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I ran into an issue where my volume buttons on my mac weren't able to adjust the volume of my computer. I sought a solution and someone suggested using sudo killall coreaudiod. Now I have no volume on my computer at all. How do I fix this?

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  • I have to kill coreaudiod regularly on Catalina and Big Sur, and it always restarts, working perfectly.
    – benwiggy
    May 1 at 8:53
61

This command will do it:

sudo launchctl stop com.apple.audio.coreaudiod && sudo launchctl start com.apple.audio.coreaudiod

Details

Martin Strouhal's answer doesn't work for OS X/macOS ≥ 10.12.4 due to removal of com.apple.audio.coreaudiod from system integrity protection's RemovableServices whitelist in /System/Library/Sandbox/com.apple.xpc.launchd.rootless.plist [1].

sudo launchctl unload /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.audio.coreaudiod.plist
/System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.audio.coreaudiod.plist: _
   Operation not permitted while System Integrity Protection is engaged

So instead of unloading the service, we instead just restart it.

Also, the latter command (sudo launchctl start com.apple.audio.coreaudiod) worked to restart the service after I had killed coreaudiod using killall coreaudiod.

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  • This is going to relaunch the service actually (I can see the spinner on the bar sound icon, but the output audio device does not come back (I only see the damn SoundFlower). Mar 16 '19 at 15:02
  • Similarly - Catalina (10.15.7) does not let you relaunch coreaudiod due to "System Integrity Protection".
    – sygibson
    Oct 10 '20 at 16:14
  • Thanks @sygibson . This inspired me to do a little digging into where exactly and in what macOS version this functionality was disabled. Turns out 10.12.4 onwards won't allow it (see the discussion I added above).
    – ijoseph
    Oct 11 '20 at 4:57
22

You need to reload coreaudiod instead of killing it. This one-liner will fix broken sound without restarting your mac

sudo launchctl unload /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.audio.coreaudiod.plist && sudo launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.audio.coreaudiod.plist

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  • 6
    I can't believe I have to do this several times a day.
    – octohedron
    Jan 21 '17 at 10:26
  • Nice, worked very nicely to clean up my Airplay connection after adding and removing Soundflower. Apr 13 '18 at 21:53
  • I also have to run this again and again to clean up the choppy noise in my speakers. Feb 11 '19 at 19:14
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    I get a service already loaded and nothing actually loads. Mar 16 '19 at 15:01
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    @octohedron I can't believe this is STILL broken...
    – Kheldar
    Jan 25 '20 at 16:06
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sudo killall coreaudiod should work to kill your audio drivers. It should reload itself within a fraction of a second. (verified on my mbp running 10.14 but used this on a couple of previous versions)

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  • This completely worked for me while other solutions did not. NOTE: I had to do this 3 times before coreaudiod stopped pegging the cpu. (mine was consistently hitting 75% cpu utilization)
    – MER
    Feb 13 '20 at 23:09
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You can also use the command:

sudo launchctl kill SIGTERM system/com.apple.audio.coreaudiod
0

You've simply killed Core Audio, which will restart itself if you restart your computer. Try logging out/in, and if that doesn't work restart your computer.

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  • does not work with logout only, you need a restart...damn mac windowsness Mar 16 '19 at 15:04

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