Minecraft is the most sold game, selling over 238,000,000 copies worldwide. And sure, there’s plenty to do in single-player mode, including standard survival, creative mode, and the story modes. However, once you play with other people, be that friends, family, or even strangers from different parts of the world with similar interests as yourself, you’ll realize there’s no coming back.
Here’s where top Minecraft server hosting comes into the picture. Indeed, you can go in a few directions, including a massive server, modded hosting, public vanilla hosting, or a small server to share with your friends. Either way, you’ll need a Minecraft server to host your game files and world data. In turn, you and other fellow players will be able to log in from anywhere and play together in real-time.
At HostAdvice, we’ve performed an independent study including thousands of user reviews, surveys, and tests to deliver you the best Minecraft server providers. In this article, you can learn more about the game itself, the best way to host a Minecraft server, and other exciting aspects of Minecraft hosting.
But if you are in a hurry, let’s jump straight into it. Here’s our selection of the best Minecraft server providers.
What Is Minecraft Hosting, and Who Is It For?
The multiplayer mode in Minecraft significantly enriches the gaming experience. It can help you develop teamwork skills and have more fun than you would by yourself. However, if you want to play in real-time with other players that can log in from anywhere, you need a Minecraft server.
A Minecraft server is a private network that anyone can create. If you create the network, you can set IP and username restrictions, control who can access the server, set commands and settings, such as the number of players allowed at the same time, rules, enabling PvP, and so on.
Still, you need hardware to run the server, and here’s where Minecraft hosting comes into play. This option entails you’ll rent server space and resources to get your Minecraft environment online. And if you don’t own a data center, this is essentially your only alternative.
Therefore, Minecraft hosting is a suitable alternative for anyone looking to create a Minecraft server and play with other people from around the globe. It’s a much more straightforward, functional, and easy-to-use solution than traditional web hosting because it comes with many game-specific features and modifications to enrich the gaming experience.
The Best Minecraft Hosting Services Of 2023 (Bought and Tested):
If you ask me, Hostinger offers the best all-around Minecraft experience. You’ll benefit from plans made especially for the game and sufficient resources that allow you to start small and scale your hosting to more powerful and capable options as your needs increase.
- Overall Score: 4.6
- Connection Parameters: 4.9
- Game Servers: 4.8
- Minecraft Features: 4.9
- Customer Support: 3.9
- Plans & Pricing: 4.6
Hostinger grants you full control over your game server with a VPS pre-configured for Minecraft hosting. It’s the best MC server hosting provider with variable pricing and international payment options.
Connection Parameters: Hostinger utilizes premium hardware to create fast and lag-free servers with terabytes of SSD storage and industry-standard Intel Xeon Processors.
Game Servers: You can select a server in the US, UK, Netherlands, Singapore, or Lithuania to ensure low latency and a good user experience. You can also change the location as you see fit.
Minecraft Features: Even the cheapest Hostinger VPS plan includes mod support, full root access, DDoS protection, PCI-DSS compliance, automatic off-site backups, 99.99% uptime guarantee, dedicated IPv4/IPv6 addresses, direct and easier access to your server files via FTP, plugin and mod automatic installers, and full file access to add third-party plugins and mods manually.
Customer Support: Hostinger offers self-managed VPS hosting plans, meaning they can only assist you with setting up the VPS and the Minecraft server. Otherwise, you’ll have to browse the knowledge base or Hostinger Tutorials to get answers.
Plans & Pricing: Hostinger offers multiple affordable VPS packages, starting at $6.95 per month for 2GB RAM and 2 vCPU hardware. You’ll benefit from an instant plan-changing option. And if you aren’t satisfied, they will refund your money as part of the 30-day money-back guarantee.
Pros & Cons
- User-friendly Game Panel for instant setup and easy server management
- Unlimited plugins and mods with 1-click installs (and from third-party sources)
- Multiple servers worldwide for ultra-low latency
- More expensive base level plans than competitors (still, pretty cheap for a VPS)
- No free domains included
Ranking comparison between the Top Providers
How Do We Rank and How You Should Choose Your Best Minecraft Hosting?
