Running Your Own Minecraft Server At Home

What are we doing? Minecraft on iPad/iPhone is “Pocket Edition”. It can connect to servers — on the internet or on your own server at home. This is fun because you can add mods to your server, which is something you cannot do in Pocket Editions app. Mods are one of the cooler things about Minecraft’s full edition on computers.

Time required: took me 4 hours over 2 days.

System: Macbook Air OS X


  • Your Mac will need some developer tools on it. This can be a pain to install. It was for me.
  • Then you need to get the Minecraft server downloaded.
  • And it needs to be the ‘latest’ version. Every time the Minecraft Pocket Edition app updates… it seems to break the server. Then server guys need to issue a release and you have to download and patch it. Like daily.

How to: 

  1. Find a server build that isn’t outdated, useless, badly supported etc. This is hard! There are tons of “script kiddiez” that seem to make and distribute these servers. So, I offer you this project that seems neat and tidy and well done — Genisys.  And here is the binary file download link. They just provide the binary here (you will need more).
  2. To do things you will need to launch Terminal (or get a command line) and navigate to where these files are being downloaded.
  3. A precondition to using this build is having a PHP package. Here is the one those same folks offer.  (You’ll notice command line instructions.)
  4. A precondition to installing that, is this PHP installer phpbrew.
  5. Many recipes of this easy to follow style work for the author…but then don’t work on YOUR computer for some dumb dependency or bug reason. This makes these recipes suck. I also followed a recipe like this one and it took hours – not minutes – to figure out. So, my request to you is please comment on this post if you arrive here and it doesn’t work for you.
  6. OK now you need PocketMine itself – which is a bunch more stuff. You will put that Genisys binary into the folder PocketMine creates. It has libraries and helpers. Here is their homepage. Here is the download link.
  7. When I installed PocketMine from that link…it was out of date. So I replaced the main file PocketMine-MP.phar with the file from Genisys by renaming it, and then returned to the PocketMine instructions…and that worked. So the frequently updated Genisys binary is important.
  8. And here, theoretically, is plugins/mods you can use (but I haven’t succeeded with that yet).