Starting off, we have the utility plugins. These are plugins that are great for any server, big or small. They help with anything related to either making tasks more efficient, helping with management, or just simply being useful! They usually require minimal configuration (very little diving into the files!) in order to be used for their full potential!
Many, many servers use Essentials. This plugin is a must for any server, big or small! It adds a lot of useful commands that help manage your server, or aliases for already existing commands that just make it plain easier to do things! (Ex. /gm c instead of /gamemode creative)
PlugMan is a management plugin that lets server administrators manage plugins from either in-game or console without the need to restart the server. Note: Does not work with every plugin, as some require the server be restarted in order to work. Generally, restarting the server is best to do when installing new plugins. /reload can cause memory leaks, and PlugMan can help put a stop to that!
WorldEdit is a world editing and terrain shaping plugin for Minecraft, although most have seen the great wooden axe! It may take time to get a hold of for inexperienced server administrators, but the possibilities and time-saving capabilities are endless! WorldGuard is a region protection plugin that requires WorldEdit in order to work. It's the most widely-used protection plugin Minecraft has to offer! Learning the commands for it can potentially be a hassle for some, but it's the best plugin out there for server owners looking for grief protection.
A permissions plugin is an absolute necessity if you plan on making a public server, learning how to do permissions is also quite straightforward! Going through the permissions list of every plugin is also quite useful!
If you want multiple worlds on your server, check this plugin out! It's relatively easy to use and lets you have a server with multiple worlds. It also has custom generator support!
This is a required plugin for a few plugins you may find yourself using! Make sure to have this one installed if you plan on using plugins such as SuperVanish or certain custom-made plugins utilizing this plugin.
A required plugin if you plan on utilizing any kind of economy, permissions, and basic things such as that on your server.
This plugin is incredible for any servers owners wishing to combat lag! It won't get rid of lag, but will at least do something to reduce the amount of it provided the TPS gets below a certain limit!
Administration plugins! If you want to keep an eye on your players, catch filthy hackers, or just in general have peace of mind, these plugins will come in very useful!
This plugin is a must if you want to prevent griefing on your server! It logs literally everything a player does, from breaking/placing blocks to whatever they do in a chest, taking items, storing items, it even logs when a player kills a mob! This can be essential to finding out who did what in a griefing situation, and this plugin is wonderfully created to help with any situation like that.
EssentialsX comes with its own /invsee command, however, it's quite limited in its capabilities! That's where OpenInv comes in! This plugin lets you view online and offline players' inventories and enderchests. You can even view their current armor and offhand items! Incredibly useful for any owners and staff trying to retrieve players' stolen items.
Requires ProtocolLib! This plugin is very useful for keeping a watchful eye on players you may be suspicious of breaking your server's rules such as hacking, duplicating items, or griefing. They won't even know you're there!
Plugins that help you customize things in-game, or just help you color your world to your liking (figuratively and literally!)
This plugin is a lightweight in-game announcement broadcaster that you can set messages to broadcast across your server at a certain timed interval and with support for ordered/random frequencies!
This plugin allows you to rename items and add lores to your items and gear, even in color! Very useful for making custom server items!
This plugin allows you to easily edit, copy, and paste signs in your server without the hassle of having to rewrite every. single. sign. Incredibly useful plugin!
Ever mined a spawner with Silk Touch in vanilla Minecraft and got surprised when it didn't drop? Or right clicked a spawner with a spawnegg to change the spawner's mob type in vanilla Minecraft and it did nothing? Yeah, this plugin does that!
You ever wanted to sit in Minecraft? Here you go!
With this plugin, you can play noteblock music that plays locally Minecraft! Using this, you don't have to build huge contraptions in order to listen to your favorite song wonderfully remastered in crisp, clear, Minecraft quality!
These are fun plugins that enrich the experience of your server! Some of these plugins have had entire servers built off of them! These could be gamemodes, fun things, and much more!
A very satisfying and fun plugin to use! Makes Minecraft as a whole feel new again, with a wide variety of "skills" you can learn and level up to get certain perks that come with them! If your server involves any kind of grinding, this plugin is a must!
Everyone has played Factions atleast once in their Minecraft career! This is basically an entire game of its own within Minecraft, and shaped more than just Minecraft as a whole, but entire communities!
You can create and manage custom achievements with variable rewards in this plugin!
If you'd like a custom GUI shop in your server, and an easy-to-use player-owned shop system, these plugins are your way to go!
This is a really good plugin for anyone wanting a villager-trading based GUI shop! It's incredibly useful for server-based currencies and for giving unique items to players!
This plugin lets you use extra fun commands as an operator, and even lets you do some lighthearted trolling! Some features include fake leave/join, exploding, /slap players, and more!