The Minecraft Launcher is a game launcher and downloader for Minecraft: Java Edition. It also serves as a launcher and downloader for Minecraft for Windows (Bedrock Edition), and Minecraft Dungeons. It is available for Windows and macOS, but Minecraft for Windows cannot be played on Windows 10/11 and Minecraft Dungeons can only be used on Windows 7+.
Users must log in to the initial login screen with a Microsoft account. If they don't have one, they can create one by clicking this link. Logins can be made in the "Settings” tab. If a user attempts login with a Mojang Studios account or legacy Minecraft account they will be directed towards migrating to a Microsoft account.
On the left side you will see a "News" tab and a tab for each of the Minecraft Launcher games.
The Minecraft Launcher's top left corner contains the user's Xbox gamertag. This may differ from their Minecraft Java Edition username. Clicking on it will allow users to log in or log out of their account. A "Help" page will appear with links to various resources.
- You can launch multiple instances by pressing the "Play” button while the game is still running. - The game can also be run offline if it has been downloaded previously.
- If the user hasn't purchased the game yet, the "Play" button will appear as a "Play demo", which downloads and launches a demo version.
You will also find a section called "Patch notes", where you can view the patch notes for the game's latest update, as well as snapshots (if they are enabled).
Creating new installations.
You can create and edit custom installations in the "Installations” section. You can sort and search for installations. There are also checkboxes that allow you to install "Releases", Snapshots, and Modded versions of the game. Installations are stored in launcher_profiles.json (or launcher_profiles_microsoft_store.json when using the new Minecraft Launcher for Windows) in the game's directory (.minecraft).
There are two default installations: one for the "Latest release" (if enabled) and one for the "Latest snapshot", which cannot be modified. Click the "New Installation" button to create a new installation. You can also edit an existing one by clicking on it. The "Play" button launches the selected installation. A folder icon takes you to the installation's games directory. You can edit, duplicate, and delete an installation by clicking the ellipses button.
The following can be modified on the create/edit install page:
- Icon. You can choose from the default icons or add your own. You must have a.png file and 128x128 pixels to create custom icons.
- Name, defaultly called "".
- Version, which allows you to access older releases and snapshots (if available).
- Game directory is the location where game files are saved. The default is.minecraft. You can either type the location or select it using the "Browse” button.
- Resolution. This changes the game's window size. You can choose from a variety of resolutions or create your own.
Java executable defaults to the bundled Java runtime
- JVM arguments such as heap size.
It was possible to manually set a log configuration in the past (see Debugging on Wiki.vg for more information), but this does not seem to work anymore.
You can also download a specific game version's server. To do this, select the version from the list and click the "Server" button.
The Minecraft Launcher can play older versions of the game and older snapshots by default. However, it will also allow you to play older versions before Release 1.0. These versions can be viewed in the Installations section if the player has enabled "Show historical Java Edition" in their Minecraft Launcher settings tab. These versions are unsupported and may have bugs or other issues that are not found in the latest versions. To avoid save corruption and other problems, it is recommended that you run older versions of the game in a different directory and backup worlds.
After historical versions have been enabled, the following can all be accessed:
- Most beta versions.
- The most alpha versions.
- One infdev version.
- Four classic versions.
- Five pre-classic versions.
These older versions have some issues:
- Some sounds are incorrect; doors, bows, and explosions use sounds from RC1 even though they were not available in previous versions. Sounds do not work in versions before Alpha 1.1.2_01
Versions prior to 1.7 are missing skins. This is because earlier versions used a different server for skins, which has since been closed down. Capes may still function, however. [needs testing]
- The Minecraft Launcher doesn't correctly set the player's name in Alpha 1.0.15 and Alpha 1.2.0 to Alpha 2.2.6. This causes everyone to use default names: "Player" followed with a random 3-digit number. Multiplayer is difficult to play because the client's inventory and location are reset each time they launch their client.
- Players are always called "Player524" in Alpha 1.2.5 and Alpha 2.2.6. These versions do not allow multiplayer play, as players can only join a server with the same name.
Online mode is no longer available in Beta 1.8 versions as a side effect of the above and due to old authentication servers being shut off.
The "Skins" section allows the user to view and modify their in-game skin. The default skin is either Steve, or Alex.
