UniFi – Run the controller as a Windows service

Readers will learn how to run the Ubiquiti UniFi controller software as a Windows service.

Windows services are often useful since they are “background” applications which don’t require any attention on the part of the end-user. In this way, the service will launch upon startup, without any intervention on the part of the user.



1. Close any instances of the UniFi software on the computer. If the UniFi Network Controller was just installed, make sure to open the controller software manually at least once, or let it run at the end of the wizard. Once you see the message UniFi Controller (a.b.c) started, the controller may be closed.

2. Launch the Command Prompt as an Administrator. On Windows 10 this would entail right-clicking and selecting “Run as administrator”. Please see Windows documentation to identify the appropriate method for your specific Windows version.

3. Change directory to the location of UniFi in the computer using the following command (exactly as it is here, no need to substitute anything):

cd "%UserProfile%\Ubiquiti UniFi\"

4. Once in the root of the UniFi folder, issue the following command to install the UniFi Network Controller service:

java -jar lib\ace.jar installsvc

5. Once you’re at a new command prompt line, after it says “Complete Installation…”, issue the following:

java -jar lib\ace.jar startsvc

6. Close the command prompt window either by entering the exit command, or clicking the X.

7. To access the UniFi Network Controller now open a browser and go to https://localhost:8443. Alternatively, the desired interface IP, or FQDN that is mapped to that host (in place of “localhost”) may be used.