The mystery of the disappearing laptop screen brightness slider (Windows 7)

I noticed this problem in the last 2 weeks or so, but searching around the ‘net returned no results.

So I noticed that if the power plug turned off during bootup, I would be unable to adjust my screen brightness. To resolve the problem, a restart — with the power plugged in — was required.

Right-clicking the Power system icon — located on the bottom right of the task bar, clicking Power Options -> High Performance -> Change plan settings showed just two options: “Turn off the display”, “Put the computer to sleep”. “Adjust plan brightness” had disappeared!

The solution is:

Start -> Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> Device Manager.

In the Device Manager window, look for “Monitors”, then right-click your monitor and select “Uninstall”. Be sure to also check the “Remove driver” option. Once removed, click the “Scan for hardware changes” icon.

Voila. “Adjust plan brightness” returns, mystery solved.

References

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprohardware/thread/08a3eb1d-b698-4639-af4b-5278b721fcdc/

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127 Responses to The mystery of the disappearing laptop screen brightness slider (Windows 7)

  1. Anonymous says:

    At last!!!

    So greatful! I am an IT-consultant with serious issues on my own laptop….
    About 3 hours of googling didnt take me anywhere!

  2. spoonman09 says:

    Thank you! This has been bugging me for years!

  3. Jedi says:

    Thank you so so so so so so much!

  4. amir says:

    Thanks! It solved the problem like a miracle. I had the slider before and it suddenly disappeared for no particular reason. Thanks again! :)

  5. Aabid says:

    OMG YOU GENIUS!!! <3 XXXXX THANKS SO MUCH :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    Pretty techie myself and this was driving me crazy. Thank you for taking the time to post this.

  7. mev says:

    THANKS! IT REALLY WORKED!! ;DD

  8. ashleigh825 says:

    I’m a total computer idiot and know nothing about this kind of techie stuff, but I was able to follow this easily and I have my screen brightness slider back. Thank you very much! This super-bright screen was giving me a splitting headache.

  9. Anonymous says:

    a thousands thanks you!! =) i was almost getting blind =)

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much, been looking for a solution for months!!

  11. john says:

    You are a genius!!!

  12. Nerdgasm says:

    Finally! This has been a pain in my ass for a week now. The permanent bright screen was a sight for sore eyes, literally. You’re a humanitarian and a wonderful person.

  13. Anonymous says:

    OMG THANK YOU SO MUCH! THIS HAS BEEN SO ANNOYING FOR LIKE MONTHS.

  14. elliphant says:

    A million thanks, Sahib… I always had brightness adjustment available from the beginning… until … somewhere along the line brightness went to max and all controls disappeared and keyboard Fn controls stopped working. Don’t know when or how it happened, but it drove me nuts for months. All searching and digging through web sites, manufacturer website (Acer), M$, etc. provided no useful results at all… UNTIL … I stumbled over your post. Following your lead, I uninstalled the monitor driver (deleting driver software), had windows rescan for hardware updates; it installed a “generic” monitor driver, and viola!! Everything works! Thank you again for sharing this! PS. I have been a computer operator/technician for over 30 years, since the days of mainframes; before I started working in this field, I had hair! ;-)

  15. Anonymous says:

    Thank a bunch, thank you for posting this on line, Microsoft help did not go any where. You saved my life before going crazy

  16. whameed says:

    Thank you. The problem just surfaced and your’s was the first Google link I found

  17. Anonymous says:

    Will you marry me?

  18. Anonymous says:

    Gracias, Thanks, Koszi, Spassiba, Silvuple you genius!

  19. Anonymous says:

    THanks!!!! That works!!!!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Same here. This was driving me crazy for months. Any idea what’s caused the problem to start with in the first place? In my case it happens each time I unplugged the laptop and start running on batteries. Even once I plug the computer back in, the screen stays dimmed and there is no way to increase the brightness other than what you suggested.. a bit of a pain. Thank you.

  21. Usman says:

    Thanks …it solved my problem

  22. the.fornr says:

    Genius…. absolutely genius

  23. Anonymous says:

    so simple, so not obvious :p thanks!

