Why is there a queue?
Our system is not infinitely large and sometimes there are more users who want to play than we have resources for. If our system is full you have to wait until other players have finished playing and their server got stopped. It's like at the supermarket: If all employees are already serving other customers you have to wait until it's your turn. That's the only way to keep it fair for everyone.
How does the queue work?
As soon as you click on the green start button you'll see a screen like this:
This is the queue. On the left side of the orange bar, you can see your estimated waiting time. On the right side, you can see your position in the queue and how many people are waiting in total right now. By clicking the red stop button you can leave the queue. If you do this you'll have to start from the beginning again. Your position in the queue won't be saved.
If you're getting closer to the front of the queue you'll see this screen:
Here you have to click the green confirmation button. You'll also receive a desktop notification and hear a notification sound.
This is required to make sure that you are still active and really want to play on your server. Otherwise, your server might get started without anyone playing on it, which would waste resources that could be used by others. By clicking the green button your server is marked as ready and will be started within the next minutes. If you forget to confirm you'll be kicked out of the queue.
After you've passed the queue your server will be started:
Why is the queue so long?
Especially on weekends or on holidays there are many many people who want to play, therefore the queue might be very long. Unfortunately, we can not really change that. This is especially true right now during the Corona crisis, read our thread about our situation here: https://board.aternos.org/thread/42437-long-queueing-times-our-current-situation/
How can the queue be shortened?
It is important for us to keep the queue as short as possible by expanding our system as fast as we can, but that costs money which is finite. But you can also make a simple contribution to keeping the queue short. Use our system fair. Stop your server when you're done playing and don't try to keep your server online permanently.
Can I skip the queue?
In general, no. Everyone has to wait to keep it fair for everyone.
However, you might have already heard of headstart keys. With these keys, you are able to skip the queue once. More information about them can be found here.