- Server Hardware9%
- Superior Connection Parameters9%
- Storage Type & Space5%
- Security Levels5%
- Scalability Options3%
- Game Servers Locations8%
- Dedicated IP Address3%
- Number Of Players Allowed5%
- Mods Allowed and Included5%
- Ease Of Use7%
- Minecraft-Specific Support8%
- User Reviews30%
The question is, how to choose good Minecraft server hosting for yourself? Fortunately, our HostAdvice professionals have done the work for you, taking off loads of time and effort from your shoulders.
Our experts at HostAdvice test independently and specifically for each category. First, we set the criteria for each category. See, what matters for one category might essentially be irrelevant for another. Also, not each factor is of equal importance. So, you’ll see an allocated percentage next to each criterion, depicting its relative importance and contribution to the perfect Minecraft server hosting.
Then, we take dozens of providers and test them against these pre-determined factors to separate the best from the rest. HostAdvice experts engage in real-life testing, measuring the company’s uptime, speed, ease of use, customer support, etc. Most importantly, our study is backed up by thousands of user reviews worldwide, giving an unbiased and objective perspective on the web host’s quality.
Here’s what you need to consider to ensure a smooth Minecraft hosting experience:
- Server Hardware (9%): Gaming environments require processing time to run, meaning you need to select a web host equipped with multiple, powerful processors. At this point, you must ensure to get the right kind of processor and enough RAM and bandwidth to handle Minecraft’s heavy hardware requirements and keep your multiplayer environment optimized. It would be best to go for something like an Intel Xeon or iSeries. Also, keep in mind that you’ll have to share these server resources with other users on the same server if you go for a shared hosting environment. In general, this harms the gaming experience. If, however, you buy a VPS or a dedicated server, you’ll get exclusive use of these assets.
- Superior Connection Parameters (9%): Server hardware is essentially the dealmaker or the dealbreaker regarding Minecraft hosting. Quality hardware delivers high performance, excellent uptime, and low latency/ping. The rule of thumb is that the more players you want on the server simultaneously, the more powerful server you need. However, you’ll also need to consider real-time performance and speeds, not just the hardware brand and the web host’s promises. There’s nothing more annoying than a connection drop in the middle of your game, right? That’s why you need a 99.99% uptime!
- Storage Type & Space (5%): Minecraft isn’t particularly a storage-heavy game, yet, you need sufficient storage to boost performance. HHDs are cheaper, but SSDs are faster. So, server hosts that offer SSD storage will typically give you the best possible outcome for your Minecraft server’s smoothness. Still, there are some differences you need to pay attention to. For instance, the Minecraft host might offer SSD-based server software (the OS and the webserver software) but store your data on regular storage. On the other hand, you might get a full SSD solution, delivering better performance.
- Security Levels (5%): DDoS attacks are the most common attacks against Minecraft servers. A reliable Minecraft service will always come with DDoS protection and other measures to protect you from potential threats during your game.
- Scalability Options (3%): Growing with your server is vital for good Minecraft server hosting. In the best-case scenario, you should be able to start with only a few players and add people without having to overpay for resources.
- Game Servers Locations (8%): Lag time/high latency is your number one enemy as a gamer. The rule of thumb is that the closer the server is to you, the less latency you’ll experience. If you are from Europe and play on a US server, you’ll be seeing a lot of lag. So, ensure that you pick a server near your location or those of players inside the server (ideally, in the same country to speed up the connection). The best MC server hosting providers will allow you to choose from multiple countries and continents.
- Dedicated IP Address (3%): A dedicated IP will allow players worldwide to connect directly to your server without passing through a central hosting or lobby. Also, it will protect your resources needed for gameplay from others; you’ll get “reserved” memory and bandwidth.
