(Changed title) Original was: Mysterious X-Plane BSODs
EDIT: One Week Later… You can read my thinking and my actions below but here’s the punchline: It wasn’t hardware. And it certainly wasn’t X-Plane. It was Oculus. Since the problem isn’t universal among all X-Plane/Oculus RiftS users I am guessing that maybe a recent update of the Oculus software failed to fully clean after itself. So in conclusion, after a complete deletion of all Oculus software using Windows Safe Mode with internet off and a clean reinstall, all seems fine after two very hard days of use. Yay! One accusation below probably is true however. The recent Oculus update did remove some deprecated OpenGL functionality that Laminar Research have failed to take out of their library. Today (May 2020) X-Plane still lock or crash every time if run rendering with OpenGL.
I am not looking for help. This is just a public display of desparation. In fact, please don’t try to help. Because every unicorn that is tossed out as a possible solution will have me under the hood for another three hours thinking victory is at hand. Someday I will figure this out and I will paste my solution here as the one cause of my three days of X-Plane woe.
Three nights ago I downloaded beta 9 of X-Plane 11’s transition to the Vulkan rendering engine. That worked ok. No change really. I then installed FSEconomy which places a small python script and a plugin in X-Plane but otherwise manages everything off-sim. Then, after seeing that Mudspike Air Delivery was going to be a (mostly) Air Hauler 2 enterprise, I installed that. Like FSEconomy, Air Hauler uses a plugin but all functions are otherwise handled off-sim in an app. Seeing as MAD would be based in KEAT, smack in the middle of Washington state, I installed both the freeware airport and “Forkboy2”'s massive ortho scenery for Washington. Yesterday I had my first ever Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) on this PC. At first I blamed the beta and therefore myself. I normally avoid tweaks, mods, overclocks and most betas for the very reason that I laugh at stories like the one I am now telling. The long road to eternal frustration is paved with the crushed skulls of people who just can’t leave well enough alone. What’s one more skull? No one else using beta 9 was complaining so I figured maybe the new ortho wasn’t unpacked perfectly and was causing a stack overflow.
(what am I saying? I have no idea what an “stack overflow” is. Maybe I made that phrase up. Moving along…)
Later, I got another BSOD climbing out of Phoenix, far, far away from Forboy2’s Washington orthos. So then I thought maybe it’s all these crazy “economy” games and their pesky plugins. I removed those plugins. Another BSOD. I then emptied the shaderchache folder. Worked! I flew and flew. So I reinstalled the Air Hauler plugin and was an hour into my very first delivery and…
I restarted the PC and ran X-Plane without VR. I then let my DC-3 sit on the ramp at KEAT overnight. Next day, still there. No BSOD restart. OK good. I enabled VR and X-Plane locked up for awhile, turned black and then came back to life in 2-D and stuck for a moment, unresponsive, in the VR Settings screen. But it didn’t quite outright. When the moment was done it responded again but in 2D only. Restarted. Same. Screw it! I copied 200gb of sceneries and planes that I like and uninstalled X-Plane entirely.
I didn’t even use a saved installer. I went to X-Plane.com and got a new one. It took an hour to download. I ran the virgin, totally untouched version of X-Plane and it asked for an update. I let the update run for another 30 minutes and now I was up to X-Plane version 11.41, still totally untouched by me. I ran it. Exited out of the stupid demo. Set up a 172 on the ramp at Seattle. Great! Enabled VR.
Same damn thing!
It locked up for a minute and came back to life in 2D. I’ve tried a bunch of restarts. I’ve run the windows memory utility. I’ve run the disk utility twice. I’ve run both the current Nvidia driver and when that yielded the same stuck VR, I tried the latest beta drivers. Nothing works except the 2D version of X-plane. All of my sims including X-Plane exist on disk D:, an old fashioned harddrive. Disk C: is a ssd but is for system stuff only. I have tried every other sim in VR and they all work fine. Google Earth VR works fine. Condor2 flown hours on end in VR works fine.
But this plane jane, untouch, unmodified X-plane simply will not work.
Is it X-Plane? Maybe.
Is it the D: drive? Maybe.
Is it my 8gb NV GTX 1080? Maybe.
Is it my Oculus? Maybe.
Is it a memory stick? Maybe.
Is it Forkboy2’s Ortho? No.
Is it FSEconomy? No.
Is it Air Hauler? No.
Is it a plugin? No. None are installed that didn’t come packed with the sim.
Is it an airplane? No. None installed.
Is it a scenery? No. None installed.
Am I going start replacing hardware? Maybe. It’s easy to say, “screw X-Plane!” But that and Condor are the only essential apps I own. Otherwise I could toss the PC entirely and stick with my MacBook.
Someday, maybe today, I will figure this out. And when I do I will report back and promise never, ever to again mess with a system that isn’t broke.
One thing I should add, for what little it is worth, is that in recent memory, whether in VR or 2D, I have been unable to shut x-plane down. I have to hit “quit” and wait for the Windows “it’s unresponsive, should I kill it?” prompt. With the fresh X-Plane, even before I tried VR, it still refused to quit without being forced.