Thursday, March 31, 2016

Dev update #4

Mobile version 0.7.7 is out on Play Store and version of desktop client should auto-update on restart. This week we were focused to give you configuration options since a lot of you asked for them. Here they are.

Viewport is now confgurable

You can tap cogwheel at the bottom of streaming screen and use sliders to configure IPD and scale. Reducing scale may increase your field of view (depends on your Cardboard and lenses). Try different settings and pick whatever works best for you. Distortion coefficients are also still configurable by scanning your QR code.

Green background fits here, right?

Streaming settings

You may now configure stream quality to make it work perfectly with your connection method. 
Stream quality is configurable at the last screen in desktop client.

UI is still work in progress 

Default is suggested by your phone but for reasons unknown some phones report incorrect capabilities at 60 FPS. We do not limit those settings and you may go above your phone recommendation but default presets will respect whatever your phone reported as its limit.

If you want to go above/below UI limits you can edit Config/vridgeQuality.cfg file. Using unsupported values will usually make VRidge crash but I'm sure some of you enjoy experimenting with that stuff. This file is always written (and overwritten) when you:
  • connect your phone with VRidge
  • click "Save" button
This means you need to make your experimental edits after connecting but before starting new game.

SDK 1.3 not support yet

Oculus SDK 1.3 was released at Rift's launch day. Few titles use it and work great with CV1 but a lot of stuff has changed. We hope to have support for Rift CV1 and Vive VR titles in few weeks but we need to adapt our hooking methods to emulate them properly. A lot of you asked for Elite: Dangerous, Virtual Desktop and some other great games/software. We are working hard to bring it to VRidge but we need at least few weeks to get it right. Don't worry - beta isn't ending before we make it work.

Nexus 5X/6P still broken

We were focused to get config options right and couldn't get those devices in time. Sorry!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Dev update #3

Screen dimensions (viewport) should now be correct 

We fixed some issues that caused viewport to be too small/aligned incorrectly. IPD/lens params should now be correctly configured by scanning QR code on your cardboard viewer. Manual tuning will come in the future.

Solved some of the "Trying to connect/restoring" errors.

Some of you experienced infinite trying to reconnect -> restoring -> connected -> streaming -> trying to reconnect... loop.
It was caused by packets arriving out-of-order or overflowing. We simplified connection handshake and moved it to TCP instead of UDP so it should not happen anymore because of this.

Got rid of artifacts on fast connections (USB mostly)

Sometimes frames were arriving too fast and Android could not process them fast enough. In this scenario some frames were dropped which caused constant artifacts and floating pixels. We increased socket buffer size so it no longer overflows.

It's still only 30FPS (but you can change it!)

Currently some devices have trouble with decoding 60FPS stream so default is 30FPS.
You can unlock 60 FPS by creating empty file named "unlocksmooth.cfg" in {RiftCatInstallationFolder}/Config directory. More options (resolution, bitrate, etc) will be available in configuration window in the next patch.

Updated auto-updater's updating flow

~1% of you had to reinstall every update because auto-updater was always failing to complete updating process. Now it should no longer happen but one last uninstall + clean install from website will be required (because if you had this problem - updater cannot update itself). We also added a window that will display update progress and point you to log files if something goes wrong. You can send us those logs and we'll know how to fix it.

Added confirmation prompt for new updates.

Automatically updating could force-close any games you were running through VRidge and it wasn't nice behaviour. Sorry!

Added comm protocol versions

If you are running incompatible Android app with the most recent desktop client you will see a message asking you to update Android app from Google Play.

Added extra checks for hardware encoders

If you upgraded from Nvidia to AMD recently and did not reinstall Windows some driver files were left. In this case VRidge was crashing 100% of the time because VRidge was attempting to use Nvidia encoder. We now check for actual physical hardware presence before encoder is selected. We also added a message that will be shown if your OS/Video card is not supported.

