How to Fix USB Keyboard volume keys not working on Windows 11

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 5, 2021
Windows 11 Help

Some USB keyboards that you connect to your Windows 11 devices may have extra keys, such as a mute key, volume up or down keys, or keys to control media playback. It may happen that these special keys, or some of them, stop working from one day to the other.

This happened to one of my devices on Windows 10, and it happened again recently on a Windows 11 device. The following paragraphs detail how I was able to resolve the issue. Hopefully, you may use it as a blueprint to fix the issue on your end, if you experience it as well.

Step 1:  Finding out why the volume keys are not working

windows 11 volume mixer

It is often a good idea to start with the easy things and dig deeper if these don't yield the desired result. Here is what you may want to do:

  1. Test that the PC is able to play sound, e.g. by playing a video or music file.
  2. If that does not work, try plugging in headphones or a different set of speakers to find out if the other ones have a defect.
  3. Try changing the volume using the system tray volume slider. Is the volume changing?
  4. If headphones or speakers have controls, e.g. a mute button or volume wheel, make sure it is not turned off or down all the way.
  5. Check that mute is not enabled.
  6. Check other keys on the keyboard, note which work and which don't.
  7. If you use a laptop keyboard, check if these keys work and support the controlling of the volume.

Proceed to step 2 if you could not resolve the issue in step 1.

Step 2: Troubleshoot the volume keys not working issue on Windows 11

There are a couple of things that you may want to try to see if they fix the issue:

  1. Try restarting the computer once to see if it resolves the issue. Yes, "have you tried turning it off and on again", works often.
  2. If you have another USB port on the device, connect the USB keyboard to it and check if that resolved the issue.
  3. Open the Windows 11 Device Manager using the keyboard shortcut Windows-X and the selection of Device Manager. Check if there are any exclamation marks or other issues listed.
  4. You may want to try uninstalling the keyboard driver (HID) and rebooting. It will be installed on the next start.
  5. If you have a second keyboard with volume keys, try connecting it to the device to see if its volume keys work.

When I ran the series of tests, I noticed that all keys but the three volume keys worked on the keyboard. These used to work fine previously, but something must have changed, as I could not use these anymore to change the volume or use the mute toggle.

I tested the keyboard of the laptop I had the issues with, and it turned out that the keys worked fine. I was able to change the volume or use the mute toggle.

How I fixed the issue on Windows 11

hidserv stopped volume keys issue

  1. Open the Windows Task Manager using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl-Shift-Esc.
  2. Switch to the Services tab.
  3. Locate the service hidserv and check the state of it.
    1. If the state is stopped, right-click on hidserv and select "Start" from the context menu.
  4. Try the volume keys.

This was all that I had to do to correct the problem and get the volume keys working again on the Windows 11 machine. The change to the Service does not require a restart of the system.

human interface device service

Note that you may want to set the service to start automatically with Windows 11, if it fixed the issue on your end as well.

  1. Select Start.
  2. Type services.msc and select the Services app.
  3. Locate Human Interface Device Service and double-click on it.
  4. Set the startup type to "automatic".

The service will start with Windows 11 from that moment on.

Closing words

The fix may work for other keyboard related issues that you are experiencing on Windows 11 machines.

How to Fix USB Keyboard volume keys not working on Windows 11
Article Name
How to Fix USB Keyboard volume keys not working on Windows 11
Find out how to troubleshoot a Windows 11 issue that prevents volume keys (up, down and mute) from working at all on USB keyboards.
Ghacks Technology News

Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. John G. said on August 21, 2023 at 2:38 pm

    There is not still W11 23H2 and these instructions are nonsense by now. :[

    1. James said on August 21, 2023 at 8:48 pm

      It worked for me just fine. You’re probably not following the instructions clearly.

      1. Katrina Thompson said on August 30, 2023 at 3:25 am

        Just tried the password option and the OOBE option and didnt work.

    2. Anonymous said on September 7, 2023 at 10:33 am

      Worked perfectly. Thank OP.

    3. Anonymous said on September 15, 2023 at 11:26 am

      Worked perfectly for me just now. Specifically, the regedit option.

  2. 45 RPM said on August 22, 2023 at 9:02 am

    Is this cut and paste from a Microsoft PR paper, because it 1000% BS:

    “By listening to user insights, Microsoft has demonstrated its commitment to refining the Windows experience based on real-world needs.”

    Windows 11 is proof they don’t give a s*it.

    1. elong45 said on August 23, 2023 at 12:25 am

      Worked for me just now

    2. Robert N said on August 28, 2023 at 10:55 pm

      I agree! Windows 11 was a downgrade to me and I kept all 8 computers in our family on Windows 10 as a result. They didn’t listen to any customers. The taskbar was THE main reason I stayed away from Windows 11. With 6 monitors, it is impossible to navigate so many browser tabs, without the feature. I will try the new version in the virtual box to see if it is worth it yet.

