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Missing Sound?

Are you missing the sound from Windows? Check this first. Sometimes it's a very simple fix and something that you may have done just by accidentally by hitting a "mute" button on a keyboard. Some laptops have dedicated buttons just for the sound and mute as well. If the info in the picture doesn't do the trick, there is much more below it.

If the mute button wasn't the issue, check to make sure that your speakers are plugged in properly. Most newer computers have the speaker jack marked by a green plug. If you have a laptop this won't be the issue. You may also want to try your speakers on a different computer to make sure you are getting sound from them. You can also check this by turning up the volume and wetting the tip of your finger just a bit and running it over the tip of the speaker plug, if you hear a small clicking or popping from the speakers they are probably just fine. If you have a laptop this is most likely not the issue. If after checking the connections and the speakers, you still don't have sound you may have to reinstall the drivers for the sound card. Drivers are software code that tell the hardware in your computer what to do.

To check to see if you need to reinstall the driver for your sound card you will need to check the hardware in the "Device Drivers". The easiest way to see this is to right click on the "My Computer" icon and choose "Manage". That will bring up the "Computer Management" bo x.

In the "Computer Management" box choose "Device Manager" from the list of choices in the left side pane. Once you do that you'll get a list of the devices in, or attached to your computer in the pane on the right. In that pane, if you see anything listed that has a little yellow dot with an exclamation point in it, next to any of the devices, you probably do need to reinstall the drivers for that device.

There will be a lot of devices listed so you'll want look up what is listed if you aren't sure. Since you're already looking for the sound, in this case, it's a good be that's what device is having trouble. If your computer came with a set of CD's or DVD's then that's the place to look first for the drivers for your computer. Usually the discs will be marked with "Drivers" on it or you may have individual discs for each piece of hardware.

Once you've located the driver disc and put that in the computer, the disc may "auto-run". If that comes up with a program of some sort that wants you to install, you will want to make sure you get a choice of what you are installing. You may get a choice of "Advanced" and that will be what you want. When you find the listing for "sound" that's the one you want.

The reason you don't want to just let a disc run without double checking what you are installing is that you may well have installed new hardware or updated the drivers that came with the original configuration of your computer.

Once the driver installation is finished you may have to reboot the computer to finish the install. If you reboot and the sound still isn't working there may be trouble with the speakers or trouble physically with your devices. If it is working, be prepared that the sound may come back very loud, since the default setting for Windows is to have the "Wave" slider all the way to the top (full blast). To change this setting you can double click on the speaker icon in the notification area. You can also right click on the speaker icon and choose "Open Volume Control" for the same control. Once that's open, you'll have "Volume Control" as the first slider and "Wave" is next. You can think of the "Wave" control like a "pre-amp" if you have a component stereo system. Slide that one down to about half on the scale and then you can check your settings by just clicking on the slider under the "Volume Control".

After that you should be back to normal. I always reboot right after that just so Windows will "remember" the settings. And now you've fixed your sound. Good job!