Fresh Ubuntu 14.04 install.

I can play sound just fine, but there's no sound indicator. If I go to system settings and then into sound I can make it pop up - but it's in a mute position and I can't change the volume...

The sound devices in the sound settings don't show up and the volume control doesn't work...

However I can set the volume fine on the login screen!



See if the following steps help:

sudo dpkg-reconfigure $(dpkg -l | grep indicator-sound | awk '{print $2}' | tr '\n' ' ')
sudo update-initramfs -u

Reboot the system.

Still no sound indicator? Then try reinstalling it:

sudo apt-get -f install --reinstall indicator-sound indicator-sound-gtk2

Reboot the system.

Original answer here: https://askubuntu.com/a/363369/298860

Part-2: (Update)

sudo apt-get remove --purge alsa-base
sudo apt-get remove --purge pulseaudio
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
sudo reboot

Then ...

sudo apt-get install alsa-base
sudo apt-get install pulseaudio
sudo alsa force-reload
sudo reboot

If one reboot doesn't do the trick, reboot a couple of times! (No, seriously!)

  • Hi, thank you I managed to fix the sound indicator. However the problem remains of the input section in the sound settings being empty. On top of that now I have no sound. If I kilall pulseaudio it comes back, and the input section fills, however the digital output is selected instead of my sound card, and I have to change that for sound to come back :(. – Jasiek Vetulani Jul 20 '14 at 10:01
  • see if "part-2" in my updated answer solves your problem. – thatmaheshrs Jul 20 '14 at 16:33
  • Doesn't work. Furthermore uninstalling pulse-audio causes these packages to get uninstalled in the process: indicator-sound* indicator-sound-gtk2* libcanberra-pulse* pulseaudio* pulseaudio-module-bluetooth* pulseaudio-module-x11* unity-control-center* unity-control-center-signon* webaccounts-extension-common* xul-ext-webaccounts* And the indicator disappears completely after that. Need to reinstall ubuntu-base to get it back and all those other packages. Still need to kill pulseaudio after login, before I get the card to show in sound settings and have sound. – Jasiek Vetulani Jul 26 '14 at 19:02
  • sudo alsa force-reload Indeed fixes it, but just as killing pulseaudio, and without reboot. However it only lasts till I logout, and I have to do it on every login. – Jasiek Vetulani Jul 26 '14 at 19:27

Open your terminal either via dash or ctrl+alt+t and paste in the following:

sudo apt-get install indicator-sound-gtk2

Then restart you pc and check your indicators again.


I had the same problem. When starting my machine I could hear the Ubuntu startup sound. But when logged in there was no sound device to select (and no sound). Apparently I'd thrown out a bit too many dependencies when trying to remove the pulseaudio equalizer.

The line that saved my life was:

sudo apt-get install alsa-base* indicator-sound* libcanberra-pulse* osspd* osspd-pulseaudio* pulseaudio* pulseaudio-module-bluetooth* pulseaudio-module-x11* unity-control-center* unity-control-center-signon* webaccounts-extension-common* xul-ext-webaccounts*

There was a dummy user for speech-dispatcher that was trying to run the pulseaudio daemon, so I had two pulseaudio-daemons trying to run at the same time, running this made it so that the audio devices are visible on boot:

sudo update-rc.d -f speech-dispatcher remove

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