Minecraft Bedrock Edition – Ubuntu Dedicated Server Guide

Minecraft Bedrock Edition Logo
Minecraft: Bedrock Edition Logo

Minecraft Bedrock Edition is the version of Minecraft that powers the iPhone / Android versions (formerly Minecraft Pocket Edition), the Xbox / PlayStation / Nintendo Switch editions and the free Windows 10 Minecraft edition.

Mojang has released a dedicated server which is considered to be in alpha testing.  I have found it to be very stable and able to run on a wide variety of hardware.

This script and guide are written to help you get a robust Minecraft Bedrock dedicated server up and running in only a few minutes!

Features

  • Sets up fully operational Minecraft Bedrock edition server in a couple of minutes
  • Ubuntu / Debian distributions supported
  • Sets up Minecraft as a system service with option to autostart at boot
  • Automatic backups when server restarts
  • Updates automatically to the latest version when server is started
  • Easy control of server with start.sh, stop.sh and restart.sh scripts
  • Optional scheduled daily restart of server using cron

Requirements

Recommended Gear

Storage

I strongly recommend a Solid State drive (SSD) for your server. This is because Minecraft is constantly reading/storing chunks to the disk which makes I/O performance very important.

These are much cheaper than they used to be. Here’s a decent 120 GB one (higher options available) at a very low price:

Kingston A400 SSD 120GB SATA 3 2.5” Solid State Drive

If you have a M.2 NVME slot in your motherboard you can go with a high end drive. This will give your server maximum performance even if a large number of players are running around on the server changing blocks and triggering disk writes.

This is the one I have in my machine. These range from 250 GB to 2 TB depending on how big your server might grow:

Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2 NVME

If you have a normal SATA drive connection (no M.2) here is a good choice:

Samsung 860 EVO 2.5″ SATA SSD

Computer / CPU / Memory

Almost any PC made in the last few years will be a x86_64 bit computer. If you have an older computer around that isn’t being used then it will most likely have the right CPU and amount of memory to run a basic server.

Throwing a SSD in one of these older computers will provide an excellent server experience for small and larger player counts.

Cheap SBC Option

If you don’t have an old PC laying around or want something that is more portable and uses much less power than a PC consider the Intel Compute Stick. It’s a Intel X86_64 with 1 GB of RAM for around the same price as a Raspberry Pi.

Intel Compute Stick STCK1A8LFC

This image has an empty alt attribute
Intel Compute Stick

The Intel compute stick is just a little bit bigger than a USB flash drive and is powered by Micro USB. I developed this entire script and guide using one.

If you choose this option check out my guide for how to install Ubuntu Server 18.04 on the Intel Compute Stick

Mid Range Option

A very small and quiet 4 GB server. Just wipe Windows off it!

Mini PC, Intel Atom x5-Z8350 Processor 4GB

Higher End Option

This is the highest I would go before just buying a used PC from somewhere to use. The upside of this is you are covered by manufacturers warranty and are getting brand new up to date hardware.

HP EliteDesk 800 Mini

Getting Linux

I highly recommend using Ubuntu Server to run the Minecraft dedicated server. It is available here: https://ubuntu.com/download/server

At the time of writing the current version is Ubuntu Server 18.04.2. This is a secure and robust operating system and will leave plenty of resources available for the server to run.

The script should run on any Debian based flavor of Linux but since the Minecraft Bedrock server is compiled natively for Ubuntu I recommend sticking with it. If you have a GUI flavor of Ubuntu and a decent PC (>= 2 GB of RAM) the server will work just fine on it.

Download the image and write it to a USB drive. If you are on Windows Win32DiskImager is a easy to use program to do this. Now boot the computer from the USB drive and follow the installation instructions.

Make a note of the IP address during installation or alternatively log into your home router and see what IP address the machine was assigned. You’ll need this later to connect to the server from the Minecraft client.

Note: Users have reported in the comments that Ubuntu 16.x is no longer working with the latest official Mojang binaries. Ubuntu 18.04 is the minimum requirement for the latest versions!

Installation

Log into your Linux server either using SSH or a mouse and keyboard and paste/type the following command:

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/TheRemote/MinecraftBedrockServer/master/SetupMinecraft.sh
chmod +x SetupMinecraft.sh
./SetupMinecraft.sh 

The script will setup the Minecraft sever and ask you some questions on how to configure it. I’ll explain here what they mean.

“Start Minecraft server at startup automatically (y/n)?” – This will set the Minecraft service to start automatically when your server boots. This is a great option to set up a Minecraft server that is always available.

“Automatically restart and backup server at 4am daily (y/n)?” – This will add a cron job to the server that reboots the server every day at 4am. This is great because every time the server restarts it backs up the server and updates to the latest version. See the “Scheduled Daily Reboots” section below for information on how to customize the time or remove the reboot.

That is it for the setup script. The server will finish configuring and start!

