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I see some information that says your PC must be online the first time you install/register your mojang account.

Is there a way to do this, and then move files / installer to a completely offline (airgapped) PC?

Conversely, if I do get my first install done online - can I save specific files, and nuke the machine and reinstall windows, and copy over the files which were online onto a machine which isn't online?

Any other possible solutions?

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    Does this answer your question? How to play Minecraft offline? – Fana Jul 6 '20 at 7:30
  • No, that has the 'use once online first' option (although they were still having problems). I would prefer a 'use never online, just download f/an online source; sneakernet to airgapped computer'. If necessary, would do it online, then reformat OS, and put 'approved' files onto a clean install. – nobodyhome Jul 6 '20 at 19:13
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yes, you can move the Minecraft Launcher files to an offline computer,

and it will start fine, remembering your installed versions, their icons and names, and so on,

but, you'll need to be online anyway to boot up the game

because the launcher needs to;

  1. log in to verify you've bought the game,
  2. re-download any version files to verify itself, i assume, seeing when i attempted it failed to boot because it couldn't connect to the launcher.mojang.com domain to get a proper 1.16.json (even though i had it in the proper location on disk).

for those curious how i did this;

  1. i set up a virtual machine and did a clean install of Windows 10 on it, making sure it itself was up-to-date with proper drivers, VirtualBox Guest Additions, and so on (this allows for host-to-guest file transfer),
  2. i copied the %programfiles(x86)%\Minecraft Launcher and %appdata%\.minecraft files to the guest OS's proper locations,
  3. i disconnected the guest OS from any network,
  4. i started up Minecraft Launcher manually--it won't pop up in the Start menu like it will in a usual install.
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  • So, it seems I must expose a windows machine to the internet in order to play minecraft. – nobodyhome Jul 6 '20 at 19:16

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