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Windows Audio Speaker Headphone “Failed to play test tone” Error

Do you have the “Sound has stopped working” or “Failed to play test tone” error on Windows, and it happens often when you quit a media player like Windows Media Player, iTunes, or a fullscreen program like a game?

I did some research on the internet, and there are several solutions you can try. Your mileage may vary depending on Operating System.

Restart audio service from administrative panel
  1. Windows Start menu, choose “Run…” (or press Win + R)
  2. In the pop-up box, type: “services.msc”
  3. In “Services” window, select “Windows Audio” and “Audio Endpoint Builder”, then right click on it and choose restart
Correct improper access permissions
  1. Windows Start menu, choose “Run…” (or press Win + R)
  2. In the pop-up box, type: “regedit”
  3. Navigate to “Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Ole”
  4. Delete the registry key “DefaultAccessPermission”. (If it isn’t there, chances are this isn’t the problem causing the lack of sound)
Disable additional sound effects
  1. Go to control panel, double-click on the Sound icon (or right-click on the sound icon in the taskbar, select Playback Devices)
  2. Right-click on the Default Device, select “Properties”
  3. Go to the “Enhancements” tab
  4. Make sure “Disable all enhancements” or “Disable all sound effects” option is checked.
Manually unplugging and plugging headphones back
  1. Go to control panel, double-click on the Sound icon (or right-click on the sound icon in the taskbar, select Playback Devices)
  2. Right-click > Disable the speakers/headphones
  3. If you don’t see the disabled device, click on anywhere  else in the box, there will be an option to select “Show Disabled Devices”
  4. Right-click > Enable the speakers/headphones
  5. Unplug then re-plug in the speakers/headphones
If all else fails, create a batch file to restart the Audio Services for you
  1. Open up notepad or text editor
  2. Paste the following:

    net stop audiosrv
    net stop AudioEndpointBuilder
    net start audiosrv
    net start AudioEndpointBuilder

  3. Save it as restartaudio.bat (the .bat extension is important!)
  4. Move it to some other place other than the desktop, for example, C:/
  5. In explorer, right-click-drag it to the desktop. A context menu will appear. Select “Create shortcuts here”.
  6. Right-click on the newly created shortcut. Select “Properties”
  7. Under the Tab “Shortcut”, in the Run: field, select “Minimized”.
  8. Also under the Tab “Shortcut”, click the “Advanced…” button. Select “Run as administrator”.
  9. (optional) Change the shortcut icon by clicking “Change icon…” button
  10. (optional) Rename the shortcut.

Sound Won’t Work, MSDN, Microsoft, Sound has stopped working, troubleshooting, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 9, Audio Speaker Headphone “Failed to play test tone” Error Fix Solution Driver Service

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