No Audio Device Found in XP

by Ruri Ranbe

Windows XP requires both a sound card and speakers or headphones to play back sound on the system. If Windows XP cannot recognize or detect either of these devices, it will display the error "No Audio Device" on the top half of the Volume tab in the Sound and Audio Devices Properties window.

Function

Your computer's sound card interprets and converts digital audio signals into an analog signal that audio devices such as speakers or headphones play back. Some computer manufacturers integrate the sound card into the motherboard, while others include an expansion card installed to one of the computer's expansion slots.

Symptoms

The most obvious sign of a problem related to the audio device in Windows XP is the failure of the device to play back sound. Other signs include skipping or distorted audio or error messages appearing when you attempt to play sound.

Causes

Outdated or corrupt sound drivers can prevent your audio device or sound card from playing back audio. Certain settings in Windows XP can also force the operating system fail to detect your audio device.

Software Solutions

Device Manager can look for and update your sound drivers to the latest versions available. Device Manager can also re-enable the sound driver if it is disabled for some reason. You can also check Windows Services to confirm that the Windows Audio service is not disabled.

Hardware Solutions

In some cases, the connections on the side of the sound card or on the back of the speakers could have come loose. Reseating the sound card or reinserting the speakers into the audio output port on the rear of your system may restore your audio device in Windows XP.

About the Author

Ruri Ranbe has been working as a writer since 2008. She received an A.A. in English literature from Valencia College and is completing a B.S. in computer science at the University of Central Florida. Ranbe also has more than six years of professional information-technology experience, specializing in computer architecture, operating systems, networking, server administration, virtualization and Web design.

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Photo Credits

  • photo_camera computer speakers image by sarit saliman from Fotolia.com