Minecraft servers allow players to play online with other people. They may either be run on a hosted Minecraft server service, a dedicated server, a Virtual Private Server or a home machine. If you are looking for a comprehensive list of servers, please check out our server list page.
Please check out the Server list page for a list of existing servers. These servers will provide you an idea of what makes a server good.
Setting up a server takes some time, and some technical know-how. Don't try to set up a server unless you have some basic computer and networking knowledge. Your best bet is to look on the internet for a guide on how to set up a server. Hosting and playing on the same machine does not matter, unless you have a slow computer. Netbooks and Notebooks don't usually make for good server machines. They typically have lower end hardware in comparison to desktops and dedicated server machines. Hosting a server with many players in a wireless network (WLAN and especially WWAN) is not recommended. Use wired network instead. If you decide you don't want to host, but still want to play online, check out the public server options in the Minecraft servers area of the Minecraft forum. If you still want to manage a server, but not from home, check out the Minecraft server hosting area of the Minecraft forum. Expect to pay monthly for this type of server.
The more memory that your computer has, the better. It is recommended to have more than 4 GB. That way, plenty of RAM is left over for the operating system, and you have the possibility of allocating more to the Minecraft server. Minecraft servers, as of 1.1.0, can use multiple cores, so now they will not sit idle. You can use http://CanIHostAMinecraftServer.com to get a rough idea how many players you can host. Here is a simple recommendation to help you get started and/or help decide which hosting option is best for you: Running inside windows (Non-Dedicated):
- 2.8Ghz Dual-Core, 3GB RAM (XP) / 4+GB (Vista/7), A High-Speed internet connection (10MBp/s)
- Running on a *nix Based Server OS (Dedicated):
- 2.2Ghz Single-Core, 2GB RAM, A High-Speed internet connection (10MBp/s)
The requirements for Windows can be dropped slightly if you are NOT going to be playing Minecraft on that machine!