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A fast, customizable and compatible open source server for Minecraft: Java Edition.


Glowstone is a lightweight, from scratch, open source Minecraft server written in Java that supports plugins written for the Bukkit API and its major forks, Spigot and Paper.

The main goals of the project are to provide a lightweight implementation of the Bukkit API and Minecraft server where exact vanilla functionality is not needed or higher performance is desired than the official software can deliver. Glowstone makes use of a thread-per-world model and performs synchronization only when necessitated by the Bukkit API.

Still have questions? Check out our FAQ.


Glowstone has a few key advantages over CraftBukkit:

  • It is 100% open source. While CraftBukkit and most other mods are open source, they rely on decompiled Minecraft source code. Glowstone's code is completely original.
  • Because of this, it is easy to contribute to Glowstone's development. The barrier of entry to contributions is lower because there is no need to work around decompiled source or maintain a minimal diff.
  • Glowstone supports all plugins written for the Bukkit, Spigot and Paper APIs natively. In practice, some plugins may try to make use of parts of the API which are not yet implemented, but in a completed state Glowstone would support all Bukkit plugins.
  • Glowstone's simplicity affords it a performance improvement over CraftBukkit and other servers, making it especially suited for situations where a large amount of players must be supported but vanilla game features are not needed.

However, there are several drawbacks:

  • Glowstone is not finished. Nothing is guaranteed to work, though many things are likely to. If in doubt, file an issue.
  • Bukkit plugins which expect the presence of CraftBukkit-specific code (that are in the org.bukkit.craftbukkit or net.minecraft.server packages) will not work on Glowstone unless they are designed to fail gracefully.
  • Glowstone is not produced by the Bukkit team, and while we do make an effort to produce quality work, Glowstone does not undergo the same rigorous testing as the Bukkit project.

For a current list of features, check the wiki.


The latest LTS and monthly releases, as well as a direct link to our latest build can be found on our website.

Older releases can be found on GitHub.


1. Setup

After installing Oracle JDK (recommended) or OpenJDK, and Maven, checkout the source:

git clone
cd Glowstone

2. Build


The final jar will be placed in build/libs/ named glowstone.jar.


Running Glowstone is simple because its dependencies are shaded into the output jar at compile time. Simply execute java -jar glowstone.jar along with any extra JVM options desired (we recommend using java -Xms1G -Xmx1G -XX:+UseG1GC -jar glowstone.jar). A variety of command-line options are also available - run java -jar glowstone.jar --help for more information.

By default, configuration is stored in the config/ subdirectory and logs are stored in the logs/ subdirectory. The main configuration file is config/glowstone.yml, which replaces CraftBukkit's and bukkit.yml. Settings from these two files will be copied over to Glowstone's configuration during the default configuration generation process.

Glowstone uses JLine for console input and colored console output. The JLine console can be disabled in the configuration if a flat console is desired.

Need more help? Check out our wiki for some guides that will help you with running, maintaining and configuring your Glowstone server.


For those of you who just want to play on a Glowstone server, we have one available for testing at Have fun!

Docs and Support

The best place to receive support is on GitHub issues. When reporting bugs, please retest and include whether the problem reproduces on:

Javadocs for Glowstone can be found here.

For documentation on the Glowkit API (an updated Bukkit for Glowstone, based on the Paper API, compatible with Spigot's update to Bukkit), see the Glowkit Javadocs.


First of all, thank you for your interest in advancing Glowstone! We always love to see new developers work on the project! You can find all of our resources on how to get started on our wiki.


More backers

Sponsor Glowstone on Bountysource!


Glowstone is open-source software released under the MIT license. Please see the LICENSE file for details.

Glowkit is open-source software released under the GPL license. Please see the LICENSE.txt file in the Glowkit repository for details.