To make the most of FooGolf, attach your launch monitor.


Frequently asked questions

"Why can't playing golf online with friends be as easy as making a video call?"

That's the question we often asked ourselves when trying to set up a game of golf online with friends and family living across the country.

Exciting new launch monitors have made it possible for anyone to hit golf balls at the range or at home and feed the data into a computer.

But getting to the next stage - like playing the back nine at Augusta with your son away at school across the country - means walking a twisty and complex path of technical hassle and expense.

We wanted to provide a service where people could just book online and then connect their launch monitor and play, without installing software, buying an expensive gaming machine or tussling with firewalls.

FooGolf is a network of high-end, on demand gaming computers hosted in 6 geographical regions around the world.

Each Windows gaming PC runs the powerful golf simulation software GSPro, with hundreds of photo-realistic golf courses available from around the world. Our physical servers are hosted in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud for maximum graphics and network performance.

When your session starts, one of our Windows gaming PCs is dedicated to you, and then launched for you to join in your browser. Any guests you add can join the same simulation - seeing and hearing the identical action in real time, but using their own launch monitor to hit their shots.

Because all the hard work happens on the Windows gaming PC, you don't need a powerful gaming PC. You can use your laptop or a Mac or linux machine, or even a Chromebook or Raspberry Pi - virtually any computer that can run a web browser.

No. This is much the same as running a golf business with several bays, each using a GSPro licence. It's just that the gaming computer is virtual and lives in the Amazon cloud instead of in a cupboard on site. Every virtual machine has its own GSPro licence.

No, FooGolf is currently for computers only. This is a limitation of the NICE DCV streaming software that Amazon provide.

Since the R10 is so popular, FooGolf has built in support for it. But you can connect any other launch monitor that already has an Open API-based integration with GSPro.

Each player can attach up to 2 launch monitors. This lets you clip together new functionality, for example adding webcam-based putting to launch monitors that don't support it.

A: FooGolf is designed to work just about anywhere, but it's not practical for us to test all the different combinations of tablets, phones, operating systems, simulator version etc. Below is the actual hardware that we use to test:

Email us at support@foogolf.com. Based in New Zealand, we're likely in a different timezone from you so replies may take a while.

Ping is a measure of how long (in millseconds) it takes data to get from your computer over to our Windows gaming PCs and then back again. A lower value means a better, less laggy viewing experience (though the accuracy of your shots is unaffected by ping).

If your ping is very high (e.g. you're in New Zealand and you're playing on a Windows gaming PC in the US East region), you can still hit shots just as accurately but the video may be too laggy for you. Choose the region with the lowest ping.

The major factors affecting ping are your physical distance from our data centers and the speed and quality of your internet connection.

Ping changes constantly as network conditions change, so refresh the web page a few times to get a feel for your actual average ping.

Important: the quality of the experience of playing a golf simulator in the cloud for different ping values is very subjective. If you're overwintering on Scott Base and want to play with your mates back home, then any ping might be good enough. So we don't prevent you from booking a session in a region, no matter how bad the ping is.

Ping    Experience
< 50Great
< 100OK
< 150Average
< 200Poor
> 200Bad

If your desired session is not available, here are a few things you can try:

  1. Check out our availability across a number of hours (not just at a point in time).
  2. Check availability for a shorter session. e.g. start at just an hour, find a time that suits, then steadily increase the duration. Short sessions are often available, tucked in between others.
  3. Try a different region. Different regions tend to be busy at different times of the day. As long as the ping is acceptable to you, you can play in any region.
  4. Try further in the future.
  5. Email us. We hate to hear of people missing out and we'll see if there's anything we can do.

Your session may be cut short by up to 10 minutes or so at the end. This gives us time to park (i.e. clear the Windows gaming PC down from the previous user), and then launch it ready for the next user.

No! GSPro's online mode is the best multiplayer solution - as long as every player has their own Windows gaming machine and GSPro licence.

If you've got that, then great - you likely don't need FooGolf! Each players gets the best possible experience by running GSPro locally on their own Windows gaming computer.

But if any players (or all players) don't have a Windows gaming machine and GSPro, then FooGolf is a great way for them to join the GSPro fun.

With FooGolf, players don't need their own gaming computer. Instead they screen share a single, high power Windows gaming machine running in the cloud (in one of Amazon's data centers). Any average computer with a web browser - even low power computers like the Raspberry Pi - will do.

