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SteamVR + First Gen Dev Kit Troubleshooting

The following is troubleshooting information for SteamVR + the first generation Vive development kit. For troubleshooting for the Vive Pre, click here.

General PC Troubleshooting

  • Turn off core parking. Download the core parking manager from here and set the slider to 100%. This will prevent your CPU from incorrectly reducing its speed.
  • Set NVIDIA power management to "prefer maximum performance" as described here:
  • Turning off user account control can help reduce some administrative tasks that Windows tries to block. This is only recommended for developers.
  • On Windows 7 go to the User Accounts control panel. Select "Change User Account Control" settings. Set it to "Never Notify".
  • (instructions for Win8 tbd)
  • On Windows 10 go to settings. In the search box type "user account control". Select "Change User Account Control" settings. Set it to "Never Notify".
  • For Windows 7 set the appearance to Windows 7 Basic. This reduces flashes when you switch to/from the compositor.
  • Consider attaching the wireless controller dongles to your HMD. For demos we often put them in the mini-hub, attach that to the spare USB connector on the HMD and tape the hub to the cables coming out of the HMD. This reduces the distance between the dongles and your controllers and thus interferance.
  • Make sure your default audio playback device is set to HTC-0.

USB Issues

The majority of USB issues can be resolved by using a powered USB hub between the HMD and the interface box. The 5m cable (HMD to interface box) and 1m cable (interface box to PC) length may cause decay in USB signal integrity, which can be alleviated by reducing the cabling distance with a hub.

The currently recommended cabling setup for the HTC Vive, described above, is shown here.

  • Ideally, plug the HMD breakout box USB connector into a powered USB2 hub and then connect the hub to your PC.
  • If you can't do the above try plugging the HMD into a USB2 port.
  • If you are still having problems try disabling XHCI in your BIOS.
  • Some Windows 10 users have reported better success with a USB3 port- Windows 10 is known to have better USB3 support.
  • Run USBDEVIEW to remove extra devices in Windows. See the section below.

HMD Issues

We have rarely found HMDs that are themselves defective so please carefully follow these troubleshooting instructions before requesting a replacement.

Error 108 (Headset not found) may be a USB / driver issue. Please follow the steps below to remedy:

  1. First, quit SteamVR.
  2. Unplug the Link Box from the PC and power (USB, HDMI, Power).
  3. Wait a few seconds, then plug it all back in. You may see more drivers install, wait for this to finish.
  4. Launch SteamVR.
  5. You may need to repeat the steps above more than once. You can try plugging into the same USB port as well as different USB ports.

Error 208 ('HMD detected over USB, but monitor not found(208)') is a generic HMD error message. This error can have a number of solutions, so please work from the list below to make sure you've attempted all available solutions:

  • Make sure all cables are connected firmly. The connections especially on the HMD itself can become loose from usage. The HDMI connector at the HMD requires some force to fully seat.
  • Make sure your breakout box is installed in the correct direction and is turned on with a green light. It has labels for the PC and VR (headset) sides of the connections.
  • Make sure the cable from the breakout box to the headset has the blue HDMI connector on the headset.
  • Run Steam as admin.
  • Ensure that the resolution for your HTC Vive is set to 2160 X 1200 in the Windows resolution control panel (Display > Screen resolution). If Windows is detecting your headset as a TV, this resolution may not be available, and resolutions below this are not supported. You'll need to make sure that your headset is correctly configured to be detected as a monitor.
  • Check your video drivers. Try the latest or else use a known-good one from the list below-
    • For NVIDIA versions tbd.
    • For AMD/ATI versions tbd

  • Issue- Headset shows black in one eye.
    • Solution- Quit VR Monitor and Steam.
    • Turn off the headset at the breakout box.
    • Turn the headset back on at the breakout box.
    • Restart Steam and VR Monitor.

