Minecraft Bedrock Edition – Ubuntu Dedicated Server Guide

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

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 originally.

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 20.04.1. 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, and 20.04 is recommended!

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

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!

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

  1. I’ve been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this web site. Thanks , I抣l try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your web site?

  2. I’ve been using your script for quite some time and it’s great, but now I’m wanting to move to using docker. I’ve been trying to get more and more efficient with my homelab over the last couple of years and I’ve recently migrated most things to a couple of minimalistic, low power, and low cost servers. I’m a beginner with docker and maybe there’s an obvious solution, but do you know of a way to “dockerize” this setup? I’m currently testing with https://hub.docker.com/r/itzg/minecraft-bedrock-server and it’s pretty simple to set up, but It would be nice to have scripts that mimic what your current scripts do. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    BTW, this thread deserves a donate button imo 🙂

  3. Hi, this tutorial is amazing. I have been running a bedrock server for all of my friends to play on for close to a month now, and we’ve enjoyed it. The thing is, I have installed it onto a hard drive, but I feel an SSD would improve the performance (we have noticed many performance issues, especially with 5+ players concurrently.) I’m not to well versed with Linux, so I was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction on how to move the server to an SSD.

  4. Hi sorry if this is a duplicate – I posted but then didn’t see it show up. Thank you for the guide. I followed the steps and the server appears to be up and running with no errors, but when I try to connect using MC on iOS (iPhone) I get the following error “Unable to connect to world.” Any help would be appreciated and thanks again for your help!

  5. James – Thanks for the page and scripts! I spent the evening spinning up ubuntu and spigot with the intent to get a minecraft server up for my daughter and her neighborhood friends to play together. Only to discover that their iOS apps don’t work with java servers. Was wandering around trying to figure out how to get a bedrock server up, when I finally found your site.

    Next step is to figure out their usernames so I can build a whitelist.

    Cheers

    1. Hey Greg,

      I’m super happy that it was able to help! I believe it shows their usernames in the server console when they connect (screen -r or sudo screen -r to see the console) so that may help. Thanks for the kind words!

  6. So I goofed, I had this installed on my user account in Ubuntu, but when I did an upgrade for Bedrock I did a SUDO SU and then ran the SetupMinecraft.sh script so now I have two version running. One on Root and other which I want to keep is on my user account minecraft.
    How do I uninstall/remove just the root installed one, with out damaging the one on my user acct?

  7. Maybe this will help some other minecraft dad: If you are just trying to use James’ SetupMinecraft.sh script to update to the lastest version of the server, make sure you stop the server first.

  8. I ran into the same problem with the auto updater not working. I ran SetupMinecraft.sh again, but I must have screwed something up because my world is gone. I tried restoring a backup of the world that was made earlier today from the previous minecraft version, but it doesn’t seem to work. Each time I try to restore the backup, Minecraft appears to be generating a new world. Do you know if backups are only compatible with like versions? Anyways, somewhat devastated by my own stupidity. As Steve would say, oof.

    1. I ran into a similar issue today. Yesterday my server was fine (working for days already on version 1.16.100.4). Today, not so much. Minecraft generated a new world when I launched the game. I had noticed that bedrock_server was actually running even though when I try to stop the server it shows it is not running. If I join the world, do something, save it, and exit, I was good to go. However my old world was not working. What I eventually did was to backup the entire folder of minecraftbe, delete it, remove the servername.service from /etc/systemd/system and start from scratch using the same server name I had before. Once it launched, I verified it was working and that I could connect. I stopped the bedrock server. I restored the worlds folder from the backup. I then modified the server.properties to match the few customizations I had before but I did notice that server-authoritative-movement was different than it was before. It was set to true in my backup but that didn’t seem to be a valid option now based on the description so I left it set to server-auth. Then I started the bedrock server, connected, and my world was back. We will see what happened tonight…

      1. Thanks for the response! I should mention that in my case the problem was rather simple and occurred because I was too impatient and didn’t read everything in the terminal after running the setup script. What I should have done was enter the same directory name as my original directory (the directory that lives inside of the “minecraftbe” directory), whereas I accidentally entered a new name and therefore created a second install of Minecraftbds. Once I ran the setup script again and entered the original directory name when prompted, the version updated on the original minecraft install and it automatically used my same world data without the need to restore the backup.

  9. hey, any idea why this might be happening?

