Server.properties

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The settings for a Minecraft server are saved in the file server.properties. This file is normally located in the same directory as the server (minecraft_server.jar) and can be edited by the operator (Admin) with a normal text editor (e.g. Notepad) or via the Web interface. After settings are changed, the file must be saved and the server restarted.

Default configuration

This is the default configuration that will be generated the first time the server is started (if it does not already exist).

#Minecraft server properties
#(Time of last detected file change)
generator-settings=
op-permission-level=4
allow-nether=true
resource-pack-hash=
level-name=world
enable-query=false
allow-flight=false
announce-player-achievements=true
server-port=25565
max-world-size=29999984
level-type=DEFAULT
enable-rcon=false
level-seed=
force-gamemode=false
server-ip=
network-compression-threshold=256
max-build-height=256
spawn-npcs=true
white-list=false
spawn-animals=true
snooper-enabled=true
online-mode=true
resource-pack=
pvp=true
difficulty=1
enable-command-block=false
gamemode=0
player-idle-timeout=0
max-players=20
max-tick-time=60000
spawn-monsters=true
generate-structures=true
view-distance=10
motd=A Minecraft Server


Table of settings

Name Default value Description
allow-flight false Allows players to fly in survival mode.
false - Flying is not allowed (players who are in the air for more than 5 seconds are kicked by the server).
true - Flying is allowed and can be used when mods are installed.
allow-nether true Allows travel to the Nether.
false - Nether portals are disabled.
true - It is possible to travel through portals to the Nether.
announce-player-achievements true If a player gets an achievement, the other players receive a message.
false - No public achievement messages.
true - Achievement messages are published via the chat.
difficulty 1 Defines the difficulty level on the server
0 - Peaceful
1 - Easy
2 - Normal
3 - Hard
enable-rcon false Enables remote access for the server console (rcon = remote control ). The protocol is explained here: http://wiki.vg/Rcon.
enable-command-block false Enables / disables the command block.
true - Command blocks are enabled.
false - Command blocks are disabled.
force-gamemode false Determines in which game mode the players join the server.
false - Players will be in the same game mode that they left the server with.
true - Players will always be in the default game mode, which is set with the option 'gamemode' .
gamemode 0 Defines the game mode that players will receive the first time they visit the server.
0 - Survival mode
1 - Creative mode
2 - Adventure mode
3 - Spectator mode
generate-structures true Defines whether buildings (such as villages) are generated.
false - Buildings are not generated in new chunks.
true - Buildings are generated in new chunks.
generator-settings empty Defines the settings for the generation of flatland and adapted worlds. Examples are given there.
hardcore false Must be entered 'manually' into server.properties for hardcore mode to be activated, hardcore players are permanently banned from the server as soon as they die. The activation or non-activation of the hardcore mode is entered into the world data during the generation of the world. After this, it is no longer possible to change this setting.
level-name world The name of the world and the folder where it is saved.
level-seed empty Sets the seed used for generating the world.
level-type DEFAULT Determines the world type. ATTENTION! After changing this option, a new server world should be started. If the world is maintained, undesirable cuts occur in the landscape, at every place where new chunks are generated.
'DEFAULT' - Normal world with hills, valleys, villages, etc.
'FLAT' - A completely flat world. The structure of the planes can be set individually via the generator-settings option.
'LARGEBIOMES' - Similar to the standard world, only with extremely large biomes.
'AMPLIFIED' - Similar to the standard world, only with extreme differences in height and jagged mountains up to altitude 256. The distribution of the biomes remains the same.
'CUSTOMIZED' - An individually designed world whose structure is defined by the 'generator-settings' option.
max-build-height 256 The maximum height that can be built up to. The global generator does not pay attention to this altitude.


