followed by World of Warcraft and eventually Rust. The vast majority of his indoor time is spent running Rust servers or helping friends with their Rust-related projects. He enjoys working around the house, continuing his education when time permits, and creating new processes to simplify activities of daily living for his friends and family. He has an incredible wife, a dog, three children, and one granddaughter.

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