How to run more than one Stream/Instance with/of OBS

If you want to stream to more than one location or do a high quality recording with different settings of your stream, you probably ran into the problem that OBS does not allow you to do this yet. Though it will be added in the future we can use a workaround at the moment to do it already. The video version of this guide can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_14KsWslxc 
and an older version here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_XFrr1-tVh4

You use either the installer or the zip download to install OBS two times into two different folders, for example:

  • Downloads\OBS-1\ and Downloads\OBS-2\

Now we need a shortcut for each of the installations, just create them on the desktop and name then according to the OBS installation number, so you can distinguish them. Both of the shortcuts now need to be edited to start OBS with the “-multi” and “-portable” option. Right-click them and open the properties like this:

Edit the target line and just add -multi or -portable or both. “Multi” allows us to run more than one instance of OBS, while “portable” sets OBS to use its install location to save all files. (Normally all settings of OBS get saved to the appdata folder of your user-profile) So the target field of each shortcut should look like this:

  • ….Downloads\OBS-1\obs.exe -multi -portable
  • ….Downloads\OBS-2\obs.exe -multi -portable

Its also ok if you have it like this, just make sure one space seperates each command:

  • “….Desktop\OBS-1\Obs.exe” -multi -portable
  • “….Desktop\OBS-2\Obs.exe” -multi -portable

Thats about it, you can now run both instances of OBS at the same time. Be aware you need a very powerful processor to do more than one encoding at a time. If you run into problems, lower the settings of each instance until you find the sweet-spot of your system.

Each instance will save their settings to its install location. You can also setup all scenes in OBS-1, copy the scenes.xconfig over and use the same scenes in both instances, if you change anything you have to copy again of course. Last but not least, one of the instances of course does not have to run in portable mode. If you already have a configured OBS installation running, you could use this just with the “-multi” option and setup a secondary one that uses portable settings.

Questions, ideas, annotations? Post below.

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