    Checking for the latest version of Minecraft Bedrock server …
    Unable to connect to update website (internet connection may be down). Skipping update …

    i’m able to download and do regular linux updates and i’m even able to download your file

    1. Hey James,

      Thank you for reporting this problem. It looks like when you use the –spider param on wget the site returns a 503 error. I’ve made a change to start.sh and uploaded it to GitHub to fix this.

      Can you give the new version a try?

      1. The change to the wget worked. I had found that yesterday with the 503 error and was going to comment but I see someone reported that and you already fixed it. Thank you.

  10. Hello, I ran the script and now it shows

    IPv4 supported, port: 19132
    IPv6 supported, port: 19133
    IPv4 supported, port: 60860
    IPv6 supported, port: 38740

    and I cannot connect to it on my Bedrock Minecraft on Windows 10. I am using Ubuntu 20.04 LTS for the server.

    1. Should have to click add server and enter the IP address of the Ubuntu server. Mine found it right away running on Windows 10 & Xbox. When I go to reconnect later it shows up as friends play and list the server there.

  11. How come I was never given the option where I wanted to install the software? My OS drive is very small and I have a dedicated SSD drive that I was going to use.

    1. How do I pull up the terminal or console to type command settings. Like setting my xbox user as owner and enabling the different options? Also is there a GUI available?

      1. Hey TINK,

        You can pull up the server console with sudo screen -r. You can set most of these settings from the console, but there are a couple that are in the server.properties text file (you can edit this with cd ~/minecraft (or your server name) then doing nano server.properties to open it with a simple text editor.

        Here’s a pretty good overview article that answers most of your questions like setting it up for the different platforms, etc here and talks about the different pieces of the server configuration:

        https://minecraft.gamepedia.com/Bedrock_Dedicated_Server

        1. How can I host 2 worlds? I backed up my world off the xbox and reran your install script and edited the file with different ports from world 1 and gave the server a new name the paste my world in the world folder. Will it still run world 1 and now 2 doing that at restarts? I then manually went in to the 2nd world folder and ran the start script manually from terminal.

          Most of the help I find is for Java only or Windows 10 BE.

  12. I ran it and all seems good until the end when it is supposed to start the Server. It does not start. What am I missing?

    1. Hey Ben,

      Try a sudo screen -r to see if you have a console available. If not, go into the minecraft folder on your Pi and there is a log file called debug_log.txt you can open and that should tell us what is happening.

      If you want to post the output here I can definitely take a look here and see what is going wrong!

  13. hanno haßelkuß

    This works locally but i can not connect via WAN to my server …. Portforwarded 1932 but nothing …… Seems to be a MS issue

  14. I copied my world into the right folder, and it’s loaded. The problem is that the inventory and location are cleared. So I think all the playerdata gets wiped somehow. Any tips on fixing this?

    Thanks a lot 😉

  15. Hi Folks,

    Anyone know how I can move a world from one server to another? I had a hardware failure on the machine I was using to host the server and want to move it to a more reliable machine. I have a full copy of the directory from the original machine, and I’ve tried copying the entire folder, the contents of the folder etc, but nothing seems to allow me to use the old world.

    Any help appreciated

  16. Hi. great script. thx. How can I change the server.properties file? I have changed the game mode in the file but it is not taking effect. Can you help? thx

      1. James thank you for your prompt reply. I did not even think about the bedrock settings using different parameters. I running the server on azure, and have edited with nano the settings in the server.properties file and restarted the server. It still does not work, despite the server indicating it is in Creative mode!. In addition I can access the server from Ipad but, strangely NOT from PC, but that is another problem we will address later. thx again for getting back to me.

  17. I used the script and everything seems to be installed and running except that I cannot connect to the world. After trying to connect it says “Unable to connect to world.”

    When I ping 19132 and 19133 the TCP connection fails. From the research that I have done the Bedrock server doesn’t use TCP. So, I am guessing that this isn’t it. This is on the local network so I know it is not an issue with port forwarding.

    What else could it be?

    1. Okay. It turns out that a world cannot be generated from an iPad. When I connected from Windows 10 everything worked perfectly and it generated the world. And now I can connect from my iPad.

      Now I am trying to figure out how to show coordinates. This apparently requires the Minecraft server console, which if I am following right is the mcrcon. Was this installed by your script? If so, where?

      1. The way I enabled coordinates was I opped myself. Type “screen -r (server name)”. Then “op (username)” Then I went into Minecraft and typed the command “/gamerule show_coordinates” or something like that.

Leave a Reply to Daniel Cancel Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Type here..

Exit mobile version