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Just wondering, is it possible to change the settings (e.g. Render distance) via commands? If not, is there another way to do?

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Short answer : NO


Long answer: NO in vanilla Minecraft.

You can have some mod, that will have server and client version (they are usually same, but some don't have both of them), where server-side of mod will push values to the client-side, overriding the values in client. Some mods do use it, for example JourneyMap has server version capable to forcing setup of client versions used on server. Also (from my experience) HardcoreDarkness can have forced settings, and eventually more of them. However even those cannot be affected by commands, but are by their configs. And it is traffic-heavy to sending all those data.

The thing is that you need something that sends the info what you want to force, and you need something that will listen to and will change it. Vanilla client has nothing like that for most things you would imagine you want to setup.


However when you mentioned view distance - this thing you can go around.

In server.properties on server, there is

view-distance=7

This is MAXIMAL view distance on server, you can force the clients to have no use of higher numbers. That works because server just simply won't send to players more chunks than this setup offers.

  • Oh well, lets dream on! – Guy named Jon Jun 22 '16 at 14:25
  • I'd also like to point out that forcing the user to have specific settings is not very user friendly. What if the server is a super-fast computer that forces users to have maximum graphics settings? Users with potatoes for PCs won't be able to play on that server at all. Conversely, if the server requires users to have minimum settings and someone has a supercomputer that can render a bunch of shaders/textures/etc, they might get upset that they are limited to lowest graphics settings. – Mage Xy Jun 22 '16 at 15:23
  • @MageXy I imagine this would be (and in my examples is) used for gameplay things, for JourneyMap you can block radar for entities, showing underground, etc, for that darkness mod it just don't let player to change his config to disable the darkness (which can be considered cheating) - however yes, one shall be cautious what he forces to his clients. For modpacks, one can do it by sending the configs, however user can still change them. And yes, not changing some values can be desired thing, really :) – Antoine Hejlík Jun 22 '16 at 15:29

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