Oculus Quest 2 Link On PcSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

Owners of the Oculus Quest and Oculus Quest 2 know just how good the truly wireless experience is. What they may not know, however, is how their gaming PC could transform these devices into an Oculus Rift and enable even grander-scale VR experiences. Our step-by-step guide will show you the easiest path to using your Oculus Quest as a PC VR headset, as well as introducing a few ways to keep the experience truly wireless. The best part is that your PC will be storing all the games needed, so you can opt for the less-expensive Oculus Quest 2 64GB. Let's get started with how to play SteamVR on Oculus Quest.

With Virtual Desktop (wireless)

Oculus Quest 2 Virtual DesktopSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

Virtual Desktop is our method of choice for playing PC VR games on your Oculus Quest or Oculus Quest 2, and that's because you'll get to play them completely wirelessly. Virtual Desktop isn't a free application, but the $20 price point will get you the best wireless experience available. If you'd rather try out a free wireless option, check the ALVR tab above.

When you connect an Oculus Quest 2 to a Wi-Fi 6 network, Virtual Desktop can provide even higher quality visuals with lower latency. Virtual Desktop now supports streaming directly from your PC to your Oculus Quest without the need for additional patches that were once required. That means all you'll need to do is install Virtual Desktop on your Quest, then get the streaming app installed on your computer.

Virtual Desktop Logo

Virtual Desktop

Virtual Desktop is all you'll need for perfect wireless PC VR on your Oculus Quest.

Whichever Oculus Quest you use, make sure to buy the correct Oculus Quest version of Virtual Desktop, which can be found on the Oculus Store and is linked above. The Steam and Oculus Rift versions of Virtual Desktop won't do the same thing. Once you've purchased that, put your Oculus Quest on and get Virtual Desktop installed:

  1. Open your library tab on the Oculus bar at the bottom of your view. It's the square grid of 9 dots.
    • If you don't see the bar at the bottom, press the home button on your right controller.
  2. Install Virtual Desktop by clicking the install button on the Virtual Desktop tile.

    Virtual Destop QuestSource: Android Central

  3. Ensure your Quest is on the same Wi-Fi network as your PC.
  4. Once it's done installing, take your headset off. Don't launch Virtual Desktop just yet.

Head over to your gaming PC now

  1. Make sure Steam is installed on your computer. You can get Steam here.
  2. Log in with your Steam account and download SteamVR.
  3. While that installs, open up the Oculus software on your PC.
  4. Sign in with your Oculus account.
  5. There's no need to go through the setup for adding a new headset since Virtual Desktop will handle that for you.
  6. Download the Virtual Desktop streaming app.
  7. Run the application once it's done downloading.

    Quest Virtual Desktop streamerSource: Android Central

  8. Fill in your Oculus username in the box and press Save.
  9. For the best future experience, make sure Start with Windows and Start minimized in tray are selected.
  10. With those options selected, all you'll need to do in the future is turn your PC and launch Virtual Desktop on your Oculus Quest.

Time to put the Oculus Quest on your head and get started

  1. Launch Virtual Desktop from the library tab on the Oculus bar at the bottom.
  2. When Virtual Desktop loads up for the first time, you'll need to select your Desktop PC from the list to connect to it. It's probably the only thing listed.

    Virtual Destop QuestSource: Android Central

  3. Once Virtual Desktop has connected to your PC, press the menu button on the left Oculus Touch controller to bring up the Virtual Desktop menu.
  4. Select Start SteamVR on the left-hand menu
  5. Once SteamVR loads up, press the menu button on the left Oculus Touch controller to pull up the SteamVR dashboard.

    Quest Steam Vr HomeSource: Android Central

  6. To bring up the Virtual Desktop menu again, long-press the menu button on the left Oculus Touch controller. You should always launch new games this way instead of browsing the SteamVR library from Steam.

Enjoy wireless SteamVR on your Oculus Quest or Oculus Quest 2!

With an Oculus Link (wired)

Oculus Quest 2 Link CableSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

While wireless is the preferable solution, wiring up your Oculus Quest or Quest 2 with an Oculus Link cable is technically the only official solution. That means, for the simplest and most sure-fire experience, an Oculus Link cable is the way to go. To get started, all you'll need is a USB Type-C cable to plug your Oculus Quest into your computer.

The $80 Oculus Link cable will offer the highest quality experience and is officially recommended by Oculus. If your computer doesn't have a USB Type-C port (or you just want to save money), there are some less expensive third-party options available on Amazon. Once you've got the cable, follow these instructions.

  1. Make sure Steam is installed on your computer. You can get Steam here.
  2. Log in with your Steam account and download SteamVR.
  3. While that installs, open up the Oculus software on your PC.
  4. Sign in with your Oculus account.
  5. Connect one side of the USB cable to the appropriate port on your PC.
  6. Connect the other side to your Oculus Quest/Quest 2.
  7. The Oculus app on your computer should recognize the Oculus Quest once it's plugged in. Click Continue on the screen that pops up to enable Oculus Link.

    Quest Link SetupSource: Android Central

  8. During the Oculus Link setup, you can test the cable to make sure it's fast enough to be used with Oculus Link by clicking the Test button at the bottom of the screen.

