Cant Reach Oculus Service? Try These 14 Fixes

Cant Reach Oculus Service

When you use Oculus on your PC, there are so many interactions that have to take place between your headset and your PC in order for Oculus to run smoothly on your PC.

The “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” or “Can’t Reach Oculus Runtime Service” error occurs when the Oculus application running on your PC is unable to communicate with the Oculus service or software on your headset.

Simply put, the frontend service (that you can see and interact with on the PC) cannot communicate with the backend service (that works on the headset, in the background).

This error is a generic error message, meaning that there are different possible causes to it. What we have done in this article is to research all the possible, known causes of the error message and provide detailed solutions to each of them.

Why Does It Say Can’t Reach Oculus

1. Oculus VR Runtime Service isn’t Running

A Service for an application is a program on your PC that runs in the background which allows the application to run properly.

When you install an application that requires a service, the service either starts automatically when you power on your PC, or starts when you run the application. When your PC and the application are running normally, you never have to interact with its background service.

When you install the Oculus app on your PC, whether for Rift, Quest or Quest, the application adds a Service on your PC called the Oculus VR Runtime Service. This service is meant to start automatically.

However, a glitch on your PC or in the application may cause the Oculus VR Runtime Service to not start, or to start with the wrong settings.

When either of these happens, your PC will throw the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” or “Can’t Reach Oculus Runtime Service” error.

Fix – Make Sure Oculus VR Runtime is Running

The first thing to do when you get the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service error” is to confirm that the service referred in the error message is actually running. From our explanation earlier, it is clear that Oculus will not run if the background service that supports it isn’t running.

To check, please follow the steps below:

1. Click the Windows button on your PC

2. Search for Services in the search bar

3. Select Services from the results

4. When the Services window opens, scroll down to the Service named Oculus VR Runtime

5. Under the Status column, check if the service is running

6. If it is running, right-click on it and select Restart

7. If it is not running, right-click on it and select Start

8. Under the Startup Type Column, confirm that it says Automatic

9. If it says anything else, please right-click on the service and select Properties

10. In the General tab, at Startup Type, click the dropdown and select Automatic

11. Click Apply and OK

2. Update From Oculus

We have observed that this error sometimes occurs after the installation of an update on your Oculus device. Sometimes, Oculus release updates that may cause your VR headset to malfunction or cause an incompatibility problem with your PC software.

When this happens, the Oculus application on your PC will no longer be able to communicate with the Oculus software on your headset, hence the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error.

Fix – Install the Official Oculus Patch

When the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service error” first appeared about 4 years ago, Meta realised that it was caused primarily by a code error in their software that was disconnecting the Oculus app from the Oculus core service on the headset.

This happened mostly after new updates were installed or while an updating installation was ongoing.

Meta then released a special update called a patch which is meant to specifically fix the error. Please note that this update does not come with the normal version updates; you would have to download and install it manually from the Meta website below

After downloading the application, please follow the steps below to install it:

1. Go to the downloaded patch application, right-click on it and select Run As Administrator

2. A window will appear telling you that the application is already installed

3. Then it will bring up options asking if you want to Quit, Open Oculus, Uninstall, or Repair

4. Please select Repair and let it finish the repair process

Please Note:

  • Your antivirus software may block the installation of the software. In that case, please disable the antivirus software to complete the installation. Then re-enable the antivirus software
  • After completing the Repair, you are likely to be prompted to download and install an update shortly afterwards. Please allow this to complete, too. This process may take a while
  • After this is done, please restart your PC and check if the error has cleared.

3. PC Graphics Update

Another finding from our research is that the incompatibility issue may be caused by an update in your PC graphics drivers. You may already be aware that the graphics drivers on your PC are responsible for rendering the Oculus app and games on your PC screen.

If the driver becomes incompatible with the software on your Oculus application, it will also cause your PC to return the error message.

Fix – Update The PC Graphics Driver

The error could also be caused either by your PC graphics driver being out of date or being updated with the wrong software.

When your Windows OS installs updates, it also updates the drivers on the PC that control things like audio, video, graphics, USB ports, wireless connections, and so on. However, Windows, or more precisely, Microsoft may not install the correct update for drivers that are owned by the hardware manufacturers.

Here’s an example. If your PC graphics driver is a GeForce, the driver is manufactured by Nvida. To get the best and latest updates for the driver, especially when you experience the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error, you would be best served to download from Nvida website rather than use the one installed by Windows update.

To check your PC graphics driver, please use the steps below:

1. Click the Windows icon on your PC

2. In the search bar, type Device Manager and select Device Manager from the search results

3. When the Device Manager window opens, scroll to Display Adapters and double-click it

4. Two drivers should display under Display Adapters, one Intel and the other the main driver used for your Oculus.

Search for the manufacturer of the main driver on google and head to the website to download the latest graphics drivers.

