Easily Fix “Sound, video and game controllers” Driver Missing Issues

Your computer can’t play any sound. In Device Manager, you find the “Sound, video and game controllers” category is missing. What does this mean and how to fix this sound error? Read on then you’ll find the answers.

When the “Sound, video and game controllers” section is not listed in Device Manager, it means the sound card cannot be recognized by Windows. It’s usually caused by missing sound card drivers. In some rare cases, it can be caused by corrupted system files. To get “Sound, video and game controllers” back, you can try the five methods below.

Method 1: Use the Scan for hardware changes option in Device Manager
Method 2: Run the audio troubleshooter
Method 3: Update the audio driver
Method 4: Perform an in-place upgrade
Method 5: Restore BIOS to default

Method 1: Use the Scan for hardware changes option in Device Manager

To get the “Sound, video and game controllers” category back, you can use the Scan for hardware changes option in Device Manager, then update the sound driver via Device Manager. Follow these steps:

1) Open Device Manager (learn how to access Device Manager).

2) Click Action at the top and select Scan for hardware changes.

3) Check if the sound card device shows up. The sound card device may be listed under the “Other devices” category and displayed as Unknown device.

4) Right-click on the sound card device and select Update driver.

show how to update audio driver via device manager

5) Select Search automatically for drivers, then Windows will search for and install the new driver automatically.

If Method 1 doesn’t work for you, move on and try Method 2.

Method 2: Run the audio troubleshooter

The Windows built-in audio troubleshooter allows you to troubleshoot and fix any sound issues. You just need to run it and follow the on-screen instructions.

1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo button.

2) Type “troubleshoot settings” and then select Troubleshoot settings.

3) Click on Additional troubleshooters.

4) Click Playing Audio and click the Run the troubleshooter button. Then Windows will detect sound problems. You just need to follow the instructions on the screen to finish the process.

If Method 2 doesn’t work for you, continue to try Method 3.

Method 3: Update the audio driver

This can be a driver issue. The sound driver can be missing or faulty. Updating the sound driver may help fix the issue.

You can go to your device manufacturer’s website to download the latest version of audio driver. Generally, drivers can be downloaded from the Support, Driver or Download section.

Alternatively, you can perform a search with your favorite search engine. Open the search engine, search the keywords “device model + driver”. You’ll find the official driver download page for your device model among the top search results.

Method 4: Perform an in-place upgrade

Corrupted file systems can also be the cause of the “Sound, video and game controllers” category missing error. You can try performing an in-place upgrade to repair corrupted system files and see if it helps.

You can visit the post Perform and In-Place Upgrade with Windows 10 to learn more about in-place upgrade and learn how to perform an in-place upgrade.

Method 5: Restore BIOS to default

If none of the above methods works, incorrect BIOS settings (for example, the sound card is disabled in BIOS) is probably the cause. The last resort you can try is to restore BIOS to default.

The specific steps to restore BIOS vary depending on the computer manufacturer. But you can refer to the steps below to give it a try.

IMPORTANT: Modifying BIOS incorrectly may cause serious system issues. Ensure you know what you’re doing. If not, it’s recommended you contact the manufacturer for help.

1) Enter BIOS.

First, boot your computer. If your computer is already on, restart it.

After booting your computer, on the load screen, you should see a notification telling you what key you can press to access BIOS (F2, DEL, F8, etc.). Keep pressing that key then you can access BIOS.

2) Once you’re in the BIOS, you can press F9 or F5 to bring up a prompt that’ll allow you to restore the BIOS. You can also find the option under the Security tab or the Exit tab.

The name of the option allowing you to restore BIOS varies depending on what motherboard you have. It could be Reset to Default, Load Factory Defaults, Load Setup Defaults, Load Optimized Defaults, etc.

3) Use the arrow key to select Yes, then BIOS will be restored to default.

4) Once done, press the key next to Save and Exit.

5) Reboot your computer and check to see if “Sound, video and game controllers” is listed in Device Manager.

Hopefully you find the article helpful. If you have any questions, feel free to drop a comment below. I’ll get back to you ASAP.

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