Top 5 best Minecraft server jars for Java Edition

 Game Hosting, VPS Hosting

This article is a list of the top 5 best Minecraft server jars for Java Edition minecraft hosting. If you’d like to check out a plethora of different server jars with a history of that jar AND have the ability to download, check out MinecraftJars, learn how to download these jars here.

Running a Minecraft server can, at times, be difficult and sometimes can leave you feeling overwhelmed and in need of quick and accessible information. You’re in luck; we compiled a list of the best server jars for your Minecraft Java Edition server. If you want to know how to install a custom jar like one of these on your Minecraft server through the game panel, you can learn that here.

Before we get started, here’s a quick rundown of what a Minecraft server is. A Minecraft server is pretty self-explanatory. It is a server running a specific Minecraft version, which is either a version Minecraft directly from Mojang or a third party tweak of the release from Mojang. The easiest and most common way of running a server is using a Minecraft host, like ElixirNode’s Minecraft server hosting. A server is yours, so you do what you wish with it, whether using it for personal use, with friends or open to the public. You can set up a Minecraft server rental with ElixirNode right now for as low as $1/GB and about 3 minutes of your time. Find out more information here. Additionally, you can learn more about our 3 tiers of affordable minecraft server hosting here.



Vanilla Minecraft is, as stated, plain Minecraft. It’s the server jar released from Mojang immediately after a game update. Vanilla Minecraft is the easiest way to install an updated server for players to enjoy.

Vanilla Minecraft has a major downfall, that is being from Mojang. Vanilla has no way of installing plugins; per se, you can download “datapacks,” which are, basically, a plugin for the game. However, they are NOT as user-friendly and, at times, optimized. If you intend to run a simple community, then datapacks will do just fine, but if you want to run a minigames server or a project larger-scale, datapacks are NOT the way to go. Lastly, it’s not recommended you immediately download a newly updated server jar to accommodate a new release of the game (1.15.2 to 1.16), this may lead to some instability and a potential slew of glitches, it’s recommended to wait for a ‘.1’ version of the game to be released, which will have allowed Mojang to smooth out any optimization bugs that needed reconciling.



CraftBukkit is a modified version of Vanilla Minecraft (standard, plain Minecraft), allowing developers to create plugins, which are game-modifying mini-programs, with these plugins, server owners may install them onto the server and enjoy some game-enhancing features.

Throughout the years, CraftBukkit’s developer community has dwindled and moved to Spigot. CraftBukkit is ranked #4 simply because of its recognizability in the community.



Forge is an open-source API that allows mods to be uploaded and played. It’s an excellent alternative to Minecraft multiplayer. Changing the way Minecraft multiplayer is played, Forge can give you and your server a chance to shine, in a different way,

Forge’s Achilles heel is it’s the greatest strength. Because you’re playing modded Minecraft with a group of people, you’re going to need a hefty amount of RAM and top of the line hardware. That’s no problem, though. You can find the best equipment for the best price with ElixirNode’s Minecraft hosting here.

Additionally, if you would like to install mods and plugins at the same time on your server you learn to do so here by using Magma!



Spigot is the most populated platform/community for plugin development. Spigot is, essentially, the same as CraftBukkit, the only difference between the two in terms of the program itself, not the community, Spigot is slightly less optimized. CraftBukkit will be lighter for your server when running.

Spigot’s only downside, as mentioned before, is the optimization. SpigotMC is excellent if you’re looking for a plugin that is updated, but Spigot can sometimes bog your server down, causing lag in-game. When it’s time for a new update to be released, Spigot may take a couple of days to update to the latest version of Minecraft, while, depending on the plugins you have, you could be waiting even longer to being fully optimized and up to date.



Like its predecessor or ex-sibling, Spigot, PaperMC is a game version that allows community plugins to be attached to the game. The only difference between PaperMC and Spigot is optimization. PaperMC is more optimized for your server, allowing you to dedicate more RAM to other areas of the server. The plugins are the same. You can have the same plugin for a Spigot as you would have on a PaperMC server. PaperMC is also the most popular among Minecraft faction servers whom primarily need to ensure the server runs smoothly due to the gamemode containing many things like cannon tnt!

PaperMC does have a downside. It’s, at times, slower than Spigot with pushing out updated versions of the API, meaning you’re stuck either waiting or switching to Spigot, which, as stated before, could cause an issue with RAM. That’s why just in case a problem like this happens; you can EASILY upgrade and downgrade your Minecraft server rental’s RAM instantly with ElixirNode, get started now.

Finding the best Minecraft server jar for your server can, at times, be a steep slope, especially if you’re not sure what path you want to take! It’s always nice to be able to collaborate; it’s human. Join ElixirNode’s Discord server and easily chat with other people, like you, to help decide and troubleshoot any problem your server may have in it’s near and distant future. If you have any technical or billing issues, you can easily open a ticket in here to have the help you need and deserve.

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