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What Are Plugins

Bukkit/Spigot plugins are extensions to your Minecraft Server that add or change existing gameplay functionality.


Contents

  1. What are Plugin Files?
  2. What Can Plugins Do?
  3. How Plugins are Loaded
  4. What is the Difference Between Spigot and Bukkit

What are Plugin Files?

A plugin is a Java Archive (JAR) containing files and code that can be read by a Minecraft server using CraftBukkit. They are used to extend the functions of a vanilla server and only need to be installed on the server without being added to player's files. Some common types of plugins include:

  • Permission plugins that allow server owners to add ranks and rules to player groups.
  • World Protection plugins that allow or prevent building and block-breaking in specified areas as well as grief/troll protections.
  • Economy plugins that add ingame currency for players to trade with each other.
  • Performance plugins that improve server performance and reduce lag to make the server better to play on.

Plugins can be found in many places and plugins from most sources can be used together. The most popular sites for plugins are:


What Can Plugins Do?

Plugins have a very wide range of functionality being able to do everything from make the game feel like it's fully modded all the way to making it so you can make sure players don't break things that are not their own. Below is a list of some of the most common types of plugins:

  • Permission Management - These plugins are used frequently to manage what commands players are able to run on the server. These plugins prevent normal players from being able to run moderator commands (ie: /gamemode)
  • Land Management - These plugins allow you to manage the world in your server, preventing players from breaking other people's builds and sometimes even disallowing them from opening doors and chests in that area.
  • Chat - These plugins change how the in game chat function, from making different chat rooms to making chat only work with players in a specific distance of other players.

How Plugins Are Loaded

In order for plugins to be loaded with your server, you must be running a special kind of server.

Plugins are searched for in the plugins folder by your server and any file with a .jar extension is checked to see if it is a plugin, if it is the server does some magic to see what order everything should be loaded in and then loads it all to start the server.


What is the Difference Between Spigot and Bukkit

There are two major types of plugin servers, Spigot and Bukkit. These two servers are almost the same, the main differences are what they allow the plugin to do. Both of these server types are now managed by Spigot Party Limited, which is the original developers of Spigot only, once the original team behind Bukkit stopped maintaining Bukkit, the Spigot team took it into their own hands to maintain. Most plugins between the two types of servers are able to run on either of the servers, but some older plugins will require a very specific server version and either Bukkit or Spigot and will not work at all with the other server type.


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