  24. jertas2013 says:

    Hey there, I’m having this problem except I don’t have a Monitors tab in device manager, nor can I see any entries relating to a monitor in Device Manager. I’m using a HP Pavilion dv6 laptop, is there anything I can do to solve this problem? I used to have the sliders and the buttons used to work but now the sliders are gone and the buttons aren’t functioning. Thanks for any help.

  25. Wayne Khan says:

    Jertas2013: Oh my. You might want to try Action > Add legacy heardware/Scan for hardware changes. HTH.

  26. Pingback: Windows 7 Laptop Brightness Problem (Solved)

  27. ayleen says:

    i can follow the instruction until the “Remove driver” stage because i cannot find it. can anyone help me? i’m using lenovo g460. the brightness make my head pain.. !

  28. Cane says:

    Im not good with this stuff but will that do any damage to my computer if I unistall it? I mean like is it important to have to or thats just… extra?

    • Wayne Khan says:

      Hi Cane,
      It doesn’t seem to have had an effect on my laptop, and the good thing is that I can adjust my screen brightness now. I consider it critical to be able to adjust that, since it has an impact on my reading and battery life.

      • Apparel says:

        Hello there! Can you help me find where can i check the “remove driver” ?? i can’t find it..

  29. keyvn says:

    Can somebody help me find the ‘remove drive’ option? My laptop is HP COMPAQ. I would be very grateful if somebody help!

  30. SUNNAY says:

    Wow, worked THANKS ALOT :)

  31. Reggie says:

    Worked for me as well :-) Thank you very much! I thought I was crazy when it disappeared!

  32. Anonymous says:

    It works!!! Thank you!!!!

  33. Dick says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! This has been bugging me for weeks! I think a Windows update must have been the culprit because I didn’t do anything else to the laptop around the time this happened.

    Clevo W76CU

    • Brian says:

      Im on a Clevo P170HM (Sager). It happened to me when I got below 7% battery and it auto-dimmed the screen. When I plugged it back in, I couldnt change it anymore.

  34. Anonymous says:

    thank you for crying out loud, why can’t this be on the “help” menu????????????????????????????? I’ve had to download smart brightness controller 3 times already (free trial). you are truly a genius

  35. Anonymous says:

    thank you :)
    -shabin muhammed

  36. John says:

    Do I need a windows disk to reinstall the driver or will the system find it on my hard drive?
    Cheers

  37. Anonymous says:

    Thanks so much…at last.

  38. Chenzo says:

    I have no idea why the slider vanished in the first place. I recent did an update and I’m guessing that was what caused the problem? In any case this solution worked great and was quick and easy!

  39. Kaijer says:

    Since the windows update in august, this brightness slider was vanished from the control panel. now for this tips, i got it back again, thank you very much..— Kaijer

  40. Ahmet Kula says:

    Thank you so so so muck

  41. ivory says:

    works great, although it is definitely a software bug by microsoft

  42. Anonymous says:

    OMFG!! Thanks SO DAMN MUCH!!! I could not believe that nobody else had this problem when I looked it up.. I was dealing with a super bright laptop for about 5 months now, because I just gave up!! Then I finally googled it one last time today, and bam, your resolution came up and worked!! THANKS!! :D

  43. aisha says:

    can anybody help me in finding out remove driver option.. i have toshiba satellite C655D laptop..please hep to find it guys..otherwise i`ll have to continue with my super bright laptop..please,..

  44. davide says:

    you is mi supermen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:D :D :D

  45. Anonymous says:

    YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS
    THANKS A LOT
    IT EVEN HELP for z500 brightness problem

  46. Anonymous says:

    Rolling back the driver for Monitor in Device Manager helped……thnks for the pointers :-)

  47. rivo says:

    thank youuuuuuuu and happy new year!!!!

  48. Anonymous says:

    why i don’t have the uninstall option when I right click “monitors”????? PLeeasee helpp!!!!!

