How to fix a missing Volume icon in Windows 10

Milan Stanojevic
by Milan Stanojevic
Deputy Editor
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  • The Volume icon is a UI element present in the Windows Taskbar, and it gives you access to the audio control panel where you can adjust various volume and sound quality settings.
  • Unfortunately, various software or driver issues can cause the Volume icon to go missing. When that happens, simply follow the steps written below.
  • We have plenty of other such article in our dedicated hub for fixing Windows 10 issues, so bookmark it since you may need it again sometimes.
  • For more great articles on the topic, check out our Windows 10 page.
missing volume button

If you want to quickly change the sound volume on your PC, the easiest way to do that is to use the Volume icon in the Taskbar. Unfortunately, users reported that the Volume icon is missing on Windows 10, so let’s see how to fix this issue.


Volume icon missing on Windows 10, how to fix it?

Missing volume icon can be annoying, but users reported many similar issues. Speaking of volume icon issues, here are some of the problems that users reported:

  • Volume icon missing Windows 7, 8
    • This error can appear on both Windows 7 and Windows 8.
    • Even if you don’t use Windows 10, you should be able to fix this problem by using some of our solutions.
  • Volume icon missing from taskbar Windows 10
    • If your volume icon is missing from the Taskbar, it’s possible that the icon is just disabled.
    • To fix the problem, make sure that your volume icon is enabled from the Settings app.
  • Volume icon greyed out Windows 10
    • This problem can occur if there’s an issue with your audio device.
    • If your volume icon is grayed out, you might want to try updating your drivers and check if that solves the problem.
  • Windows 10 volume icon not working
    • If volume control icon isn’t working, that might be due to a temporary glitch.
    • To fix the problem, simply sign out and sign back in and the issue should be resolved.
  • Can’t turn volume icon on
    • According to users, sometimes you might not be able to turn your volume icon on.
    • If that’s the case, be sure to check if the required services are running properly.
  • Volume icon has disappeared
    • This is another common problem that can occur.
    • If you’re having this issue, just change the text size and that will solve your problem.
  • Volume icon missing notification area
    • Another common problem is the missing volume icon from the notification area.
    • This can be a problem, but you should be able to fix it using one of our solutions.

1. Make sure that Volume icon is enabled

  1. Open the Settings app and go to System.
    Volume icon missing Windows 8
  2. Now go to the Notifications & actions tab.
    1. A list of available app notifications will appear.
    2. Make sure that the Audio is set to On.
      Volume icon missing from taskbar Windows 10

If the Volume icon is missing on Windows 10, you need to make sure that this icon is enabled.


2. Run Local Group Policy Editor

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter gpedit.msc.
  2. Press OK or click Enter.
    Can't turn volume icon on
  3. In the left pane navigate to User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Start Menu and Taskbar.
  4. In the right pane locate Remove the volume control icon and double-click it.
    Volume icon has disappeared
  5. Once the properties window opens make sure that Not Configured or Disabled option is selected.
    Volume icon missing notification area
  6. Click Apply and OK to save changes.

Local Group Policy Editor is a powerful tool that allows you to change many system settings, and one of those settings is the appearance of the Volume icon.


3. Change the text size to 125%

  1. Right-click your Desktop and choose Display settings.
    Volume icon greyed out Windows 10
  2. When the Customize your display window opens move the slider a bit to the right and set the size of the text to 125%.
  3. After you’ve done that, move the slider back again to the left and change the size to the 100%.
    Windows 10 volume icon not working
  4. Close the window and the Volume icon should appear.

Unfortunately, you might have to repeat these steps every time Volume icon disappears from Windows 10. If Volume icon is missing from Windows 10, you can fix this problem by changing the size of the text to 125%.


4. Log out and log in to Windows 10

According to users, one of the simplest ways to fix this issue is to log out and log back into Windows 10. To do that just click the Start button, then your user name and choose Sign out from the menu. After you sign out, log back into Windows 10 and Volume icon should appear.
Windows 10 volume icon not working

This is a simple workaround, and you’ll have to repeat it every time in order to fix the problem with the missing Volume icon.


5. Restart Explorer

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to start Task Manager.
  2. When Task Manager starts, go to Details tab.
  3. Locate explorer.exe process and right click it.
  4. Choose End Task from the menu.
    Can't turn volume icon on
  5. Press Windows Key + R and enter explorer.
  6. Press Enter or click OK.
    Volume icon has disappeared

Another workaround is to restart Explorer by using the Task Manager. According to users, after restarting the Explorer process, the Volume icon appears.


6. Add values to the registry

  1. Press Windows Key + X to open Power User Menu and select Command Prompt (Admin).
    Volume icon missing notification area
  2. When Command Prompt starts enter the following lines:
    • reg add “HKCU\Control Panel\Desktop” /v “HungAppTimeout” /t REG_SZ /d “10000” /f
      volume-icon-missing-cmd-1
    • reg add “HKCU\Control Panel\Desktop” /v “WaitToKillAppTimeout” /t REG_SZ /d “20000” /f
      volume-icon-missing-cmd-2
  3. Close Command Prompt and check if the issue is resolved.

Adding values to the registry can be potentially dangerous and cause system instability, therefore, it might be a good idea that you create a backup of your registry just in case.


