If you‘re a Minecraft fan, you may be wondering – can I create my own free server to play with friends on Bedrock Edition? The good news is, yes you absolutely can! In this detailed guide, I‘ll walk you through everything you need to know about creating your own free Minecraft Bedrock server.
Can You Really Host a Bedrock Server 100% Free?
Let‘s start with the most important question – is it actually possible to setup a Minecraft Bedrock server for free?
The answer is yes, you can host a Bedrock server at no cost by leveraging free hosting services. Popular options include:
Aternos: The leading free Minecraft server host. Aternos is 100% free forever and supports both Java and Bedrock.
Minehut: Offers free Bedrock servers with no time limits. Just install their custom client to connect.
Nitrado: Basic plan includes a free 5 slot Bedrock server.
So by using one of these services, you can setup a legitimate Minecraft Bedrock server for you and your friends without spending a dime. Of course, the free plans have some limitations that I‘ll cover later. But for casual gameplay, they work great.
Step-by-Step Guide: How to Create Your Own Free Bedrock Server
Ready to setup your own free Bedrock Edition server? Let me walk you through the quick and easy process step-by-step.
We‘ll use Aternos since it‘s the most popular free host, but the overall process is similar for other services.
Step 1) Go to Aternos.org
First, open your web browser and go to Aternos.org. This is where we‘ll setup our free server.
Step 2) Click the "Start Server" Button
On the Aternos homepage, click the big green "Start Server" button. This will take you to the server creation screen.
Step 3) Select Minecraft Bedrock Edition
On the next page, select Minecraft Bedrock Edition as the server type from the dropdown menu.
Step 4) Name Your Server
Next, enter a fun name for your Minecraft server in the "Server Name" field. This is the name players will see when they connect. Be creative!
Step 5) Select a Location
Choose the closest server location to you and your friends for the lowest latency. For example, North America East or Europe West.
Step 6) Click "Create Server"
When ready, click the Create Server button. Aternos will now deploy your Minecraft Bedrock server. This takes just a minute or two!
Step 7) Wait for Deployment to Finish
You‘ll see a message that deployment has started. Wait for this process to finish. Soon your server will be installed and ready.
Step 8) Click "Go to Server"
Once deployment completes, click the green "Go to Server" button to visit your server‘s control panel. This is where you manage and configure your new Minecraft server.
Step 9) Start Your Server
On the server control panel, click the Start button to launch your Minecraft Bedrock server. Give it a minute to fully start up.
Step 10) Invite Friends
Your free Bedrock server is now up and running! Click "Copy IP Address" and send it to your friends to join.
And that‘s it – in those simple steps you now have a fully functioning free Minecraft Bedrock server for you and your friends to play on together!
Key Differences Between Bedrock & Java Servers
Now that you know how to make a free Bedrock server, you may be wondering – how is this different from a Java Edition server?
There are a few key distinctions:
Cross-play – Bedrock enables cross-play between mobile, consoles, and Windows 10. Java only works for the Java Edition.
Performance – Bedrock servers run better on lower-end hardware. Java needs beefier specs.
Mods – Java has way more mods and plugins. Bedrock has limited addons.
Updates – Java gets major updates first. Bedrock version lags behind.
So if you want heavy modding go Java. For cross-play and performance, use Bedrock.
What Features Come with a Free Bedrock Server?
Okay, so what exact capabilities and resources can you expect with a free Minecraft Bedrock server?
Here‘s an overview of typical free plan limitations:
Players – Max of 10 slots for users. Enough for a small group of friends.
World Size – Usually 1GB total for your world save data.
Uptime – Around 12-18 hours of uptime per day. Servers may sleep when inactive.
Connections – Can handle 50-100 concurrent connections.
RAM – 1-2GB of RAM allocated to run the server.
Backups – Automated backups, but frequency varies.
While limited compared to paid plans, this is still plenty to have fun with a few friends or try running a server for the first time.