  49. Anonymous says:

    And I thought it was my computer. Thank you

  50. Anonymous says:

    Excellent Tip sir… It solved my issue

  51. Ad says:

    Thank you so much ! Got no answer in thousands of sites visited, except here =D

  52. Anonymous says:

    Brilliant ! fixed the problem.Thanks man.

  53. Mohammed says:

    Wow thank you very much you are a genius

  54. Anonymous says:

    Thank-you so so much, I’ve spent 3 months trying to figure it out.

  55. Anonymous says:

    Thank you!!!

  56. Anonymous says:

    THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH. I cant express how bad this has annoyed me, and how many things I’ve tried with no avail.

  57. Anonymous says:

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CANT BELIEVE THIS WORKED BUT IT DID.. SONY VAIO LAPTOP FIXED

  58. PepLamb says:

    Thanks works for Windows 8 too :)

  59. Bob S. says:

    Thanks, that is pure genius. Stupid Microsoft had nothing about the issue in technet.

  60. Marc R. says:

    Thank you so much – I’ve been searching for an answer to this for at least two weeks, and was about to completely wipe my system when I read your post. Definitely saved a MASSIVE restore job – much appreciated!

  61. Moises says:

    I don’t know how, but the monitor driver got replaced by a TeamViewer Monitor Driver. Thanks to these instructions, I was able to finally install the correct monitor driver.

    Many Thanks!!

  62. suhas says:

    Super..
    Thanks lot.

  63. Anonymous says:

    Works on compaq CQ-56. Thanks man

  64. Anonymous says:

    Thank you sir. 1 month with a screen, dark as night. I don’t know how to thank you. My kindest words. You are a life saver.

    Laptop: MSI GT-70 0NE

  65. Anonymous says:

    Thanks! Woke up this morning, turned on computer, brightness settings were gone and my eyes were being burned out by the max brightness, for which there were no settings. Great fix.

  66. Anonymous says:

    great this really works

  67. Apparel says:

    Please help me find the “Remove Driver” option.. Help me guys :-/

  68. John says:

    What do u guys mean by “remove driver” option??? i went into device manager and uninstalled my moniter then scanned but there still is no brightness setting option. Please help!!! T.T

  69. Anonymous says:

    The remove driver option did not get displayed in my case, only a warning that I was going to uninstall my driver, I clicked ok and it uninstalled the generic pnp monitor.
    After that I right clicked and scanned for hardware updates and the brightness adjustment bar was there again.. Thanks! :).

  70. jove says:

    i also don’t have a Monitors tab in device manager. Well in my laptop it’s in “devices and printers”, did I make it right? there are only devices, printers and faxes, and unspecified. I tried to look for “Scan for hardware changes” options but can’t find it. I’m using VAIO VPCCW26FG. any help? thanks before

  71. Anonymous says:

    thank u very much

  72. Anonymous says:

    Awesome. Thank you very much.

  73. pare says:

    ofmg…. thank uuuuu i start laughing when this worked…. ty my friend

  74. Anonymous says:

    Thanks a lot! This has bothered me for years.

  75. Anonymous says:

    LOL I’m a sys admin at our work but I could resolve this silly problem on my own laptop. After 3 days of google Glad I found this gold.

  76. Avira Rose says:

    I AM SCREAMING THANK YOU

  77. Anonymous says:

    i can’t believe this. it doesn’t work for me. i only have “generin pnp monitor” at the monitor section. there is no “remove driver” anywhere. i uninstall it, then click on the button to the rightest “scan for hardware changes”. after that i go to control panel, power options, and there is still no slider.

  78. Chaks Singh says:

    Thanks you very much!! it worked and save me from re-installing PC!! million thanks, have a bright future ahead!!

  79. Anonymous says:

    wow. it worked.. thank u so much,

  80. Atul Prashant says:

    Thank you very much from my core of my heart. It is 100% working.