7. Delete a value from your registry

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter regedit.
  2. Now click OK or press Enter.
    Volume icon greyed out Windows 10
  3. When Registry Editor opens, go to the following key:
    • Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\TrayNotify key in the left pane.
      Windows 10 volume icon not working
  4. Before we proceed, it’s always a good idea to back up your registry, just in case.
  5. To do that, right-click TrayNotify key in the right pane and choose Export from the menu.Can't turn volume icon onMake sure to choose Selected branch in the Export range section.
  6. Now enter the desired file name, choose a save location and click the Save button.
    Volume icon has disappeared
  7. Now you have created a backup of your registry. If any issues occur after making registry changes, feel free to run this file and restore your registry to the original state.
  8. In the right pane, locate IconStreams and PastIconStreams and delete them both. If you have only one of these values, just delete that one value.
  9. Now restart your PC and check if the problem is resolved. If you don’t want to restart your PC, you can restart Windows Explorer or log out of your account and log back in.

If you’re still having problems with missing volume icon, you might be able to solve the problem by removing a couple of values from your registry.

Your registry holds all sorts of sensitive data, and by changing this data you can change various settings. It’s worth mentioning that your registry is rather sensitive, so we advise extra caution while modifying the registry.

As you can see, this solution is relatively simple, and if you have problems with missing volume icon, be sure to try it out.


8. Update your audio drivers

  1. Press Windows Key + X and choose Device Manager from the list.
    Volume icon missing Windows 7
  2. When Device Manager opens, expand the Sound, video and game controllers section, right-click your audio device and choose Update driver.
    Volume icon missing Windows 7
  3. Select Search automatically for updated driver software and let Windows download the best driver for your device.
    Volume icon missing from taskbar Windows 10

According to users, some of them managed to fix the problem with missing volume icon simply by updating their audio driver. Sometimes outdated drivers can cause this and other problems to occur, and in order to fix it, it’s advised to update your drivers.

Alternatively, you can also download the necessary drivers simply by downloading them directly from your sound card manufacturer. If you don’t want to download drivers manually, there are also automated solutions that will update your drivers automatically.

8.1 Update drivers automatically (third-party tool suggested)

Downloading drivers manually is a process that carries the risk of getting the wrong driver installed, which may lead to serious malfunctions. We strongly suggest you update your driver automatically by using Tweakbit’s Driver Updater tool.

This tool is approved by Microsoft and Norton Antivirus and after several tests, our team concluded that this is the best-automatized solution. Here’s how to use this software:

  1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updaterdriver updater starting window
  2. Once installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically.
  3. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates.
  4. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
    TweakBit driver updater scanning proccess
  5. Upon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC.
  6. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once.
  7. To update one driver at a time, click the Update driver link next to the driver’s name.
  8. Or simply click the Update all button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
    Automatically Update complete

Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Disclaimer: some features of this tool are not free.


9. Make sure that the necessary services are running

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter services.msc.
  2. Now press Enter or click OK.Volume icon missing notification area
  3. List of services will now appear. Double-click Windows Audio service.
    Volume icon missing Windows 7
  4. When the Properties window opens, set the Startup type to Automatic.
  5. If the service isn’t running, click the Start button to start it.
  6. Now click Apply and OK to save changes.
    Volume icon missing from taskbar Windows 10
  7. Now double-click Windows Audio Endpoint Builder service, and repeat everything from the previous step.
    Volume icon greyed out Windows 10

Many components of Windows rely on certain services in order to work properly, and if the Volume icon is missing on your PC, the problem might be because the necessary services aren’t running. However, you can always fix that problem by enabling the required services manually.

After doing that, the necessary services should be started and working properly, and your problem will be resolved. Missing Volume icon in Windows 10 is a small problem that can cause inconvenience, but we hope that you fixed the problem by using one of our solutions.


10. Try to adjust volume using an equalizer

This solution can be performed in case you don’t arrive to solve this issue. We recommend you Boom 3D, a top-rated sound equalizer from Global Delight Apps. This equalizer lets you not only adjust different sound frequencies but also adapt your hearing sense to the environment.volume icon missing adjust volume boom 3d

You will be able to choose between multiple types of headphones in case you are using them on a daily basis and will have a bank of effects in order to personalize the sound. However, the most important thing is that you can adjust your PC or laptop volume by cutting or raising the equalizer frequencies on Boom 3D.

Editor's choice
boom 3d logo
  • Windows 10 compatible
  • Full-equipped audio equalizer
  • Special effects available
  • Great customer support

Disclaimer: this tool is designed to work on Windows 10. You can download it for free from the official website and try it. However, if you are a tech-savvy, you can try it on a lower Windows version.


FAQ: Learn more about Windows 10 audio

  • Can I still adjust my sound if the Volume icon is missing?

Yes. You can also access your sound settings by going to Start > Settings > System > Audio.

  • Are audio drivers truly necessary?

No. Windows 10 can run perfectly fine without dedicated audio drivers since the OS comes with some generic drivers incorporated. The only difference will be that you won’t have access to a detailed audio control panel, such as the one from Realtek.

  • What happens if I have badly installed audio drivers or no drivers at all?

Simply put, you won’t have any audio signal in your headphones or speakers. However, a simple PC reboot will automatically trigger the Windows 10 generic audio drivers to install.


By following these steps, you should be able to see the Volume icon in the taskbar back in no time.

Let us know which of the steps listed above helped you the most by leaving us a message in the comments section below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in April 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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