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Since it is no longer possible for flowing water to deactivate a Nether portal, you can't use pistons to push blocks into the nether portal and finally you can't move the obsidian powering the portal with pistons; is it possible to deactivate the portal some other way with redstone?

I'm not too interested in detonating TNT near the portal either, ideally the method needs to be reusable and not destroy the surrounding mechanisms.

Bonus points for activating a Nether portal with redstone as well.

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youtube.com/watch?v=bx0hQKONU3A I haven't tried this yet, but with his design specifically its suppose to work. Is this what you are looking for? –  Zero Stack Jan 23 '12 at 21:04
    
@Foxtrot that is actually really neat, unfortunately it doesn't work with retail pistons (as opposed to the piston mod). That might work for activating the portal, but it won't deactivate it (pistons can't push blocks through a nether portal). I will try the activation method when I get home. –  Resorath Jan 23 '12 at 21:08
    
This used to be possible with water, but a recent update (not sure exactly which) removed the functionality. As far as I know, it's currently impossible. –  Alexis King Jan 24 '12 at 0:52

5 Answers 5

up vote 13 down vote accepted

You can put a single bucket of water into a dispenser. When a dispenser "dispenses" an empty bucket, it actually "picks up" a source block in front of it. By putting a single water bucket in a dispenser, when it's activated once it dispenses the water and when it's activated again it removes the water.

You can use this to make a button- or other restone device-triggered "off switch" for a portal. This is a complete reference design:

A nether portal with a dispenser in front of it, hooked up to a button.

The dispenser has a water block in front of it, filling the portal with flow blocks.

The trench behind the portal is what keeps the water from flowing everywhere:

A shot from the other side, showing the channel the water flows in to keep it contained.


To turn it back on, you can build a dispenser with Fire Charges directly against the frame. The Fire Charge goes through the frame, lighting it. The only problem with this is that it consumes a resource that has to be occasionally replenished. Thanks to Resorath for the tip and the video that demonstrates the technique:

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Actually I heard you can shoot a fireball (by using a nether ingredient) through a dispenser to reactivate it. This is great trivia about dispensing and picking up water. –  Resorath Sep 10 '12 at 19:30
    
@Resorath I tried Fire Charges, but they don't light the portal if they just hit beside it, and I haven't found a way to have a dispenser make one hit inside the frame. –  SevenSidedDie Sep 10 '12 at 19:41
    
I saw it in a video similar to this one: youtube.com/watch?v=H1Cwxsf6Ulk but I haven't tested it myself yet. –  Resorath Sep 10 '12 at 19:42
    
@SevenSidedDice interesting. well, I'll have to play around with it. Seems like a front to back solution though finally! –  Resorath Sep 10 '12 at 19:47
    
@Resorath That does work! I'll add that to my answer. –  SevenSidedDie Sep 10 '12 at 19:47

Minecraft version 1.5 allows flint and steel to be used in a dispenser. When the dispenser is activated it will light the Nether portal.

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From the wiki, the only ways to deactivate a nether portal are explosions or pouring a water bucket directly into the portal. If you don't want to have anything explode, it looks like you will not be able to deactivate it with redstone.

One option, if you want to try using TNT without destroying anything nearby, you can use obsidian to direct the blast towards the portal and then just make sure that there is nothing important in that direction.

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I've read the wiki and hoped someone had a more creative way of doing it. –  Resorath Jan 23 '12 at 21:05
    
The wiki is pretty exhaustive in most cases. –  Adam Arold Jul 8 '12 at 9:44
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As of snapshot version 12w21a, dispensers can both dispense buckets of water and fill empty buckets with water blocks. This allows for using redstone to disable the portal (not the most pretty way though). Unfortunately no way to reactivate it though. –  Dracs Jul 9 '12 at 2:12

The answer could evolve with time and updates, but:

As of 1.1.0, with a Vanilla client, no, it's impossible. Plenty of mods will allow that however.

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You can put a water bucket into a dispenser putting it out.

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protected by Community Sep 21 at 10:41

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