We have provided links for some downloads below:

There you can search manually for graphics updates for your PC or you can download the GeForce Experience app for automatic updates

There you could also either search for your specific PC driver or install the automatic update software.

4. Oculus App Has a Bug or Is Glitching

The Oculus application installed on your PC can run into a software code error or experience a temporary malfunction that causes it to stop reaching the core service on your VR headset.

There are different ways to resolve bugs and glitches depending on the cause and severity of the issue. We will cover them in the fixes in the next section

Fix – Launch the Oculus App Manually Using File Explorer

This error may also be caused by the Oculus application launch interface running into a glitch. In that case, you would need to locate the application executable file and launch it manually.

To do this:

1. Press the Windows and E keys on your keyboard simultaneously

2. Enter the address below in the search bar at the top of the Windows explorer page

C:\Program Files\Oculus\Support\oculus-runtime\

3. On the window that opens, right-click OVRServer_x64.exe and select Run As Administrator

4. This should run the Oculus app without the error.

Note: the address given above assumes that your Oculus app was installed in the C:\Program Files directory, as it usually does. If it was installed in any other directory such as C:\Program Files (86) or another drive like D:\, that is the directory you should navigate to.

Fix 2 – Fix Headset Connection

If you are using Link to connect to your headset, it is important to confirm that headset is properly connected to the PC. Improper connection between the headset and the PC will result in the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error.

  • If you are able to open the Oculus app menu, please select Devices, select your Headset and ensure that it shows Connected as status.
  • If you are unable to open the menu on the Oculus app, please unplug the headset and plug it back in.
  • If it does not show the connected status, or if you are unable to open the Oculus app menu at all, it may be that the application has become corrupt, or that it was not installed properly. In that case, you would have to reinstall the Oculus app, which we will detail later.

5. Wireless LAN Service Disabled

Wireless LAN Service is a set of programmes and protocols that allow and control your PC’s access to wireless networks. You need to know that your PC requires internet service to access the Oculus servers when you launch the application.

If the Wireless Lan Service is not running on your PC, it will hinder your PC’s connection to wireless networks or to your Oculus device core software.

Fix – Enable Wireless LAN Service

We have explained the role of the Wireless Lan Service for proper communication between your PC and the Oculus servers. If installing the patch in the step above does not clear the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error for you, then you may try enabling or starting the Wireless Lan Service on your PC.

The method to do this depends on the OS version you are using.

Method 1 – Enable in Roles and Features on Windows Server

1. Open Control Panel

2. Go to Roles and Features

3. Under Features, click to enable Wireless Lan Service

4. Click OK and let the server finish the process

5. Then restart the server

Method 2 – Start Wireless Lan Service in Services on Windows 10

1. Click the Windows button on your PC

2. Search for Services in the search bar

3. Select Services from the results

4. When the Service window opens, scroll down to the service named WLAN AutoConfig

5. Under Status, check if it is running. If it is running, right-click on it and select Restart

6. If it is not running, right-click on it and select Start

7. Then, right-click on it and click Properties

8. In the General tab, at Startup Type, please click the dropdown and select Automatic

9. Click Apply and OK

You do not need to restart the PC after performing method 2. You may then check if the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error has cleared on your PC.

Fix 2 – Make Sure You Have Internet Access on Your PC

The error may also be caused by poor or no internet connection on your PC. This is one of the early checks you should perform before trying any other fixes.

Simply open a browser on your PC and try to open a website or stream a video. If you have internet connection, please head to the next fix. If you don’t have internet, please resolve it first and check if the error clears.

6. An Update Is In Progress on Your Oculus Device

We have also found that when your Oculus headset is installing an update, it may disable connections to any external devices, including your PC.

This is because updates require changes to be made to the entire firmware of the headset so, all programmes that are running at the time are suspended until the changes are completed.

This is also why on Quest and Quest 2 headsets, automatic updates only install successfully when the headset is left idle for a while. So, when you see the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error, it may just be that your headset is updating and the error will go away when the update is completed.

7. Headset Out of Date

As always, an out-of-date headset can cause any error on Oculus VR devices (Rift, Quest and Quest 2). Oculus release updates for two main reasons:

  • To prevent or fix bugs in the Oculus headset firmware which cause it to malfunction
  • To add new features and enhance current capabilities so that the headset can handle processes better. And, one of these processes is being able to communicate seamlessly with the Oculus app on your PC and the PC itself.

You can see that lacking any one of these types of updates can cause your Oculus to stop functioning properly and return the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error message.

