Oculus Rift

People who get their VR content and games on Oculus are getting a most unwelcome surprise today. Every single Oculus Rift head mounted display (HMD) is bricked, simply not working. It seems the problem has been caused by an expired certificate in the Oculus Runtime Service.

The Runtime Service is being deemed invalid, specifically the OculusAppFramework.dll. It seems the problem caught Facebook owned Oculus completely off guard. The company would surely have patched this before problem occurred. Considering no fix is available, we guess the company is scrambling today.

It is clear Oculus will need to send out an update to solve this problem. Until then, at least officially, no Oculus Rift HMD works. However, there is a workaround available which involves tricking the license into believing it is still valid.

That should be as easy as setting your PC date back a couple of days, specifically any time before March 7. Of course, switching dates on a computer can bring its own fair of issues, especially on apps that rely on the data and time. Windows Update is one example.

If you own an Oculus Rift, you will have to decide to set your headset aside until there is a software patch, or screw up some apps on your PC. It is interesting that Oculus has yet to officially put out a statement, lending credence to the feeling the company has been taken by surprise.

VR Competition

The virtual reality market is starting to catch fire. Oculus faces rivals such as HTC Vive on PC and PlayStation VR on consoles. Microsoft entered the market with Windows Mixed Reality last year. Backed by several HMDs, Windows MR allows affordable virtual reality at a fraction of the hardware requirements demanded by Oculus Rift and Vive.

While Oculus will undoubtedly solve this problem, it is the kind of PR disaster the company could do without in a competitive and nascent market.