HMD Status Lights

The HMD has a small light on the left outside (as you hold the HMD when you are about to put it on. This light shows the status-

  • Green- the HMD is operating correctly.
  • Off- the HMD is not connected.
    • Check that the switch on the breakout box is on and the breakout box is showing a green light next to the switch.
    • Check your cable connections for all three connectors at the HMD, the brekout box and the computer.
  • Red- the HMD is not receiving power correctly
    • Check cable connections.
    • Make sure the breakout box is on
    • Try turning off and on the breakout box.
  • Blue-USB is not connected.
    • Check the cable connections.
    • Try a different USB port on the computer.
    • Try removing USB devices in VR Monitor. See instructions below.
    • After fixing the USB connection you will likely need to turn the breakout box off and back on.
  • Yellow- HDMI is not connected.
    • Check the cable connections
    • Make sure your video card supports multiple connections. Some video cards have limitations on how many active connections they support at the same time. If you have more than one monitor attached to the computer try disconnecting all but one.
    • HDMI adapters are not supported at this time
    • After fixing the HDMI connection you will likely need to turn the breakout box off and back on

Base Station Lights

  • Green- All good.
  • Red- The base station detected movement and disabled the laser. This should just be temporary unless the mount is transmitting vibrations to the base station.
  • Blue- Other base station error including a basestation rotor that is not locked. Tracking will not work in this state.
    • Try updating base-station firmware.
    • If the paint is flaking off the rotors and causing a flashing red/blue light you will need a replacement base station. You can verify this condition by looking for bare metal on the base-station rotors.

Base Station Sync

  • Make sure each base station is powered
  • Connect the base stations with the 50ft sync cable
  • Set one unit to mode A and one to mode B using the MODE button on the back of each base station
    • Long press: enter switching mode
    • Short press: toggle between modes
    • Long press: set mode


  • Check the batteries.
  • They can have a low charge which is not reported by the system or even fail to charge.
  • Try swapping in another set of batteries (either your spares or from the other controller).
  • Controllers with low batteries might still show up in VR Monitor but track inconsistently.
  • Check that the batteries are tight in their compartment. The contacts that hold them in can become bent and provide insufficient contact strength. Bend the lower contact out slightly so it will provide more firm contact.
  • If controllers are not tracking consistently try removing Wifi sources from near the controllers and/or the controller dongles.
  • Check your controllers for broken sensors. Its possible for the sensors to become dislodged and they will then track erratically. If the sensor are broken, please contact SteamVR support for a replacement.
  • If your trackpads are not responding correctly you might need to calibrate them.
    • Turn off the controller
    • Hold the tiny black button (system button) and trigger (all the way in- really hard until it hits the button inside).
    • Turn on the controller while holding those buttons.
    • It should make a different sound than usual and be recalibrated.

Room Calibration Tips

  • When setting the floor height it often helps to put the other controller on the floor and then adjust the floor so that second controller just barely rests on the floor.
  • Its ok to set the wall boundaries near the actual walls. The safe-zone will be inset from the actual walls.
  • If you have low obstructions (a couch, etc) its often ok to put the walls slightly past the start of the object so that you can reach over the object but won't walk into it.
  • The room setup app shows the expected tracking volume of your base stations- use that to make sure to place the walls to prevent yourself from leaving the tracking area even if that area is not obstructed by an ac tual wall.


USBDEVVIEW is a USB utility that can be used to remove old USB device records from Windows. Removing these records can help with certain situations with SteamVR does not recognize your HMD or controllers.

  • Download USBDEVVIEW from the link on this page and unzip the archive.
  • Turn off the HMD breakout box and unplug the controller dongles.
  • Launch USBDEVIEW
  • From the Options menu turn on "Display disconnected devices".
  • Sort the list by VendorID.
  • Find the items marked as VendorID 28de and select them all.
  • Right click on them and select "Uninstall selected devices". If you turned off user account control (UAC) this should work promptly otherwise you will have to say yes to a dialog for each one.
  • Quit and reboot your PC.
  • Turn on the HMD breakout box. Wait for Windows to install the devices. Make sure that the 2nd display shows up in the Displays control panel.
  • Run VR Monitor and make sure it recognizes the HMD.
  • Turn on your controllers. Wait for Windows to install the devices and make sure VR Monitor shows them

If All Else Fails

If all else fails, please create a system report and send it to the SteamVR mailing list so we can diagnose what is going wrong with your setup.

  • In vrmonitor, go to the Advanced Panel > Overview, click Create System Report, and click Save to File.
  • Send this system report to the SteamVR mailing list.
  • Please only do this if you have tried all of the troubleshooting steps above and checked the forums for answers.