Updating Minecraft via .jar files.

Often times prior to a full release Jens and the Mojang team will release snapshots or pre-releases. These snapshots are designed to give a preview of upcoming content.

Because updating Minecraft often interferes with Minecraft servers and other add-ons snapshots are optional downloads and do not utilize the standard updater. This guide will give instruction on how to manually update Minecraft via .jar files.

The first step to installing a snapshot or pre-release is downloading it. For safety purposes always download the snapshot and from Monjang official website. The downloaded file will be called minecraft.jar. This .jar file can be found in the download folder.

Once the .jar file has been successfully downloaded and located it is time to install it.

The following steps will guide you through the installation.

Step 1. Open the Minecraft folder. To do so open the launcher and click on the option button.

Step 1.

Step 2. Click on the game location link to open the file where Minecraft’s files are existed.

Step 2. (1)






Step 3. Make a backup copy of the minecraft.jar file located in the bin folder. 

Step 2.

Step 4. Place the new minecraft.jar file that was just downloaded into the bin folder.

Step 4.

Step 5. After replacing the old minecraft.jar file with the new one the game should be updated. To verify that the installation was successful check the version number within the game as seen below.

The basic cobble stone generator.

Many people playing survival mode will argue that one of the most fundamental things to create early on is a cobblestone generator. The generator is built off the simple premise that when flowing lava touches water it turns to cobblestone.

The first step in making a generator is to create two V-shaped trough. One trough will be one brick longer than another. There should be four spaces between the two troughs

Step One

Step One

In the longer trough dig two spaces straight down as seen in the picture.

Step two

Step Two

Put a bucket of water in the back of the longer trough. If you have done it correctly the water should only extend one space out.

Step Three

Step Three

In the back of the other trough place a bucket of lava. Once placed the lava will continue to try to move forward but once it makes contact with the water it will turn to cobblestone. At this point you simple need to use your pick to harvest it.

Step Four

Step Four

This basic concept can be made to be more elaborate through the use of buttons, pistons, levers and red stone. It is possible to create an automatic cobblestone generator with enough patience, or if complex red stone isn’t your thing you can easily use a button and piston combination to make a semiautomatic generator.

Fully Automatic

Fully Automatic






Minecraft 1.2: The Guide pt.2 Villagers

Sweeping changes have been made to villagers in patch 1.2. They have not yet reached their original design but, the new changes have created a much more organic interaction.

The villagers AI have undergone a substantial upgrade. Villagers will now interact with each other as well as interact with some passive mobs.

Villagers will now search out homes within the village and will go inside and seek shelter from the rain or during night.V They have also gained some survival technique and will flee from zombies seeking shelter in the village structures. Zombies will continue to pursue villagers and if the game is set to hard mode they will break down wooden doors and kill all the villagers inside.

Zombie Chase

The most important addition to villagers is their ability to mate. The mating of villagers is the only way to spawn an iron golem in survival mode. Villagers will mate without any direct interaction with the player but do require certain criteria to be met first.

Mating Villagers

For villagers to mate there must be available houses in the village. A house is defined as a wooden door that has an inside and access to the outside. Only wooden doors count toward mating villagers. Iron doors and trap doors will not promote villager mating.

The inside of a house is determined by whether or not the door is within five blocks of a roof. For a roof to be valid it top must be exposed to the outside and its bottom must be part of an enclose structure.

Villagers mate in a near 1/3 ratio (.35 is the exact number) meaning that for every three doors there can be one villager.

Because doors are used to indicate a house it is possible to create efficient structures with multiple doors to promote faster mating. Buildings like this are unsightly but can be used if the player is only interested in spawning a golem.

Village Spawner

Allocating more memory to Java

If you’re experiencing lagging in Minecraft, or you want to add HD texture packs, you may need to allocate more memory to Java. I have made a video tutorial that can be found at http://youtu.be/nNn_aLqZ-1Y. In the video, I am using Windows 7 Ultimate with Java build 1.6.31.

Let’s begin!

First, click on the windows start button, located on the bottom left of your screen. In the search field, type:


You should see “Java” show up in the control panel section of the search bar. Click on the Java application.

When the Java control panel opens, click on the Java tab, then click view. You should see your platform version and other information. Double click the “Runtime Parameters” column. You should now be able to insert characters.

In this column, you will enter the amount of memory to allocate to Java. The syntax is:


Where # is the amount of memory to allocate in megabytes. It is best practice to keep this amount in multiples of 128 (Java default heap size), but much easier to jump in multiples of 256.

Here are some expamles:




Try starting off at 256m and working your way up until you see a performance increase, or you are able to use your texture pack.

