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Note: Since version 0.4.14, Minetest has an “advanced settings” feature to change virtually all settings in Minetest, including a brief description of what each setting does. You will now rarely need to edit minetest.conf manually.

minetest.conf is the configuration file used for numerous purposes. This file is read every time the game starts and is always created/modified when the menu quits.

The configuration file is located in one of these locations:

  • ../minetest.conf - (RUN_IN_PLACE version, relative to executable)
  • ../../minetest.conf - (RUN_IN_PLACE version, relative to executable)
  • ~/.minetest/minetest.conf - (globally installed version on Linux)

A custom path to a configuration file can be specified in command line using the option --config /path/to/minetest.conf.

A file called minetest.conf.example is provided as an example. See that file for a more complete list of options.
This C++ code automatically generates minetest.conf, it contains all the default settings: [1]

Default Settings (Excerpt)

Raw file

Key Type Default Value Description
video_driver string opengl Allows the user to chose the video renderer used to render Minetest.
null - No rendering at all.
software - Software rendering (not accelerated by graphics card, everything done by the processor), very slow.
burningsvideo - Also software rendering, very slow.
direct3d8 - Uses Direct3D 8, unlikely to work.
directdd9 - Uses Direct3D 9, may not work.
opengl - Uses OpenGL, latest version possible. Best stability.
address string blank The address used for connecting to a server, if it is blank, the game will start a local server when attempting to connect.
port integer 30000 The port used when connecting to, or creating a server. For creating a server, ports above 1024 are preferred for security, compatibility and standards compliance reasons.
creative_mode boolean 0 Enables creative mode. This only affects local server.
1 - Creative mode enabled.
0 - Creative mode disabled.
enable_damage boolean 0 Enables damage. When disabled, players cannot die or receive damage of any kind. This only affects local server.
1 - Damage enabled.
0 - Damage disabled.
name string blank The name of the player.
new_style_leaves boolean 1 Whether to make leaves transparent (1) or opaque (0); opaque leaves are faster, thus recommended on slower computers.
1 - Leaves are transparent.
0 - Leaves are opaque.
new_style_water boolean 0 Whether to lower water surface (1) or not (0) compared to other nodes; default water is faster to render and more accurate.
1 - Water surface is lowered compared to other nodes, does not affect physics or gameplay.
0 - Water surfaced is not lowered.
opaque_water boolean 0 Whether to enable opaque water.
1 - Opaque water enabled.
0 - Opaque water disabled.
show_debug boolean 0 Whether to enable debug info (coordinates, draw times...) on startup.
1 - Debug info shown by default.
0 - Debug info hidden by default.
smooth_lighting boolean 1 Whether to use smooth lighting.
1 - Smooth lighting enabled.
0 - Smooth lighting disabled.
client_delete_unused_sectors_timeout integer 600 This will set the client to forget parts of the map from the memory when they haven't been accessed for N seconds.
invert_mouse boolean 0 Allows the user to invert their mouse vertical axis.
1 - Mouse vertical axis inverted.
0 - Mouse vertical axis not inverted.
texture_path string blank Allows the user to specify an additional texture directory, from which Minetest will first search for textures.
time_speed integer 72 This changes the speed of the day-night cycle (also applies to local/singleplayer game). When set to 0, the day-night cycle stops. The higher is the value, the faster the day-night cycle will be. 1 is equivalent to real world's day-night cycle.
viewing_range_nodes_min integer 25 Allows the user to change their minimal view range. This is very useful for slow computers. Can be changed using KP + and KP - in-game.
viewing_range_nodes_max integer 160 Allows the user to change their maximal view range. This is very useful for slow computers.
fov integer 72 Allows the user to change their field of view.
view_bobbing boolean 1 Whether to enable view and wield item bobbing.
1 - View bobbing enabled.
0 - View bobbing disabled.
view_bobbing_amount float 1.0 Controls view bobbing intensity, 1.0 being 100%, 1.5 being 150% and so on. When set to 0.0, view bobbing is disabled but the wield item still bobs.
enable_fog boolean 1 Whether to fog out the end of the visible area.
1 - Fog enabled.
0 - Fog disabled.
enable_clouds boolean 1 Whether to draw clouds.
1 - Clouds enabled.
0 - Clouds disabled.
enable_3d_clouds boolean 0 Allows the user to enable 3D clouds.
1 - 3D clouds enabled.
0 - 3D clouds disabled (2D clouds used instead).
enable_sound boolean 1 Whether to enable sound; sound can only be enabled if you have installed OpenAL.
1 - Sound enabled.
0 - Sound disabled.
sound_volume float 0.8 Allows the user to change sound volume. 1 is 100% volume whereas 0 is 0% volume.


