Create VMs

This topic outlines the process to start deploying virtual machines (VMs) for your game servers.

Using our service, you configure VMs to be automatically spun up globally as game servers according to your budget and demand. In order to do so, you do not explicitly create VMs but define parameters that determine how they get created on your behalf. This process is called deploying or creating a build for the VMs.

For general steps to deploy a build, see the section below. If you already have a build and want to update it, see Safe deployment using alias.


The builds that you deploy for VMs are not game server builds. This build defines when and how VMs are deployed. Game server builds run on servers, just like client builds run on clients. You upload the game server build as an asset or include it as part of a container image, so it runs on the VMs when it gets created.


Details about each available option are provided in Build definition and configuration.

  1. Select from a broad range of VMs distributed globally based on number of cores, storage space, and RAM. For more information about the VMs, see Multiplayer Servers details and price
  2. Select the OS for the VM—Windows or Linux. The way builds are deployed for Linux servers are similar to Windows servers with a few important differences. To learn more, see Using Windows and Linux servers.
  3. Upload your assets like the PlayFab Multiplayer Game Server Build. For more information on how to create this, see Author a game server build.
  4. Determine network settings—port number and protocol
  5. Set other parameters such as maximum number of servers and number of standby servers for the regions

Once you've provided a valid build definition, the build starts deploying. You will be automatically directed to the Server page. In 5-10 minutes, you will see standby machines for your build, as shown below.

Successful deployment of build with standby machines

Ways to deploy

There are two ways to deploy or create a build for the VMs.

  1. PlayFab portal—Game Manager
  2. Using PowerShell/API

To help you evaluate and develop using our servers, certain servers have limited free usage and capacity limits. For more information, see What comes with your basic PlayFab Core Services package?.

To start deploying a build using our samples, see Create your first server.


When you're not using the servers during development, remember to turn them off. Servers in all states, including standby, are counted against your free allotment. You can set standby servers to zero using Game Manager under Region settings. Alternatively, use the PowerShell/APImethod to set Regions.StandbyServer=0. You can also delete the build to ensure all servers are turned off in Game Manager.

See also