How to Install Spigot Minecraft Server on Ubuntu 20.04

Spigot is a modified Minecraft server software based on CraftBukkit. It provides additional performance optimizations, configuration options and features while maintaining compatibility with all existing plugins and mods.

In this tutorial, you will learn how to build and install Spigot Server on a Ubuntu 20.04 based server and install plugins.


  • A server running Ubuntu 20.04 with a minimum of 4GB RAM and 2 CPU Cores.

  • A non-root user with sudo privileges.

  • Everything is updated.

    $ sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
  • Install the required packages.

    $ sudo apt install wget apt-transport-https gnupg nano screen

Step 1 - Configure Firewall

The first step is to configure the firewall. Ubuntu comes with ufw (Uncomplicated Firewall) by default.

Check if the firewall is running.

$ sudo ufw status

You should get the following output.

Status: inactive

Allow SSH port to prevent the firewall from breaking the current connection on enabling it.

$ sudo ufw allow OpenSSH

Allow port 25565 for the Spigot server to accept connections.

$ sudo ufw allow 25565

Enable the Firewall

$ sudo ufw enable
Command may disrupt existing ssh connections. Proceed with operation (y|n)? y
Firewall is active and enabled on system startup

Check the status of the firewall again.

$ sudo ufw status

You should see a similar output.

Status: active

To                         Action      From
--                         ------      ----
OpenSSH                    ALLOW       Anywhere
25565                      ALLOW       Anywhere
OpenSSH (v6)               ALLOW       Anywhere (v6)
25565 (v6)                 ALLOW       Anywhere (v6)

Step 2 - Install Java and Git

Spigot installer needs Java and Git to work. Ubuntu 20.04 ships with OpenJDK 17 as the latest available version of Java. Run the following command to install it.

$ sudo apt install openjdk-17-jre-headless

Confirm the release.

$ java --version
openjdk 17.0.1 2021-10-19
OpenJDK Runtime Environment (build 17.0.1+12-Ubuntu-120.04)
OpenJDK 64-Bit Server VM (build 17.0.1+12-Ubuntu-120.04, mixed mode, sharing)

Install Git.

$ sudo apt install git

Step 3 - Create a Minecraft user

The next step is to create a dedicated user for running the server.

$ sudo adduser minecraft

Switch to the newly created user.

$ sudo su - minecraft

Step 4 - Download and install Spigot

We will build Spigot using the BuildTools.jar application. The first step is to switch to the home directory.

minecraft:$ cd ~

Create a new directory for BuildTools and shift to it.

minecraft:$ mkdir buildtools && cd buildtools

Grab the BuildTools.jar file.

minecraft:$ wget -O BuildTools.jar

Build the latest stable version of Spigot.

minecraft:$ java -jar BuildTools.jar --rev latest

Depending on the available server resources, this process may take time to complete.

Check the name of the Spigot jar file created.

minecraft:$ ls 
apache-maven-3.6.0  BuildData  BuildTools.jar  BuildTools.log.txt  Bukkit  CraftBukkit  Spigot  spigot-1.18.1.jar  work

In our case, the name is.

Create another directory for your Spigot Server and switch to it.

minecraft:$ cd ~ && mkdir server && cd server

Move your Spigot jar file to the newly created server directory.

minecraft:$ mv ~/buildtools/spigot-1.18.1.jar ~/server/spigot.jar

Step 5 - Start Spigot Server

To start the Spigot server, we need to create a startup script that allows us to pass various Java parameters to optimize the server.

Create and open the startup script for Spigot.

minecraft:$ sudo nano

Paste the following code in the file.


java -Xms3G -Xmx3G -XX:+UseG1GC -XX:+ParallelRefProcEnabled -XX:MaxGCPauseMillis=200 -XX:+UnlockExperimentalVMOptions -XX:+DisableExplicitGC -XX:+AlwaysPreTouch -XX:G1NewSizePercent=30 -XX:G1MaxNewSizePercent=40 -XX:G1HeapRegionSize=8M -XX:G1ReservePercent=20 -XX:G1HeapWastePercent=5 -XX:G1MixedGCCountTarget=4 -XX:InitiatingHeapOccupancyPercent=15 -XX:G1MixedGCLiveThresholdPercent=90 -XX:G1RSetUpdatingPauseTimePercent=5 -XX:SurvivorRatio=32 -XX:+PerfDisableSharedMem -XX:MaxTenuringThreshold=1 -Dusing.aikars.flags= -jar spigot.jar nogui

The parameter -Xms3G -Xmx3G configured the Java heapspace for 4GB of RAM. We have left 1GB free in our case for the OS and any other stuff that it needs the ram for. Change this to the amount of RAM you want to allocate to the Spigot server. If your server has 16GB of RAM, you should set the parameter to occupy 14 or 15GB of RAM.

Once finished, save the file by pressing Ctrl + X and entering Y when prompted.

Make the startup script executable.

minecraft:$ chmod +x

Start your Spigot server for the first time.

minecraft:$ ./

The server will not start and instead terminate, giving the following message.

[14:14:21] [ServerMain/INFO]: You need to agree to the EULA in order to run the server. Go to eula.txt for more info.

