The multimedia keyboards come with media keys that let users control the media via the keyboard. These media keys include Play, Pause, Next Track, Previous Track, Volume Increase, Volume Decrease, etc. If media keys do not work for any reason, you have to use your mouse to control the media. This can be very frustrating for some users. If media keys are not working on your Windows 11/10 computer, this article may help you fix it.
Why are my multimedia keys not working?
There could be many reasons why your keyboard’s multimedia keys are not working on Windows 11/10. We have mentioned some most common causes of the problem below:
- Your keyboard’s driver is outdated or corrupted.
- Your keyboard’s hardware is damaged. This generally does not happen with new keyboards. You can check this by connecting your keyboard with another computer.
- There is a third-party app or extension causing the problem.
- You have not set up your keyboard layout correctly.
Media Keys not working in Windows 11/10
If media keys are not working on your Windows 11/10 computer, the first thing that you should do is check your keyboard functionality by connecting it with another computer. This lets you know whether the problem is associated with hardware or software. If you have a new multimedia keyboard, the chances of hardware failure are less.
Another thing that you can try is restarting Windows Explorer or restarting your computer. Sometimes, a restart fixes the issues on Windows OS. To restart Windows Explorer, open the Run command box by pressing Win + R keys and type
taskmgr. Select the Processes tab. Scroll down to locate the Windows Explorer process. Once you find it, right-click on it and select Restart.
The users are experiencing this issue with different applications, like Spotify, Windows Media Player, YouTube, etc. If your keyboard is working properly and restarting your device and Windows Explorer does not fix the issue, try the below solutions.
- Run Keyboard Troubleshooter
- Reset your keyboard layout to default
- Disable Windows Media Network Sharing Service
- Disable the problematic Chrome extension
- Restart Human Interface Device Service
Below, we have explained all these solutions in detail. Before you proceed, close the applications (Spotify, Windows Media Player, etc.) if you have opened them.
1] Run Keyboard Troubleshooter
Windows 11/10 has different types of troubleshooters that fix different problems. Because the keyboard multimedia keys are not working, running Keyboard Troubleshooter may fix the problem. You can run this troubleshooter from Windows 11/10 Settings.
2] Reset your keyboard layout to default
It is also possible that you have changed your keyboard layout by mistake and are experiencing this issue due to this mistake. If such a thing has really happened, resetting the keyboard layout to default will fix the problem.
3] Disable Windows Media Network Sharing Service
This solution is for the users who are experiencing the issue with the Spotify application. Other users can also try this. Disable Windows Media Network Sharing Service and see if it helps.
Follow the instructions below:
- Press Win + R keys to launch the Run command box.
msconfigand click OK.
- Select the Services tab.
- Scroll down the list and look for Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service.
- Uncheck the box to disable this service.
- Click Apply and then OK.
4] Disable problematic Chrome extension
Several users have reported they experienced the issue while playing media in Spotify on Google Chrome. If such a thing is happening to you, there could be a problematic extension on Google Chrome. You can try disabling all your extensions installed on Chrome one by one. This is a Hit & Trial method to identify the problematic Chrome extension.
According to the affected users, the following are some problematic Chrome extensions:
- Google Play Music
If you have installed any of the above extensions, first, disable these extensions and check if this fixes the problem. This will save your time in the Hit & Trial method to identify the problematic extension.
The steps to disable the Chrome extension are listed below:
- Open Google Chrome.
- Click on the three vertical dots on the top right side and go to “More tools > Extensions.”
- Disable the extension by clicking on the toggle switch next to it.
If none of your Google Chrome extensions is responsible for causing the Media Keys to fail, Chrome’s Hardware Media Key Handling feature might be causing the problem. Previously, Google Chrome had introduced a feature that lets users control multimedia playback by pressing the media keys on their keyboards. Many users have found that this feature is taking over the media keys and preventing them from controlling apps like Spotify. To fix this problem, you have to disable the Hardware Media Key Handling flag in Chrome.
5] Restart Human Interface Device Service
Restarting the Human Interface Device Service has helped many users fix the issue. You should also give this method a try. To do so, you have to follow the instructions listed below:
- Launch the Run command box by pressing the Win + R keys.
services.mscand click OK. This will open the Services app.
- In the Services app, scroll down the list and look for Human Interface Device Service.
- Once you find the service, check its status.
- If the service is stopped, right-click on it and select Start.
- If it is already running, right-click on it and select Restart.
Now, check if the problem is solved or not.
Media keys are not working in Windows Media Player
Some users have experienced this problem in Windows Media Player. By following the solutions given below, you can fix the problem on Windows Media Player. But before you proceed towards the troubleshooting methods listed below, we suggest you restart Windows Media Player and see if the issue occurs.
- Run Windows Media Player Troubleshooter
- Clear Windows Media Player cache
- Disable and re-enable Windows Media Player via Windows Features
We have explained these fixes below in detail.
1] Run Windows Media Player Troubleshooter
You can troubleshoot Windows Media Player problems by running three different troubleshooters. You have to type some specific commands in the Run command box to launch these three Windows Media Player Troubleshooters.
2] Clear Windows Media Player cache
The cache is a storage location that stores some amount of data of websites, web browsers, apps, etc., in order to serve the same data requests faster. The corruption in cache data causes several problems. You can fix this issue simply by clearing the cache data.
You might be experiencing the issue of media keys failure in Windows Media Player due to cache data corruption. The following instructions will help you clear the Windows Media Player cache data files:
- Open Windows Media Player.
- Go to “Tools > Options.”
- Select the Privacy tab.
- Click on the Clear Caches button.
Restart Windows Media Player and see if the issue persists.
3] Disable and re-enable Windows Media Player via Windows Features
If none of the above solutions work, disable and re-enable Windows Media Player via Windows Features. It should work.
The entire process is described below:
- Open the Control Panel.
- Select Category in the View by mode.
- Click Programs.
- Click Turn Windows features on or off under the Programs and Features section.
- Now, expand Media Features and uncheck the Windows Media Player checkbox. Click Yes in the confirmation box.
- Click OK.
- Restart your computer.
- Repeat the first four steps again and expand Media Features. Select the Windows Media Player checkbox and click OK. This will enable the Windows Media Player again.
- Restart your computer again.
Why are my volume keys not working on Windows?
If the volume keys are not working on your Windows computer, your keyboard’s driver may be outdated or corrupted or your keyboard is damaged. The Bluetooth keyboard users might be facing this problem due to dead batteries. You may replace your batteries and check if the issue persists.
Hope this helps.