max-tick-time 60000 The game is tick-based, i. With each tick, actions are executed in the world, even if the player does not move. A tick usually takes place every 50 milliseconds. If the server is overloaded, the ticks are less frequent, e.g. With huge animal populations or gigantic number of dropped items due to extensive TNT explosions. Then the monsters and other objects will move so slowly that you can not play anymore. With this parameter, you can set the server to stop itself when a tick exceeds a certain value (default = 60 seconds). The message is "A single server tick took 60.00 seconds (should be max 0.05); Considering it to be crashed, server will forcibly shutdown."
'- 1' deactivates self-monitoring.
max-world-size 29999984 Maximum radius of the world barrier. By default, it is a chunk (16 blocks) below the maximum world size of ± 30,000,000 blocks, a larger value is ignored. The maximum radius determines how far the world barrier can be changed with the /worldborder command in game. Attention: the command changes the diameter, the maximum radius is given here.
motd A Minecraft Server A text that is displayed in the server list under the name of the server (motd = Message of the Day ).
  • The motd supports chat formatting codes that correspond to the colors and formatting options that can be used with JSON texts.
  • A long motd is displayed over a maximum of two lines. All other characters are truncated.
  • A line break can be performed with the code \u000A</ code>.
network-compression-threshold 256 Clients and the server are constantly exchanging data packets: The server informs the client what the world looks like and where all players and creatures are located, and the client presents this as an image. In turn, the client informs the server Of all the player's actions so that the server can update the world accordingly. These data packets can run uncompressed or compressed through the network connection. The setting network-compression-threshold specifies the size in bytes from which the transmitted data packets are compressed. A low number means more compression and thus smaller packets. However, if the setting is too low, the compressed packets may be even larger than the original ones (for example, if you compress a 64-byte text file with zip, the result is 131 bytes.)
  • -1 means no compression at all
  • 0 means compression regardless of packet size
  • Larger numbers indicate the size at which packets are compressed

Wikipedia (translated from German): Ethernet specification requires packets less than 64 bytes to be filled to 64 bytes. For this reason, it makes no sense to enter a value less than 64. It is also not recommended to exceed the maximum transmission unit (maximum transportable packet size, MTU) of normally 1500 bytes.

online-mode true If this option is enabled, the server compares each player that wants to connect to the Mojang database. This option should only be set to false if the server is not connected to the Internet, and there is no white list (see white-list option). The option online-mode is for security because it checks whether the player has a valid account. Fake accounts are thus revealed. Server whose online-mode is on false are called "cracked" servers.

However, if the services of Mojang are offline or otherwise unavailable (see For the status of Mojang servers), no player can join the game server if the option is true.

'True' - Enabled. The server assumes that an Internet connection exists and compares each connected player with the Mojang database.
'False' - Disabled. The server does not compare connected players to the database.
op-permission-level 4 Sets the default permission level for players made operator with the /op command. Afterwards an individual adjustment of the level for individual players is possible via the file "ops.json".
'1' operators with level 1 can make changes in the otherwise protected spawn range.
'2' Level 2 operators can edit command blocks and execute all cheat commands other than Level 3 and 4.
'3' - Operators with level 3 can execute server commands (command /kick, command /ban etc.) and assign further operators (command /op).
'4' operators with level 4 can stop the server with the /stop command.
player-idle-timeout 0 If the value is not 0, inactive players are kicked by the server after the specified time in minutes. The time is reset for a player when he triggers an action in the game, moves, invokes a menu, or writes to the chat. In detail, the following signals reset the inactive time:
* 3 (0x3) Chat
* 7 (0x7) UseEntity
* 14 (0xe) BlockDig
* 15 (0xf) Place
* 16 (0x10) BlockItemSwitch
* 18 (0x12) ArmAnimation
* 19 (0x13) EntityAction
* 102 (0x66) WindowClick
* 108 (0x6c) ButtonClick
* 130 (0x82) UpdateSign
* 205 (0xcd) ClientCommand
pvp true Enables PvP ( 'Player versus Player' ) on the server. In PvP mode, players can directly inflict damage to others. Without PvP, they can only indirectly damage, e.g. Through lava, fire, TNT and in the broadest sense water, sand and gravel.
'True' Players can kill other players.
'False' Players can not kill other players (also called Player versus Environment (PvE)).


rcon.password empty Defines the password for remote access to the server (see 'enable-rcon' ).
rcon.port 25575 Defines the port for remote access to the server (see 'enable-rcon' ).
resource-pack empty A server may recommend a resource package to be enabled, this changes how the game plays e.g. can be played with command blocks or a special translation of individual texts (for example, the deaths) or even special textures. For this purpose, the web address (URL) of the download has to be entered here. There are some restrictions:
  • The URL must point to a zip file. A different compression or an uncompressed resource package is not possible.
  • The resource pack may be a maximum of 50 MB.
  • The file must meet the requirements set-up for a resource package (for example, it must contain the file pack.mcmeta).

