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Minecraft Exit Code 1 error: What is it and how to fix it

There are a few quick fixes available.
By

Published onJanuary 3, 2024

Minecraft remains an incredibly popular game and has evolved over the years to include plenty of new features and content, along with support for multiple platforms, from PCs to handheld consoles like the Nintendo Switch. It’s not entirely free from bugs and glitches, though, and a common error that PC players, in particular, may encounter is the “Exit code: 1” error. The Exit Code 1 error pops up when the game fails to load. The crash happens because of problems with the Java Runtime configuration, but there are other reasons too. Here’s how to fix the Exit Code 1 error on Minecraft.

QUICK ANSWER

To fix the Exit Code 1 error on Minecraft, reinstall or update Java since a Java configuration issue likely caused the problem. You can also try changing the Java Executable path and the Minecraft Launcher path if those are the problems. Ensure that your GPU drivers are updated, and you might have to disable or delete outdated mods. If all else fails, you can try uninstalling and reinstalling the game but don't forget to back up your saves first.

How to fix the Minecraft Exit Code 1 error

The Minecraft Exit Code 1 error is usually the result of an issue with the Java installation on your machine. However, the problem can be caused by other issues.

ROG Phone 2 Front shot of gaming playing Minecraft

Reinstall Java

As the Exit Code 1 error is usually caused by a Java configuration issue, the best option is to reinstall Java. This should address any configuration problems and update the Java Runtime Environment to the latest version.

First, uninstall Java as you would remove any other software on your PC. Then go to the Java download page and find the correct version for your system OS. Download the installer and go through the setup process.

Change the Java Executable path

While reinstalling is the easier way to fix problems with Java, you can also try changing the Java Executable path to run a modified version of the game. Open the Minecraft Launcher and go to the Minecraft Java Edition window in the left panel. Go to Installations, click the three horizontal dots icon (which appears when you hover your mouse over Latest release), and select Edit.

Click More options and select Browse in the Java Executable section. Find the Java installation folder. By default, the path is C: > Program Files (x86) > Java > Jre(version number) > bin. Select java.exe and click Open. Apply the changes and relaunch the Minecraft Launcher. An important thing to remember here is that you will have to go through this process every time you update Java, so it’s better to try reinstalling Java first to see if that fixes the Exit Code 1 error.

Change the Minecraft Launcher path

Issues with the Minecraft Launcher path can also cause the Exit Code 1 error to appear. This problem is often caused by using a special character in your username. Luckily, there’s a quick fix to ensure that special characters in your User ID don’t cause an issue.

Right-click on the Minecraft Launcher icon and go to Properties. Open the Shortcut tab, and in the Target window, add –workDir %ProgramData%.minecraft or –workDir %ProgramData%.minecraft. Ensure you add it to the end of the existing target file, and don’t change anything with the original link.

After making the addition, the target link should be something like C:\Program Files (x86)\Minecraft Launcher\MinecraftLauncher.exe” –workDir %ProgramData%.minecraft. Click Apply to save it and see if the error code goes away.

Disable mods

Minecraft enjoys incredible community support, and there are fantastic mods available that let you completely change your experience. However, outdated mods or too many of them might cause problems and stop the game from loading correctly. You can try and delete your mods to see if that fixes the issue, and then install them one by one to figure out which one is the problem.

To delete your mods, launch the Run dialog (Win + R  or type Run in the Search bar) and type %appdata%\. Open the .minecraft folder and delete the Mods folder (create a backup first). Run the game to see if this fixes the problem. However, remember that removing mods will break certain aspects of the game. You can try reinstalling the mods to see if there is a specific one that caused the Exit Code 1 error to pop up.

Update GPU drivers

Outdated versions of GPU drivers cause problems when gaming, so you should try and keep them updated as much as possible. Older drivers might cause the Exit Code 1 error to appear as well. Ensure that you update your GPU drivers. The steps will differ depending on your GPU, so it’s best to look up the manufacturer’s instructions on how to update the GPU.

Reinstall Minecraft

Uninstalling and reinstalling the game is also a generic troubleshooting step you can try to fix the Minecraft Exit Code 1 error. Minecraft doesn’t have a convenient uninstallation program, but it’s still easy to do.

First, you should create a backup for your saves so you don’t lose them. Open the Run dialog (Win + R  or type Run in the Search bar) and type %appdata%\.minecraft. You can also find it by following the path to C:\Users\(username)\AppData\Roaming\.minecraft.

Copy the Saves folder to another location on your computer. Then go back to the Roaming folder and delete .minecraft to uninstall the game. Open the Minecraft Launcher to reinstall the game and copy the Saves folder back in place.