SpaceNavigator, Windows 10, and Second Life

3DConnexion has a Windows 10 driver for the SpaceNavigator, version 10.4.5 August 11, 2016. They come in 64-bit and 32-bit versions. If you are on Windows 10, you most likely are on 64-bit. Don’t worry about it too much. If you are on 32-bit and try to install 64-bit software/drivers the 64-bit software/driver will refuse to install.

I CAN HAS SPACENAVIGATOR?

I CAN HAS SPACENAVIGATOR?

Two years ago I got my SpaceNavigator (SN) and had a heck of a time getting it working as I wanted. So, I wrote the tutorial: 3DConnextion SpaceNavigator v10 for Second Life (8/2014). I used it as my guide for getting my SN working on my new Windows 10 machine.

I found things have changed. It is easier. But, there are somethings to do. Setup is NOT automatic.

So…

SpaceNavigator Icon v10.4

SpaceNavigator Icon v10.4

Download and install the driver.

Close all the other programs. This is so the SN doesn’t get confused. Open 3DConnexion Home. Click on Settings. You should see the setting panel titled Desktop. This tells us it is working.

3Dconnexion SpaceNavigator Home

3Dconnexion SpaceNavigator Home

Now start your preferred viewer; Firestorm, RLV, Cool VL, Linden Second Life… whatever.

Once the viewer is fully loaded, no need to login, click on the viewer to assure the system has moved the focus to it. Then click the SN icon in the taskbar. When the settings panel comes up, it should be titled Second Life or Firestorm or whatever viewer name you are using.

If not, you have confused SN. Click into the viewer, open HELP or something. Then click the SN icon again. It is important that the viewer name appear in the Settings panel title.

Note: RLV will cause SN Settings to use the name Second Life, not RLV Viewer as you probably expect. I did. If RLV is the ONLY viewer you have running, its OK that it says SL. If you are running more than one viewer you can see why things could get confusing.

Click the BUTTONS button in the panel. The LEFT button I program to show the SN Settings panel. You can program it for whatever you want. To have it show the settings click; LEFT->3Dconnexion->Properties…

3Dconnexion Settings Panel

3Dconnexion Settings Panel

Note: In this image I goofed up and got the Snipping Tool active so, it shows in the panel’s title. It has to be your viewer’s name where it shows Snipping Tool.

Next click the button RIGHT and program it to switch in and out of Flycam viewer mode. You can manually play with Flycam to see if you want to do that. In the viewer press Alt-Shift-F to go into Flycam mode. Press again to leave Flycam.

Configure Buttons

Configure Buttons

To program a macro to do Flycam when you press the RIGHT SN button click; RIGHT->Macros->New Macro.

This opens a new panel. Name your macro and press the keys Alt-Shift-F. All 3 have to be down at the same time. Click close.

OK your way out. This effort has created a SN configuration file we need to edit. There is a bit of a problem with how the Lab has programmed this part of the viewer. The SN and viewer don’t talk as well as they should. This is a problem all the viewers I’ve tried have. So, we need to do some editing.

Navigate to:

C:\Users\[Win_Login_ID]\AppData\ Roaming\3Dconnexion\3DxWare\Cfg\

There should be a file in there with your viewer’s name. If not… you probably confused SN by having more than one program/app open. Try the steps above again. The trick is getting the viewer’s name to appear in the Settings panel’s title. If not, it won’t build the file we need.

If you are using the Second Life Viewer, the file we need to edit will be named: SecondLifeViewer.xml. This is a text file written in XML format, meaning lots of <tag_name> stuff in it. Not to fear. Provided you can read, this is an easy edit. Use Notepad or any simple text editor.

First change:

<Transport>KMJ</Transport>

To

<Transport>DirectInput</Transport>

Next change:

<InheritsFrom>STR_[something]</InheritsFrom>

To

<InheritsFrom />

Save the file. You are done.

Close the viewer, if it is open and restart the computer. You may not need to restart, but I’ve seen SN miss seeing the changes until after a restart. So, rather than tough it out and deal with a hiccup, restart.

Open your viewer and login.

SN should find your new configuration file and set it self up. But, now you need to setup the viewer.

FS: Open Preferences->Move & View->Movement (tab)->Joystick Configuration (button).

SL: Open Preferences->Move & View->Other Devices

You should see a complex panel like the image below. If your SN is working and you move it a bit, you will see the green lines and numbers to their right move.

Firestorm Joystick Settings

Firestorm Joystick Settings

Enable the Joystick: SpaceNavigator. This should be all you have to do. It should be working as soon as you click enable and OK out. But, things may not work as you expect. So, we may need to tweak the setup.

The Firestorm Instructions are here: Firestorm Joystick Configuration. The axis setup information in their page seems to assume you have the navigator’s directions reversed. If you are doing a clean install of the SN that should NOT be the case. I’m using these settings:

  • X Axis Mapping = 0
  • Y Axis Mapping = 2
  • Z Axis Mapping = 1
  • Pitch Mapping = 3
  • Yaw Mapping = 5
  • Roll Mapping = 4
  • Zoom Mapping = -1

There are a whole bunch of ‘sensitivity’ settings you can make. These adjust how hard or softly you have to press or twist on the SN. The image shows the settings I use. These I took from my Quad Core2 machine and I think I’ll need to change them a bit for my i5-6600k. I just haven’t taken time to experiment.

Each column allows specific settings for an activity; Avatar movement, building movement, and Flycam control. I think the Flycam control is most important and what I use the most. Play with settings to find what works for you.

Summary

The new driver and app is easier to use. With the old one I had to start out with a template file and figure out how to get it working with my device and viewer. Now SN makes the base file for me and I just need to make a couple of tweaks for Second Life. Much easier.

If you want to program more control in or you have one of the more complex SN’s the information in my previous article may help.

The SL JIRA has a number of SpaceNavigator issues. Most of these are from people that have not supplied enough information for the Lindens to take action. And there are feature requests and requests to update the viewer to provide better support for the SN.

6 thoughts on “SpaceNavigator, Windows 10, and Second Life

  1. Pingback: 3DConnextion SpaceNavigator v10 for Second Life | Nalates' Things & StuffNalates’ Things & Stuff

  2. I need to retest it, but why install the driver ? So far i know my space navigastor works out of the box without extra drivers. I think i not used the drivers before.

    I think you not need any driver software if you use it only for secondlife.

  3. Pingback: 3d-Maus SpaceNavigator für SL/Opensim konfigurieren | Dings Digital's Diary

  4. I’ve always used mine out of the box as well. Left button toggles flycam mode no problem. Without the drivers the LED never turns on, which doesn’t bother me. Even with the drivers I’ve never had to jump through all of these hoops??

    Levio

    • Didn’t work for me… My FS and SL viewers didn’t recognize the SpaceNavigator and nothing worked. You must be charmed.

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