Minecraft is a lot more fun when you play with friends, but to be able to do so, you either need to join a public server or host your own, and needless to say, many users opt for the second option.
Playing on your private server has many advantages but, unfortunately, comes with a few difficulties when not done correctly.
If you hosted a server and your friends seem unable to join it, the issue might be just what we’ll be covering in this guide, and that’s an issue with the port forwarding in Minecraft.
With that said, let’s get right into what you should know about this issue.
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What Does Port Forwarding Mean, And Why Do I Need To Do It?
Before we get into the fixes for this problem, it’s crucial to understand what you’re doing and what it means to port forward when hosting a Minecraft server.
To simplify, when a user forwards their port(s), they allow other computers on the internet to connect to their computer or service (in our situation, a Minecraft server).
Port forwarding is a method used often and for many different applications, one of which is running a game server like the one you’re trying to host for your friends.
However, this also comes with a slight security risk, as every port open to the public means a higher security risk. That is why you’ll sometimes hear users report they can’t host a server for Minecraft or a different game due to their ISP blocking the port forward attempts.
If this is your case, you might not be able to host servers until you contact your internet service provider and sort out the restrictions.
But, if your ISP isn’t restricting your actions, then the problem might be caused by something else that we’ll help you find and fix.
Things To Do Before Applying The Fixes
For some users, port forwarding is a delicate and complex process during which things can quickly become hard to understand. That is why we recommend doing everything listed in this section before proceeding to the fixes mentioned below.
Create A Static IP Address
Once again, to simplify, Windows automatically assigns your local IP address (also known as “dynamic IP address”) to avoid possible issues with duplicate IP addresses on the same network and other security issues.
Allowing windows to dynamically assign an IP address is the superior method, but only unless you need a static IP for a specific cause, such as hosting a server, in our case.
To host a server, you must have a static IP address. That is because the forwarded ports may not apply to your IP address when it changes due to the “dynamic” setting. If that becomes the case, the players looking for your server will be unable to join.
You can create a static IP address by following the steps below:
- Press Windows + S simultaneously on your keyboard and type in Command Prompt in the search box. Right-click the first result and choose Run as Administrator.
- Inside the Command Prompt panel, type in “ipconfig /all” and press Enter on your keyboard. You’ll see different values on your screen that will be required later, so for now, minimize the window and move on to the next step (don’t exit the window).
- Now that you minimized the window, open the windows search panel again. Type in Network Connections, and then click on the first result.
- Right-click the connection you’re currently using and choose Properties from the list of options, as shown in the image below.
- Paste the values in the correct fields (which will not be the same as the ones shown in the image below) and then save the changes by clicking “OK” at the bottom of the panel. Also, depending on which version of Windows you’re running, the Command Prompt window and the results showcased may look different than the screenshot we provided.
You’ve now successfully created a static local IP address. The next thing we recommend doing is setting up your router.
Since there are way too many different types of routers on the market, we won’t be able to lead you through the process as it may be different than what it was for us. However, the good news is that there’s a lot of support available on the internet for this specific cause.
We recommend checking PortForward and looking up your router’s brand, then following the steps listed to forward a port to the IP address we created in the previous steps.
This helpful video below explains the process in detail and should help you get things done quickly and with ease.
Now that you’ve created a static IP address and successfully forwarded a port, you should be able to host a server and invite your friends to it. If they are still unable to join, or you tested it and your system doesn’t recognize it as open, the problem could be in one of the things we’re solving in the sections below.
Fix 1: Temporarily Disable Your Windows Firewall
In many cases, Minecraft users reported that Windows Firewall was blocking their port and that they were unable to properly host a server until both the port and the app were allowed through it.
To save time while also checking if this is the root of the problem, we recommend disabling your antivirus and the windows firewall altogether, but temporarily. If this changes anything, and you now see the port as open, you can re-enable both your antivirus and the firewall, but this time add Minecraft as an exception in both.
Since there are many different antivirus programs out there, we cannot guide you through the process of adding Minecraft to yours, but it should be relatively easy to find this information on the internet by doing a quick search.
As for adding Minecraft as an exception in your Windows 10 firewall settings, here’s how to do it quickly and efficiently:
- Press Windows + S on your keyboard simultaneously to open the Windows search panel, then type in Firewall & Network Protection. Press Enter on your keyboard to initiate the search.
- Scroll down the panel and click on Allow an App Through the Firewall, as shown in the image below.
- Add the Minecraft executable file as an exception, which should ensure that the connection won’t be blocked by the firewall anymore.
Finally, to ensure the same, but this time with your port, take a look at this helpful video which covers the entire process in detail.
Now you’ve successfully done all things on your end that could’ve possibly been a problem as to why Minecraft port forwarding is not working on your computer. There’s one last thing to do if you are still experiencing the problem.
Take a look at the section down below to find out more.
Fix 2: Contact Your ISP
As we already mentioned earlier in this guide, some internet service providers decide to block any attempts to create a static IP address and port forwarding to protect inexperienced users from potential security threats.
By contacting them, you will be able to explain why you’re trying to port forward and why you need a static IP address. In most cases, they’ll assist you in what you’re trying to achieve, so we recommend doing it.
With all that said, you now know why your Minecraft Port Forwarding may not be working as it should. Luckily, the methods listed above helped many users, and hopefully, they’ll help you as well.
Lastly, we recommend this helpful guide explaining how to port forward for Risk of Rain 2, created by a Steam user and posted on the community forum, which also applies to many other games, such as Minecraft, in our case. You should find it useful whenever you’re trying to play a multiplayer or co-op game with your friends on your privately hosted server.