MinecraftEdu is a special edition of Mojang’s original Minecraft developed by TeacherGaming LLC in Finland in 2011. It has been used in thousands of classrooms in 40 countries all around the globe. At the heart of any MinecraftEdu classroom setup is the MinecraftEdu server. A separate server license is required for each classroom using MincraftEdu for pupils working collaboratively on a Minecraft project in any curriculum area. Each server license costs $41 (approx. €37) and each MinecraftEdu client license cost $18 (approx. €16). The MinecraftEdu server can be hosted on a school server, teacher’s classroom computer connected to the projector/interactive whiteboard or can be hosted in the cloud on the MinecraftEdu cloud hosting which is available for an additional $25 per month (approx. €22).
TeacherGaming LLC say that MinecraftEdu should run on any desktop or laptop computer manufactured in the last 5 years. An up to date version of Java (Version 6 – Release 45) is required. In a school setting, particularly if computers in your school are on a domain, Java might have to be updated in order to successfully install the server or the client on a p.c. If in doubt, you can check the version of java installed at http://www.java.com/en/download/installed8.jsp
Once a teacher has purchased their MinecraftEdu server and client licenses they will be sent a link to the software download via email. The installation file can be saved to a USB key for installing on different computers.
Microsoft purchased Minecraft from Mojang in the summer of 2014 for $2.5 billion. Last month they announced they were acquiring MinecraftEdu and would be releasing Minecraft Education Edition next summer. Existing MinecraftEdu customers can continue to use their current version of MinecraftEdu as they purchased a perpetual license and will be offered Minecraft Education Edition free of charge for one year.
More details on MinecraftEdu and Minecraft Education Edition can be found here