Small fixes:

  • Fixed random NullReferenceException crash during encoding.
  • Fixed one more case where SocketException could crash randomly.
  • Removed USB interfaces without proper IP from connection list. 169.254.*.* (auto-IP) is no longer accepted as valid IP address.

That's it! We probably broke something else (like VRidge tab last week for some people) but we'll be hotfixing any critical errors on Friday. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Dev Update #2

Update: Some people report crash with following message when accesing VRidge tab:
Object reference not set to an instance of an object. 
Hotfix will be deployed in few hours. is now deployed. 

We have received a lot of feedback from you and the positive reactions exceeded our expectations. We even have multiple major VR hardware manufacturers shipping their HMDs to us so we can make VRidge work with their hardware. Last week was amazing but we were also working hard to fix all the stuff you reported. 

Patch notes

USB Tethering works and it's awesome

USB Tethering can now work without disabling other interfaces/restarting RiftCat. Set up your USB router by going to [Settings -> More > USB Tethering] on your Android device and try it out. Latency is much lower and encoding artifacts/frame drops much less frequent.

Please keep in mind that:
  • USB Tethering will allow apps on your PC to use your mobile data. Disable mobile data if you are on limited plan.
  • USB Tethering performance varies greatly across different USB controllers, mobile phone models and drivers. In some cases WiFi may be better

Added connection selection dialog

You asked us for a way to choose connection (USB Tethering, WiFi Direct, Ethernet) that will be used to link your phone and PC.

Direct connect by IP option added

Some of you had trouble pairing your mobile device with PC. We added some extra ways for devices to find each other but anything automatic may fail so you'll be able to enter IP address on your phone.

GeForce M Series now work

NVidia Optimus technology no longer starts vridge on integrated gpu. "Catastrophic failure" message should no longer appear (assuming you don't use outdated GPU below minimum requirements). Special thanks to Jakob Daníel Vigfússon for figuring it out!

Unity 5.3.x games now work.

Few developers asked us why their games do not work with VRidge. Our Unity hooks were working up to version 5.2.x but now it should work with the most recent Untiy games too.

We really care about compatability :)

Fixed multiple connection crashes identified by messages:

  • Only one usage of each socket address (protocol/network address/port) is normally permitted
  • A message sent on a datagram socket was larger than the internal message buffer or some other network limit

Secret super silky smooth setting

You can create empty file named "unlocksmooth.cfg" in {RiftCatInstallationFolder}/Config directory. If this file exists VRidge should run without any ghosting. We want to enable it by default but it sometimes causes artifacting.

Major known issues

Attempting to reconnect/restoring connection

Many people still experience this error loop. We are still investigating.

Screen dimensions wrong (picture too small)

You may try tapping cogwheel at the bottom part of streaming screen on your mobile. You can scan QR code (if present on your cardboard) and try to configure lens/ipd this way but sometimes it does not work. We use a mix of cardboard api configuration parameters and display parameters and some combinations do not work well yet.

You can find more known issues at our helpcenter.

We will try to deploy a new version every Thursday. Emergency hotfixes may appear more often.

Friday, March 11, 2016

First update -

  • Device discovery updated. If you have been experiencing constant "Trying to connect" it might work now. Manual IP connection will come in the future.
  • Added detailed VRidge logger. If you are experiencing any issues with VRidge runtime (black screen, reconnections, frame drops), please describe your issue and e-mail us at with {RiftCat installation folder}/logs/vridge.log file attached. Diagnostic data will help us a lot to narrow down some problems.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

We are working hard to fix all the issues.

We have received a lot of informations about the issues that you had while launching VRidge. We have created a page describing the most common ones:

Please, make sure to report to us with every single issue you have with VRidge. We want it to become bugless, so we will all be able to enjoy PC VR within mobile headsets.

Welcome to RiftCat blog.


We are starting this blog to keep you posted on the changes to RiftCat platform and VRidge technology. We hope that by communicating with you through this blog, we'll be able to make RiftCat even better experience.

Have a nice day!