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Oculus patch fixes sudden failure of Rift headsets, includes $15 store credit for affected users (update)

A flaw related to an expired security certificate has been fixed

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Annual E3 Gaming Conference In Los Angeles - Oculus Rift headset Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Update 3: Oculus has issued an emergency patch that’s simple to install and quickly solves the issue. Feel free to use our step-by-step guide. It explains how to get your Rift working again. We tried the process on two different Polygon devices and were pleased with the results. In an email sent to users this morning, Oculus said it would provide a $15 credit to the accounts of all users who were affected by the outage.

Original Story: Oculus Rift virtual reality headsets around the world are experiencing an outage this morning, including devices here at Polygon. Users are not sure what is causing the issue, and so far neither Facebook nor Oculus itself has provided a solution.

One place where users experiencing the issue are gathering is on the Oculus forums. Last night user apexmaster booted up his computer, tried to open the Oculus app and was greeted by an error indicating that the software could not reach the “Oculus Runtime Service.”

Can’t Reach Oculus Runtime Service error message apexmaster/Oculus forums

That same error is cropping up on computers all around the world, including several devices here at Polygon. Once it has appeared, there’s no way to restart the Oculus app, which renders the Rift headset unusable.

I was able to get the Oculus application to open up just a little while ago, but an update of the software itself (version 1.24) appeared to be hung in the download queue. Troubleshooting steps listed by the Oculus website included restarting the software, which would not clear the issue for me. The next step given was to reboot my computer. After reboot, I received the same error message as listed above. There’s no clear way forward at this time.

At least one developer, Adam Boyne, was mid-demo at an event when his Oculus stopped working. He said that he spent an hour trying to get his unit to start back up, but was similarly flummoxed.

One user, digging through the Oculus files on his machine, seems to think that the issue could be a lapsed security certificate that expired today. Security certificates are issued by third-party agencies and allow for software and websites to authenticate with each other in order to prevent malicious hacking and fraud. Without a valid security certificate, some operating systems will prevent certain programs from running.

Polygon has reached out to Oculus for more information.

Update: Following our article, Oculus went to Twitter to announce that it is aware of the problem and is working to resolve it.

Update 2: Oculus confirms what its users suspected this morning. The outage is the result of an expired security certificate. Right now, they’re asking owners to be patient.

“That certificate has expired,” said the Oculus support team on its forums, “and we’re looking at a few different ways to resolve the issue. We’ll update you with the latest info as available. We recommend you wait until we provide an official fix. Thanks for your patience.”

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