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Best Minecraft server hosting 2021

minecraft artwork
(Image credit: Microsoft / Mojang)

The best Minecraft server hosting has to be able to support plenty of connections with exceptional reliability, speed, and stability to support the more than 140 million Minecraft users playing online on any given day. Plenty of the most successful Minecraft servers also support online communities via a website and forum, so it should be easy to set up all these different components. 

There are a number of excellent web hosting providers that can meet these requirements. Unsurprisingly, some of these made our list of the best web hosting services, as many of the requirements of excellent web hosting overlap with Minecraft hosting. 

In this round-up of the best Minecraft server hosting, we’ve compared providers based on a number of criteria, including hardware, pricing, ease of setup and configuration, user support, and maintenance. We’ve listed all the key features below to help you make your choice and get your Minecraft server up and running.

What are the best Minecraft server hosting solutions?

Hostinger is one of the most popular options for Minecraft hosting, with a variety of hosting options available and quick and easy setup of Official, Spigot, Forge, Tekkit, and many other servers. ScalaCube offers a free hosting service, which is a great option for beginners, as is Apex Hosting with its one-click installation of mods and preconfigured mini-games. 

If you’re interested in hosting multiple games at a low cost, MCProHosting’s ONE plan lets you switch between games at will. Finally, Shockbyte boasts a truly impressive 100% uptime rate and very flexible upgrade and downgrade options.

The best Minecraft server hosting you can buy today

Hostinger Minecraft hosting

(Image credit: Hostinger)

Best overall Minecraft hosting provider

Specifications
Max RAM: 16GB
Base rate: $8.95
Uptime: 99.9%
DDoS Protection: Yes
Support: Email/Ticket (M-F)
Reasons to buy
+A variety of dedicated Minecraft hosting options+2GB of RAM and 2 vCPUs available for just $8.95 per month+Unlimited modpacks, pre-installed mods and full root access to add more
Reasons to avoid
-No 24/7 user support-Max 16GB RAM

There are a few reasons why Hostinger is at the top of this list, not least because it offers a dedicated Minecraft hosting service, which is rare among hosting heavy-hitters like Hostinger. It also stands out for a remarkably easy setup. You can use the Game Panel feature to set up a server in just a few minutes, or else manually create an environment with Ubuntu 18, Centos 7, or Debian 9 (all Linux distributions compatible with Minecraft). 

All of Hostinger’s Minecraft hosting is VPS hosting, which means you get a dedicated allotment of storage, bandwidth, and RAM that’s yours and yours alone (compared to shared hosting, which can be cheaper but less reliable and performative). It’s also cloud-based with versioning support, so you can restore files and Minecraft environments from snapshots in the past in case anything goes wrong and players are unable to connect to your server. 

Finally, Hostinger supports a huge number of Minecraft server types, including Official, Spigot, Purpur, Forge, Cauldron, Tekkit, and Feed the Beast, with a wide range of plans starting from $8.95/mo for 2GB RAM and 2 CPUs and up to $77.99/mo for 16GB and 8 CPUs. 

Read our full Hostinger review.

ScalaCube Minecraft hosting

(Image credit: ScalaCube)

2. ScalaCube

Best for free Minecraft hosting

Specifications
Max RAM: 32GB
Base rate: Free
Uptime: 99.9%
DDoS Protection: Yes
Support: Chat (24/7)
Reasons to buy
+Offers a free plan to get started and try out hosting+24/7 user support available via chat+Free website, forum, and web hosting with all plans
Reasons to avoid
-Largest plans can be very pricey-Free servers have to be renewed every two days

ScalaCube is a hosting service that focuses on game hosting, including Minecraft, Minecraft: PE, Rust, Hytale, ARK, and Valheim. That makes it a great choice for hosting multiple games. 

ScalaCube also boasts unlimited free traffic with no throttling, so you never have to worry about your Minecraft server slowing down because of the number of users that have connected to it. All plans come with full file access, plugin and mod support, modpack support, custom JAR and launcher, a website and forum with free web hosting, instant setup, a free domain, and a free MySQL database. 

ScalaCube is also only of the few high-end Minecraft server providers to offer a free plan. It includes 3 GB of RAM, 2 x 3.4 GHz CPUs, 30GB of SSD storage, and space for one game server. This makes it a great choice for beginners who want to learn the ropes of building a Minecraft server without committing to a subscription or spending any money.

Other than that, there are nine paid tiers, ranging from 770MB RAM, 3.4 GHz CPU, 10GB storage at $5.00/mo up to 32GB RAM, 8 x 3.4 GHz CPUs, 320 GB at $192, all with an unlimited number of servers.

Read our full ScalaCube review.

MCProHosting Minecraft hosting

(Image credit: MCProHosting)

3. MCProHosting

Best for hosting multiple games

Specifications
Max RAM: 32GB
Base rate: $7.99
Uptime: 99.9%
DDoS Protection: Yes
Support: Email (24/7) or Chat (9AM-1AM EST)
Reasons to buy
+Free trial available+Host and switch between games, including ARK and Rust+Large, trustworthy veteran name in Minecraft hosting
Reasons to avoid
-Chat support isn’t 24/7 (although it’s close)-Some users have complained of lengthy downtimes

MCProHosting has been providing games hosting since 2011 and is one of the world’s largest and most trusted brands. MCProHosting’s servers are available in 22 locations across six continents, with a majority in the United States and Europe. That means fast loading times and gameplay no matter where people are connecting from. 