Click "Use" to apply skin from the skins library. You can edit, duplicate, and delete the skin by clicking on the ellipsis icon. The default skins for Steve and Alex are stored in the library. They can be duplicated, applied, or removed.
If you visit this section without purchasing the game, a button will redirect to the Minecraft: Java Edition store page.
- The game can be played offline if the device isn't connected to the internet. However, it must have been downloaded initially.
- A warning will appear if the user is using an unsupported device. The link to a website that supports supported devices will be provided.
- If the user hasn't created an account to purchase the game, the "Play button" will appear as a "Play demo button" that links to Microsoft Store to download the demo version.
There is a section called "FAQ" that answers frequently asked questions about Minecraft Launcher and Minecraft For Windows (Bedrock Edition), and an "Installation” section that allows you to uninstall or repair the game. A section called "Patch notes" contains the patch notes for the latest updates (not including beta versions).
The main "Play” section allows users to download (if necessary) and launch the latest Minecraft Dungeons version with the "Play” button. It also contains images from the game as well as a list of recent news articles from minecraft.net. This section also includes a notice that the game is available separately from Microsoft Store for Windows. If the player isn't playing on the supported platform, a message at the bottom will be displayed that says: Where is the play button? Minecraft Dungeons is not available on (platform).
You can use the search bar or filter option to narrow down your results when searching for DLCs. Check the box to see the bundle and/or DLCs.
Each DLC is presented in a card-like format with the DLC information on the left and the cover image on the right. A slideshow is also included at the bottom of each card.
When you press the FAQ tab, the FAQ section will be displayed. The FAQ tab contains a list of troubleshooting areas and a link that will take you to the Minecraft Dungeons FAQ.
Users can access in the main "General" section.
- Change the Minecraft Launcher language. There are 66 languages, including 2 joke languages (as at February 2021).
- Download the beta version of Minecraft Launcher. This requires restarting the launcher in order to download the latest version.
- Keep the Minecraft Launcher open when games are running.
- Enable animations within the Minecraft Launcher. These animations are disabled by default to prevent motion sickness for some users.
- Disable hardware acceleration
Only available for Minecraft Edition:
- When the game starts, open the output log.
- Option to automatically email the game's crash logs to Mojang Studios
- Display historical versions of the game (versions before Release 1.0) using the version selector in Section Installations.
Users can manage, add, delete, change, manage and manage their Microsoft accounts in the "Accounts" section.
The "About" section provides information about Minecraft Launcher, including its version, credits and third-party licences. You can also view a list of patch notes by clicking on the "What's new?" button. button.
The Help Message when using MinecraftLauncher.exe --help
The Minecraft Launcher now has the following command-line options for Minecraft: Java Edition.
--demo - This launches the demo version, just like if you haven't purchased the game yet.
-h, -help - This option displays a help text on how to run it in a command line.
--clean - This option removes the "game", and "runtime", folders from the working directory, along with their contents.
--launcherui – This option displays the login screen.
-w, -workDir – This option is followed by a path (relative, absolute), which changes the location (and/or the name) of the.minecraft directory. - This option can be used to create a portable version of the game. You can use --workDir (or -workDir=) to create a portable installation of the game. can be used to make Minecraft Launcher use current directory (regardless of what it is called).
This only applies to players who are using Windows 10 or later. The new Minecraft Launcher for Windows is not compatible with older versions of Windows. To remove any confusion between the launchers, you can install the new launcher and uninstall the old one. The new launcher is called the "Minecraft Launcher for Windows", while the old launcher is known as the "Minecraft Unified Launcher".
How do I uninstall the Minecraft Unified Launcher? (old launcher).
1. Click the Start Menu in Windows (windows icon at the bottom left).
2. Click the top entry and type "Add or Remove Programs"
3. Search for "Minecraft Launcher" The launcher to uninstall displays Mojang under the title "Minecraft Rocketer".
4. Click the three dots to the left of "Minecraft Launcher", and choose "Uninstall".
Only one launcher should now be installed. To make sure it works, run the Minecraft Launcher Windows. If it doesn't work, reinstall it using Microsoft Store or Xbox App.
Before you uninstall the old launcher, it may be necessary to migrate or re-install game mods or launcher to the new Minecraft Launcher For Windows installation location. For more information, contact the mod developer.