Have an important video meeting, and your webcam is not working in Windows 10? Well, this can be because of some minor glitch or permission issues in Windows 10. The webcam has become vital with the growing importance of video calls, online interviews, and online live lectures.
Be it, kids or adults, everyone uses a webcam either for work, schools, or just to connect with family and friends via video calls. Anyone with little technical expertise can easily fix the issue of webcam not working in Windows 10.
Solutions to Fix Webcam Not Working in Windows 10
Let’s fix your webcam before you miss another live lecture or video meeting. The solutions below can help you fix your webcam in an easy and convenient manner. If it is a temporary glitch or settings issue, the initial solutions will fix them.
1. Restart your Computer
If you have not restarted your system after facing the issues with webcam, then this is the time to do it. Restarting your computer can fix the temporary problem in hardware and problem, and it doesn’t take much of your time.
To restart your computer, click on the Windows icon on the taskbar.
Next, click on the Power button, followed by the Restart option.
Once your system restarts, try using your webcam again. If still, your webcam is not working in Windows 10, then it is more than a technical glitch. You can check out other solutions from the list.
2. Update Windows
Windows update fixes bugs, issues, and compatibility problems with its updates. So, if your webcam is not working in Windows 10 because of the update issues, then it can be fixed.
To update Windows to the latest version, press Windows key + I to open Settings and go to Update & Security. Now, from the left panel, click on Windows Update.
Click on Check for updates and if there is any update, download and install it.
Once your system restarts after the update, check if the webcam is working properly.
3. Check Webcam with Camera App
You can check your webcam using the Camera app in Windows 10. Checking your webcam in the camera app will give you an idea if there is an issue with the webcam or with the app you are using for video calls.
Search for the camera in the start menu and open it from the search result.
When the Camera app opens, check if you can see the webcam preview on your screen.
If the preview is fine, then there might be a problem with the app you are using for video calls and lectures. At times, the camera doesn’t work in the Skype app only. In such cases, you need to troubleshoot the issue within the app.
However, if you do not see a proper preview here, then there is an issue with your system’s webcam. Follow the solutions mentioned below to fix the webcam not working in Windows 10.
4. Turn on Switch for your Webcam
It may sound weird to some users, but some webcams do have buttons and switches to turn it on. If your monitor has a built-in webcam, then there are fewer chances of your webcam having buttons and switches.
However, if you are using an external webcam, then there might be a switch or button on it to turn it on. Most modern webcams don’t have such switches and buttons, but it is better to confirm this once. After turning the webcam on, check if it works in the Camera app, as shown in the solutions number 3.
5. Camera Access permission for Application
If your webcam is not working in Windows 10 for any specific app, then you may need to check the permission settings. The permission is important for any app to access the webcam. Check all the permission settings mentioned below. If the issue is only because of permissions, then below mentioned settings change would fix it for you.
Step 1: Open Settings via the start menu or by pressing Windows key + I and then click on Privacy.
Step 2: Now, in Privacy, click on Camera under App permissions.
Step 3: Make sure the switch below ‘Allow apps to access your camera’ is turned on. If this is disabled, none of the apps will be able to access the webcam.
Step 4: After enabling webcam access to apps, check if the app you are using has access to the camera. This setting is found under ‘Choose which Microsoft Store apps can access your camera.’ If the switch next to your video calling app is disabled, then enable it.
Step 5: Also, turn on the switch below ‘Allow desktop apps to access your camera’ to avoid any issues and accessibility issues of webcam in Skype, Chrome, or any other desktop app.
After making the said changes in permission, check if the webcam not working issue is fixed.
6. Use Another USB Port
If you are using an external webcam via USB port, then try connecting it to another USB port. The issues like a faulty USB port or an inadequate power supply may also cause the webcam to not work in your Windows 10.
You can change the USB port and then check if the webcam is working, and you can see your preview in the camera again. If still the issue persists, then you may need to check other solutions mentioned below.
7. Check your Antivirus
Many times your antivirus may stop an app from accessing the webcam. This can be because it may find suspicious activity within the app; hence in order to protect from any online crime, the antivirus blocks the access.
If this is the case, then you need to check your antivirus settings and also verify the app you are using. The settings can be changed, and you can then access the webcam without any issue. If you cannot change the settings, you can visit the manufacturer’s website or contact the support team to fix it for you.
