• FAQ •

Updated: 2007-Aug-09. (Updated links, minor adjustments to be current)

Be sure to take a quick look at the Ventrilo log file for any indications of potential problems. You can open the log file by right clicking in the user list window, select the "Miscellaneous" menu option then select "View log file".

Some of these Questions will be very similar but with slight variations and with different answers. However, those that are similar are usually grouped together to make finding them easier. But you should always read the entire FAQ page if you don't find exactly what you are looking for.

Please note that some messages being generated by the Operating System will vary from platform to platform. This will require that you use a little interpretation of the following questions as they might be worded differently then the message you got.

Some problems might be further explained in the Operating System groups.

Administration
- Login in as Server Admin
- Create root level channels
- Un-ban a user

Codecs
- Unable to initialize codec. Code = -1
- Unable to initialize codec. Code = -8
- Unable to initialize codec. Code = -10

Text to speech
- I don't hear Text to speech (TTS) messages
- TTS messages stopped working

Sound
- Everyone hears me as a "Robotic" voice
- Sometimes I broadcast "Static"
- Turtle Beach Santa Cruz causes others to hear them selves when I'm connected
- I hear my self echoed when ever a certain person is connected at the same time
- Wave headers are coming in too fast. Closing sound input device
- Can't transmit when connected to a server
- Some games cause Ventrilo to delay sound and other functions
- When I enter a game I either can't hear the game sound or I can't hear Ventrilo

Mouse
- Mouse Sensitivity problems using Logitech Mouseware drivers
- Unable to bind mouse buttons 4 and 5

Keyboard
- I'm using XP and my keyboard keys don't work properly in certain games
- I'm using XP and Half Life based games will sometimes go crazy
- I'm using 98/ME and my Push-to-talk key won't work if Ventrilo doesn't have focus

Connection
- Unable to resolve DNS/Hostname
- Unable to connect to server
- Disconnects immediately after connecting to server. Starts reconnect countdown.

Installation
- Cannot find the file 'MSIEXEC' (or one of its components)
- This installation package cannot be installed by the Windows Installer Service
- The dynamic link library DINPUT8.DLL could not be found.
- The ordinal 12 could not be located in the dynamic link library DSOUND.dll
- The VENTRILO.EXE file is linked to missing export DSOUND.DLL:12
- A device attached to the system not functioning

XP
- Slow to minimize when using XP
- Running Ventrilo in compatibility mode
- Running a server with XP Pro firewall on

95/98/ME
- My system will sometimes crash while running Ventrilo
- SB Live/Audigy with 98/ME. Can't hear Ventrilo and game sounds at the same time

Miscellaneous
- Lockup when connecting to a server
- Lockup in Setup-Voice when I click the Monitor or Test buttons
- Lockup as soon as I click Setup even before connecting to a server
- 56K dialup modem and my games lag while running Ventrilo at the same time


Q: Login in as Server admin.

There are two ways to gain server admin access.

The first is to enter the global admin password which is defined in the servers "ventrilo_srv.ini" file.

1) Connect to the server.
2) Right click in the Ventrilo window.
3) Select Server Admin.
4) Select Login.
5) Enter global server administration password.

The second method is to add your self to the USR file and have it automatically assign you server admin rights when you connect using your reserved name and password. See the first method for becoming a server admin to perform the following steps.

1) Right click in the Ventrilo window.
2) Select Server Admin.
3) Select User editor.
4) Enter your login name.
5) Give it a unique password for this login.
6) Check the Server Admin option.
7) Click Add.

You will need to modify the server definition you created in the client when connecting to this server so that the specific password matches what you just entered in the User Editor. This reserves your login name because the password is now unique. When you connect to the server it will automatically give you server admin rights.

Please note that if you don't enter the same password in your server definition that you created in the Server Editor window then you will not be able to login in at all even if the server does not have a global password. As mentioned, your login name is reserved by adding it to the USR file so be sure to get it right the first time.


Q: Create root level channels.

1) Login with the server Admin password.
2) Right click on the server name at the top of the users lists window.
3) Select Channel Admin - Create.


Q: Un-ban a user.

1) Login with server admin password.
2) Right click in the Ventrilo window.
3) Select Server Admin
4) Select Ban List
5) Select the IP/User you wish to un-ban and click delete.


Q: Slow to minimize when using Windows XP?

Installing Windows XP Service Pack 1 will usually fix this problem.

If you do not have SP1 then you can try this trick. Right click on the Ventrilo program icon. Select properties menu item. Click on the Compatibility tab then set the "Disable Visual Themes" check box. You will need to restart Ventrilo for this change to take effect.

