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I run windows 7. I run a Minecraft server, but I can only host around 9 players before lag appears.

I heard that Ubuntu can run a server with much better performance than Windows 7. I kind of like the whole idea of Ubuntu, but I don't want to change my OS to Unix or anything else.

Basically, my question is, does running a server (specifically and Minecraft server) run easier and faster on a Ubuntu server? On top of that, how would one set that up?

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Well, that depends on the complexity that you want. The answers here are for simpler servers. But if you need something that'll autostart at boot, etc... – Kaz Wolfe Dec 31 '13 at 17:01
up vote 9 down vote accepted

Ubuntu would be a superior choice for hosting a server based application, especially if you use the server edition of Ubuntu. There would be less resources diverted to unnecessary things, like the desktop interface. The downside is that it would be command line only. You can always still go with Ubuntu desktop if you need a desktop interface.

To setup a Minecraft server with ubuntu, do the following:

  1. Ensure that you have the necessary Java packages installed.

    sudo apt-get install openjdk-7-jre-headless
  2. After you install Java, download either Bukkit or vanilla Minecraft server. Bukkit allows you to install plugins for server customization.

    To get Bukkit (latest beta version as of post date):

    mkdir ~/minecraft && wget -O ~/minecraft/server.jar

    To get vanilla Minecraft Server:

    mkdir ~/minecraft && wget -O ~/minecraft/server.jar
  3. Then, all you have to do is run Minecraft using this command:

    cd ~/minecraft && java -Xmx1024M -Xms1024M -jar server.jar nogui

    You can increase the allowed RAM usage by modifying the "1024" number in both locations in the previous command. This will help performance if you can spare the extra RAM.

If you decide to use Ubuntu desktop, you can always get extra resources by stopping the desktop interface. To disable: sudo service lightdm stop, and to enable: sudo service lightdm start.

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Though not generally recommended, it's perfectly possible to install a GUI on Ubuntu Server, and this is no worse than using Ubuntu desktop for server purposes. – Eliah Kagan Jan 21 '13 at 2:54
Thank you a lot for the response, I am looking into this right now. – LeChosenOne Jan 22 '13 at 1:38

To start automatically, and download the latest beta:

mkdir ~/minecraft && cd ~/minecraft && wget -O ~/minecraft/server.jar && java -Xmx1024M -Xms1024M -jar server.jar
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