- Number Of Players Allowed (5%): Good Minecraft server hosting companies allow for over ten players simultaneously, and you shouldn’t accept anything below this number. You can even get unlimited players in some cases, which is essentially the best possible scenario.
- Mods Allowed and Included (5%): The best server hosting for modded Minecraft will allow for free mods and come with some of the most popular ones pre-installed. If not, you should be able to install them with a single click.
- Ease Of Use (7%): Dealing with a Minecraft server might require technical understanding and specialized knowledge. That’s why it’s critical to select a web hosting company with a straightforward setup process. This way, you would be able to sign up and start the game immediately. Consider a one-click setup or a wizard to guide you. Also, look for an intuitive control panel that enables you to customize your preferences, including multiple mods and plugins.
- Minecraft-Specific Support (8%): Web hosting companies that offer Minecraft-specific hosting plans offer additional support from such experts. These professionals know the game better than anyone; thus, they can help you with installation and setup. Opt for 24/7 assistance to always have someone to assist you in case of an outage, crash, or similar frustration. The best way to set your expectations straight is to test the customer service before spending your money on a plan.
- Pricing (3%): Sure, you’ll find many Minecraft server providers with lower rates than those recommended in our list. But don’t rush in and let pricing be your priority. Cheaper plans almost always offer sub-par services and may cut corners, harming your gaming experience. Instead, consider your budget and choose the best price to value ratio. Do you want to commit to the long term or not? Usually, this will get you better discounts, but it all comes down to your needs and preference.
- User Reviews (30%): Your final decision should always be made after considering customers’ experience worldwide. This way, you’ll assess the real picture of the web host’s performance and quality. However, make sure to trust a reliable third-party source and not just about anyone on the web. Beware of fake reviews and unreputable sources.
A Quick Recap of Minecraft
The Minecraft game has quite an exciting history, as Markus Notch Persson originally developed it in the Java programming language. Still, it was eventually acquired by Microsoft, alongside the developer Mojang, for $2.5 billion.
Minecraft can be seen as this virtual Lego type of game, where people can build pretty much anything they can imagine. While the single-player variant of this game can offer you endless hours of fun, it can eventually become stale; this is where the multiplayer option can truly bring a new dimension to your gameplay sessions.
Since it has this sandbox nature, you have many mods and variations built by the community itself that you can enjoy within a server. These include modes such as Pixelmon, Skyblock, Survival, Olympus, Parkour, KIT-PVP, Creative, Prison, or Towny.
All of these are coded as well, with most of them in the Java programming language, which correlates well with the java version of Minecraft. Of course, the Bedrock Edition of Minecraft is coded in C++ and can be a bit easier on resource usage. Nonetheless, you’ll need a beefy server to run all of this.
Either way, you’ll need to fulfill some minimum requirements to host anything Minecraft-related. That processing power will have to process each player’s interaction and the changes in the world itself. But more on this later.
How Does a Minecraft Server Work?
A Minecraft server is a CPU or specialized hardware which runs hosting software. This program is specialized in the Minecraft game and allows people to play together on the Internet. Users can connect to the server and begin playing when a program has already been established by following the directions of a provider, which is accomplished by inputting the server’s dedicated and unique IP address.
That is the basic notion of an online server, and it is all that most gamers would need to know. Nevertheless, as a hosting provider, there is more to be mindful of, particularly in terms of hosting performance.
For instance, if you don’t have enough resources and power, say you’re just utilizing a modest web hosting and have a bunch of Minecraft players, you’ll face a lot of latency, and your players will stop playing. But, if you have robust hosting but few gamers, you’re essentially wasting money.
Why Should You Run Your Own Minecraft Server?
Here are the benefits of having your own Minecraft server.
- Building A Community – People are social beings, and while spending time with friends may be a lot more fun, time does not always allow for it. Fortunately, the digital world eliminates distance, and Minecraft may be a terrific method for you to create a little community of your best friends. So to speak, your own planet within the globe.
