I have a laptop running Ubuntu 18.04. It worked just fine until recently when it stopped playing audio after booting. Every time I reboot the system I have to plug in and then plug out a headset in order to make the built-in speaker work.

I think the issue might come up with an update because I didn't make any system changes at the time when the issue showed up.

Q: How to restore sound to its normal state?


2 Answers 2


Sorry Sasha Shpota, I don't have a definitive answer. But I've been digging around on forums to find an answer to an audio problem that I have and this problem does seem related to PulseAudio and how it recognises devices. There's lots of commentary on how capricious PulseAudio can be, especially when there are multiple audio devices.

What I can recommend is that you install and take a look at the app pavucontrol. Whilst using this audio configuration app didn't help me, it did list all of the audio input and output apps and allowed me to switch things on and off. It might be that you find that the builtin speaker is switched off at the software level and that you can switch it back on using pavucontrol.

To find out if you have pavucontrol:

dpkg -l pavucontrol

If it's not installed:

sudo apt install pavucontrol

Hope this helps. :)


You can read this article:

Sample screen:

ubuntu no sound.png

It has many tips (with graphics above) and at the very end the last resort is to reinstall sound apps:

sudo apt remove --purge alsa-base pulseaudio
sudo apt install alsa-base pulseaudio

Try the other steps first though.

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