In minetest.conf, you can configure most (but not all) keys, but a few more keys can be configured which are not configurable in the in-game settings menu; most notably, camera mode and minimap.

A few things to note:

  • Controls are written in the format keymap_<action name> = <key name>, e.g. keymap_forward = KEY_KEY_W
  • The list of possible controls (value right of the equals sign) can be seen in [2]. If your key isn't listed there, try writing the literal character
  • To disable a control completely, leave the part right of the equals sign empty, e.g. keymap_toggle_debug =

See Controls for a list of controls and their setting name (if available).

Server-side settings

Key Type Default Value Description
server_name string empty Name of the server, to be displayed when players join and in the serverlist.
server_description string empty Description of server, to be displayed when players join and in the serverlist.
server_address string empty Domain name of server, to be displayed in the serverlist.
server_url string empty Homepage of server, to be displayed in the serverlist.
server_announce boolean false Automatically report to the serverlist.
serverlist_url string servers.minetest.net Announce to this serverlist.
strip_color_codes boolean false Remove color codes from incoming chat messages. Use this to stop players from being able to use color in their messages
port integer 30000 Network port to listen (UDP).

This value will be overridden when starting from the main menu.

bind_address string empty The network interface that the server listens on. e.g. eth0
strict_protocol_version_checking boolean false Enable to disallow old clients from connecting.

Older clients are compatible in the sense that they will not crash when connecting to new servers, but they may not support all new features that you are expecting.

remote_media string empty Specifies URL from which client fetches media instead of using UDP.

$filename should be accessible from $remote_media$filename via cURL (obviously, remote_media should end with a slash). Files that are not present will be fetched the usual way.

ipv6_server boolean false Enable/disable running an IPv6 server. Ignored if bind_address is set.
max_simultaneos_block_sends_per_client integer 40 Maximum number of blocks that are simultaneously sent per client.

The maximum total count is calculated dynamically: max_total = ceil((#clients + max_users) * per_client / 4)

full_block_send_enable_min_time_from_building float? (please correct) 2.0 To reduce lag, block transfers are slowed down when a player is building something.

This determines how long they are slowed down after placing or removing a node.

max_packets_per_iteration integer 1024 Maximum number of packets sent per send step, if you have a slow connection

try reducing it, but don't reduce it to a number below double of targeted client number.

default_game string minetest Default game when creating a new world.

This will be overridden when creating a world from the main menu.

motd string empty Message of the day displayed to players connecting.
max_users integer 15 Maximum number of players that can be connected simultaneously.
map-dir string empty World directory (everything in the world is stored here).

Not needed if starting from the main menu.

item_enity_ttl integer 900 Time in seconds for item entity (dropped items) to live.

Setting it to -1 disables the feature.

enable_damage missing missing Missing
creative_mode missing missing Missing
fixed_map_seed missing missing Missing
default_password missing missing Missing
default_privs missing missing Missing
basic_privs missing missing Missing
player_transfer_distance missing missing Missing
enable_pvp missing missing Missing
enable_mod_channels missing missing Missing
disallow_empty_password missing missing Missing
disable_anticheat missing missing Missing
enable_rollback_recording missing missing Missing
chat_message_format missing missing Missing
kick_msg_shutdown missing missing Missing
kick_msg_crash missing missing Missing
ask_reconnect_on_crash missing missing Missing
active_object_send_range_blocks missing missing Missing
active_block_range missing missing Missing
max_block_send_distance missing missing Missing
max_forceloaded_blocks missing missing Missing
time_send_interval missing missing Missing
time_speed missing missing Missing
world_start_time missing missing Missing
server_map_save_internal missing missing Missing
chat_message_max_size missing missing Missing
chat_message_limit_per_10sec missing missing Missing
chat_message_limit_trigger_kick missing missing Missing

The descriptions are mostly taken from Minetest's main menu settings tab.