In addition to Minecraft, MCProHosting supports ARK, Rust, Factori, Starbound, Garry’s Mod, CS GO, and Team Fortress 2. If you’re a fan of more than one of these games, you’ll love MC’s ONE plan: you can switch between games at any time and back up and restore games on the fly. You can spend a month hosting Minecraft, switch for a few weeks to hosting a Rust game with friends, then pick your Minecraft world right back up where you left off. 

MC also offers 24/7 support, plugin/mod support, full file access, unlimited storage, and daily backups. Minecraft servers start from $7.99/mo, and there’s a free trial available to get you started.

Read our full MCProHosting review.

Shockbyte Minecraft hosting

(Image credit: Shockbyte)

4. Shockbyte

Best for uptime and hands-off setup

Specifications
Max RAM: 64GB
Base rate: $2.50
Uptime: 100%
DDoS Protection: Yes
Support: Ticket or Chat (24/7)
Reasons to buy
+Impressive 100% uptime record+Server management options for hands-off setup with plugins, mods, and jars+Free subdomain with a custom IP+Ticket and chat support available 24/7
Reasons to avoid
-Unlimited slots can be unmanageable for smaller servers-Automatic backup has to be manually turned on and configured

Shockbyte is another popular Minecraft and gaming server with a lot to offer, including an incredible 100% uptime record. It includes instant setup, of course, but also a $15 server management option, where a Shockbyte employee will set up your server with all the plugins, mods, and jars you want. You also get a free subdomain, so you can create a custom IP for your server. 

The plans are inexpensive and flexible, starting at $2.50/mo for 1GB RAM. While servers do have a recommended number of slots, there’s no actual limit on them. In other words, all plans come with unlimited slots. You can upgrade and downgrade freely between plans as needed, and you’re only billed for the days you use each plan, not the whole month—so it’s easy to scale up for special events. 

You can also configure your own custom plan, with up to 64GB of RAM, a dedicated IP, and a preferred server location.

Read our full Shockbyte review.

Apex Hosting Minecraft Hosting

(Image credit: Apex Hosting)

5. Apex Hosting

Best for one-click configuration and mini-game setup

Specifications
Max RAM: 32GB
Max CPU: N/A
Base rate: $7.99
Uptime: 99.9%
DDoS Protection: Yes
Support: Ticket & Chat (24/7)
Reasons to buy
+24/7 ticket and chat support+7-day money-back guarantee+Unlimited slots, backups, and storage on all plans+200+ one-click modpack and mini-game installations
Reasons to avoid
-No dedicated IP available-Pricing a bit higher based on $/GB RAM

Last but certainly not least, Apex Hosting is a well-known name in Minecraft server hosting. It stands out in part for its ease of use and configuration, with 200+ one-click modpack installations and preconfigured minigames, plus helpful guides for setting up plugins, mods, mini-games, and maps. It’s a great hosting choice for beginners in this regard. 

Apex also features 24/7 ticket and chat support, plus a seven-day money-back guarantee, so you can try out the service before making any commitments. Each plan comes with full FTP and MySQL database access, plus free server transfers (if you have an existing game to move over). 

Pricing starts at $9.99/mo with 2GB RAM, a basic server, and some modpacks, and goes up to $59.99/mo with 15GB RAM, advanced servers, and all modpacks. All plans come with unlimited slots, automated backups, and unlimited storage.

Read our fill Apex Hosting review.

How to choose the best Minecraft server hosting for you

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your provider. Hardware is, of course, very important when hosting an online multiplayer game. 

The larger the server, the more players and slots, and the more advanced and reliable the hardware needs to be. You’ll need enough RAM and processing power to support all the connections. Shockbyte definitely stands out in this regard, with up to 64GB RAM available. That said, ScalaCube and MCProHosting both have plans of up to 32GB, which is plenty for all but the largest servers. 

Cost is also a factor. If you’re just starting out and want to learn the ins and outs of running a Minecraft server, it’s hard to beat ScalaCube’s free plan, although Shockbyte also offers some very low-cost plans. You’ll need to weigh this against your hardware needs, though. 

Server configuration is another important element. Apex Hosting’s one-click configuration of mods and mini-games makes it super easy to go from a blank slate to a fully functioning Minecraft server in little time. If you have more experience and want more control, the manual Linux environments offered by Hostinger are a good option. 

Finally, no matter what your server configuration, it’s important to have good support options. If your server goes down or you need help installing a new mod, you’ll need reliable, responsive user support, and you’ll want it fast to keep your game going. Apex, Shockbyte, MCProHosting, and ScalaCube all offer 24/7 user support.

Read our guide to the best web hosting services.

Christian Rigg

Christian is a freelance writer and content project manager, with over six years' experience writing and leading teams in finance and technology for some of the world's largest online publishers, including TechRadar and Tom's Guide.