How to Fix the No Sound Problem on Windows XP (7 Steps)

by Kefa Olang

In Windows XP, sound problems can be attributed to faulty or corrupt sound drivers and problems with digital media players. Common sound problems are also caused by improperly connected external speaker systems. If you're unable to hear sound from the computer's speakers or headphones, inspecting one or more of these devices allows you to isolate the cause of the problem and use the best method to restore sound.

XP Sound Troubleshooter

Step 1

Navigate to the XP Sound Troubleshooter page (see link in Resources).

Step 2

Click the "Fix it" button and click the "Run Now" button to start the FixIt wizard.

Follow the guided steps in the wizard to determine the cause of sound problems. The FixIt wizard provides solutions to solve problems automatically.

Updating Sound Drivers

Step 1

Click the Start button and click "Run." Type "dxdiag" (without quotes) in the open box and press "Enter" to start the DirectX Diagnotisc Tool.

Step 2

Click the "Sound" tab. Look for the name of your sound card under Device and then look for the "Provider" section under Driver. Write down the name of the sound card provider.

Step 3

Navigate to the sound card provider's website and search for driver updates from the support section. When you find the driver update, follow the website's instructions to download and install it because the steps may vary with different providers.

Restart your computer to complete the update process.


  • Never download files from untrusted sites.


  • If you're using a third-party external sound system, try using a different device as the issue may be with the sound system. If you have been using speakers, use headphones to help you narrow down the problem. If none of the devices work, the issue is with the computer. If only one device works, the other one is most likely faulty.
  • If you're using external sound speaker systems, verify the connections. Refer to the device's manual if you're not sure whether it's properly connected.
  • If you're unable to hear sound when you use a specific media software, update the program. Updates repair missing or damaged components that can cause sound problems.


About the Author

Kefa Olang has been writing articles online since April 2009. He has been published in the "Celebration of Young Poets" and has an associate degree in communication and media arts from Dutchess Community College, and a bachelor's degree in broadcasting and mass communication from the State University of New York, Oswego.

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