If SteamVR is not working properly on your Windows 11/10 PC then this post will help you troubleshoot the issue. SteamVR is a virtual reality system that enables you to experience VR games on your desktop. However, some users have complained that SteamVR is not working fine on their Windows PC. If you are one of those facing the same problem, this guide will help you fix the problem.
Why is my Steam VR not working?
Here are the possible reasons why SteamVR might not work properly or as intended:
- Missing administrator rights to run Steam can also prevent SteamVR from working properly. Hence, try running Steam as an administrator to fix the problem.
- If you have set your PC’s power plan to Balanced or Power Saving mode, it can cause performance issues with SteamVR. If the scenario is applicable, try tweaking the power plan of your computer to high performance to get the best out of your applications including SteamVR.
- An out-of-date or corrupted graphics driver can also cause the problem of SteamVR not working fine on a Windows PC. Faulty graphics drivers affect VR gameplay. So, make sure you have an up-to-date graphics driver on your system.
- If you are using some add-ons with SteamVR, there are chances that they might cause performance issues. In case this scenario applies to you, you can try disabling SteamVR add-ons and then check if the problem is fixed or not.
- The in-game overlays can also prevent SteamVR from working as intended. Hence, try disabling in-game overlays in Steam to get rid of the problem.
Based on the above scenarios, you can try a suitable fix to resolve the problem.
SteamVR not working on Windows PC
Here are the methods you can try to fix the problem of SteamVR not working on your Windows PC:
- Run Steam as an administrator.
- Modify the PC power plan.
- Keep your graphics driver updated.
- Change the NVIDIA settings.
- Disable SteamVR add-ons.
- Opt into SteamVR beta.
- Disable in-game overlay.
1] Run Steam as an administrator
The first thing you should do to fix the problem is to relaunch Steam with administrator privilege. There are high chances that the issue is caused because Steam doesn’t have sufficient permissions to perform certain actions. Hence, if SteamVR is not working fine, close Steam and then reopen it as an administrator.
To do that, go to the shortcut of Steam on your desktop and then right-click on it. From the right-click context menu, choose the Run as administrator option. Try launching SteamVR and see if it works fine or not. If it functions without any problem, you will have to launch Steam with admin rights every time you want to use it. So, to avoid, make Steam run as an administrator by default. You can follow the below steps to do that:
- Firstly, navigate to Steam’s shortcut and right-click on it.
- Now, select the Properties option from the context menu.
- Next, in the Properties window, go to the Compatibility tab.
- After that, enable the Run this program as an administrator checkbox and tap on the OK button.
- When done, you can now launch Steam with admin privilege always.
In case this method doesn’t help you fix the issue, go ahead and try the next potential solution to resolve the problem.
2] Modify the PC power plan
In case you have set Balanced or Power saver plan on your PC, it can cause performance issues with your applications including Steam and SteamVR. So, if the scenario is applicable, you can try changing your PC’s power plan to Best Performance and see if it enables SteamVR to work properly. Here is how you can modify the power plan of your PC:
- Firstly, launch the Settings app using Windows+I hotkey, and then make sure you are in the System tab.
- Now, click on the Power & battery option.
- Next, locate the Power mode option and click on the drop-down menu button associated with it.
- After that, select Best performance as the power mode.
- Then, relaunch SteamVR and see if the problem is now fixed.
Hopefully, this will help you run SteamVR properly. If not, try the next method to fix the issue.
3] Keep your graphics driver updated
If you are dealing with an outdated or corrupted graphics driver, you will face performance issues with SteamVR. To enjoy the best VR gameplay, you will need to have an up-to-date graphics driver on your PC. In case this scenario is applicable, update your graphics driver and then relaunch SteamVR to see whether it works fine or not.
You update your graphics drivers using the following methods:
- To update your drivers, you can check for Driver Updates using Windows Update.
- You can even go to the official manufacturer’s website and download the drivers.
- Try free driver update software.
- In the case of the INF driver file, you can follow below steps:
- Launch Device Manager.
- Tap on Display adapters to expand the menu.
- Select your graphics and right-click on them.
- Click on the Update Driver option.
- Updating your graphics drivers by following the on-screen guide.
4] Change the NVIDIA settings
If you have an NVIDIA graphics card, try changing its power mode to get rid of the performance issue of SteamVR. This method has worked for some affected users and might just work for you as well. Here are the steps to do that:
- First of all, right-click on the empty space on your desktop and then select the NVIDIA Control Panel option.
- Now, from the left pane, navigate to 3D settings > Manage 3D settings.
- Next, go to the Program Settings tab and tap on the Add button, and choose Steam to customize.
- After that, from the settings list, look for Power management mode.
- Finally, set the Power Management mode to Prefer maximum performance.
You can now try launching Steam and then SteamVR and then see if the problem is resolved. In case SteamVR still doesn’t work fine for you, move on to the next potential fix to resolve the problem.
5] Disable SteamVR add-ons
SteamVR might not work as intended if you have enabled some add-ons. This is reposted by many affected users. If the scenario applies to you, you can try disabling SteamVR add-ons using the below steps:
- Firstly, launch SteamVR, and if you manage to get inside it, click on the icon present at the top left corner. Then, press the Settings option.
- Now, go to the Startup/Shutdown tab and then select the MANAGE ADD-ONS button.
- Next, analyze each add-on and disable them one by one.
- After that, see if SteamVR starts working fine or not.
If the problem still persists, try the next solution to fix it.
6] Opt into SteamVR beta
You can try enrolling in the beta version of SteamVR to fix the problem. It comes with new features and bug fixes that might enable SteamVR to work properly. Here is how you can opt into SteamVR beta:
- Firstly, open Steam and click on LIBRARY.
- Now, select and right-click on SteamVR and then click on the Properties option.
- After that, navigate to the BETAS tab.
- Next, from the right-hand side panel, select the beta – SteamVR Beta Update option from the drop-down menu.
- Finally, close the window and launch SteamVR to check if it works fine now.
7] Disable in-game overlay
As per many user reports, the in-game overlay can also the issue of SteamVR not working properly. So, if the scenario applies, you can try disabling the in-game overlay to fix the problem.
To disable in-game overlay in Steam, try the below steps:
- Firstly, start the Steam client and go to Steam > Settings.
- Now, go to the In-Game tab.
- Then, disable checkboxes associated with options including Enable the Steam Overlay while in-game, Use the Big Picture Overlay when using a Steam Input enabled controller from the desktop, and Use Desktop Game Theater when launching desktop games while SteamVR is active.
- After that, press the OK button to save changes.
- Finally, relaunch SteamVR and see if the problem is gone.
How do I run Steam VR on my desktop?
To run SteamVR on your desktop, here are the steps you can follow:
- Firstly, you need to have the Steam client; so download and install Steam and log in to your account.
- Now, install SteamVR from Steam’s store. You can connect your headset and then start STeam to complete the installation of SteamVR using the onscreen guide.
- Also, make sure to install Windows Mixed Reality for SteamVR.
- You can now run SteamVR games using the Steam client.