Average Cost for Paid Bedrock Server Hosting
Once you‘re ready to upgrade, how much does paid Bedrock server hosting usually cost?
Here are estimated monthly prices for popular hosts:
Aternos – Starts at $2.50/month for 5GB RAM. Unlimited slots.
Minehut – Around $3/month for 20 slots. More RAM is extra.
Nitrado – $11/month for 20 slots and backups.
Shockbyte – From $2.50/GB. Has modpack and minigame support.
ServerMiner – Starts at $7/month for 6GB RAM, 30 slots.
For context, a typical small server for 10-20 players will cost $10 – $20 monthly. Additional RAM or storage raises prices further.
So while not free, paid Bedrock servers are very affordable starting at just a few dollars per month.
Minecraft Bedrock vs. Java Players Statistics
Just how popular is Minecraft Bedrock compared to the original Java Edition? Let‘s look at some key stats:
Total players:roughly 475 million total for Bedrock vs 140 million for Java Edition.
Monthly active: about 131 million monthly on Bedrock vs 26 million on Java as of 2021.
Revenue share: in Fiscal Year 2021, Bedrock made up 64% of Minecraft‘s $1.1 billion revenue, while Java was 36%.
So in terms of total and active players, Bedrock is significantly larger than Java. But a good chunk of spending still comes from Java players.
This highlights that while Bedrock has exploded onto consoles and mobile, Java remains an extremely important edition, especially amongst dedicated server hosts.
Enabling Cross-Play Between Bedrock and Java Editions
By default, Bedrock and Java players cannot play on the same server due to incompatible networks.
However, there is a plugin called GeyserMC that acts as a bridge between Bedrock and Java – allowing cross-play between both editions!
Here is a quick guide to setting up Geyser:
First host a Java server through a host like Aternos.
Upload the GeyserMC plugin file to your server‘s plugin manager.
Restart your server. Geyser will generate required config files.
Open config.yml, set
Restart once more. Bedrock players can now join through Geyser!
So with GeyserMC, you can bring Java and Bedrock players together on one server for true cross-edition fun.
Is It Possible to Self-Host a Bedrock Server?
Rather than use a hosting provider, can you host a Bedrock server on your own computer?
It is technically possible, but has some challenges:
Your PC must be online 24/7 for server uptime.
Good upload speeds are required so users can connect smoothly.
Port forwarding must be setup on your router.
If your IP changes, it can break the server.
So while doable for tech-savvy users, most people will have an easier time using a third-party host. But if you do want to self-host:
Accept the EULA, configure server.properties, port forward your router.
Give out your public IP and port for friends to connect.
Overall, I suggest using a dedicated hosting service for your first Bedrock server unless you have strong technical skills to self-host.
Tips for Running a Lag-Free Server on a Free Plan
Even on lower-resource free hosting, a few handy tweaks can help your Bedrock server run faster and smoother:
Keep mob farms and redstone contraptions smaller in scale to reduce lag.
Set view-distance to 4 or 6. Anything higher consumes more RAM.
Avoid exploring and modifying large areas to minimize disk usage.
Delete unused world save files to free up space.
Restart the server once per day during off-peak hours for improved stability.
Limit number of online players to stay under resource quotas.
Use Discord for chatting to prevent spamming and text overload.
With smart management, you can build an enjoyable multiplayer experience even on a free Bedrock server.
Final Thoughts and Recommendations
So in summary – yes, creating your own free Minecraft Bedrock Edition server is absolutely possible and a great way to play with friends!
Use Aternos, Minehut or Nitrado for free and easy server hosting.
Follow the step-by-step guide to create your server. Takes just minutes!
Free plans allow 10 players online and about 1GB world storage.
Enable cross-play between Bedrock and Java using the GeyserMC plugin.
Paid Bedrock servers start around $10/month for more resources and slots.
Overall, I highly recommend trying out a free Bedrock server with your friends. It‘s an awesome gateway into hosting your very own Minecraft multiplayer world that you control!