    • If your cable fails the test, you should consider one of the cables we recommended above.

    Quest Link FailSource: Android Central

  9. Click Continue and put the Oculus Quest on your head.
  10. If you see Allow access to data on your Oculus Quest, select Deny.
    • Selecting accept could interfere with the connection and cause random disconnections during play.
  11. Select Enable Oculus Link on the next pop-up that appears.
  12. On the Oculus Home screen, select Apps on the left-hand side of the screen.
  13. Start SteamVR.

    Oculus Home SteamvrSource: Android Central

  14. Once SteamVR loads up, press the menu button on the left Oculus Touch controller to pull up the SteamVR dashboard.

    Quest Steam Vr HomeSource: Android Central

With ALVR (wireless)

Oculus Quest 2 Link On PcSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

ALVR delivers a wireless VR experience without the extra cost. It's come a long way in a very short amount of time, and in most cases, the quality gap between it and Virtual Desktop has quickly shrunk. That's why we love ALVR and can recommend it as a great way to go wireless without spending the extra dough. It does require a few extra steps, however, so if you're not comfortable with adding third-party software to your Oculus Quest, this might not be the solution for you.

For this tutorial, you'll need to use SideQuest to get ALVR installed onto your Oculus Quest. Please follow our SideQuest guide here if you don't have SideQuest installed yet.

  1. Make sure Steam is installed on your computer. You can get Steam here.
  2. Log in with your Steam account and download SteamVR.
  3. On your computer, navigate to the ALVR Github.
  4. Download ALVR_Installer_vXXXX.exe (XXXX represents the version number). You can find this under the Assets section of each release in Github.

    Alvr Github InstallerSource: Android Central

  5. Run ALVR_Installer_vXXXX.exe.
  6. Accept any security dialogs that might appear and run through the installer.

    Alvr Installer SecuritySource: Android Central

  7. Navigate to your Start Menu and select ALVR.

    Alvr Start MenuSource: Android Central

  8. Follow through the initial setup to make sure your Windows Firewall is configured correctly.

    Alvr LaunchSource: Android Central

Now to load ALVR onto your Oculus Quest

  1. Plug your Oculus Quest into your computer with a USB cable.
  2. Open up the SideQuest application on your desktop PC.
  3. Use the search box at the top of the screen to search for ALVR. The full title name you'll see listed in Sidequest is ALVR - Air Light VR.

    Alvr SidequestSource: Android Central

  4. On the store page within Sidequest, click the Install to Headset button to download and install ALVR onto your Oculus Quest.

    Alvr SidequestSource: Android Central

  5. Once the installation is complete, unplug the Oculus Quest and fit it to your face as you normally would when playing.
  6. Open your library tab on the Oculus bar at the bottom of your view. It's the square grid of 9 dots. If you don't see the bar at the bottom, press the home button on your right controller.
  7. Select Unknown Sources from the rightmost dropdown list.
  8. Scroll down and select ALVR from the main pane.

    Alvr Quest LaunchSource: Android Central

  9. ALVR will launch into a white screen.
  10. Pull your visor up but leave the Oculus Quest on your head to keep it from falling asleep.
  11. On your computer, click the Trust button within the ALVR app next to the Oculus Quest listing.

    Alvr LaunchSource: Android Central

  12. Once it's connected, you'll see your headset's statistics and information displayed in the ALVR app on your desktop.
  13. SteamVR will automatically launch and you'll be greeted with SteamVR home from within the Oculus Quest.
  14. Once SteamVR loads up, press the menu button on the left Oculus Touch controller to pull up the SteamVR dashboard.

    Quest Steam VrSource: Android Central

Enjoy wireless SteamVR on your Oculus Quest or Oculus Quest 2!

You're all set!

No matter how you get there, whether it's by connecting a wire or setting up one of the excellent wireless experiences, it's now better than ever to turn your Oculus Quest into an Oculus Rift and play super-powered PC VR games.

Untethered VR

Oculus Quest 2 Leak With Controllers

Oculus Quest 2

VR without the need for external sensors

The Oculus Quest 2 is the latest wireless VR headset, with the ability to play games by itself like a console or hook up to a PC for even more powerful experiences.

Link it up with a PC

Oculus Quest 2 Link Cable

Oculus Link

The only official solution

Oculus has officially discontinued its Rift hardware, making way for the Oculus Quest 2 as its replacement with an Oculus Link cable.

USB-C, eh?

Vookoo Oculus Link Cable

Vookoo 16-foot Oculus Link cable

Right connection, right length, right price

When you don't have a USB Type-C port on your computer, or you just want to save some cash, Vookoo has a fantastic Oculus Link cable alternative.

Apps you need

Steam-App-Hero

SteamVR (Free at Steam)

Steam offers VR gamers thousands of options to choose from, whether it's big-name VR titles like Half-Life: Alyx, or indie-developed wonders and even free experiences, Steam has just about everything you'll want.

Oculus Logo

Oculus Store (Free at Oculus)

When Facebook bought Oculus many moons ago, few understood just how much the company would end up investing in VR. The biggest names and hits in the VR world are on the Oculus Store, and many titles even work cross-platform between Oculus Rift and Oculus Quest!

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