- Freedom of Choice in Mods – It can be irritating if you’ve ever played and been annoyed because the version you’re on doesn’t have certain modifications enabled. These plugins may even be readily available but just out of reach. You have complete control over what you install by running your own Minecraft server with the best server hosting for modded Minecraft.
- Monetization – Hosting Minecraft may be somewhat costly in the long term, especially if you have many players. The cost of running servers will be enormous; however, Minecraft is also under Microsoft’s license, so it recognizes that fees must be addressed. As a result, Microsoft introduced some allowances, providing options for cost offset. In-game advertising, web storefronts, and other methods may be used to monetize your Minecraft servers.
- Your Own Rules – When hosting a big community, regulations are frequently designed to have a wide blanket impact for the advantage of the majority. If you operate your own Minecraft server, you simply need to think about the regulations that will apply to your little group. It will be entirely at your discretion and no one else’s.
- Admin Control – Toxic players are the most common issue you might encounter in online gaming. Hosting a server allows you to restrict, penalize, and even ban players who may cause havoc in your Minecraft world. Concerned parents can lock these servers to ensure that only their children’s pals play on them.
- 24/7 Access – Because we’re focused on the external web-hosted servers that aren’t on your computer, you may leave them operating at all times. After settling the server charges, the service providers handle maintenance and energy to guarantee that either you or your friends may use the server at any time.
- Teaching Tool – If you’re a teacher, you might be shocked to learn that Minecraft is a great teaching tool. Consider doing social experiments and educating youngsters on the importance of behavioral characteristics and decision making in a stimulating atmosphere that encourages them to construct and explore.
Minimum Minecraft Server Hosting Requirements
As you may be aware, hosting games may be challenging since they consume more resources than standard web apps. Fortunately, Minecraft isn’t a significant resource eater, so you can run the game using web servers that match some very minimal requirements. That being said, we’re talking about the most basic Minecraft settings – or “pure Vanilla,” as it’s known.
Let’s have a look at the specific needs for plain and best MC server hosting in figures:
- Minimum Requirements – 1GB RAM and 1 CPU Core
- Recommended Requirements – 2GB RAM and 2 CPU Core
Storage space needs are small compared to what is often provided by hosting companies; therefore, we’ve ignored it entirely. Just make sure your storage is SSD-based.
If you’re more serious about Minecraft, you’ll most likely be looking for hosting configurations that will enable you to play the experience in player groups of 50 or more. You may also want to explore alternative options, such as using custom modifications, which can boost the requirements even more.
A dedicated IP Address is also an important aspect; the one-of-a-kind number provided to the server enables gamers to connect to it directly without passing through a main hosting or lobby. It also guarantees that you have the resources you require for games and stops others from using all of the bandwidth or RAM.
In the event of a difficulty, good Minecraft server hosting companies provide round-the-clock customer care. Hosting outages or crashes may be inconvenient, and it’s always helpful to know that you can count on someone to assist you in getting back up and running quickly as possible.
Reasons To Go For A Specialized Minecraft Server Hosting Platform Instead Of Building By Yourself
Instead of developing your own Minecraft server, using a specialized Minecraft server hosting platform is preferable. Here are the reasons why it is better.
- Improved Performance – You don’t have to bother about other programs that are running on your gadget slowing down the gaming when you have a specialist server hosting. Furthermore, it will not affect your resource utilization. As a result, you will be able to play for an extended period.
- Better Uptime and Low Latency – Global data centers are available from specialized hosting companies. As a result, you host your server in a local data center for increased uptime and minimal latency. Many of them also offer server backups to protect your data if something goes wrong.
- Better Control – Having your game supported by a strong server provides you with more control over your gameplay. Minecraft’s creators have created a variety of modifications and software packages to improve the game’s look, tools and weaponry, monsters and avatars, and other features. You have complete control over all of the elements you wish to maintain in your gameplay and may alter it as you like.
