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Voice Issues

Please note: Viewers play a minor part in voice functionality. The bulk of voice support is given by the external application called SLVoice, which is made by the SL voice provider, Vivox. Voice failures are almost always due to one of the following reasons:

  • Your ISP is throttling or blocking the voice service;
  • failure of the Vivox service;
  • voice issues on the region you are on;
  • voice being throttled by bandwidth set incorrectly - please check it by following the instructions here;
  • voice hardware (mic, headset) not configured correctly in your operating system settings;
  • voice hardware not configured correctly in the viewer;
  • another application has your voice hardware in use (example, Skype);
  • your anti virus software has “mangled” the voice application; see here.

Please go to Voice Echo Canyon when trying to get voice to work. If voice is working correctly for you, anything you say there will be echoed back to you. Once there, relog to last location.

Check Voice Settings in your Operating System

Due to the many different versions of each operating system (Windows, linux distros, Mac OSx's), it is very difficult to give specifics for each one. Nonetheless, make sure that your operating system is correctly configured for voice: that voice is going to your headset (or speakers, as you prefer), and that your mic is enabled and configured.

Check Voice Settings in the Viewer

  • Go to PreferencesSound & Media -> General. Find the Voice Chat slider and make sure it is not all to the left. Try increasing the volume.
  • Make sure that Voice chat is enabled on that preferences tab.
  • go to PreferencesSound & Media -> Voice Settings. Click on Audio Device Settings. For Input and Output, use the dropdowns to select your voice devices (headset, microphone, whatever you use). It is best not to leave these at Default.
  • Close Preferences and locate the Mic button on the button bar. Click the Lock checkbox then the actual button, and try speaking (hopefully, you went to Voice Echo Canyon so you can test).

If voice still does not work, then continue working through this page.

Voice is Intermittent

If using Firestorm 4.5.1 and 4.6.1 on Windows, please see here.

If you find that voice cuts in and out, particularly right after a TP, and at the same time, you notice that things are not rezzing in for you very well (avatars, objects, etc), then the likely cause is that your router is being “overwhelmed” with texture transfers. So try the following:

If that does not help, then proceed with the section below.

Voice Worked Fine but Suddenly Doesn't Work

Chances are good that the problem lies with the SL servers or the voice provider, Vivox. Still, there are things you can try:

  • Shut down all applications that use, or can use, voice - like Skype, etc. Then relog.
  • What sometimes helps to get voice working is disabling voice in PreferencesSound & Media -> Voice Settings, hitting apply, waiting a minute and then enabling voice and hitting apply. When these methods fail (assuming voice usually works for you) it is usually the Vivox voice servers that are the problem.
  • Go to Preferences → Network & Cache and reduce your bandwidth setting to 500 (if it is not already set there). Repeat the above step to toggle voice off and back on. See here for more information on setting your bandwidth properly, but bear in mind that lower levels than those calculated there may be necessary for troubleshooting purposes.
  • Try going to another region to see if voice works there. If so, then the issue is the region you were in before. Was voice disabled there? If not, a region restart might solve the problem.
  • Try a relog, or even a reboot of the computer.
  • HTTP fetching may be overloading your router; please try the suggestions given here; if they do not help, revert the changes made then return to this page and continue.

Never Been Able to Get Voice to Work

  • Does your headset/microphone work outside of SL? ie when using Skype, Yahoo or MSN
  • Is your voice chat volume turned up and not muted?
  • Is the SLVoice.exe (simply SLVoice on Mac) that is in the Firestorm folder in the exceptions/allowed list for your firewall? If your firewall is turned off, turn it on and add the SLVoice.exe (or SLVoice) anyway.
  • Check the bandwidth you are actually getting and what you have set in Preferences → Network & Cache. Please refer to this page for specifics.
  • Go to Advanced → Debug Settings, and in the window that opens, type: Cmdlinedisablevoice - then ensure this is set to FALSE.

Windows-specific

Firestorm 4.5.1 (38838) and 4.6.1 (40478)


Don't do this section if using Firestorm 4.6.5.40833.