  81. dewayne says:

    holly crap your awesome! I was like all worried it wasn’t going to work but i read the comments and gave me hope. Your wonderful thank yyou

  82. Anonymous says:

    Thank you very much,
    It worked for my HP Touchsmart TM2 2080la Notebook,

    Muchas gracias,
    Me funcionó para mi computador portatil HP Touchsmart TM2 2080la Notebook.

  83. Anonymous says:

    worked!!! thanks its was real pain in ass.

  84. Anonymous says:

    wowwww thank u soooooooooo much man
    u r great

  85. Anonymous says:

    Thanks :)

  86. Anonymous says:

    OMG. I never thought I would be able to fix this!!! I figured I must have broken something inside my laptop when I dropped it….thank you so much for posting this! At first I was kind of hesitant on following the directions posted here because I’m not much of a computer person, but your instructions are very simple to follow! Thank you so much once again! Goodbye to super bright screen that hurts my eyes~!!! (:

  87. Vijay says:

    i have vaio SVE15117FN with windows 8 pro 64 bit.. i don’t have any option like moniters in device manager.. then i uninstalled AMD Radeon HD 7500M/7600M Series (Microsoft Corporation – WDDM v1.20) from Display Adapters and scanned for hardware changes.. then also i didn’t get brightness control in my power options or any where else.. please help me..

  88. Thank you SO much! It worked!! I have been googling this issue for ages. =)

  89. Louis says:

    Thank you! I just discovered the problem last night. Two days ago I had plugged an external monitor into my Sony Vaio (Windows 7). I think that might have had something to do with the disappearance of the brightness control. Anyway, your solution worked perfectly. cheers.

  90. Hi,
    where I find “remove driver”?
    thanks ;)

  91. Maxwellfire says:

    THANKS SOOOOO MUCH. Anoyyed me for like the past three weeks

  92. Anonymous says:

    Have a Acer aspire 7750g W7/64, most recent update was display adapter AMD radeon HD7600M, after that i was unable to change my brightness level. because i have 2 display adapters Inter HD3000chip(integrated) and HD7600 as mentioned above. I use only AMD cause well its better for everything expect for battery life.
    when i switch to HD7600 i am unable to dim the brightness. The function works fine when i swicth it back to the lame Inter HD3000 . Any suggestions would help. your theory for PnP did not work for me so far.

    Thank you very much in advance.

  93. jamal says:

    have a Sony VAIO ,the same thing happened to me when i formatted my win7 ,i tried your way and it didn’t work , can you help me please .

  94. jack says:

    Worked on my packardbell LM laptop. THANKS A MILLION!

  95. works like a charm!! Thank you endlessly, too bad I only find your post now, after all these years :P

  96. Anonymous says:

    Much appreciated dude!

  97. now i ve still one problem… :( i cant regulate the brightness anymore..
    any idea??

  98. Mikhail says:

    Thank You so Much!! Don`t want to install Intel drivers over HP factory drivers, so this solution is so much better.

  99. bous says:

    thank you

  100. Anonymous says:

    Didnt work for me… However! I just uninstalled the driver, didnt scan anymore since it didnt help, but I saw Display Adapters setting and Intel HD Graphics Family was disabled. So I hit enable – and it finally let me set the brightness. So for those who won’t get results with 1st option, try this.

  101. Anonymous says:

    Wow, thanks for this. My retina was getting burned out.

  102. taiji_lou says:

    THANK YOU! WORKED!

  103. Anonymous says:

    THANK you A LOT ! :D

  104. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, that worked!

  105. anarki says:

    does anyone know WHY this happens on this planet?

    • anarki says:

      awkward, but are you all running teamviewer?

      I think once someone takes over your desktop, the teamviewer driver takes over and it could be bugged, locking these options.
      Can anyone confirm?

  106. Anonymous says:

    It didn’t work with me. Any aother suggestions?

  107. Nonye85 says:

    thank you and God bless

  108. Dev says:

    it isnt working on mine too,plz sum 1 help

  109. Anonymous says:

    I love you.

  110. Mamay says:

    It’s No use!! Someone please help me, there’s no adjustment setting in my laptop.

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