Minecraft is an incredible, fun, and engaging game that millions of people play all across the globe. It is played by kids and adults alike. Online servers make it easier for friends to get together and play Minecraft with each other, they also make it possible for gamers to meet new people and play with stranger Minecrafters!
There are already thousands of fantastic Minecraft servers that can be easily accessed if you have the Minecraft game, however you may want your own unique Minecraft server for you and your friends to play on. Or maybe you want to be the next big Minecraft server host and create a massive world of your own where you can invite many people to play. You may even want to host the next 2B2T.
It’s very important before committing to making a Minecraft server that you understand what reasons you have for doing so, and what specifications you need to meet to make one and safely (and also reliably) host players. Servers, depending on the number of players active at any given time, can take a lot of computing power, and they can demand a lot of memory from the host device. For example, the amount of Random Access Memory, or RAM you’ll need varies.
In this blog post, we’ll give you the ultimate guide to discovering how much RAM you’ll need for your Minecraft server, and a few other titbits to get you up and running with your own virtual world which your friends and even strangers can play together on!
What is a Minecraft server?
In tech, a server is typically a large, powerful computer that takes up a cupboard or often an entire room and connects to a network, allowing many people to communicate with it and pass requests through it. We depend on servers for our internet, online gaming, and many more purposes. You’re connecting to a server every day.
In fact, you’re definitely connected to a server to be reading this!
On Minecraft, servers are a brilliant and outstanding way to connect with other players and to host a Minecraft world that can be accessed by multiple people at once from multiple devices.
There are literally thousands of notable Minecraft servers, and hundreds of highly popular ones, so if you’re simply looking to play a few fun minigames without the hassle of setting up your server or building the games yourself in an MC world, then forget about creating a server and just browse for an already existing one.
However, if you want to be the ruler of your own server, create your own world and allow people to play on it - whether that be your friends, family, or just totally random people looking to have fun on a Minecraft world - then a server might be a good idea for you.
Also don’t forget to take into account how much a Minecraft server will cost?
Although many of the largest and highest demanding servers are run on, well, actual servers (ie. entire cabinets filled with computers) most small servers can be hosted on a single device. If you have a spare laptop you can dedicate to running a server, that's fantastic and it’ll do just fine if it has reasonable processing power and memory!
Should you set up a Minecraft server?
Setting up and running your own Minecraft server can typically be quite expensive and time-consuming. That’s why so many Minecraft players opt for Microsoft’s Realm feature, which allows players to create a multiplayer world with up to ten wireless players on devices anywhere in the world, and play together. Realms are cost-effective, ridiculously easy, simple, and straightforward to set up, and won’t be a pain to you.
However, if you want more than ten players, or want to modify the world, edit its settings and generally just customize it to your liking, only a server will cater to that desire and provide the compatible functionality needed to do just that.
If you’re looking for a sense of community and want to create a large world where many players can create societies and clans, fight against each other, build, explore and do so much more, a server is also perfect for that, too. Servers can accommodate a huge number of players if you have a fast-enough computer, enough processing power, and a lot of memory to hold the player’s data.
Servers also allow you to modify, or “mod”, them. This means you can add special effects to the game, add in a variety of extra features that are not included by the game devs. For example, there are mods that add shaders to the game that make it much more beautiful and appealing to play, while others add new kinds of “mobs” into the game, and others add new storylines and game modes into the game.
So, if you’re looking for a world where many people can play together and you can modify it with new features, then you’ll need a server. Doing this on a Minecraft Realm doesn’t work because they don’t make it possible for you to change the world settings or add modifications to it.
How much RAM do I need for a Minecraft server?
Most small Minecraft servers can actually be run on an average modern computer with enough processing power and memory. Like we mentioned before, if you have a spare computer or laptop that you can run the world on, then that’ll do.
However, the amount of Random Access Memory (RAM) you’ll actually know can change a huge amount because it really depends on how demanding your world is and much memory your server will be utilizing for the players.
For example, if you have a lot of modifications and extra features, then that could easily increase the amount of RAM you’ll need to efficiently run the server without having any lag or unexpected crashes!
Generally, the more players you have, the more RAM you’ll need to run a server effectively. A good standard to go by for the typical vanilla world with players who actively participate in the game and use an average amount of memory, a gigabyte of RAM for every 20 users is reasonable.
This size of RAM allows for the game to be played with minimal lag, and without the game crashing out of nowhere. It also means that any sudden increases in demand for memory usage can be dealt with because there’ll be a margin of RAM to spare!
As newly developed versions of the game become increasingly complex, you’re going to need a lot more RAM. For example, any versions newer than about release 1.6 are going to need a lot more than a gigabyte for every twenty players; in fact, you should look into setting aside two or three gigabytes of RAM for every twenty players, especially if you want to play the world with the latest features or on the 1.8 version - or higher.
When you’re running your server, it is of the utmost priority to keep your eye on how much computing power (CPU) and Random-Access Memory the server is using. This is because if it is consistently using a hundred percent of your RAM, you absolutely must update to a newer device, allow greater CPU and RAM usage, or upgrade your device with extra RAM fittings.
We can’t stress enough how important it is that you use a powerful device for your server and to ensure you have a backup amount of RAM so that the server is never overloaded.
Sometimes crashes can happen that accidentally won’t save people’s work, and that’s terrible. If you’re running out of memory or computing power, the server may also kick players off randomly to make space or downright stop working, which can significantly damage you’re playing experience.
So, if you’re planning to set up and run a Minecraft server, use a good device with enough CPU and RAM. Otherwise, set up a Minecraft Realm instead. You’re likely to save quite a bit of money and time and won’t damage your device forcing it to perform tasks that are beyond its capability!
Okay, we hope this article helped you understand a few of the major reasons why it’s so important to reserve a decent amount of RAM for your Minecraft server. As well as telling you what a Minecraft server is and how it works, we have given you a few solid reasons for setting one up, and some arguments for why you shouldn’t - especially if a Minecraft Realm would be effective for you!
We also talked about how much Random-Access Memory, or RAM you’ll need to run a Minecraft server effectively, and what to do if you don’t think you have enough to host your desired number of players and game modifications.
Let us know in the comments below your thoughts and don’t forget to share this among your friends.