Fix Sndvol32.exe Application Error

The sndvol32.exe process is used to control volume settings of your Windows system. To access this file on Windows XP, open Control Panel, and select Sounds and Audio Devices. Next, go to and click the Advanced button in the Device volume section on the Volume tab in the Sounds and Audio Devices dialog box that is displayed.

You can use the sndvol32.exe process to control volume from Command Prompt. To display Command Prompt, type cmd at Start > Run and press Enter. Here, you may use the following command:

SndVol32.exe [-R | -D n]


-R starts the application in record mode.
-D n specifies a device identifier.

File Information

By default, you find sndvol32.exe in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. It is a Windows system file and its default size on Windows XP is 138,752 bytes.

Sndvol32.exe Application Error

You may receive the following application error message on your Windows XP computer when there is an existing issue with the sndvol32.exe process.

"Windows cannot display the volume control on the taskbar because the Volume Control program has not been installed. To install it use Add/Remove Programs in Control Panel."

Cause of Error

There may be two possible reasons for this problem.

  • The Volume icon is not added to the notification area. This is possible because the Volume icon is not displayed by default when you install Windows XP.
  • Sndvol32.exe is either missing or damaged.

Resolution Method

To resolve this issue, you need to do the following:

  • Add the Volume icon in system tray, or
  • Replace the missing or damaged sndvol32.exe file with a healthy file. Because sndvol32.exe is a Windows system file, you need to extract the file from the Windows XP Installation CD. Let us now go through the steps to perform these tasks.

Step 1: Add the Volume Icon to System Tray

Note: If you have already added the Volume icon in the system tray and still receive the error message, you may skip this section and proceed to the next step.

  1. Click Start and then select Run.
  2. Type mmsys.cpl and press Enter to display the Sounds and Audio Devices dialog box.
  3. On the Volume tab, select the Place volume icon in the taskbar checkbox.
  4. Click Apply and then click OK to save your changes and exit the dialog box.

The volume icon should now be visible in the system tray on the taskbar.

Proceed to step 2 if you are unable to add the Volume icon or if you get an error message when trying to add it to the taskbar.

Step 2 – Replace the Sndvol32.exe File

Insert the Windows XP Installation CD in the ?CD or DVD drive. Remember to hold the Shift key down. This will prevent the CD from starting automatically.

  1. Click on Start and then select Run.
  2. Type cmd and then press Enter to display the Command Prompt window.
  3. At command prompt, type the drive letter for your CD/DVD drive and then press Enter. For example, if your CD/DVD drive letter is F, type f: and press Enter.
  4. Type cd i386 and press Enter.
  5. Type expand sndvol32.ex_ C:\Windows\system32\sndvol32.exe to copy the sndvol32.exe file from the installation disk to the system32 folder on your hard disk. Here, C:\Windows is the default system root where Windows system files are installed.
  6. Type exit and press Enter to close the Command Prompt window.
  7. Check to see if the icon for Volume is displayed.

Errors related to exe files may also occur if your PC is infected with one or more malware programs. If you are suspicious, it is best that you use efficient antivirus and antispyware tools to perform a thorough scan of your PC.? It is also recommended that you regularly scan and clean your registry with an efficient? registry tool such as RegServe to ensure that no exe and PC errors occur due to registry problems.