Speaker Driver and Audio Service Weirdness Solved

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  1. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
       #1

    Speaker Driver and Audio Service Weirdness


    This originally was posted in the User Accounts section since I was first attempting to change the name of my username and username folder. That was successfully done.

    After doing so, I had somehow managed to make it where the Audio Service wasn't loading. Despite looking at services.msc and seeing that everything was configured correctly to automatically start, was running, etc., things continued to progress. At some point I messed things up and could get no sound at all. A repair/in-place reinstallment of Windows 10 seemed to have fixed the issue, but I'm still seeing a red "X" in the speaker icon, not recognizing the speaker, etc.

    The weird thing is that I can still hear sound through the speaker.

    If I right click it and bring up a list of speakers, the selected speaker is "unknown." I can open the speaker list.

    If I click the speaker icon to adjust the volume, I'm forced to run the troubleshooter. However, I can cancel the troubleshooter once it starts (before it has time to do anything) and by doing so, the red X disappears and I can adjust the volume.

    I'm running v1709 Win Pro for Workstations.

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    Last edited by ericnixmd; 19 Apr 2018 at 02:09.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    #2

    The taskbar speaker icon is quirky. My slider will go out intermittently and come back. I use the F keys to control volume, at that point. But, on to you -
    Is the Dell, the 'Unknown' speaker ? I would try to isolate the problem by disconnecting the Dell Sound Bar and see if using the other 2 'Ready' devices work or even a pair of test headphones. If so, we'll know it's a Dell device issue. Re-attach and try roll back driver. If that fails, try following -
    Open Device Manager/Sound, video and game controllers/***HD Audio. r-click 'Update driver/Browse my computer ***/Let me pick ***. In the list, choose the generic driver, not the branded one, then Next to install/restart.
    A force fix is to open Device Manager, uninstall the sound drivers, use 'Scan for hardware changes' in the Device Manager icon bar at top, then reboot.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #3

    The unknown source is listed even when my laptop isn't hooked to anything (just the Realtek driver shows in the list of devices).

    The error seems to occur randomly. I cold started the computer this morning and it was there. I ran the troubleshooter and fixed it. Shut down the computer later and started it back up. Worked fine. Rebooted and it had the error. Several reboots later and cold starts later and it remained. Had to run the troubleshooter again.

    I have fast startup disabled. This is really annoying to say the least.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #4

    Happened again from a cold boot. Unknown speaker, red X. Rebooted and it reappeared without doing anything else.

    Puzzling and annoying. :|
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    #5

    Have you confirmed that the 'Unknown' is the Dell soundbar and disconnected to test other speakers?

    I ran the troubleshooter and fixed it. ... Had to run the troubleshooter again.


    Is there anything under 'Details' in lower L corner, as to what the troubleshooter did ?

    I have fast startup disabled. ... Happened again from a cold boot.

    If you delete the hiberfil.sys file, that would be a more complete disabling of fast startup, as well as hibernation, which may have stored corrupted driver states. Open as admin, a command prompt/powershell. Type powercfg -h off and test with complete shut down (Start button, Shift+Shut down). Good Luck
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #6

    The unknown shows up when the Dell soundbar isn't connected. E.g., when I booted today, it was just the laptop (not connected to the dock -- the soundbar is connected to my monitor which connects to my dock). The soundbar isn't listed as an available device. I've actually uninstalled the driver before and the unknown speaker still shows up (I also deleted the SpeechMike microphone as well and tried).

    Will try the powercfg -h off and see.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #7

    No bueno. Cold start had the same problem. Immediate reboot resolved it without touching a single thing.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  8. Posts : 8
    Windows 10 Pro
       #8

    I've been having the exact same issue since 2-3 months ago and it's driving me crazy. I've tried different driver versions, tried flipping the audio service between manual and automatic.
    I still don't have any solution other than running the troubleshooter to fix the icon on almost every startup.
    My best guess is that it relates to the order of how Windows launches system services on startup, but I'm clueless on how to fix this without reinstalling Windows..
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #9

    @GFX I'm glad I'm not alone. Have you reported it to Microsoft via the Feedback Hub?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10. ericnixmd's Avatar
    Posts : 275
    Windows 10 Pro for Workstations
    Thread Starter
       #10

    Doing some trial and error here... these issues also seemed to have surfaced around the time I installed Acrobat (the cloud-based subscription version). I disabled the CreativeCloud, Adobe tray icon, etc. startups. Will monitor to see if it has an effect. I'm wondering if it's causing a delay that leads to the audio service not loading.

    I cold booted tonight at work and had no problems with the audio service (other than it selecting my Philips SpeechMike as the device; had to select the internal speakers as default after previously selecting the Dell AE515 speakers as default).

    Will continue to monitor as n=1 doesn't really mean anything.

    Out of curiosity @GFX, do you also have an Adobe Creative Cloud app installed?

    Finally, is there a way to select speaker priority? I would like the laptop to default to the Dell AE515 when connected to the dock and default to the Realtek internal speakers when not connected. I never want to hear anything through the speaker in my microphone (Philips SpeechMike).
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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