Some have issues with voice on Firestorm 4.5.1 or 4.6.1 - specifically, “stuttering”. The only work-around currently is to swap out the voice files.

To this end, download this file; save it to your hard drive. Make sure you do not have Firestorm running. Then extract the files to your Firestorm install folder. (For Firestorm 32-bit viewer, this is typically located at C:\Program Files\Firestorm on 32 bit Windows, and C:\Program Files (x86)\Firestorm on Windows 64-bit. For Firestorm 64-bit Viewer, this is typically located at C:\Program Files\Firestorm.) When prompted, allow the replacement of existing files.

Windows Vista and Windows 7

Try disabling compatibility mode, if enabled:

  • Locate your desktop shortcut for Firestorm
  • Right click on the icon and select Properties
  • Select the Compatibility tab
  • Find “Run this program in compatibility mode for:” if it is set then disable this
  • Make sure “Run as Administrator” is enabled (if this is greyed out, then you're probably already running as administrator, so you can ignore this step).
  • Click Apply.
  • Now log back into the viewer, and see if voice works (do you have the white dot over your head?). If not, go to PreferencesSound & Media -> Voice Settings and disable voice; wait a few moments, then re-enable. 1)

On Windows 7, if you find yourself being able to talk but not hear what others say, then a possible solution is to use the sound drivers from Vista. (This needs further confirmation.)

Check that slvoice.exe is not muted in the speaker/headphones icon (located in the notification area) → mixer.

Linux-specific

Every linux distro is different; and each distro may have more than one window manager to further complicate things. So tips can't be “absolute”; you will need to experiment and see what works for you. The following have been suggested by some as effective. But first….

In the Firestorm install directory, there's a text file (originally from LL) with tips on getting voice to work in linux. If you haven't read that, then you can try to see if it helps.

  • Make sure you have ALSA and/or FMOD available. FMOD is supplied with Firestorm, normally. If you look at Help → About Firestorm, you should see a line that resembles this:
    Audio Driver Version: OpenAL, version 1.1 ALSOFT 1.11.753 / OpenAL Community / OpenAL Soft: PulseAudio Software
    If that says “none” then you have no audio driver available to Firestorm and need to install one.
  • Edit the firestorm shell script and remove the #. That will force LL to use FMOD rather than ALSA. Some say this is how to get voice working.
#export LL_BAD_OPENAL_DRIVER=x
  • Some swear that the problem is PulseAudio, so you can try to remove that from your system. Be warned, however, that this could cause more problems than it solves. Make sure you remove only Pulse and not half the OS.
  • Be sure to have the correct devices select in Firestorm for voice:

    Preferences → Sound & Media → Audio Device Settings (button) … input and output may not work if left at default; they may need to go to a specific device like “ALSA Capture on [device name]”.

Below are results for selected linux distros, based on input from Phoenix and Firestorm users. This will be updated as more information becomes available.

  • ubuntu 14.04 64 bit + FS64: The following comand installs a few 32-bit libs and voice works after. Maybe you need fewer 32-bit libs but that needs further investigation.
    Apparently, arch requires these as well - or some of them - though the exact lib name may be different.
sudo apt-get install gstreamer0.10-pulseaudio:i386 libidn11:i386 libuuid1:i386 libstdc++6:i386

Mac-specific

All Mac Operating Systems

If you are unable to connect to voice and you are also having problems with teleporting and/or loading your friends list, perhaps along with other things, then see the “Mac-specific” section of this page for instructions and more explanation.

Mountain Lion (10.8.x) Only

Some Mountain Lion users experience a problem with voice output, while input works fine (that is, you can hear but you can't speak). To fix this, open the voice preferences for your viewer (PreferencesSound & Media -> Voice Settings in Firestorm). Click the device settings button and select “built-in microph” as the audio input device and click OK. (OK is important, Apply doesn't work.) Reopen Preferences and go back to the device settings button to ensure you're getting sound in on the mic.

1) Incorporates suggestions from user Maverick Buccaneer.
fs_voice.txt · Last modified: 2014/07/05 23:25 by miro.collas