I'm planning on formatting my hard drive and deal with all the hassle that comes with it. My one concern is, where is the saved game file for DayZ? Will I be able to transfer it to my fresh new install of Windows, or will I have to start a new character?
To expand on OrigamiRobot:
The DayZ 'team' has what's called a 'Hive.' Think of this as a central database where everyone's character data is stored.. that is, your coordinates, your inventory, stats, everything.
The only thing that is local to you is your ARMA profile. For example: Player Name/Skin/Squad data.
You'll notice if you ever have joined a 'private' server that you have to start on the bean coast, this is because each private server has it's own local 'hive.'
Your dayz hive data is based on your CD-Key. If you were to buy Arma on a different steam account you could essentially have 2 DayZ characters.
Just wanted to update this entry with the new standalone finally coming out. I am having the same issue as the original poster and have been trying to find the answer, with everyone telling me that a character is linked server side with my game.
I would like to note that server characters are BS for standalone, at least as of 01/25/14. I reformatted my hard drive and installed DayZ Standalone and my character was wiped, even on the same server that I was playing on earlier that day. I had no troubles with character loss any time before reformatting and I logged out in the same way that I always did.
I just wanted to give this warning to anyone who needs to reformat their system or wants to install DayZ on a new device. Sorry to bump a 2 year old post but this was the only thing I could find that was related to my issue. Hopefully if someone comes across this post with the same issues as me this can help them, but unfortunately I cannot find where characters are saved.