Fixed: EPIC Games show as “unavailable” in the launcher

I’ve had a small issue with the EPIC Games Launcher more and more recently. Some of my games (usually the un-installed ones) show up as being unavailable. Tell me if you’ve seen this before:

This has started happening as for the last four weeks I’d say. I’ve started moving some of my games over to a hard driver other than C, and the size of my library has gradually been increasing if it makes a difference. At first glance it looks like there might be a problem with the game, as if it had been removed from sale.

EPIC even have an article on this phenomenon, which hints at unavailable games being of a different version than the one you currently own, but that just confuses matters and it’s not the case here.

Thankfully there is an easier solution: just navigate around in the launcher for a bit, then check your library again. I know it sounds too easy, but for me this issue goes away if I head over to my settings, click on a couple of pages, and then come back to my library tab. See?

If this doesn’t work for you, try right-clicking the launcher completely by right-clicking on the task bar icon and selecting exit. Restart it again and check your library, hopefully to find all your games as available or installable again. The guys at Proletariat Support have discovered this problem a year ago, and also suggest to re-launch the launcher.

Hope this helps, and happy gaming!

How to enable the integrated Search Option in GeneratePress

I keep forgetting where and how to enable the integrated top level search function in the GeneratePress Theme. I had found it once and it made perfect sense, but when I installed the theme on a new site I had forgotten where that option is hiding.

It’s in the WordPress Theme Customiser under Layout – Primary Navigation – Navigation Search.

Thought I’d make a note here so I know where to look next time ๐Ÿ™‚

Can you use a regular Mic to USB adapter with the GoPro HERO 5/6/7/8?

I have a fairly popular video on how to use the GoPro Microphone Adapter on my channel, and due to its high view count, I get a lot of questions on it. The most popular question relates to why we have to use the large and expensive adaptor in the first place. It sells for $50 or $80, if it’s in stock, and it stands to reason that a cheaper alternative for around $10 might do the trick. I’ve answered the question about 20 times already, so to save myself and my viewers some time, I thought I’d draft a thorough response here.

TD;LR – Sadly we cannot use a cheap 3.5mm mic to USB-C adapter. Find out the reasons below.

Continue reading Can you use a regular Mic to USB adapter with the GoPro HERO 5/6/7/8?

How to specify a resolution when connecting with NoMachine

I control most of my local computers around the office with NoMachine. It’s the only client that lets me start several GUI heavy apps from the command line without running into some type of issue (like OpenGL driver shenanigans). You can download it from NoMachine.com for free, and I absolutely love it.

One thing that’s been bugging me though is that when I connect, the resolution of my source monitor is always matched on the client. In my case, that’s a 2K monitor on my Mac, and the resolution is a whopping 2560×1440. Quite frankly that’s often too much for the machine I’m connecting to, and it doesn’t make for the best viewing experience at my end with scroll bars left and bottom. I’d much rather have it be set to 1920×1080 every time as a default, without having to manually change it every time I connect.

Thankfully there’s a way to do this, and I’ve just worked out how it works! Here’s how to do it:

  • connect to your destination as usual
  • head over to the Display Settings (usually top left active corner – Display – Change Settings)
  • choose a resolution with the slider, or enter a custom resolution (enable the tick box)
  • IMPORTANT: uncheck the option “Match client resolution upon connecting”

The last point appears to be the most important one. If left unchecked, the client’s resolution is used instead of what we specify with the slider or the entered values. Now you disconnect and reconnect from your client with the resolution of your choice.

Another network mystery solved!

How to play Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved in 1920×1080 (Steam)

I’ve just picked up a copy of Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved on Steam. I used to love this twin-stick arcade shooter since I first discovered it in Project Gotham Racing. I had the Xbox 360 version too, and haven’t thought about it for many years. I didn’t even know it was available on Steam until today, and picked up a copy for $1.99 – happy memories!

I browsed through the resolution options pretty much immediately, since the game comes up with a default of 640×480, which is a tad low for today’s screens. By default though, the highest I could set it to was something along the lines of 1280×720 (or derivatives thereof), and truth be told, that’s troublesome for streaming. Was that as high as it went? Did I need a dodgy patch to go any higher?

Thankfully no, a 1920×1080 option is built in, but it’s not exactly obvious how to obtain it. Here’s how to do it:

  • head over to Help and Options
  • select Video
  • set Keep Aspect Ratio to YES
  • now select 1920×1080

The Aspect Ratio is the crucial part. Setting this to YES will unlock other resolutions that were not available with the default option of NO. Much easier than I thought.

Getting Started with Streaming – An Overview

I’ve been meaning to put this quick guide together, with helpful bits of equipment and software that you need to get started in the world of streaming. I also wanted to explain the principles in a not-too-technical way. Here’s what I’ve come up with! This guide includes some philosophy, general tips, some basic kit suggestions, as well as “extra credit” optionals with affiliated links to the products I’m talking about. I hope you get some information out of this list!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments and I’ll try my best to help if I can.