  3. Anonymous said on August 23, 2023 at 11:33 pm

    Microsoft did a terrible job with this implementation.

    They simply need to employ the creator of StartAllBack to fix Windows. He is smarter and more talented than the entire campus of Microsoft employees.

    1. Anonymous said on September 4, 2023 at 11:36 pm


  4. Joe Mama said on August 24, 2023 at 12:10 am

    Thank you so much! I work in IT and this is extremely useful information!

  5. Anonymous said on August 27, 2023 at 9:34 pm

    Thanks man. The second method worked great!

  6. Anonymous said on August 28, 2023 at 1:16 pm

    I used the second method, and i got exactly what i expected.

  7. adrian said on September 1, 2023 at 12:52 am

    Using the Bypass 2: Use a banned email address email worked fantastically as I had gone to far to use the bypass 1.
    I will be back when I next have a problem.
    Keep you the great work

  8. John G. said on September 4, 2023 at 6:15 pm

    W11 File Explorer is the worst crap ever done. W11 is the biggest shame ever.

  9. MarineRecon said on September 4, 2023 at 9:14 pm

    Just one more reason for me to go to Linux when Windows 10 ages out.

    1. TelV said on September 19, 2023 at 11:46 am

      @ MarineRecon,

      Be careful which Linux distro you choose. Some of them don’t include the Wayland protocol which is a security issue i.e. apps can copy, paste and inject data without user interaction.

      It’s included in Fedora:

  10. Dustyn said on September 4, 2023 at 9:28 pm

    How about a DARK MODE for your website? That would be oh so nice.

    1. Tom Hawack said on September 5, 2023 at 12:55 am

      Something like this : [] maybe?
      Done with ‘Dark Reader Extension for ? Firefox’ []

      This comment was written on [}

    2. TelV said on September 19, 2023 at 11:49 am

      Definitely NOT! Once you get older and your eyesight starts to fail you’ll positively loathe dark mode.

      1. Mycroft1325 said on September 25, 2023 at 11:48 pm

        Not sure what eye problems *you’re* having, but for me the exact opposite is true. Dark Mode is MUCH easier on my Eyes.

        BTW- I’m 52, and have worked in IT all my life. Been staring at monitors for hours each day, most days of the week since the late 1980’s.

  11. Anonymous said on September 5, 2023 at 2:05 am

    Microsoft completely ruined File Explorer by converting to XAML/WinUI/whatever new bloated modern garbage. Its worse than it ever was.

  12. Invoker said on September 5, 2023 at 3:32 pm

    i tested it on win10 current edition. speeds up explorer like a charm

  13. LOEL LARZELERE said on September 13, 2023 at 8:07 am

    SO what is the priority numbers to give preference to ethernet over wireless?

  14. christop_bader said on September 14, 2023 at 1:50 am

    Worked very well happy to have Windows Photo Viewer back in action in Windows-11

  15. Anonymous said on September 16, 2023 at 4:29 am

    Worked for me (registry option) thank god, I can use the search option to find things on my computer again. Thank you so much!

    1. TelV said on September 19, 2023 at 11:54 am

      Install Everything Search and dispense with Microsoft’s crappy search tool.

      Martin wrote an article on it:

  16. said on September 17, 2023 at 6:39 pm

    I presume the text “WindowsCopilot,,” is a typographical error (2023/09/17/how-to-disable-windows-copilot-in-windows/). The broken comment system unfortunately looks like it is populating itself via AI autopilot.

  17. Anonymous said on September 17, 2023 at 10:37 pm

    Hopefully, this Windows Copilot nonsense fails even more spectacularly than Cortana. Who requested this? We want all of the UX features removed back in 11, not this copilot nonsense.

  18. Anonymous said on September 17, 2023 at 10:51 pm

    I really don’t mind all of these Windows enhancement but Microsoft get one thing very wrong. ‘Opt in’, is far better than seek information and work to disable.

  19. ilev said on September 18, 2023 at 7:13 am

    Turn off Windows Copilot entirely is not good enough.

    How to uninstall Copilot entirely ?

    1. TelV said on September 19, 2023 at 11:57 am

      @ ilev,

      Use Gpedit or the registry. Explained in this article:

  20. WilliamGatesTheight said on September 21, 2023 at 2:13 pm

    With that snake oil salesman Panos gone, hopefully Windows can return to a normal desktop operating system without all the insanity it has right now in Windows 11.

  21. Tachy said on September 21, 2023 at 3:19 pm

    Can we please stop being ‘politically correct’ (lying) and call them ads again instead of ‘suggestions’?

  22. TelV said on September 25, 2023 at 4:05 pm

    @ Martin,

    Does your gpedit hack also turn off all the other “subscribed content” shown in the registry screenshot? Do you happen to know what all those are?

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.