First Run

The server will start up and start displaying output to the console.

[2019-03-30 20:25:12 INFO] Starting Server
[2019-03-30 20:25:12 INFO] Version 1.10.0.7
[2019-03-30 20:25:12 INFO] Level Name: Bedrock level
[2019-03-30 20:25:12 INFO] Game mode: 0 Survival
[2019-03-30 20:25:12 INFO] Difficulty: 1 EASY
[2019-03-30 20:25:20 INFO] IPv4 supported, port: 19132
[2019-03-30 20:25:20 INFO] IPv6 supported, port: 19133
[2019-03-30 20:25:23 INFO] Server started.

Once you see the “Server started” line you will be able to connect from the client.

To add the server to the client open Minecraft and click “Play”. Then at the top of the screen select the “Servers” tab and click “Add Server”.

This will ask you for a Server Name and Server IP Address. For the name you can put anything and for the server IP address put the address of your Linux server. Leave the port as the default 19132. For more information on how to let people from outside your network on go to the “Port Forwarding” section below.

Now choose the server you just added in the list and connect!

Start, Stop and Restart Server

The server can be started, stopped and restarted two different ways. You can use the provided scripts in the Minecraft folder or you can use systemctl. Here are the commands:

cd ~/minecraftbe
./start.sh
./stop.sh
./restart.sh

-OR-

sudo systemctl start minecraftbe
sudo systemctl stop minecraftbe
sudo systemctl restart minecraftbe

Automatic Backups

The server backs up each time it starts. This helps you recover easily if something goes wrong. This system works best if you configured the server to restart daily since it means you will have a backup every day.

To access these backups type:

cd ~/minecraftbe/backups
ls

When a backup is made the filename will be the date and time the backup was taken. If you need to restore a backup it’s very easy. Substitute the timestamp in my example to the backup you want to roll back to. Type:

cd ~/minecraftbe
./stop.sh
rm -rf worlds
tar -xf backups/2019.02.15.22.06.30.tar.gz
./start.sh

Your world has now been restored! It’s a good idea to download these backups off the server periodically just in case the server’s storage fails.

Scheduled Daily Reboots

The daily reboots are scheduled using cron. It’s very easy to customize the time your server restarts.

To change the time that the server restarts type: crontab -e

This will open a window that will ask you to select a text editor (I find nano to be the easiest) and will show the cronjobs scheduled on the server. The Minecraft one will look like the following:

0 4 * * * /home/ubuntu/minecraftbe/restart.sh
Crontab's syntax layout
Crontab’s syntax layout

There are 5 fields here. The default restart time is set to reboot at 0 minutes of the 4th hour of the day (4 AM). The other 3 fields are left as * to represent every day of every month. Make any desired changes here and press Ctrl+X to exit nano and update the cronjob.

To remove the daily reboot simply delete the line and save.

Reconfigure / Update Scripts

The scripts can always be reconfigured and updated by downloading the latest SetupMinecraft.sh and running the installer again. It will update all of the scripts in the Minecraft directory and reinstall the startup service for you.

Running SetupMinecraft.sh again will also give you a chance to reconfigure options such as the memory dedicated to the server, daily reboots, starting the server on boot, etc.

This will not overwrite your world or any other data so it is safe to run!

Port Forwarding

If everyone on your server is on the same LAN or WiFi network as you then you don’t need to do this. If you want people to connect from outside your local network then you need to set up port forwarding on your router.

The process for this is different for every router so the best thing to do is just look at your router and find the model # and put that in google with port forwarding for easy instructions on how to do it for your specific router.

You want to forward port 19132. The type of connection is both TCP and UDP. On some routers you need to do both a TCP entry and then a second entry as UDP.

Once you do this people will be able to connect to your Minecraft server through your public IP address. This is different than your local IP which is usually a 192.x.x.x or 10.x.x.x. If you don’t know what that is just go to google and type “what’s my ip” and Google will kindly tell you!

Wired vs. Wireless

Going with an ethernet (wired) connection is going to be faster and more reliable. There’s so much wireless traffic and other interference in the air that running your server on WiFi is not recommended.

Even if it is working great 99% of the time it can ruin your experience very quickly if the WiFi drops for a couple of seconds and you get blown up by a creeper!

All that being said, the server works fine on wireless. The script will work fine as is with a wireless connection.

Conclusion

The Minecraft Bedrock Edition dedicated server runs much better than previous third party servers in the past that were missing critical features. The performance is very good even on low end hardware. It has never been easier to set up a Minecraft Bedrock server.

If you have any feedback or suggestions let me know in the comment section. A lot of the changes and developments in this script and guide are directly from readers.

Have fun!

