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From a few years back I vaguely remember finding a stronghold where I could get to most of the it, but in order to access the portal room, I had to look up its location with cheats and dig through the walls of the stronghold to reach it.

The memory faded over time, and I'm not sure it really was like that, but my brother just found another stronghold, and has scoured it for hours without finding the portal room. I've heard that strongholds don't necessarily have one, but the only sources I could find state that this does not apply to the Java edition.

So I have these questions:

  • Is it possible, in Java edition specifically, to have a stronghold that doesn't have a portal room?
  • Is it possible for a stronghold to have a portal room, but that can't be reached from the staircase that it's generated from?
  • In the event that a portal room is inaccessible, how would one go about finding it?
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    I know from personal experience that the portal room can spawn separate to the rest of the stronghold. – Reflexive Jul 2 at 23:47
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    I recently found a stronghold that has a mineshaft running through the portal room in Java edition. Not sure whether it's possible for a stronghold on its own to generate without a portal, but other structures can generate through the portal room. – Pika the Wizard of the Whales Jul 3 at 0:14
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    @PikachutheParenthesisWizard Were there blocks missing from the portal itself? – Nissa Jul 3 at 0:15
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    Yes, most of the portal itself was missing. – Pika the Wizard of the Whales Jul 3 at 0:31
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Firstly, Eyes of Ender don't always necessarily lead to an End Portal. They instead locate the nearest Stronghold (emphasis mine):

Pressing use while holding an eye of ender will cause it to fly approximately 12 meters in the direction of the nearest stronghold, traveling through any blocks necessary, and leave a trail of purple particles in its wake, the same particle effect used for ender chests.

Since Stronghold generation is random, to the point where sometimes an End Portal room is not generated (in some versions this causes strongholds to be re-generated until and End Portal is placed; in others only one Stronghold will contain an End Portal[citation needed]), this can also lead to rooms being blocked off naturally:

Sometimes, doors can be sealed off by stone bricks, resulting in "secret doors", its usually occur on 5-way crossing.

So in the instance of locating a "blocked off" End portal, your best bet is simply to go mining. If a wall does not have a door, break the blocks behind them to see if another layer of stone bricks is visible. This should indicate a "hidden" room. You won't need to dig more than 2 layers at most. Though, in my experience of playing the Java Edition, using an Eye of Ender above ground, to the point where it locates a Stronghold has generally led me directly to the End Portal (though I have only played intermittently since the release of 1.14).

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