Universally unique identifier

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UUIDs (Universally unique identifiers; Java Class) are 128 bit long numbers that are used by Minecraft to distinguish between separate instances.

Representation[edit]

  • Hyphenated hexadecimal: A hexadecimal representation of the UUID, with hyphens separating the different sections into individual numbers.
    The hyphen are set to split the UUID into numbers of the format 8-4-4-4-12 with each number marking the number of hexadecimal digits fitting into the corresponding section. Further detail follows in the Technical aspects section.
    An example of this representation would be f81d4fae-7dec-11d0-a765-00a0c91e6bf6.
    • Because every part is evaluated as an individual number, empty digits at the start of a section can be ignored.
      For example, 00000001-0002-0003-0004-000000000005 can be evaluated as the same as 1-2-3-4-5.
  • Hexadecimal: The same as the hyphenated hexadecimal representation, but without the separation of the different sections.
    An example for this representation would be 00000001000200030004000000000005, where it is impossible for the majority of empty digits to be removed as opposed to the hyphenated hexadecimal representation.
  • Most/Least: A separation of the 64 most significant bits from the 64 least significant bits. Each of the two numbers is stored separately and uses the Long data type in the game.
    This format is deprecated as it was used before 1.16 and was entirely replaced by the Int-array format.
    An example of this representation would be UUIDMost:-568210367123287600 paired with UUIDLeast:-6384696206158828554.
  • Int-array: A separation into four 32 bit numbers. Each part is stored in an integer array ordered from most significant to least significant.
    An example of this representation would be [I;-132296786,2112623056,-1486552928,-920753162]

Occurences[edit]

The following table represents the situations in which UUIDs are used in places accessible by a player:

Location (general) Location (path) Format Use
All entities (NBT) UUID int-array Own UUID
Attribute modifiers (NBT) UUID int-array Own UUID. Used when equipping and unequipping the item to identify which modifier to add or remove from the entity.
Attribute modifiers (Loot table) id Hyphenated hexadecimal Set UUID of modifier in set_attributes function
/attribute - Hyphenated hexadecimal Used to identify modifier
Tameable mobs (NBT) Owner int-array Owner
Projectiles (NBT) Owner int-array Entity that shot the projectile
Item entities (NBT) Owner int-array Target player for /give command
Item entities (NBT) Thrower int-array Player who dropped the item
Shulker bullets (NBT) Target int-array Entity targeted for attack
Conduits (NBT) Target int-array Entity targeted for attack
Player heads (NBT) SkullOwner.Id int-array Owner of the skin
Player heads (NBT) SkullOwner.Properties.textures[].Value.ProfileId hexadecimal Owner of the skin
Mobs (NBT) Leash.UUID int-array Entity that leashed the mob
Breedable mobs (NBT) LoveCause int-array Player who fed the mob
Zombie Villagers (NBT) ConversionPlayer int-array Player who is converting the Zombie Villager
Neutral mobs except piglins (NBT) AngryAt int-array Entity that hurt the neutral mob
Villagers (NBT) Gossips[].Target int-array Player who caused the gossip
Players (NBT) RootVehicle.Attach int-array Identifier of the entity that the player is riding
Target selectors (Commands) - Hyphenated hexadecimal Selected entity

Technical aspects[edit]

Value range[edit]

A UUID can be expressed as a 128 bit number, which means that it supports all integer values from -(2^127) to (2^127)-1. It is important to note that this evaluation does not refer to the range of values generated by the game but instead focuses on the capacity of the format.

Hyphenated hexadecimal format section names[edit]

Hyphenated hexadecimal format UUIDs follow the pattern xxxxxxxx-xxxx-Axxx-Bxxx-xxxxxxxxxxxx.

Section name Bit range
From To Size Characters
time-low 96 127 32 8
time-mid 80 95 16 4
time-high-and-version 54 79 16 4
clock-seq-and-reserved 36 53 8 2
clock-seq-low 48 45 8 2
node 0 47 48 12

(The names make sense only for version 1 and 2 UUIDs, but it has been passed onto all forms of UUIDs used.)

Versions and variants[edit]

There have been five versions of UUIDs. Versions 1 and 2 are based on current time and MAC address; versions 3 and 5 are based on hashing a string; version 4 is based on completely random generation. The "version" value occupies four bits, and is located in the UUID string format at the position indicated by an "A".

The "B" position is the variant (format) of the UUID. Depending on the specific variant, it may occupy the high 1 to 3 bits:

  • 0xx is the "variant 0" of Apollo NCS 1.5, an old type of UUID.
  • 10x is the "variant 1" of IETF RFC 4122 (Leach-Salz). It's referred to as "variant 2" by Java.
  • 110 is the "variant 2" of old Microsoft products. It's referred to as "variant 6" by Java.
  • 111 is the "reserved variant". It's referred to as "variant 7" by Java.

In Minecraft[edit]

Minecraft uses version 4, variant 1 (RFC) UUIDs, which means that the entire number with the exception of the bits used for metadata (version and variant) is randomly generated. Java's UUID.randomUUID() function performs this exact task.

A table with the locations and values of the metadata:

Bitwise version

Main article: UUID/metadata
[edit]

Collapsed version

Main article: UUID/metadata1
[edit]

Related tools[edit]