Table of Contents

Continue reading Getting Started with Streaming – An Overview

How to build anchor links on the same page with WordPress

Anchor Links are internal links that can re-direct the user to a part further up or down inside a web page. This is a useful way to make a longer article better navigable, for example by starting with a small table of content, with each heading linking further down on the same page.

It’s been a popular strategy back in the early days of the internet, and it’s technically still how a table of contents in an e-book works, and I thought I’d bring the topic back to the table (I had forgotten how to do it, so here’s a handy reminder for my future self).

This is an example of an anchor link, sending you to the bottom of the page.

To create one, we need to have an ID of our choice that we’ll add to the beginning section of where we’d like to link. In my example, I’ll just call it “further down”. I’d like to use the link on my headline (called Example Anchor Link), so I’ll select the block and choose “Advanced” in the block editor.

That’s the destination of our anchor link setup. Now we can pick any passage of text inside or post, select it and pick the little link icon as usual. The difference however is that we don’t give the full protocol to our destination (like https://wpguru.tv), but instead we’ll start with the hash sign (#), followed by the anchor text we specified above. Like this:

Note how WordPress is telling us that it recognises this as an internal link. If you accidentally leave out the # sign, WordPress will (incorrectly) add http:// to the front and your internal link won’t work.

Example Anchor Link

Well there you are – you’ve been linked here from the example link at the top. If I wanted to, I could build another link to send you back up – but I don’t want to risk breaking the internet with an endless loop. I’m sure you get the gist of it ๐Ÿ˜‰

How to recover from a 6-beep BIOS error on a HP Z600 / Z800 Workstation

Funny story: I was setting browsing through the Z600 BIOS today trying to optimise an issue I was investigating, when I came across an interesting option I thought I’d fiddle with: the PCI-e compute option. You can find it under Advanced PCI options I believe. I thought perhaps it’ll turn my two GPUs on the system into even faster devices… but sadly that wasn’t the case. Instead I apparently BRICKED the whole system!

So my Z600 is beeping 6 times upon startup, which indicates a pre-video startup error (in other words, the system can’t communicate with an available graphics card). Turns out that when I enabled the PCI-e compute option on every slot, the BIOS disabled the ability to use said slots for graphics. Bit of a design flaw there, HP…

The Solution

Naturally I did this on both GPU slots, and sadly a regular CMOS reset does not switch these options back. What does work however is to use a regular PCI slot with an older graphics card to let us boot into the BIOS and change the settings back (i.e. disable compute option). The short top slot is ideal for that, because to my astonishment it’s open at the back. This means longer cards fit in without problems, and most GPUs can communicate on the front contacts.

I whipped out an ATI Radeon 2800 that’s been collecting dust in a box, slipped it in as my THIRD graphics card, attached a monitor and booted into my Z600. All went well, I could change the settings in the BIOS to non-compute, and the whole thing was solved.

I was even able to boot straight into Windows with the Radeon 2800 and the short slot, even thought the refresh rate wasn’t great (perhaps 20 Hz at best at 1920×1080), but at least I could fix the issue of the bricked workstation.

It goes to show that it’s always good to keep older graphics cards around! This works on both Z600 and Z800 workstations.

Further Reading

Here’s a list of links that helped get me to this solution:

If you have any questions, leave a comment below.

WHOLEV 12″ LCD HDMI / BNC Field Monitor Review

I was looking for a small portable monitor, the size of a laptop screen with a HDMI input. Most big brands offer sizes of 22″ and larger, but during the COVID crisis I needed something smaller for a streaming setup in my spare room. This WHOLEV model seemed to fit my needs (I got the 12″ version). 

The unit is as described, featuring four inputs at the back:

  • HDMI
  • VGA
  • RCA
  • and BNC ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

The latter is of interest to professional broadcast users, for whom BNC is a standard composite video route). There’s also a USB port at the back, but I’ve not worked out what its use is (possibly software updates). We find an on/off switch at the back, as well as menu control options. Thankfully there’s a small remote control in the box with which switching inputs and working the menu is much easier.

Continue reading WHOLEV 12″ LCD HDMI / BNC Field Monitor Review

ASUS Monitor Comparison: VS228H vs VP228 – The Differences

I’ve been looking for a 22″ monitor to improve my setup, and I came across two ASUS models that both fit my budget nicely. They’re both under $100 with very similar features, yet one seemed to be the “newer model” according to Amazon. I was intrigued to know the differences, and dissatisfied with the descriptions, I ordered both! I’ve compared them side by side for a week and I can finally tell you the exact differences between

I’ll let you check out the sale page on the ASUS website on the links above in your own time, chances are that you already know these models if you’re reading this. Here are my personal impressions:

Continue reading ASUS Monitor Comparison: VS228H vs VP228 – The Differences