Your Windows gaming PC will typically be already updated with the very latest GSPro software (not the beta software - the latest production version). Whenever the GSPro team release an update, we update our Windows gaming PCs shortly afterwards.

However it could be that when you start GSPro, a newer version is available. When this happens it is your choice whether to download the latest version or cancel the download and run the existing version.

We have a handful of courses pre-downlaoded on each Windows gaming PC. However new courses are released regularly, and you can download any courses you want from withing GSPro.

Many very talented designers make their own GSPro courses available, e.g. through Patreon. If you have a Patreon subscription, just log in on the Windows gaming PC.

Instead of running in a web browser, for maximum performance you can run a NICE DCV native client.

We regret that we can't assist you with installing or using the NICE DCV native clients, however you'll find assistance online.

FooGolf is a tiny team of golf-crazed techies located in New Zealand.

We're small but we try to be responsive (though our hours may be a little different to you). Please drop us a line at support@foogolf.com if you've got any comments or suggestions on ways we can do better.




Troubleshooting

Using a Windows gaming PC in the cloud is easy once you're used to it. Here are some differences you will see:

  • Typing into fields and clicking buttons can feel sluggish (depending on your ping).
  • You can't "Alt tab" between programs within the cloud PC.
  • If you're playing multiplayer, your screen resolution may change when another player joins the simulator.

Here are some tips that should make your experience smoother:

  • Have a test run! We highly recommend you book a one hour practice session to sort out the kinks before that big game with your mates. Remember, it costs only $2 per hour to book a session at short notice.
  • When you join the cloud PC, right click the join link and choose "New window". Now you can keep the simulator window in full screen throughout. Use "Alt tab" to switch between the cloud PC display and the other programs running on your own computer.
  • Be patient! If nothing seems to be happening, just wait a few seconds before clicking again.

This can happen when you first start the cloud PC, or if you are on a slower network or in a region with a high ping.


To fix it:

  1. Wait for a minute. It will usually come right on its own. Otherwise:
  2. Move your mouse to the top right of the screen. You should then be able to see and click on the NICE DCV menu (see below).
  3. Click "Send Ctrl + Alt + Del", then click Cancel.
  4. Your mouse pointer should now be visible.

To fix it:

  1. Move your mouse to the top right of the screen and click the NICE DCV menu.
  2. Click "Send Ctrl + Alt + Del", then choose Task Manager. The task manager will appear, and you should also now be able to see the taskbar at the bottom of the screen.
  3. You can close the task manager.

You shouldn't need to do this often, but with so many technical moving parts, things can get tangled up sometimes.

For the ultimate "reset everything", to reset the communication between GSPro and your launch monitor(s), follow these steps in order.

  1. In GSPro, select "Settings -> Game settings -> Reset GSPro Connect".
    Wait a few seconds until the API window reappears, then you can close the settings page.
  2. In FooGolf, click "Reconnect to GSPro".
  3. If you are still stuck you could try deleting your launch monitor and then re-attaching it.

When you first open a course, it can take several minutes for the "Course initializing, please wait" phase just to get to 1 or 2%.


Don't worry! Things will speed up a lot from here on in. You'll be playing in just a few more seconds.

If you are interested in the technical details, we scrub every cloud PC completely clean before you use it for your security. This includes clearing down the GSPro cache, which is used to speed up course loading. Effectively your session is running on a brand new, freshly installed Windows computer.

This can happen if you are on a slower network or in a region with a high ping.


To fix it, check that the volume is not turned down on the cloud PC or on your computer.


After that, the only solution is to use a faster network. If you have a very slow home network, hotspotting to your phone may be faster.

Typically you will want GSPro running in its own browser window (not a tab) and taking up the entire screen.

This is easy enough when getting started, but if you minimise your window, even temporarily, then GSPro may end up with a "banded" display (empty space at top and bottom).

To fix it:

  1. Move your mouse to the top right of the screen. You should then be able to see and click on the NICE DCV menu (see below).
  2. Click "Send Ctrl + Alt + Del".
  3. Click the full screen icon (four arrows pointing outwards).
  4. Click Cancel.

GSPro should now be displayed correctly and taking up the entire screen.

Be aware that when you have multiple players, and some players have different screen aspect ratios, someone will always end up with a banded display.