Tutorial: Setting up your first Minecraft Server (on Windows 7)

I figure we will start with the very basics… how do we set up a new Minecraft server? Its actually not such a horrible process, the hardest part is finding step by step instructions, and that is what I hope to help you with today by providing some explanations as well as leveraging some of the good resources that are already out there. I find many of the existing YouTube videos or tutorials quite worthless. They either have someone speaking a mile a minute making it difficult and frustrating as f*ck to understand or they just assume you are already an expert on the small, but very crucial, details. Most guides only touch upon one or two of the 3 main pieces to the equation, leaving you (and me) quite confused.

If you are anything like me, you knew nothing about setting up a server, you got talked into playing the game, found a cool server, and thought… shit this is cool, I can probably do this on my own computer! Well, this IS infact something anyone can do, by performing a couple fairly simple tasks. Here is a breakdown…

1. Download the basic server files

2. Setup a static IP address

3. Setup port forwarding on your router…almost no one speaks to this, they only show you how they open the server folder and everything is magically posted to the internet like it was handed on a platter… (this is NOT the case in reality)

Downloading Server Files:

You have options here… you are welcome to download the basic minecraft server directly from the website, but personally I use a Bukkit server. The reason I like bukkit is because it comes with everything you need right out of the box, and many plugins are certified for use with it. So when you decide to start adding some of the shiny new bells and whistles to your server in the future, you will be able to do so with minimal effort. Here are basic instructions:

Vanilla: http://minecraft.gamepedia.com/Tutorials/Setting_up_a_server
ukkit: http://wiki.bukkit.org/Setting_up_a_server

McMyAdmin: http://www.mcmyadmin.com/ (great setup utility/manager and I believe its now free for personal use)

There are also Launchers like ATLauncher which makes setup a snap plus adds a ton of mods that are really fun to play, tutorial here: (Mind the guy burping into the microphone… really annoying, and makes me want to vomit on my keyboard)

ATLauncher Setup: http://www.atlauncher.com/downloads/

The installers themselves are very easy to follow, pick your settings (Survival/Creative/Adventure/World Type/Max Players/etc.) as you see fit. The only thing that might stop you is the ip address section. To find your ip, just go to the website WhatsMyIP.org, this will give you your IP at the top of the page…

Setting up a Static IP Address:

It is quite necessary to set up a static IP address, that way you can forward this out to the ‘interwebs’ consistently. Setting up a static IP is somewhat easier than expected, there are a lot of tools out there to help simplify this process for you. Portforward.com is a great resource for anything IP address related, they have great tutorials and tools to get you going in the right direction.

The first thing you want to do is download the free tool on the site called Portforward Setup Static IP Address. Once installed you literally just click the ‘Make It Static’ button and it does all the work for you. I just kept everything at defaults similar to the way they have it on the tutorial on their site.

Setting up Port Forwarding:

First thing we need to do is open up the port we want to forward. In order to do this there are a lot of very helpful guides out there. This one will get the job done [How to Open a Windows 7 Port for Dummies]. One thing to keep in mind is that you can’t just type in any port, you want to use the port 25565 this is specific to the minecraft server.

Again, you will want to use Portforward.com as your primary source for port forwarding information. Start right from Portforward.com on the left hand side of the page they tell you to choose your router to begin the process. I did this all on my own without buying any of their tools, I’m sure they are helpful but the process is easy enough that it is a waste of time in my opinion. When on the home page:

  • Choose your router brand and model (you can usually find this information on a little sticker on the back or bottom of your router)
  • Once you have been directed to the proper page, it gives you a list of all the applications you could possibly want to port forward with. In this case we will obviously be clicking on ‘Minecraft’
  • From there, you will be on a step by step tutorial of how to setup up port forwarding dependant on your router, I’d go into detail here, but it is unlikely that I have the same router as you…

That is it! The next step is to open up your minecraft client, click ‘Multiplayer’, ‘Add Server’, type in any name you want at the top, and then your host, which will be your IP address (from whatsmyip.org) followed by the host port which will always be… 25565.

It will look something like this:


Now give out your address to your friends, and have at it. More to come about all the little knicknacks you can add to it…


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