Research has shown that enabling the "Use DirectInput to detect Hotkey" option will solve this problem.


Q: Running Ventrilo in Compatibility mode?

Do NOT run Ventrilo in compatibility mode.

Ventrilo was originally designed, developed and tested on Windows NT4. It is now developed on XP. You should not need to tell Ventrilo to work in ANY compatibility mode what so ever. Let it run natively like it was designed to. Starting Ventrilo in compatibility mode causes all sorts of nasty problems that are not immediately obvious.

To disable compatibility mode: Right click on the Ventrilo program icon. Select properties menu item. Click on the the Compatibility tab and uncheck the "Run this program in compatibility mode". Click OK when done. You will need to restart Ventrilo for this change to take effect.


Q: Turtle Beach Santa Cruz causes others to hear them selves when I'm connected.

This is a problem with the Santa Cruz card it self. Basically, the microphone input port is picking up bleed over from the line out port going to your speakers. It is a defect in the cards design as far as I can tell. TB has a suggestion for mitigating it but its still not acceptable.

You might want to read this thread in our forum for some input about what's actually going on and how to test for it. Some of these ideas can be applied to all sound cards. If you insist on keeping your Santa Cruz, because of potential problems with a VIA chipset and other sound cards, then I would recommend buying a USB microphone as the input source instead of using the mic port on the Santa Cruz, or enable the Push-to-talk option.


Q: I hear my self echoed when ever a certain person is connected at the same time.

Most likely your friend has a Creative Labs sound card and he is using it for the microphone input. There is nothing wrong with the card but the way the system wide sound mixer controls are configured by default. For some unknown reason Creative defaults the sound input device to mix all input sources into a single source. This includes, mic, sound loopback, midi, wave, etc... They all get mixed together. If you reinstall Creative drivers or update to newer ones then this will quite often revert back to all-in-one mix mode again.

The solution to this problem is quite simple but must be performed by the person who is generating the echo rather then you who hears it.

Have this person go into Ventrilo Setup and select a Mixer for the sound card that will be the sound input device (as determined by the "Input device" option). This will populate the Mux and Line options. Normally there should only be one Mux. It's possible that you might have numerous Line options. Go ahead and select "Microphone" or what ever is appropriate for the input line and then click OK.

That should solve the problem.

Please note that selecting a mixer, mux and line will enable the "Hardware volume" slider. This gives you hardware level control over the sound input signal and is the best way for controlling how loud you are. Setting the slider to half way seems to work best for most people but that will be system and hardware dependant.


Q: I use a Sound Blaster Live/Audigy and run Windows 98/ME. When I join a game I can't hear incoming voice streams or I can't hear the game sounds.

The default settings for maximum number of sound streams in the Creative drivers for Windows 9x based systems is set to low. Follow these directions and it should start working.

Start Creative's AudioHQ program... Should be able to find it here...

StartButton / Creative / SoundBlaster Live! / AudioHQ

Then double click on Device Controls icon... It should be sitting on the "Wave" tab by default when it opens... There should also be a slider titled "Maximum simultaneous wave playback"... By default mine was set to 4... Try bumping this up to 16 or 32 and then run Ventrilo, your games, whatever and see if you still have the problem... It might require a reboot to take effect.


Q: Ventrilo works fine until I enter a game then I either can't hear the game sound or I can't hear Ventrilo?

Most likely this is a sound card / driver problem. You might be using an old sound card that doesn't support multiple simultaneous sound streams. We recommend you purchase one of the newer cards from Creative Labs or Turtle Beach, or any manufacturer that supports multiple sound streams and full duplex recording and playback.


Q: I use a 56K dialup modem for internet connection and my games lag while running Ventrilo at the same time.

Your only option is to configure the server to use a different codec and/or sample rate. However, this will directly impact the sound quality that the broadband users probably will not want to give up as the change will apply to all clients.


Q: I run Windows 98/ME and my system will sometimes crash while running Ventrilo.

1) The first thing you should try is to enable the "Use DirectSound for Input Device" option in the Setup window. Some sound cards have serious issues with their drivers and do not function properly in all modes. Enabling this option will sometimes correct the issue.

2) Install the lastest version of the client as they usually have tweaks to help solve problems like these.

3) Do the following and it should make your system more stable. However, I would highly recommend you upgrade to Windows 2000 or XP as their drivers are more current and usually more stable.

Open control panel
Double click Multimedia icon.
Click audio tab (if not already on it)
Click on the recording version of Advanced Properties.
Move Hardware acceleration down a notch.
Reboot.
Test with ventrilo.
Repeat until Windows stops crashing.


