Install Minecraft on Ubuntu Using Snap Packages

Get the latest Minecraft release for Ubuntu

When you first install Minecraft on an Ubuntu system it involves a convoluted set of steps, which for the average computer user, isn't as straightforward as installing Debian package.

The steps involve obtaining the correct version of the Oracle runtimes and downloading the Minecraft.jar file.

You then have to make the Minecraft.jar file executable and run it using a Java command.

While the process isn't particularly difficult, it isn't as easy as the method that you will be using today.

Snap Packages

Ubuntu has a new package type called snap packages. Snap packages differ from normal packages in that rather than working out dependencies and only installing missing dependencies a Snap package downloads and installs every dependency.

Snap packages are installed to a separate location and are isolated from the rest of the system so that they are self-contained. This is great for security purposes and it also prevents dependency issues when other packages are installed because each snap package uses its own set of libraries.

This is, of course, very expensive in terms of disk space because you might have the same libraries installed in multiple places.

The use of shared libraries was a great idea back in the day when disk space was at a premium because each application could share the same resources.

Most computers now have more disk space than people require and it is cheap to buy more disk space. By separating each application into their own container you no longer have to worry about the installation of one package breaking another package.

How to Install Minecraft Using a Snap Package

The process for installing Minecraft using a snap package is actually very straightforward.

First of all, forget the graphical software tool. It is not fit for purpose. You need to use the command line.

Open a terminal and type the following command:

snap find | less

This command will provide a list of available packages and page them using the less command.

You can find the Minecraft snap package by typing the following command:

snap find minecraft | less

A number of results will be returned and by looking at the descriptions you can see there is one called "mc-installer".

Minecraft installer package in Ubuntu

The "mc-installer" package automatically downloads the Minecraft Java Edition .jar file and sets it up with a shortcut, so you can run Minecraft like you would any regular Ubuntu application.

To install the "mc-installer" package type the following command:

sudo snap install mc-installer

Ubuntu install snap mc-installer

After the file has downloaded run the package by using the following command:

snap run mc-installer

The package will run and start downloading the Minecraft .jar. It'll take a few seconds beyond that to set up the scripts and shortcuts. When it's done, it'll open up Minecraft for you.

All you need to do now is log in and away you go.

How to Start Minecraft

After it has installed you might be wondering how you run Minecraft on subsequent occasions.

Thanks to the mc-installer snap, You don't really need to worry about it. Open up your application listing by pressing Show Applications in the bottom left of your desktop.

Show Applications button in Ubuntu

Scroll through the results until you see the Minecraft icon. When you do, select it to launch Minecraft.

Minecraft icon in Ubuntu

Minecraft will pop open, and you;ll be asked to sign in, if you haven't already. Once you do, you're free to play Minecraft to your heart's content. It'll work this way every time you want to play.

Minecraft running on Ubuntu

The Alternative Method for Installing Minecraft

Of course, if you don't like this method there is another method for installing Minecraft.

The first thing to do is add a new PPA to your list of sources. A PPA stands for Personal Package Archive and it is basically another software repository.

To add the PPA run the following command in a terminal window:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:flexiondotorg/minecraft

You now need to run an update to refresh the list of packages for the new repository that you added.

sudo apt update

Now install the Minecraft installer package:

sudo apt install minecraft-installer

After the package has installed run it as follows:


Minecraft will now run and you can either register a new account or login.

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