Just finished troubleshooting the problem with no sound after installing Windows 10 Version 1803 Systems Update (KB4458469). KB4458469 seems to be the responsible file as the problem started after installing it with other cumulative updates. A quick restart after installing the update came up with a red cross which indicates the speaker is not working. A diagnostic check that can be started by right-clicking on the speaker icon in taskbar made no difference.
Fix sound problem after installing Windows 10 Version 1803
- Right click on This PC located on the Desktop
- Click on Manage. This will bring up the Computer Management window
- Click Device Manager. You may notice the yellow exclamation mark next to the sound drivers which indicates a conflict or corrupted driver.
- Right click on the corrupted entries with the yellow exclamation, then click on Uninstall device from the popup window.
- Restart the computer. The default sound driver from Windows updates will get uploaded automatically.
- Check the problem is fixed.
If the problem is not solved, it might be because of a conflict between the sound drivers provided by the original device manufacturer and the ones from Windows update.
- Open Settings from Start Menu
- Click Apps which opens Apps & features window
- Go through the list of all installed Apps. If there is an entry for the Sound driver, select and click Uninstall
- Restart the computer when the uninstallation is finished
This should fix the problem. The problem is with third-party sound driver conflict with windows sound driver. It seems the problem was a conflict between Realtek sound driver and windows update.
Third Party Sound Driver re-installation
Out of curiosity, re-installed Realtek software. It did successfully install. It did take a little longer to get the software installed than it used to take normally. However, the software did install and worked perfectly.
In case, if you use a different third-party software and it failed to uninstall, then inform your third-party sound card vendor. You may have to wait until the vendor release a compatible software.
Why insist using third-party software than default windows sound driver?
There is nothing wrong with using default windows sound driver. It should work fine. But, the sound card manufacturer knows their hardware better. They know how to get the best performance out of their hardware and they are constantly working on minor tweaks and improvements to get the best out of their hardware. Also, they have advanced options such as setting sound to different presets, configure home theatre etc.
Conclusion: Since Realtek software was installed successfully, it seems that Windows update corrupted Realtek sound driver files not conflicting with it. Once the software was uninstalled and then re-installed, it seems everything is working fine.