Q: Unable to initialize the codec. CODE = -1

-1 means the codec isn't installed. For some unknown reason some people do not have the codec installed even though the base install of the Operating System should have put it on. The following instructions are for Windows XP but should apply, with minor changes to Windows 2000. If you are using a Windows 9x system then put your install CD back on and reinstall all of the media files.

You accept all responsibility for any possible damage caused to your system if these instructions do not work. If you are not comfortable following these instructions then you should call Microsoft support and ask them how to do it.

1) Start.
2) Control Panel.
3) Printers and Other Hardware. (Win2000 users use "Add/Remove Hardware")
4) Under See Also click the Add Hardware. (Next)
5) Select the "Yes, I have already connected the hardware". (Next)
6) Scroll to bottom and select "Add a new hardware device". (Next)
7) Select the "Install the hardware that I manually select from a list". (Next)
8) Select "Sound, video and game controllers". (Next)
9) Select "(Standard system devices)" then select "Audio Codecs".
10) Click "Have Disk"
11) Click "Browse"
12) Browse to c:\windows\system32 (or c:\winnt\system32 for Win2000)
13) Select the "mmdriver.inf" file. (Open)
14) Click OK to "Install from Disk".
15) If asked about Windows Logo testing just click Continue anyway.
16) Select "Microsoft GSM 6.10 Audio CODEC". (Next)
17) Select Auto-Configure, which should set both Comp and Decomp to 44100 each.
18) Click OK.
19) Click Finish.
20) Reboot and pray that it works.


Q: Unable to initialize the codec. CODE = -8

-8 means the codec is found but the settings are messed up.

Control panel
Sound and multimedia
Hardware
Double click "Audio Codec"
Double click on Microsoft GSM 6.10
Click settings.
Set Compress and Decompress to 44100 (or just click Auto Config).
Press OK.


Q: Unable to initialize the codec. CODE = -10

-10 means the codec is found but is marked as disabled.

Control panel
Sound and multimedia
Hardware
Double click "Audio Codec"
Double click on Microsoft GSM 6.10
Click on "Use this audio codec"
Press OK.


Q: I don't hear Text-to-speech (TTS) messages.

Microsoft XP comes with the TTS libraries built in but some people have experienced problems making it work for one reason or another. Thus, the following instructions might help them as well.

On Windows 9x and 2000 platforms you need to download and install the libraries manually. Click here and download the "Speech SDK 5.1" file, all 68Meg of it, then install the file using the default installation information. The next time you start Ventrilo it will automatically detect the presence of the TTS library and use it.

Once the library is installed you can tell Ventrilo to generate TTS messages when certain events occur, and whether or not it should process incoming TTS messages from other users. Click on the Setup button and then click on the Speech and Event tabs to control TTS processing.


Q: Text-to-speech (TTS) stopped working.

The Microsoft TTS library seems to have a few problems and is prone to getting corrupted. Please read this MS Knowledge base item for a possible solution.


Q: I'm using XP and my keyboard keys don't work properly in certain games.

This is a known bug in Microsoft's DirectInput sub-system and only occurs on Windows XP. If you are running 9x or 2000 you will not have these problems.

To elaborate, when you run a game like Counter Strike with Ventrilo on Windows XP and you have the shift key bound in game to make your character walk instead of running then this combination will cause an errant event to be sent to the game making it think that you are pressing the shift key when you really are not. Or, if you use the arrow keys for movement and something else seems to happen in addition to the movement you want.

The problem is DirectInput and only occurs when a program in the background is monitoring the keyboard using the DirectInput interface. As mentioned the problem is only on XP. To prevent this problem from occurring follow these steps.

1) Start ventrilo.
2) Click on setup.
3) Uncheck the "Use DirectInput to detect HotKey"
4) Click OK
5) Disable DirectInput in all Binding lists.

If you have any key binds in Ventrilo (via the bindings editor) then make sure you don't have the DirectInput check box enabled in there either.

Restart Ventrilo and the problem should go away. Please note, that if at any time you re-enable either of these DirectInput options you will need to repeat these steps including the restart of Ventrilo. Once the XP/DirectInput bug is activated you can't stop it until you do all these things.

To my knowledge Ventrilo is the only Voice Comm program that will allow you to accomplish this trick. However, some games (like BF1942 and Ghost Recon) will not allow ventrilo to detect your bind keys or PTT hotkey without the DirectInput option enabled.

Additional: You should get used to using the DirectInput option as some features will not work without it. We suggest that you do not bind the SHIFT key to any function in the game if you plan on using arrows keys for other game binds, assuming you experience this problem which no everyone does.