After you have entered the desired amount, click “OK”. In the window that remains open, be sure to click “apply” (the settings did not save when you clicked OK previously).

You have now successfully allocated more memory to Java.

Minecraft 1.2: The Guide pt.1

There were plenty of changes and new content in last week’s patches. This guide will help lead you thru some of the new features.


Is the new map generator software in Minecraft. The noticeable change that ANVIL brings to Minecraft is the increase of the upper limits of maps. World height is now a total of 256 blocks, allowing for taller structures and higher mountains.
ANVIL is retroactive so, any older map will be converted upon loading into the new format. Terrain that has already been loaded will be unaffected but, all new terrain will load under the new format. In rare instances this will create sheered cliff faces where a new mountain are being created.

An example of map issues after anvil conversion

Desert wells
Desert wells are sandstone structures that can be found in the desert biome. Their placement is random, and despite their mystique have no added function beyond being something to look at.

A sand stone well

Jungle biome
Jungle biomes were introduced in patch 1.2. Jungles feature thick foliage and very tall trees. Jungles are also covered in vines and often include small secluded lakes. Within the jungle ocelots can be found which can be tamed like wolves can from other biomes.

Jungle Biome

Ladders and Vine changes
Ladders once again have a collision box. This will allow players to stand on the top of a ladder rather than bouncing on it or sliding down it.
Vines are now able to be climbed like ladders as long as the vine is against a solid surface like trees foliage, trunk, or a wall. Vines do not have a collision box and therefore cannot be stood on.

Taming ocelots will cause it to turn into a domestic cat. The domesticated cat can take one of three forms; siamese, tabby or, tuxedo. Ocelots will despawn so a wild ocelot cannot be kept penned for long. To tame an ocelot a player must have a raw fish in hand. Unlike wolfs which can be walked up to an ocelot will flee if a player approach. If the player remains still the ocelot will approach the player and once it is close enough the player can give the fish to the ocelot causing it to become domesticated.

Siamese cat

Creating fountains in Minecraft

One of the best parts of Minecraft is creating a home. Homes in Minecraft serve many purposes. A house gives players a safe place to go when the creepers come out to play. It can also be a great base of operation to prepare for the next adventure. Houses are more importantly a place to make you own. Whether your house is a shack or a manner there are many things you can do to dress up your little piece of paradise.

Fountains in Minecraft are a simple way of sprucing up the exterior or interior of your home. They require little to complete and are vertical enough to cover a compact or large area.

Big House Fountain

The first task in making a new fountain is to create a basin in which the water will fall into. As a general rule you want to make each side of the basin an odd number of blocks. This allows for the water-spout to be easily centered in the fountains basin. The basin we are making for this tutorial is 5×5.

5x5 Grid

The basin can be lined with any material to match the look and feel desired. The use of slabs is commonly the most preferable choice because they can be used to vary the height of the basin and overall fountain in half block increments.

Step one of basin

Basin Step 2

Basin Step 3

Once the basin is prepared the next step is to add the water spout. Place a pillar of dirt in the basin, this pillar will act as a temporary place for the water to sit on.

Dirt Pillar

Using the bucket, place the water on top of the pillar of dirt. Doing so will allow the water to cascade down into the basin of the fountain.

Water flow with pillar

After the water has been placed the dirt pillar can be removed from under it. The final look of the water flow is dependent on several factors. The height of the dirt pillar, the width of the basin, and depth of the basin can all change how the fountain looks. These same principles can also be applied to other types of fountains such as the wall fountain pictured below.

Larger BasinWall Fountain

Getting out of your mine.

Today we are going to share a few simple tricks that will help you navigate your way through the many mines and caverns in Minecraft. Whether you have stumbled upon an abandoned shaft or lost in your own mine these tips will help you get out alive with your precious ore.

1. Always bring a bucket of water. It may seem like a waste of space but, if you fall into a lava flow you will be grateful that you have something to put yourself out. The worst thing for any miner is to have a bag full of diamond to die in a fire. A bucket of water can also act as a way of creating a bridge across lava lakes or as an easy way to create obsidian for nether portals.

2. Use torches to create a trail home. Place your totems with consistency, either all on the left hand side or all on the right. By placing them all on one side you will be able to decipher  if you are going deeper into your mine or if you are heading out.

3. Create a series of trademarks. When exploring caves it is easy to get lost in its twist and turns. A good cave explorer has a series of marking to help identify whether a passage has been explored or not.

I use a cross hashing like this to keep mobs out of the main tunnel.

There are many other ways to keep yourself moving through your mine smoothly. When we find some more time we will throw out some more suggestion.