Fix – Update Headset

To update your headset, please follow the steps below:

1. Put on your Oculus headset

2. Press the Oculus button on the right controller

3. On the Menu that appears, click the Clock icon

4. Select Settings

5. Select System

6. Select Software Update

7. At the top right corner, select to Update is there is any available.


1. Put on your Oculus headset

2. Press the Oculus button on the right controller

3. Select Settings

4. Select About

5. Select Download or Install Updates

8. Oculus Software Files Are Corrupt

The last possible reason we have found why the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error comes up is that the files of the Oculus software installed on your PC may have become corrupt.

You may recall that when you were installing the software, you were asked to choose a location or installation path for the Oculus software files (usually C/programs files).

The files stored in this location control how the Oculus software works whenever you launch it. Therefore, if they become corrupt or develop a bug, Oculus will no longer run properly on your PC, and may return the Oculus service error.

Fix – Change the Date and Time

When faced with problems on Oculus devices, especially Quest and Quest 2, the wrong time and date have been found to be a cause of the issue on some occasions.

It is therefore surprising that in this case, setting a wrong date and time fixes the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error for some users. We are still investigating the reason for this, but please know that it is only a temporary fix that should be reverted later.

To change the time and date on your PC:

1. Click the Windows icon on your PC

2. Type Settings in the search box and click Enter

3. Select Settings from the search results

4. Select Time and Language on the window that opens

5. Toggle to turn off Set Time Automatically and Set Time Zone Automatically

6. Click on Change

7. Enter a date in 2018, which was when the error was first discovered, and any time of your choice

8. Click on Change to effect the changes

9. Restart your PC

Then open the Oculus software to see if the error has cleared. If the error persists, please undo all the changes made above. If it does clear the error, then it may be an indication of a serious fault on the PC software.

Fix 2 – Scan PC for Corrupt Files

An early finding from our investigation of the date and time issue above is that, if it does clear the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error, it may be that some PC system files are corrupt or missing. In that case, you would need to perform a scan to find and fix the files.

To do this, please follow the steps below carefully:

1. Click the Windows icon on your PC

2. Type Command Prompt in the search bar

3. From the search results that appear, select Run As Administrator under Command Prompt

4. Type sfc/ scannow into the Command Prompt window and click enter

Please note that there is a space between / and scannow

5. Allow the scan to finish. If there are any missing or corrupt system files, this should fix the issue.

6. After the scan, revert your PC to the correct date and time and see if the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error is cleared.

Fix 3 – Reinstall the Oculus Software

If the error still remains after performing all the fixes so far, you may need to uninstall the Oculus software and reinstall it.

To uninstall Oculus software:

1. Click the Windows icon on your PC

2. Type Control Panel and select it from the search results

3. Ensure that the View By is set to Category

4. Under Programs, select Uninstall A Program

5. Select the Oculus app in the list and click Uninstall

6. Confirm to uninstall

7. Then, press the Windows and E keys simultaneously

8. Navigate to C:\Program Files\Oculus or wherever the software is installed on your PC

9. Delete the Oculus folder completely from your PC, then restart your PC

To reinstall Oculus software:

1. Download the official Oculus software to your PC

2. Click on Download Software to download the Oculus software for your headset

3. Go to the downloaded app on your PC, right-click it and select Run As Administrator

Fix 4 – Restart Headset

The next basic fix to try is to restart your headset. It is good to do this early on in the troubleshooting process because the error may just have been caused by a temporary glitch in the headset which a restart would solve.

It would save you time from trying complex fixes and also ensure that you do not make unnecessary changes to your current setup.

To restart the headset, we recommend a hard reboot using the steps below:

1. Disconnect the headset from the PC

2. Press and hold the power and (–) volume buttons on your headset simultaneously

3. Hold until the boot menu screen appears

4. Use the volume buttons to navigate and highlight Boot Device

5. Use the Power button to select the Boot Device option

6. When the headset restarts, connect it back to the PC and see if the error has cleared

Fix 5 – Restart PC

If restarting the headset does not work, then the glitch may be on the PC. Just as with your headset, the PC may run into a temporary malfunction such as not being able to load all the Oculus files when you launch the app. Restarting the PC will allow it to clear the glitches and load Oculus properly.

To restart your PC, simply click the Windows key on your PC, click the power icon and select Restart.

Fix 6 – Contact Oculus

If none of the options above is able to fix the “Can’t Reach Oculus Service” error, and this is rarely the case, then you may need to contact Oculus for support. Please use the link below to open a support ticket with Oculus

Briley is a freelance writer and has been writing for over 10 years. The former journalist now content writer currently writes for Techzillo and focuses on consumer tech in general. His main interests include video games and consumer technology. He also writes for websites such as Lifewire, and Digital Trends. Read our Editorial Guidlines and Fact Checking process.


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