How to Enable/Disable OSD Notifications on Webcam in Windows 10

Camfecting (hacking the device’s webcam) is a form of cyberattack that not too many people pay attention to. A malicious program or spyware can infect your webcam and record you without your knowledge. Therefore, you should always be aware of apps that use your webcam.

The little LED indicator next to your computer’s webcam can help determine if your webcam is hacked. It appears whenever an application activates your webcam. But what if your laptop’s webcam doesn’t have a physical indicator light? Or the webcam’s LED is faulty and not working? How do you know when the camera is recording?

The Windows operating system has an on-screen virtual display (OSD) message that functions as a temporary webcam indicator.

Enabling this will prompt Windows to send you a notification each time an application activates (or deactivates) your webcam. Webcam OSD notifications are disabled by default on all Windows 10 devices.

In this guide, we will show you several ways to enable or disable webcam OSD notifications.

How to enable OSD notifications on Webcam

The option to enable this feature is hidden in the Windows Registry. We have outlined two ways to enable the registry file responsible for OSD messages.

Note: The Windows Registry is a database of sensitive files and settings. So it’s important to make a backup of the registry before you try to enable/disable camera notifications. Damaging any registry files can corrupt the Windows operating system and cause your computer to malfunction. A backup serves as your insurance should anything go wrong. This Windows Registry backup and restore guide has everything you need to know.

Method 1: Manually modify the OSD . registry file

1. Launch Windows Run box using Windows key + CHEAP shortcut.

2 types regedit in the dialog and click ALRIGHT.

3. Paste the link below into the address bar of Registry Editor and press enter on your keyboard.


Locate the labeled key NoPhysicalCameraLED. If you don’t find the key in this folder, go to the next step to create one. If not, go to Step 6 to change its value.

4. Right click on an empty area in the folder and select New and DWORD (32-bit) value.

5. Name the newly created key NoPhysicalCameraLED and press enter.

6. Double-click NoPhysicalCameraLED or right click on it and select Change.

7. Change the Value data to first and click ALRIGHT.

8. Close Registry Editor.

By modifying the value of NoPhysicalCameraLED registry key, you are telling Windows that your webcam lacks a dedicated physical LED. That will prompt the Windows Shell to provide an alternative—an on-screen indicator—that tells you when your webcam starts or stops streaming.

Method 2: Create a shortcut for the registry file

Here is a faster alternative that requires creating a text file with the registry extension (.reg). This registry file will act as a shortcut that you can use to toggle the OSD camera on/off notification on and off with the click of a button.

1. Launch Notepad and paste the content below into the window.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
“NoPhysicalCameraLED” = dword: 00000001

2. Press Control + Shift + WILL to save the file.

3. Name the file, add .reg extension at the end of the file name— for example: Enable-Camera-OSD.reg– and click Save.

4. Double-click the registry file to enable OSD notifications.

5. Click Right on the warning prompt.

6. You will receive a message stating that the keys and values ​​have been successfully added to the registry. Option ALRIGHT to continue.

Skip to the next section to check webcam OSD on/off notification.

How OSD . camera notifications work

When you enable OSD notifications to activate and deactivate the camera on your computer, Windows displays a warning every time an application activates your webcam. Here is how it works.

Launch any app that needs access to your camera to work, e.g. Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, etc. You can find a full list of apps with camera access here : Setting > Privacy > Camera.

Start a meeting or test video call on your favorite app. As soon as you enable video in the call window or as soon as the application starts using your webcam you will see Camera is on warning in the upper left corner of your PC screen.

When an application stops using your webcam, Camera off the message pops up and disappears within 5 seconds.

OSD message not showing? Check these out

If your computer does not show the Camera on/off warning even though the OSD message is enabled in the Windows Registry, try the following.

1. Restart your computer

Sometimes, changes made to the registry may not take effect until you restart your computer. Confirm that you have changed the NoPhysicalCameraLED registry key, restart your computer and try again.

2. Switch to Administrator Account

You cannot make changes to certain registry keys from a standard account or a guest account. If you cannot enable the OSD camera notification camera from the Registry Editor, make sure you Log in to Windows as administrator. Go Setting > Account > Your information and make sure the account has Manager label.

Refer to this guide to learn how change the standard account to an administrator account on Windows 10.

Don’t want OSD notifications anymore? 2 ways to turn it off

If you don’t need Windows to show camera notifications on your screen anymore, here’s how to turn it off.

Method 1: Modify the registry

Go to registry and revert NoPhysicalCameraLED back to default.

Double click NoPhysicalCameraLED key, change the Value data to 0and choose ALRIGHT.

Method 2: Create a shortcut for the registry file

You can also create a dedicated registry file that will act as a shortcut for OSD webcam notifications. Launch Notepad and follow the steps below.

1. Paste the command below into the Notepad window and press Control + Shift + WILL to save the file.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
“NoPhysicalCameraLED” = dword: 00000000

2. Name the file, add .reg extension at the end of the file name — for example: Off-Camera-OSD.reg—And click Save.

3. Go to the desktop (or wherever you saved the file) and double-click the file to turn off the OSD notification.

4. Click Right on the warning prompt.

An extra layer of protection

Even if your Windows PC has a properly functioning webcam indicator, you should consider enabling OSD camera notifications. It’s an extra security system that notifies you of a webcam hack.

If the webcam indicator or OSD camera notification comes on at unusual times when you are not making a video call or recording a video, there may be an unrecognized program or browser extension in use. your webcam in the background. In this case, you should run a scan using Windows Defender or third-party scanners.

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