Missing playback or recording devices in Windows Vista or 7

By default Windows Vista and Windows 7 will not show playback or recording devices that are disabled. To enable Windows to show disabled devices follow the steps below.fs

  1. Click Start.
  2. Click on Control Panel.
  3. Click on Hardware and Sound, then click the Sound icon.
  4. Click on the Recording tab.
  5. Right-click anywhere in the box where the devices are listed.
  6. Click on Show Disabled Devices so there is a check mark next to it.
  7. This displays any device that has been disabled on the computer. If no new devices are found it's likely no device is being found because it's not detected by Windows. If you're having sound issues we'd suggest reinstalling your sound drivers.
  8. Right-click the new icon(s) found and click Properties.
  9. Beside 'Device usage', there is a dropdown menu. Click on 'Use this device (enable)'.

Additional information

  • See our sound definition for further information and related links on this term.