Q: Some games cause Ventrilo to delay sound and other functions.

It has been discovered that some games, like BF1942, will consume all of the CPU time of your computer. This in turn starves other applications like Ventrilo preventing them from carrying out their associated tasks. This is especially bad for voice comm programs that run in the background and independently of any game.

In the Setup-Misc page there is an option called "Process priority class". Setting it to high could very well solve these sorts of problems. However, please be sure to read the help documentation for this option so that you fully understand the ramifications of setting it to anything other then "Normal".


Q: I'm using XP and Half Life based games will sometimes go crazy.

This problem is only experienced by a handful of people. However, it's been very difficult trying to narrow it down to a specific cause. Symptoms of this problem are usually associated with the your game character continuing to move forward even though you are no longer pressing a key, choppy voice comm either between in game voice or Ventrilo.

Some things to try are:

1) Enable the "Use DirectSound for Input Device" option.

2) Use either in game or Ventrilo for voice comm, instead of trying to do both.

3) Try using voice activation instead of Push-to-talk.

4) Bump the priority class in the Setup-Misc page.

5) If using PTT mode then use the DirectInput option.

6) If using PTT mode but not using the DirectInput option, then use the Discard Hotkey option.


Q: Everyone hear's me as a "robotic" voice.

If you are using a Hercules or Philips sound card then this is most likely the problem. Usually associated with any sound card that uses the Crystal CS4630 chipset.

This is a well known problem and is systemic to these brands of boards / chipset. However, these companies do not seem to forthcoming with a solution. Your options are:

1) Dump these cards and get a SB Live/Audigy or a TB Santa Cruz.
2) Try using a USB based microphone.
3) Enable any onboard sound and use it for your microphone input.
4) In setup enable the "Use DirectSound for input device". This might help.

Hercules owners should also consider installing the latest 4101 or higher drivers. These drivers were reported on the support forum to have fixed one persons sound problems. Guess it can't hurt to try.


Q: Sometimes I broadcast "static".

Research has shown this problem to be either directly caused by XP or a combination of the OS and sound card drivers. Some machines are also prone to generating static when the server is configured to use a 22Khz sample rate vs. the default 11Khz. But even then not everyone will have this problem.

Static also tends to be induced on XP systems if you have more then one program monitoring the same sound card's input device (i.e. using in-game voice comms while using Ventrilo) or if another program in the background tries to manipulate the same sound card's mixer and controls.

There is also a bind feature called "Reset sound input device" which can be used to stop static until the next time it happens. However, you might need to reset it several times to make it actually stop. There will be a 3 second delay after you press the bind and before you can start transmitting again.

Please be advised that the Static and Robotic problems are not caused by Ventrilo. They are either OS or sound card driver related.

1) Try using a USB based microphone.
2) Enable any onboard sound and use it for your microphone input.
3) In setup enable the "Use DirectSound for input device". This might help.


Q: A device attached to the system is not functioning.

This message is usually the first of two messages when you don't have DirectX 8.1 or higher installed on your system. This message will only show up on Windows 9x based platforms. See the following items regarding DSOUND for the real reason.

This message is generated by the Operating System when trying to load the program, and not by the program it self.


Q: The dynamic link library DINPUT8.DLL could not be found.
Q: The ordinal 12 could not be located in the dynamic link library DSOUND.dll
Q: The VENTRILO.EXE file is linked to missing export DSOUND.DLL:12

Ventrilo requires DirectX 9.0c or higher installed on your system for the program to run. You can download the latest DirectX subsystem here from Microsoft.

The first version of this message will appear on Windows NT/2000/XP platforms while the second will appear on Windows 9x platforms.

These messages are generated by the Operating System when trying to load the program, and not by the program it self.


Q: Mouse Sensitivity problems using Logitech Mouseware drivers.

Make sure you have the latest drivers installed. Logitech mouse driver page.


Q: Unable to bind mouse buttons 4 and 5.

You must enable the Use DirectInput for Hotkey option.

If your mouse drivers support remapping buttons 4 and 5 to other functions then you will need to make sure that they are mapped to their default values. Button 4 is usually set to "Back" and button 5 is set to "Forward". You can test these by starting a web browser and clicking the buttons. They should do the same thing as your browsers forwards and backwards buttons.

The program also supports buttons 6 / 7 / 8 but only if your mouse drivers will allow it.


Q: Wave headers are coming in too fast. Closing sound input device.

If this message shows up in the log file during normal operation or pops up in a dialog box when using the "Monitor" or "Test" buttons in the Setup window, then you have problems with your sound card drivers.

