This is the documentation the latest work-in-progress version of MPF!

This is the documentation for MPF 0.56, which is the “dev” (next) release of MPF that is a work-in-progress. This is probably ok, and means you’ll be on the latest, cutting-edge version of MPF.

However, if you want a more stable version, select the v:stable version from the lower-left corner of this page, which is the most recent version that is not getting new updates.

If you are new to MPF, we have recently rewritten the installation process which only applies to this “latest” 0.56, so you probably want to stay here because the prior installation process doesn’t work on the latest OS and Python versions.

Troubleshooting Hardware Platforms

If you got problems with your hardware platform we first recommend to read our troubleshooting guide. Here are some hardware platform specific steps. This is a generic guide so please check if there is a more specific guide for your specific platform.

Enable Debugging

If you got problems with your platform try to enable debug first. As described in the general debugging section of our troubleshooting guide this is done by adding debug: true to your platform config section. This will add a lot more debugging and might slow down MPF a bit. We recommend to disable/remove it after finishing debugging.

Reducing light update rate

If you got a lot of lights you might run into bus contention issues. You can reduce the light update rate in MPF:

  default_light_hw_update_hz: 30   # defaults to 50
This example is tested to be valid MPF config. However, it is not integration tested.
  default_light_hw_update_hz: 30   # defaults to 50

If you set this too low fades will be less smooth but otherwise it should not affect your game.

Coils Are Not Firing

What to do if your coils are not working?

Check if Your Hardware is Working at all

Sounds stupid but this is a good start: Is the hardware working at all? Do you see switch hits in the logs? If not, check our section Your hardware is not working at all.

Check the Watchdog

If switches (or other features of the platform) are working but coils are not we have to dig deeper. Most hardware platforms have some kind of watchdog. Often there is some LED which indicates if the watchdog is received. The MPF log might also contain clues (especially if you have enabled debug and run MPF with verbose flags -v -V). If the watchdog is not received by your platform it will not enable coils.

In most cases watchdog related problems indicate wiring problems. Check if your boards are properly wired.

Test Your Coil Numbers using MPF Service CLI

Hardware is connected and generally working, watchdog is good but still your coils are not working? Maybe something with the numbering is odd. Lets tests that using the MPF Service CLI. Alternatively, you can also use service mode if you have already configured it. Both ways work similarly.

To use service cli:

  1. Open two consoles
  2. Start your game (e.g. using mpf both)
  3. Start the service cli from within your game folder using mpf service.
  4. Type list_coils and press ENTER to see a list of coils.
  5. Type coil_pulse your_coil and press ENTER to pulse it.

Does it work? If not check the log and try verify the coil number. If you do not specify default_pulse_ms MPF will use 10ms which might not be enough for some mechs. Try to increase that gently (maybe 20ms or 30ms).

Your hardware is not working at all

If your hardware is not working at all make sure that you removed the options -X, -x and --vpx from your mpf both or mpf game command line. Those options will overwrite the settings in your hardware section and MPF will not even try to connect to your hardware. If you got config errors we suggest you add -X to figure things out without interfacing real hardware all the time. Just keep that option in mind.

Another stupid thing to check: Is your hardware connected to your PC? We know it is stupid but a loose USB connector has happened to most of us.

Run MPF with verbose flag

See general debugging section for details. TLDR: run mpf both -t -v -V.

Report Your Issue and Ask For Help

If you cannot find the issue yourself please prepare some information about your issue according to our troubleshooting guide and ask in our forum.

Consider Improving the Documentation

Did you solve your issue but found that some relevant information in the documentation is missing or should be linked/located elsewhere? Either tell us in the forum or consider improving the documentation yourself to save future users some troubles the same way others saved you some troubles by writing this documentation.