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Virtual, Mixed and Augmented Reality in The Workshop

The Workshop has a variety of tools and resources for creating content for and in Augmented, Mixed and Virtual Reality

Microsoft Hololens 2 in The Workshop

The Microsoft Hololens 2 is available for in-house use to the VCU Community. If you need assistance beyond this guide, email or call 804.827.3594 to set up an appointment.


Required for checkout:  Users must have attended an XRAM (+VR) orientation to become an authorized user.

In the Hololens 2 box you will find:  One Hololens 2 headset (nosepiece falls off sometimes, watch for it), one wall charger, one USB cord.

The Hololens 2 does not need to be tethered, running independently of any computer because it is driven by Windows 10 internally. However, if you wish for viewers to see what you are seeing you will need to run the Hololens app, installed on the Alienware PC in the XRAM Studio, the App Development PC or the large display monitor in the workstation area.

Hololens 2 Headset

Power on and adjust headset
Hololens 2 Diagram

  • Make sure the room's lights are on so the headset can effectively scan to define the area, which it will do automatically.

  • Press the power button on the rear of the headset as depicted in the diagram. 

  • Put on the headset and use the adjustment wheel on the back and Velcro on the top for a good fit. 
  • After the device boots up, you may see open holograms left hovering around the room by previous users. Until you get used to the controls, just ignore them. You can dim the lights now if you like.

Hololens 2 Setup

Initial setupImage of Hololens 2 virtual keyboard

  • The first thing to do when you start up the Hololens 2 is tap your finger in the PIN box to launch the virtual keyboard. You can grab the handles on either side of the virtual keyboard to move it to your preferred position. Type in the pin, workshop.
  • If the Holo Menu does not appear automatically after entering the PIN, fix your eyes to the underside of your left wrist for a glowing Windows icon. Tap it and a Holo Menu
    will pop up.Image of Hololens 2 Start icon on wrist

  • It is advisable to click the Tips app in the Holo Menu first thing to learn how to interact. You will tap this same glowing icon on your wrist every time you wish to get out off an app or access the Holo Menu
  • At this point you are able to use the Hololens 2 with the installed apps that do not require an internet connection, If you don't seen an app in the Holo Menu that you would like to try, email with the app and need.

Hololens 2 Online

Connecting to WiFiImage of Hololens 2 WiFi icon

  • If you intend to use an app that requires online authentication or wish to share your screen on the a display through the Hololens app, you will first need to connect to WiFi.
  • Clicking No Internet in the upper left area of the holo-menu will take you to the available list off wireless networks. If the holo-menu is in your way, you can tap your wrist and it will disappear. Choose VCU Safenet (or VCU Guest), click Connect and log in with your credentials.
  • Be sure to log off your network when you are done.

Hololens 2 Casting

Two ways to cast what you see in the Hololens 2 to the display for others to see are MiraCast and LiveStream. Miracast is far easier.

MiracastImage of casting the Hololens 2 using Miracast

  • Turn on the display and the computer, click the Microsoft Connect app
  • Turn on the Hololens 2, enter the PIN then click the cast icon in the bottom right
    of the menu
  • Approve connection on display.  
  • It's that easy.


LiveStream Image of the Hololens app

  • Turn on the display and the computer, launch the Hololens app on the desktop as depicted in the image to the right.

  • Clicking HoloWorkshop will bring up a dialog box on the display asking
    for login, password and the IPv4 address of the Hololens2.

  • The login and password are both workshop. The IPv4 address is found under Adapter Properties in the Hololens 2 WiFi Settings as depicted in the image below.
  • Once the IPv4 address is accepted, you will now be able to choose Livestream in the Hololens desktop app (see next box) and your view within the Hololens 2 will be cast to the display. 
  • Note: There is an unfortunate lag, nothing can be done about this.  And as is the rule with most tech, if any of the steps in these instructions do not work, try rebooting both the computer and the Hololens 2 first.

    Image of Hololens 2 IPv4 Location

Hololens Desktop App and Hololens 2 Apps

Hololens Desktop AppImage of the Hololens app

  • Live stream will connect the Hololens camera to the app so others can see what you see.
  • Photos & Videos is where you will find any media you have captured, either from within the Hololens or using the app's Camera.

Hololens 2 Apps

  • From the Holo Menu, click All Apps to explore what is currently installed.  Email if you would like to request particular apps for the Hololens 2.
  • Currently, the XRAM PC has the following development software installed: Unity, Unity Mixed Reality Toolkit, Unreal, Unreal Mixed Reality Toolkit, Hololens Emulator, Microsoft Visual Studio. Email if you would like to request particular apps for developing mixed reality.