There’s been a bit of talk of ColoradoPlays setting up its own Minecraft server. Although we don’t quite have the money for something permanent, it did give me the idea of checking out a few free options. A good place to start would be to experiment with Minehut.
Since I’ve never done anything like this before, it’s going to be an adventure.
What is Minehut?
Minehut is a hosting service that specializes in Minecraft servers. One of the things that make Minehut stand out is the offer of setting up two free Minecraft servers.
It takes perhaps a minute or two to signup, activate, and start playing. This way, you can quickly start playing online with friends and family.
Why Set Up a Free Minehut Server?
Well, like I said, we don’t have the money to dump into setting up something massive. Besides, we really don’t have that large of a player-base right now anyway.
A free Minehut server will give us the opportunity to try out a ColoradoPlays platform for ourselves as well as our supporters. After all, we get asked frequently to play while we’re streaming.
And, we’re usually scattered across Colorado. So, having a centralized, online server would let us play together instead of relying on the local area network.
Setting Up Minehut
Signing up with Minehut, you’re asked for an email address. And then there is a month, day, year selection area. I’m assuming this is for my birth date. Since the signup screen doesn’t say, that’s what I’m going with.
Before I can log into the account, I have to verify my email. This is standard practice for a lot of services, nowadays. Just click the link in the email and all is good.
The email didn’t take very long, and I was able to start creating the server within a minute.
Creating the Server
When setting up the server, you can only use a max of 10 characters. This means my first idea of using “ColoradoPlays” isn’t going to work.
After trying several server names that fit the theme of ColoradoPlays, I was finally able to get one. Immediately, the server is set to “Hibernating” and I can activate it any time I want.
The free version only allows up to 10 players at a time. This is fine at the moment because there’s usually only four of us playing at any given time.
Activating the Minehut Server
The message stated it would take more than a minute to move the server to one that is protected from DDoS attacks. However, it took less than 30 seconds.
Perhaps the load is pretty light at the moment.
At any rate, the server has a slew of settings you can adjust for in-game play. I’ll briefly go over the options. These are available only after you activate the server.
NOTE: The Minehut server will timeout and shut down automatically if there is no activity within five minutes or so. This isn’t a lot of time to adjust your settings before play.
In this section, you can set how the server appears in Minehut and when people connect. You can change the Server Icon (if you have credits to unlock them) or add a description of your server.
You can also send server commands as well as set its visibility should you want it private from the community on Minehut.
In the settings area, you can fine-tune how Minecraft plays. For instance, you can alter the biome sizes, set the game mode, turn off PvP, change difficulty, and much more.
Know the plugin of a mod you like? You can probably add it to your Minehut server in the plugin section. In fact, I’ve already searched a few from Sky Factory 4 to see if they were available.
In this area, you can manage the files stored for your Minecraft server. This can be helpful if a player has a broken profile and you need to make adjustments.
In the World setting of Minehut, you can save, reset, use a specific seed, or upload one entirely. So, if you have a world that you play on a LAN and want others to join, you can probably add it here.
Or, recover from your own backup in case someone blows up the map.
Backups will run every hour your server is actually running. The free version of Minehut gives you one slot for these. But, any backup is better than none at all.
In the event of a catastrophic issue, you can force hibernate, reset the server, or repair files in the Danger Zone.
How Well Does a Free Minehut Server Play?
To give the server a test drive, we played during our live stream on Twitch. And I must admit, it ran pretty well. Though, the view was a much shorter distance than what I’m used to.
But that’s only because I play Sky Factory 4 on my computer with maxed out visuals.
There was only the briefest moment of lag when trying to break a wooden block at the beginning of play. After that moment, we didn’t have a single issue.
Other than the fact that I forgot to change the difficulty up from Easy.
To join a Minehut server, all you need is the name and enter it into Minecraft under the server area. Since I added it as a server, it’s now saved and all I have to do is click the icon to join.
We had a veiwer join us during the test and he had no issues at all.
It’s safe to say that the only drawback I see to having a free Minehut server is just the view distance. But that’s understandable given the nature of the game.
Too many people with a far view distance can create some major lag.
Would I Recommend Minehut?
I like how Minehut offers two servers on the free level. This means I can set up one specifically to play with viewers and one that is just a private world for ColoradoPlays.
The fact that you have five minutes to set up the Minecraft server in the settings menu is a bit annoying. It’ll take me longer than that to add the plugins I might want.
Although most of the settings windows are pretty easy to manage, you need to be quick before the server goes into auto-hibernation.
A way around this, though, is to just join the game or have someone else play while you make adjustments. From what I gather, the new changes should take effect the next time the server is started.
All in all, I would say that Minehut is a definite possibility if you’re looking for a free Minecraft server to play with friends.
Less Complicated That I Thought it Would Be
I figured setting up a game server of any kind would be a minor pain in the ass. But, Minehut takes a lot of the trouble out of the experience and you can start playing almost immediately.
Based on how well it ran, I am leaning quite a bit towards actually paying and upgrading the account.
In either case, you don’t really lose anything by trying the free server yourself. It’s quick to set up and takes little effort to manage.
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