Running & Managing a Minecraft Server – (1) Downloading Bukkit/Spigot

In this tutorial series, I would like to go over how to run and manage a Bukkit or Spigot server. I’ll be teaching how to install and configure Bukkit and Spigot, server, how to install and configure various plugins, and some tips that you can use for your own server. In this first lesson, I’ll be showing you how to download the Bukkit server software (called Craftbukkit), as well as the Spigot server software. I would like to note that they can both be used interchangeably. Before we start, I’d like to clear up some confusion. You may have heard of the terms Bukkit, Craftbukkit,  Spigot-API, Spigot, and BuildTools being thrown around a lot. So I’d like to take a minute to clarify what they all are. If you haven’t heard all of these terms yet, don’t worry. You will. So it’s important to go over them.

Bukkit – Bukkit is what’s called an API that allows programmers to create plugins for Craftbukkit. It isn’t actually what you use to run your server. When most people refer to Bukkit what they actually mean is Craftbukkit which implements the Bukkit API.

Craftbukkit – Craftbukkit is the software that actually runs your server. It implements the Bukkit API which allows programmers to create plugins for it. The aim of Craftbukkit is to be as much like vanilla Minecraft as possible aside from plugins.

Spigot-API – As the name suggests, the Spigot API is also an API. It’s based off of Bukkit, and can for the most part be used interchangeably with it.

Spigot – Spigot is based off of Craftbukkit. It adds some nifty features not included in vanilla Minecraft such as a feature called BungeeCord, and some other optimizations and tweaks.

BuildTools – BuildTools is how we will obtain Bukkit, Craftbukkit, and Spigot. It allows us to compile them from source which is the only way to obtain them because of something that happened with Bukkit. The details are a bit more then I want to explain in this guide, but you can read more about it HERE.

Now that we’ve cleared up some terms, we can start obtaining everything we’ll need. Since this tutorial is solely based off of creating a server, we will only be using Craftbukkit and Spigot.

Like I mentioned before, we will need to use BuildTools in order to compile Craftbukkit and Spigot. However, BuildTools requires a few dependencies that are needed to install and run it. Depending on your operating system will depend on how you will install these dependencies.

Windows

A Spigot community member named DemonWav has created a very useful tool called BuildToolsGUI. It includes all of the Windows dependencies built in. Simply download BuildToolsGUI.exe and put it in a folder that you can keep track of. Run the exe and click “Run BuildTools”. The files you’ll need will be found in the folder you placed it in, and you can skip to the end of this tutorial.

If you’re having trouble with the BuildToolsGUI or would rather install everything yourself, read on.

The first program you’ll need is the Java JRE or Java Runtime Environment. If you’re running BuildTools on your personal computer that plays Minecraft, you should already have the JRE installed. The JRE can be obtained from Oracle HERE. After running the installer, just continue pressing the next button until it finishes.

The second program you’ll need is called GIT for Windows. Install it where you want, and be sure that “Use Git from the Windows command prompt” is selected while installing. Keep everything else the default.

MacOS

You can obtain GIT for mac HERE.

You may have to update Java for your system. Unfortunately, it’s a bit difficult to do. Fortunately, there’s a really nice and comedic guide on Github that shows you how to check your Java version, and update it if needed on Mac. You can find said guide HERE.

Linux

You all should know what to do if I just give you a terminal command. This will install everything automagically. Be sure to use the appropriate command for your system.

 


Now that you have all of the needed dependencies installed, you can download and run BuildTools. The first step you’ll want to do, is create a folder for BuildTools. I’d recommend just making a folder in your documents called BuildTools. Inside of this folder is where you’ll want to keep BuildTools and where all of it’s generated files will be kept.

Next, we get to download BuildTools. You can download BuildTools from Spigot HERE. This should download the latest version. You can now place the downloaded BuildTools.jar in the folder that you created in the last step.

Now’s when we’ll actually run BuildTools. Again, it’s going to be a bit different depending on your operating system.

Windows

The first thing you’ll need to do, is open up command prompt and navigate to your BuildTools folder you created earlier. You can open command prompt by pressing the Windows key + R on your keyboard and typing “cmd.exe” in the prompt that appears. You’ll now want to cd into the folder that you created earlier with the cd command. If you made a folder in your documents folder like I did, then you can use the following command.

Be sure to replace <your-usename> if your PC’s account username. Now that you’re in the BuildTools directory, you can finally run BuildTools using the following command in command prompt.

This will compile Spigot and Craftbukkit for the most recent version of Minecraft. However, if you’d like to specify a version you’d like to compile for, you can replace latest with whichever version of Minecraft you’d like. For an example:

You can find a list of available versions HERE.

 

MacOS

You’ll want to begin by opening up terminal and using the cd command to navigate to wherever you created your BuildTools folder.  If you made a folder in your documents folder like I did, then you can use the following command.

Be sure to replace <your-name> if your Mac’s account username. Now that you’re in the BuildTools directory, you can finally run BuildTools using the following two commands in terminal.

This will compile Spigot and Craftbukkit for the most recent version of Minecraft. However, if you’d like to specify a version you’d like to compile for, you can replace latest with whichever version of Minecraft you’d like. For an example:

You can find a list of available versions HERE.

 

Linux

I always like to think that Linux users are the most computer-savy, so I won’t baby you. If you need any additional help, please leave a comment. Just cd where you put BuildTools.jar, and run the following commands.

You can use the –rev option to compile for a different version of Minecraft. A list of available versions can be found HERE.


If may take a few minutes to let BuildTools run. Just let it do it’s thing. If you run into any problems running BuildTools, you can see a list of issues and concerns on Spigots wiki which can be found HERE.

After BuildTools has finished running, we will finally have Craftbukkit and Spigot! They should be found in the same directory that you ran BuildTools in. At this point, you’ll need to decide if you’d like to use Craftbukkit or Spigot. This guide will work for either one, but choose one based off of your needs. We’ll be using whichever one you’ve chosen in the next lesson.

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