Open eula.txt for editing.

minecraft:$ nano eula.txt

Set the value of the variable eula to true.

#By changing the setting below to TRUE you are indicating your agreement to our EULA (
#Sun Dec 26 13:29:15 UTC 2021

Once finished, save the file by pressing Ctrl + X and entering Y when prompted.

Before starting the server, let us configure it to run it as a service in the background.

Step 6 - Configure Spigot as a service

The server needs the shell to be running all the time for it to work, which is not ideal. We need to create a service so that the server can start automatically on boot and run in the background.

Exit out of the minecraft user.

minecraft:$ exit

Create a Spigot Service file and open it for editing.

$ sudo nano /etc/systemd/system/spigot.service

Paste the following code.


ExecStart=/usr/bin/screen -d -m -S minecraft /home/minecraft/server/
ExecStop=/usr/bin/screen -S minecraft -p 0 -X stuff "stop$(printf \\r)"


Once finished, save the file by pressing Ctrl + X and entering Y when prompted.

Reload the service daemon.

$ sudo systemctl daemon-reload

Enable the service.

$ sudo systemctl enable spigot

Start the Spigot service.

$ sudo systemctl start spigot

Check the service status.

$ sudo systemctl status spigot
? spigot.service - SpigotMC
     Loaded: loaded (/etc/systemd/system/spigot.service; disabled; vendor preset: enabled)
     Active: active (running) since Mon 2021-12-27 09:15:25 UTC; 6s ago
    Process: 32011 ExecStart=/usr/bin/screen -d -m -S minecraft /home/minecraft/server/ (code=exited, sta>
   Main PID: 32012 (screen)
      Tasks: 25 (limit: 4691)
     Memory: 3.2G
     CGroup: /system.slice/spigot.service
             ??32012 /usr/bin/SCREEN -d -m -S minecraft /home/minecraft/server/
             ??32013 /bin/sh /home/minecraft/server/
             ??32014 java -Xms3G -Xmx3G -XX:+UseG1GC -XX:+ParallelRefProcEnabled -XX:MaxGCPauseMillis=200 -XX:+UnlockEx>

Dec 27 09:15:25 spigot systemd[1]: Starting SpigotMC...
Dec 27 09:15:25 spigot systemd[1]: Started SpigotMC.

Step 7 - Connect to Minecraft

Now that our server is up and running, it is time to connect to Minecraft. Launch your Minecraft game.

Minecraft game

Click on the Multiplayer button and ignore the warning for the future by checking the box, Do not show this screen again.

Minecraft Multiplayer warning

Click on Add Server button on the next page.

Minecraft Add Server

Enter your server's public IP address and name. Click Done when finished.

Your Server will now appear on the list.

Minecraft Server List

Click on your server name and press the Join Server button to start the server. Your game will start soon.

Minecraft Server Game

You can ask your friends to join your server and play with them.

Step 8 - Customize Server Properties

You can customize your server by editing the /home/minecraft/server/ file. We will go through some of the properties below.

  • Enable command blocks: Values available are true and false.

  • Gamemode: Values available are survival, creative, adventure, and spectator. They can also be defined by integers starting from 0 for survival, 1 for creative, 2 for adventure, and 3 for spectator.

  • Difficulty: Values available are peaceful, easy, normal, and hard. They can also be defined by integers starting from 0 for peaceful, 1 for easy, 2 for normal and 3 for hard.

  • MOTD: Stands for Message Of The Day. It is the message that is shown on the Server list page. Accepts a string value. Supports color, special characters and formatting codes. It should not be longer than 59 characters.

    motd=A Minecraft Server
  • PVP: Enables the Player versus Player mode. Values available are true and false.

  • Server Port: Defines the port on which the Minecraft server listens to. The default value is 25565.


    If you change the port value to something else, you will need to enable it in the firewall; otherwise, players won't be able to connect.

  • See the Minecraft wiki for more properties.

You will need to restart your Spigot server after making any changes to these properties for them to take effect.

$ sudo systemctl restart spigot

Step 9 - Install Plugins

You can download plugins from Spigot Resources or Bukkit Plugin pages.

If you download the plugin from Spigot, the following method won't work since it has been blocked. You will have to manually download the Jar file and move it to the server. But if you are downloading from Bukkit, use the following method to download directly to your server.

Download the .jar file of the plugin from the above pages to the /home/minecraft/server/plugins directory.

$ sudo wget -P /home/minecraft/server/plugins/ --content-disposition <plugin url>

The flag --content-disposition ensures the file is downloaded with the correct file name by making use of the Content-Disposition headers.

For example, if you are downloading the WorldEdit plugin, this is how you will download it.

$ sudo wget -P /home/minecraft/server/plugins --content-disposition

To reload the plugin, restart your Spigot server.

$ sudo systemctl restart spigot

Step 10 - Update Spigot

Updating Spigot will require you to repeat step 4 of this guide to grab the latest version of BuildTools.jar file and then create a fresh spigot.jar file. Make sure you backup the old jar files and stop the server before doing that.


This concludes our tutorial on installing and configuring the Spigot Minecraft server on a Ubuntu 20.04 based system. If you have any questions, post them in the comments below.

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