As soon as a client connects to the server for the first time (see client/server concept), the file will be downloaded and installed with or without a query in the background or not at all.

resource-pack-hash empty Optional checksum (SHA1-Digest) of the resource pack in hexadecimal characters. It is recommended to specify the checksum. Although it has not been used so far for its actual purpose (it is necessary to check whether the resource package has been subsequently modified), it improves the effectiveness and reliability of data buffering.
snooper-enabled true Determines whether the server is allowed to send anonymous data via the server to http://snoop.minecraft.net .
'False' - Disables the sending of data.
'True' - Enables the sending of data.
spawn-animals true Determines whether animals can spawn. This option should be disabled if the server is experiencing a performance problem.
'True' - Animals can spawn.
'False' - Animals disappear immediately after they are spawned.
spawn-monsters true Determines whether monsters can spawn outside of Monster Spawners. This option should be disabled if the server is experiencing a performance problem.
'True' Monsters spawn outside Monster Spawners. Ocelots spawn in the jungle.
'False' Monsters spawn only in Monster Spawners and ocelots do not spawn at all.

This option is useless if difficulty = 0 (peaceful).

spawn-npcs true Determines whether villagers can spawn.
'True' - Villagers can spawn.
'False' - Villagers can not spawn.
spawn-protection 16 Sets the radius of a protected area around the spawn point. The range is protected in all height levels from 0 to 255. The value 0 protects only the block of the spawn point (see SpawnX and SpawnZ in the world data). The value 1 corresponds to a radius of one block around the central block, i.e., a 3 × 3 block wide area, etc. The standard radius is 16 blocks, giving a protected range of 33 × 33 blocks.

Players with no operator privileges (see /op command) can neither remove or set any blocks, nor operate any Redstone circuits|Redstone signal generators or receivers (i.e., no buttons, levers, doors, etc.). The only exception is pressure plates.

However, exploding creepers (if it has not been disabled by the /gamerule command) can cause damage in the protected area, just like TNT, which was fired at the border, into the protected area. Water and lava can flow, and fire (if it has not been switched off by the /gamerule command) can spread, into the protected area. Pistons can also push blocks into this area.

The spawn-protection option is not included in the initial server.properties. It does not appear until the first player enters the server.

view-distance 10 Defines the amount of world data the server sends to the client, measured in chunks. This determines the visibility defined by the server. At the default setting of 10 chunks, a total of 441 chunks are sent (10 chunks in front and behind the player chunk = 21, same right and left = 21 x 21). The number of chunks that the server loads can be viewed on the debug screen. The value of the server should be reduced if you experience performance issues.
white-list false Enables a white-list on the server. If the white-list is enabled, only players listed on it can join the server. This option is recommended for private servers where only selected friends are allowed to play, and for servers that choose their members through an application process. If this option is enabled, the online-mode option must be enabled. This is also useful because otherwise, any white-listed player could join the server if he simply uses a name listed there, if he knows one. The white-list is managed via the server console using the /whitelist command.
'False' - No white-list is used.
'True' - Any player who wants to connect to the server must be entered in the white-list.

ops.json

First, the "op-permission-level" option sets the default operator level, which applies to all new operators. Then a player is given the operator rights with the /op command. This creates an entry in the file "ops.json", which is located in the same directory as "server.properties".

In this file the UUID, the name, and the standard operator level are stored for each player in JSON format. You can manually adjust a different level here for individual players.

Example with the fictional players oyo123 and yoyo:

[
  {
    "uuid": "6a8b3b3c-9d81-49c0-86d4-5518e1065f93",
    "name": "oyo123",
    "level": 4
  },
  {
    "uuid": "65ac0651-82b5-3afa-8cf9-afd2f43b10d9",
    "name": "yoyo",
    "level": 2
  }
]