Running Minecraft in a Container with Persistent Storage


TL: DR – –


As you may recall back in my OSCON Blog post, Brian Verkley (@BVerkley) and I had the pleasure ofimage sitting through a really interesting talk from Julia Ferraioli with Google. She discussed running Java type apps like Minecraft in containers. Java Apps are probably one of the most prevalent type apps inside enterprises so if you can take something like Minecraft and run it in a container, you can run anything.  During Julia’s talk, she pointed out that the one hurdle for an application like Minecraft is that the world needs to be persistent.  In other words, when I kill the container and recreate it, I need to be able to recover the world I was in.  She said imagethat a lot of advancement was being made in the community but at this point, she hasn’t looked into it. This is where Brian and I stepped in.  We decided to take her demo and add the persistency she was missing utilizing an Open Source project that the EMC {CODE} Team produced called “REX-Ray” along with ScaleIO simply because we work for EMC and wanted to use something super portable and easy to deploy on laptops. 

The process was pretty interesting, first I had to learn how to play the game Smile  You know, imageso I can really understand the ins and outs of it !  The good news is Verkley is a freaking savant with Minecraft!!  He’s been playing with his kids for the last 5 years !  After a week of solid playing, I felt like I really started to understand it.  I did rage quit a few times but I suffered through and now enjoy playing the game, especially since we have a lot of the team’s kids playing in this world together !  This project became mission critical overnight HAHA !  We are currently hosting an EC2 Instance of Ubuntu/Minecraft on AWS in an effort to help us get comfortable with running apps in the cloud !

Special thanks to Jonas Rosland (@JonasRosland) for helping us pull this all together ! In imagean effort to make the setup easy, we utilized EMC {CODE}’s Vagrant Package of ScaleIO and REX-Ray and he was able to make some changes to the repo for our demo ! 

Normally I would give you a screen shot, by ever loving screen shot install guide (stay tuned for future blog posts on how to demo all of this).  I do these mostly because I have a bad memory so documenting it was more for me, than you Smile  Well because this project will change pretty often, I’m going to document everything in the project repo itself.  As everyone should for projects like these !  So head over to and start checking it out.

If you have questions/comments head to the Community Slack group over atimage and post the questions inside the #EMC channel.  If you aren’t familiar with the EMC Code Community Slack channel you really should take the time to check it out.  It’s open to anyone, you don’t need to be an EMC customer, in fact most questions are not EMC specific !  They have really cool channels around Docker, Python and even GeekParent channel where parents talk family tech stuff !  If you have any questions around this Minecraft demo, ask them there and one of us on the team will answer them ASAP! Also, Feel free to fork it/clone it and contribute to the documentation! 



Tommyt – @vTexan




One thought on “Running Minecraft in a Container with Persistent Storage

  1. For others having issues with the private key during vagrant up, add the following line to your vagrantfile under ScaleIO folder.

    config.ssh.insert_key = false

    It should be around line 76 because it needs to be after the do config

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