User Permissions and Internet Access Required by GMS2

This guide will give you the details of folders and web URLs GMS2 will need access to on your systems in order to function properly.

It's worth noting that currently there is no "Educational" version of GMS2, so all of this guide can be followed and your intended setup confirmed using the free trial license before you make any purchase.

Following the below steps should ensure that GMS2 is able to be installed, configure itself, access our internet facilities, and be used fully by your students.

Please be aware that as we do not have access to your personal setup, our Helpdesk team are often unable to determine issues such as why one machine or student in a classroom doesn't work when the others do, and we will not be able to offer any guidance on anything to do with your user permissions, proxy server settings, firewalls, or anti-virus. For all of these issues, please ask your IT dept or system admin to investigate.



Folder Access

There are two "system" folders GMS2 uses, the location you intend to install GMS2 to, plus a number of customisable temporary project build folders you can customise in Preferences within GMS2 after the initial installation is complete.

Students will need full read+write access to all of these locations, otherwise GMS2 may fail to start, may fail to license, or may not be able to build projects.

GMS2's own settings, the tools GMS2 uses to build your projects, and information on your devices lives in the following location:

  • On Windows, C:\ProgramData\GameMakerStudio2
  • On macOS, /Users/Shared/GameMakerStudio2/ (Macintosh HD > Users > Shared > GameMakerStudio2)

This is also where GMS2's log file lives ("ui.log"), so if you're having issues and need to contact us, please see this log file first, as it may help you determine the issue straight away. We will also very likely ask you to send us this file, so please attach it to your opening request.

Each user's own preferences and settings, plus information on the projects they have worked on lives here:

  • On Windows, %AppData%\GameMakerStudio2 (AKA C:\Users\[Windows username]\AppData\Roaming\GameMakerStudio2)
  • On macOS, ~/.config/GameMakerStudio2/ (Note that .config is hidden by default. You need to open Finder and then press Shift + Cmd + . to toggle showing hidden files and folders.)

Each GMS2 seat/license which uses the machine will create a separate user settings folder within the location above.



As well as allowing read/write access to the following locations, we would recommend adding these to your antivirus client's exclusions list, as the files will be changed frequently and both applications modifying and locking the files will often increase build times and even occasionally cause build failures.

GMS2's build locations default to

  • On Windows, Temp is %LocalAppData%\GameMakerStudio2 and your build cache is %AppData%\GameMakerStudio2\Cache
  • On macOS, the Temp folder path is determined by the user and a randomly-generated value, so we can't document this as part of this guide. You will need to open Preferences after GMS2 has been installed and get the location from there. The build cache folder is /Users/[macOS username]/.config/GameMakerStudio2/Cache

Each user's own project save locations default to:

  • On Windows, C:\Users\[Windows username]\Documents\GameMakerStudio2 (AKA My Documents > GameMakerStudio2)
  • On macOS, /Users/[macOS username]/GameMakerStudio2

Projects and build files can be stored on network drives, but be aware the extra latency involved in this will impact build times (potentially substantially) and may also cause issues for the folder watcher within GMS2, which monitors files for changes made outside of GMS2 itself, as the timestamps on files may be beyond the range the file watcher is set to tolerate. So you may see notifications that files have been modified and asking do you want to save/reload when you haven't actually made any such changes.

If you are receiving these file watcher dialogs and you cannot store files on the local machine, we would recommend relaxing the timings for the file watcher so it scans the folders less frequently. Do this by typing larger values in the box shown below (the laptop one is only relevant when you're running on battery power):

Please note that for this same inaccurate timestamps reason, when installed on Windows, GMS2 requires NTFS formatted drives for all save/load locations and will not run reliably if these locations are on FAT formatted hard drives.

We do not recommend using detachable USB drives for build folders, even if they are high-speed devices.



Installation is to be performed by an administrator account, as:

  • On Windows, GMS2's installer will detect if additional .NET and Visual C++ Runtime installations are required to be performed in order to have a working GMS2 install.
  • On macOS, GMS2's installer will detect if an additional Mono Framework installation is required to be performed in order to have a working GMS2 install.

You can choose the installation location on the machine (on Windows, as part of the installer; on Mac, by where you locate the .pkg file), however GMS2 does not support remote or portable drive installations or any form of thin-client systems.

Please note there is currently no distributed/automated installation facility. Installation, licensing, and runtime installation will have to be carried out at each machine. You can, however, download your runtimes once and then pass these around on your network - see this FAQ on how to download your runtimes as a .zip.



Internet Access

The installation of GMS2 is not complete until you have downloaded your runtime files, and in order to do this you will also have to successfully log in to our accounts server to complete a licensing request.


if you can, we would recommend you allow access to *

If you have to specify all addresses, you will need to allow access to:

If you use a proxy server, then please see our FAQ for this, as this may need to be configured before you will be able to license successfully.

GMS2 does also use a small handful of third-party websites in order to confirm if the machine has internet access. We would recommend that you allow at least one of these, as it helps GMS2 confirm if there is internet but that our server is offline, and it will avoid unnecessary licensing attempts during these situations.

GMS2's stated requirements are for an always-on internet connection, however in practice you can often run offline for periods of time. Be aware GMS2 will require internet access at least once every 28 days in order to avoid your license information expiring and without internet access you will not be able to update your license if you buy new products, download any new demos or tutorials, or access our Marketplace.

You will have full access to the manual when offline, as this comes as part of your GMS2 installation and does not require internet access - even if you choose the Preference to open the manual in your default browser rather than within GMS2.

An online copy of the manual can always be found at - note that the 2 is important, as omitting this will give you the legacy GameMaker Studio 1.4 manual, which will be out-of-date for your product.


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