How to Fix Camera not working on Windows 11

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This post shows students and new users steps to take when a webcam or camera isn’t working and doesn’t show anything when using Windows 11. When it comes to devices not working on Windows, it could be many things, including missing drivers after a recent update, privacy settings that don’t allow camera access for some apps or your security apps preventing camera access.

Whether your camera is built into the laptop or is plugged using an external connector, the solutions should almost be identical, except when there’s a hardware issue. For an external camera, make sure it’s properly plugged to the connecting port, and try using another USB port as well to see if that fixes the issue.

For all cameras, these troubleshooting steps should be taken in order to resolve common issues related to webcam and computer cameras, including restarting the computer. Many times, simply restarting the PC can get your camera working again.

The new Windows 11, when released generally to everyone, will come with many new features and enhancements that will work great for some while adding some learning challenges for others. Some things and settings have changed so much that folks will have to learn new ways to work with and manage Windows 11.

But don’t be afraid as we’ll continue writing easy to use tutorials for new users and students.

To get started with troubleshooting webcam issues on Windows 11, follow the steps below.

How to fix webcam issues on Windows 11

As we mentioned above, fixing webcam and camera issues on Windows 11 could come down to a few settings, drivers or Windows updates, and the steps below should get you started.

Check for camera On or Off switch

Some laptops and camera devices have a physical switch that turns the camera on or off. When the webcam button is turn to off, Windows won’t recognize that there’s a camera installed. Turn if back on for Windows to see the camera again.

If your device doesn’t have a switch to turn off or on, then continue to the next steps.

Restart your computer

Lot of issues can be resolved simply by restart your computer. If your webcam isn’t working, go and shutdown and restart your computer.

You can read this post the learn how to shutdown your computer. Then turn it back on to see if it fixes the issues.

Check for Windows Updates

If you restarted your computer and the issues are not resolved, then go and update Windows. Windows updates can also install drivers for devices, and running older device drivers may lead to device issues.

To check for updates and install optional drivers, click on the Start button, then select Settings  > Windows Update  > Check for updates.

If there are updates available, download and install them. If no updates are available, then click Advanced options, and under Additional options, select Optional updates to see if there are updates available for your camera. Allow available updates to install, then restart your device when it’s ready.

windows 11 optional updates available

Check your computer privacy settings

Windows 11 has built-in privacy settings that prevent some apps from accessing the computer camera and you might need to give apps permission to use the camera. Some apps don’t have default access to the camera.

To let your device access the camera, click the Start button , then select Settings  > Privacy & Security  > Camera.

windows 11 disable camera web cam

Make sure Camera access is turned On. Then also confirm that the apps you want to use have access to use the camera as well. Toggle the button next to the app to the On position to enable access to the camera.

After that, test the camera to see if that fixes the issues. If not, continue below.

windows 11 camera access enable for apps

Check camera drivers

Next, make sure the correct drivers are selected for the camera. To do that, click on the Start button, then search for Device Manager. Select to open the Device Manager app.

windows 11 device manager

In Device Manager, expand the Camera, then right-click on the camera name and select Update driver as highlighted below.

windows 11 update device manager drivers

Next, select Browse my computer for drivers.

windows 11 browse computer for camera drivers

Then click “Let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer

windows 11 let me pick from a list of available drivers

Next, choose another device driver on the list. In some cases, there could be multiple drivers for a particular device. Switch between them to see which one works.

Click Next, to install the select driver. Restart your computer and test it out.

windows 11 select compatible hardware driver

Manually download new driver

If all the above steps don’t work, then you may have to download a new driver from the manufacturer website. Get the name of the device on Device Manager, then search Google and download compatible drivers for your device.

Next, reopen Device Manager as described above, right-click the device, select Update driver, choose Browse my computer for drivers, and select Then click “Let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer” then click the Have Disk.

windows 11 have disk driver for device

Browse and select the downloaded driver and install. Restart your computer and test it out.

If you tried everything above and the issues were not resolved, then there might be issue with the device itself and not software. A hardware issue means the device is broken and may need to be replaced.

That’s it.

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to resolve common camera issues when using Windows 11. If you find any error above or have anything to add, please use our comment form below.

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