- Better Security and Privacy – Many hosting companies provide you with just a control panel via which you can manage your server and limit who may access it. As a result, you will have more privacy and can play your game without interruption. You also receive comprehensive network protection to guard against internet assaults such as DDoS. As a result, you may utilize a secure system without putting your data in danger.
- Saving Device Resources – In their hosting package, they include high-performance CPUs and SSDs. This way, you won’t run out of device resources, which might influence gaming quality by dragging down your computer.
Minecraft Server Hosting Pros and Cons
Let’s look at some of the benefits and drawbacks of having your own Minecraft server.
- Increased Security and Privacy – Accessing public IPs may raise the danger of you data theft somehow. Managing the server yourself might offer clear advantages in terms of security.
- Installing As Many Modpacks As You Want – Changing is much more manageable. With a plethora of modpacks accessible in your own Minecraft server, who’s to say you can’t customize your experience to your liking?
- Potential To Generate Income – Successful Minecraft servers can begin to generate profit but keep in mind that this is generally arduous – not to forget the nerve-racking attempts to obtain attention.
- Full Control – You don’t have to be a perfectionist to enjoy this benefit, but hosting a Minecraft server enables you to stay in control – specifying limitations, permissions, delivering commands, establishing rules, etc.
- Hosting Issues – Hosting issues are one of the biggest reasons Minecraft servers fail — it may appear to be a pretty simple path on the surface, but it may surely have tough components. Consider switching hosting providers numerous times until you discover the best Minecraft hosting, all while dealing with a slew of unique challenges for each hosting business solely to keep your server running.
- Increased Costs – Hosting has a cost, and striving to acquire publicity to promote your Minecraft server is increasingly popular as a cost as well. It must be realized that simply maintaining the server may leave you significantly out of pocket in the long term. Fortunately, you can choose from the best cheap Minecraft server hosting and the best free Minecraft server hosting to stick to your budget.
- Patience to Find Time to Play – Dealing with the technical challenges that may arise while hosting a Minecraft server (or operating one yourself at home) and potentially advertising the server will all take some time. Perhaps to the point that you find it difficult to spare some time to play Minecraft.
How to use Minecraft Hosting as a Business?
Like every other game, Minecraft is a sort of entertainment, and there will always be a market for it. If you have a concept and the motivation to develop it, you can go in a few directions.
You must identify a server concept in a marketplace that is not saturated but rather intriguing. That doesn’t exclude you from running a standard one. If you have fantastic communities where people feel accepted and enjoy each other’s company, this might be a selling factor for your business.
However, operating a server and profiting from treasure or accessory crates isn’t the only option to make money.
Here are a few examples of how you may utilize Minecraft hosting for marketing purposes.
- Live Streaming – Twitch and YouTube have become incredibly popular for live broadcasting Minecraft games. It’s a fantastic method to showcase your servers and entice others to play on them! You might even conduct interviews with your server’s gamers or developers. If you want to expand your Twitch or YouTube channel, you may host a server where your audience can join and engage with you.
- In-Game Advertisements – Players that usually play on public servers may frequently see your advertisements while they are online. It’s an excellent method to pique their curiosity and keep them interested in your brand! You may hold contests or give discounts to gamers who come to your website or business. You may be attempting to sell something such as books or merchandise.
- Server Contests – These are an excellent method to interact with your server’s gamers while promoting it. One popular method is to create competitive mini-games with rewards for the winners or to give out keys to new ranks in return for tickets sold. People enjoy connecting and having goals to strive for, which is a beautiful approach to attract them.
Best Minecraft Hosting Services: Summary
As you have seen, running a Minecraft server is not too tricky. In reality, its beauty is that you have complete control over how complicated your Minecraft world will be.
The ultimate verdict is yours, whether it is a big server serving lots of players or a simple one for buddies to connect with. And money isn’t always an issue because there are several methods to potentially repay your expenses.
Finally, operating your personal Minecraft server is a labor of love – and something to think about for serious game lovers.