Make sure that your sound card drivers are up to date first.

Enabling the "Use DirectSound for Input Device" in the Setup window might solve the problem as well.


Q: I can't transmit when connected to a server, my icon doesn't turn green and I don't see the --XMIT-- in the window.

1) Uncheck the "Mute Microphone/Binds" check box at bottom of the window.
2) In Setup check the "Enable outgoing voice communications".
3) In Setup use the Monitor and Test buttons verify your configuration.


Q: I'm using 98/ME and my Push-to-talk key won't work if Ventrilo doesn't have focus.

In Setup-Voice you need to enable the "Use DirectInput to detect Hotkey" option.


Q: Ventrilo will lockup as soon as I connect to a server or if I press either the Monitor or Test buttons in Setup mode.

This usually means that the sound card drivers have problems. Enabling the "Use DirectSound for input device" in Setup will usually fix this. But you should probably verify that your sound card drivers are up to date. Please note that just because you have the latest drivers doesn't mean that things will improve, especially if your are using a Window 9x based OS since most companies have stopped further development of drivers for the 9x platform.

You might have a hardware conflict as well.

In Setup-Voice select a specific Sound Input device. If you have a webcam with built in microphone and it's the default input device it might be causing the problem as well.


Q: Ventrilo will lock up as soon as I click Setup even before connecting to a server.

There is something seriously wrong with your sound card drivers or sound mixer configuration. This usually occurs on Windows 9x based OS's. We're looking into a possible detection of problem for future releases but we know for a fact that it has something to do with the system sound mixers.

The latest client supports a little trick to test this problem. If you hold down the CTRL key while you press the Setup button it will instruct the program to bypass the sound mixer interfaces. If this enables the program to actually enter the Setup dialog then it will confirm that you have some kind of sound mixer problem. The side effect of this is that the mixer/mux/line pulldown windows will have nothing in them. This will also prevent you from adjusting the "Hardware Volume" slider. The point of this trick is to confirm sound mixer problems and not much else.


Q: I get the error "Unable to resolve DNS/Hostname" after I press the connect button.

When you defined the server you wanted to connect to you gave it a hostname instead of IP number. Host names look like "www.myserver.com" whereas IP numbers will look like "10.5.67.234" but without the quotes.

Both formats are valid but if you give it a hostname then the name must be typed correctly. If the name you entered doesn't exist then this error message will be displayed.

If you entered an IP address then you must have type in something other then numbers separated by dots.


Q: I get the error "Unable to connect to server" after I press the connect button.

This can be caused by several things.

When you defined the server you wanted to connect to your either A) typed the IP address wrong or B) entered the wrong port number.

The server might not be online.

Some kind of firewall/router is blocking your connection to the server.

Norton Internet Security and Zone Alarm don't seem to play nice with each other. If you have both installed, or one installed before installing the other then you should contact Symantec about possible conflicts.

In either event the problem is between you and the server. There is nothing we can do about it and you will have to research the problem in conjunction with the server administrator.


Q: After connecting to a server Ventrilo immediately disconnects and begins counting down before doing an automatic reconnect. This happens over and over in rapid succession.

If the count down starts immediately after connecting to a server then you have probably been banned. Contact the server administrator and have them un-ban you (assuming they are willing to do so). If the admin doesn't know how to un-ban you then tell them to read the "ventrilo_srv.htm" file that comes with each of the servers.


Q: Running a server with XP Pro firewall on.

If you are trying to run a server on XP Pro and have the XP Pro Firewall feature enabled then you must explicitly enable port 3784 for both UDP and TCP. Some firewall programs, like those that ship with Windows XP, do not have an option called "Both" or "UDP/TCP". In these cases you must create two entries in the firewall: One for UDP and another for TCP. This is easy enough to do by simply giving each entry a unique name such as Ventrilo TCP and Ventrilo UDP and assigning the appropriate network protocol to each one.

If you are running a local server you must have both UDP and TCP enabled for port 3784.


Q: Cannot find the file 'MSIEXEC' (or one of its components).

Q: This installation package cannot be installed by the Windows Installer Service. You must install a Windows service pack that contains a newer version of the Windows Installer Service.

Ventrilo now uses an MSI installation system. This requires that the "Windows Installer" version 2.0 be installed on your system. If it isn't then you may very well get one these two error messages while trying to install the Ventrilo client.

If you are using 95/98/ME then you will need to download and install the "InstMsiA.exe" program from Microsoft.

If you use using NT4 or 2000 (pre SP3) then you will need to download and install the "InstMsiW.exe" program from Microsoft.

 

 

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