54 thoughts on “Minecraft Bedrock Edition – Ubuntu Dedicated Server Guide”

  1. Avatar for Jesus

    i run the ./SetupMinecraft.sh and the server does’nt start so i try with LD_LIBRARY_PATH=. ./bedrock_server and i get this (Sorry for my bad English)

    ./bedrock_server: /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/libm.so.6: version `GLIBC_2.27′ not found (required by ./bedrock_server)
    ./bedrock_server: /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/libstdc++.so.6: version `CXXABI_1.3.11′ not found (required by ./bedrock_server)
    ./bedrock_server: /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/libcrypto.so.1.1: version `OPENSSL_1_1_1′ not found (required by ./libCrypto.so)

    1. Avatar for jamesachambers

      It looks like you are missing some libraries. Can you check and see if your apt is installing packages? It looks like you are missing openssl for sure and it looks like maybe even some glibc libraries.

      The script should try to install these for you at the beginning. Can you check the log of the script and see if the apt-get line is failing for some reason? Perhaps there’s a broken package on your machine preventing the necessary dependencies from installing.

      -James

      1. Avatar for Moses

        HI

        Got same issue on Debian 9.

        Looking at the first line:
        ./bedrock_server: /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/libm.so.6: version `GLIBC_2.27′ not found (required by ./bedrock_server)

        Checking my version:
        ldd –version
        ldd (Debian GLIBC 2.24-11+deb9u4) 2.24

        Checking available:
        sudo apt-cache policy libc6
        libc6:
        Installed: 2.24-11+deb9u4
        Candidate: 2.24-11+deb9u4
        Version table:
        *** 2.24-11+deb9u4 500
        500 http://ftp.no.debian.org/debian/ stretch/main amd64 Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status
        2.24-11+deb9u1 500
        500 http://security-cdn.debian.org/debian-security/ stretch/updates/main amd64 Packages

        Upgrading glibc without support is beyond me 🙂 and from what i can google might break other stuff running so i guess i will have to upgrade to buster
        Maybe one could try an older version of bedrock server, but that will break compatibility with newer clients i guess?

  2. Avatar for LookedPath

    Thanks for the script, it helps a lot but I’m having a few problems:
    -First of all I can’t seem to be able to find the systemd scripts with any name, not with the server name that I gave to the script and not with simply minecraftbe as it says on this guide. I can always use the scripts but using systemd would be so much easier.
    -I can connect to the server and I was also able to play but when I log out and then I try to log in the game gets stuck in “Locating server” and the CPU of the server gets pinned to 100% and it’s no slouch. The only solution to log back in is to restart the server.

    Do you have any solution on any of these problems?

    1. Avatar for LookedPath

      Ok, I’m an idiot, I’ve found the service and I wasn’t using the correct name since the first letter of the name of the server was capital and I forgot about it.

  3. Avatar for Alfred

    Hi, pretty new to Linux (don’t know admin stuff, know a bit regarding operational and simple scripts) and just messing around trying to set this up. I am not able to connect to the server once it is running. I’m using a free EC2 from amazon… is there something i need to do locally to allow access via the default ports?

    Also I was checking the restart.sh I don’t see anything regarding any backup commands.

    1. Avatar for jamesachambers

      Hey Alfred, the backup commands are automatic and the backup code itself is in start.sh.

      For opening the port on EC2 I am honestly not sure, I haven’t delved into Amazon yet. Are you able to see the server console window by typing screen -r?

      1. Avatar for Alfred

        I’m pretty new to Amazon as well we use it at work but I don’t admin it. I will mess around with it and see if I can figure it out. And Yes I can see the console. BTW I think I locked myself out of my AWS instance as I was messing with the FW trying to figure it out so I just killed it and am starting over.

        Great job with this site BTW..

        I will check out the start.sh… I’m a newbie scripter so I like to peak and learn where I can.
        I wrote a few batch scripts for the windows server version to create daily\hourly backups. Seems to have ran into an issue with the save hold command since the last update, the server hangs. So now we only do a nightly backup and restart the server as well.

        1. Avatar for Alfred

          FYI I got my server to work, the issue I was that I was allowing TCP on port 19132, I changed it to UPD and then was able to connect. Hope this might help someone else.

          Custom UDP Rule
          UDP
          19132
          0.0.0.0/0
          Minecraft
          Custom UDP Rule
          UDP
          19132
          ::/0
          Minecraft

  4. Avatar for lucasblack29

    How do you stop the server from launching on startup? I’ve selected no when offered the option during installation yet it still does.

  5. Avatar for Rui

    This is the error i get when trying to start up…
    Tried the Start.sh
    LD_LIBRARY_PATH=. ./bedrock_server

    warning: TCG doesn’t support requested feature: CPUID.01H:ECX.vmx [bit 5]
    /lib64/ld-linux-x86-64.so.2: No such file or directory

  6. Avatar for Jeremy Foster

    I’m having a hard time figuring out how to op myself in my newly created server. I tried editing the ops.json, but it doesn’t seem to be taking effect. Any advice?

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