8. Check Camera Access for your Device
If you previously disabled the camera for your device, then you need to enable it again. This can also happen if any third-party app blocked the access. To be sure, you can check the settings once.
Go to Settings ➜ Privacy ➜ Camera
Now, under ‘Allow access to the camera on this device,’ check if it shows ‘Camera access for this device is on.’ Well, if the access is on, then there is no reason to worry, and you can move on to the next solution.
Note: You will need admin access to change the camera access settings mentioned below.
However, If it shows off in the settings, then click on Change.
Once you click on Change, a small window will appear next to it. Toggle the switch below it to turn on camera access, as shown in the image below.
Once the access is turned on, check if the webcam not working issue is resolved.
9. Scan for Hardware Changes in Device Manager
If you have an inbuilt camera in your monitor or laptop or you don’t find the camera driver in Device Manager, then try the following solutions.
Scan for hardware changes refreshes the hardware of your system and shows devices that are connected recently. This will work if your camera is not showing up in Windows 10. Follow the steps mentioned below to scan for hardware changes.
Press Windows key + X and click on Device Manager to open it. In the menu bar, click on Action and then select Scan for hardware changes.
Wait till the scan completes, and driver software is reinstalled. Restart your computer and now check if the webcam works in the Camera app. You can also check if the camera drivers are installed successfully in the Device Manager.
If now you can see webcam drivers in the Device Manager, but still the webcam is not working in Windows 10, then you need to check out other fixes from the list.
10. Check for Incompatible Camera
The older webcams are not compatible with the Windows 10 operating system sometimes. And webcams with compatibility issues don’t work as expected. You can easily check if your camera is compatible or not with the help of Device Manager.
Step 1: Press Windows key + X to open the quick link menu and then click on Device Manager to open it.
Step 2: When the device manager opens, search for your camera drivers. You can find it under Cameras, Imaging devices, or video and game controllers.
In our case, it is under Cameras.
Step 3: Once found, right-click on it and select Properties from the context menu.
Step 4: Navigate to the Driver tab and then click on Driver Details.
In the driver details window, you will see Driver files, check if you can see the stream.sys file in there.
If you don’t see it, then your camera doesn’t have any compatibility issues.
However, if this file is present under your camera driver files, then it means your camera is not compatible with Windows 10. The camera was designed for the Windows 7 operating system. In such cases, the only option left is to replace the webcam with one which is compatible with Windows 10.
11. Enable Camera Drivers
If you accidentally disabled the webcam drivers via Device Manager, then you need to enable it again to use it.
To enable camera drivers, open Device Manager, and expand Camera or Imaging devices, wherever your camera driver is present.
Next, right-click on the camera driver and select Enable device from the context menu.
Note: You will see enable option only if your driver is disabled, otherwise instead of enabling you will Disable option. Do not disable your drivers.
Once re-enabled, check if the webcam issue gets resolved after this.
12. Roll Back Camera Driver
If a recent driver update has caused issues with your webcam, then you can roll back drivers to the previous version.
To do so, open Device Manager as mentioned above and right-click on the camera driver. Now, select Properties from the context menu. When the properties window opens, navigate to the Driver tab and then click on Roll Back Driver. You will be asked for confirmation, click on Yes and let the driver roll back to the previous version.
If the Roll Back Driver is greyed out in the properties, then you need to try another fix. As your system doesn’t have provision to roll back drivers to the previous version.
Make sure you restart the system after the rollback and then check if your Windows 10 camera not working issue is resolved.
13. Uninstall Driver
You can uninstall drivers if the rollback didn’t work for you, or you didn’t have an option to roll back drivers. You can do it manually and automatically by using third-party software. To uninstall driver software manually, open Device Manager and right-click on Camera drivers. Select the Uninstall device from the context menu.
Once done with the uninstallation process, go to Action in Device Manager and click on Scan for hardware changes. This will reinstall camera drivers for your system. You can get more information about the uninstallation process in our complete guide on device drivers in Windows 10.
You need to restart your system and check if the webcam not working issue is resolved by this.
With everything shifting online, from meetings, interviews to schooling, a webcam is the need of an hour. In many cases, all you need to do is launch the app and start the video calls. However, sometimes the webcam may not work as expected, and you may need to tweak in settings and permissions.
The above guide can help you fix the webcam not working in Windows 10 in a convenient manner. If nothing from the above works in your case, then you may need to change the webcam and bring a new one. You can get it replaced or repaired from the manufacturer for free if it falls under warranty/guarantee period.