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Is The Vista Startup Sound Too Much Of An Annoyance?

People are talking about a little bit of noise that they haven’t even heard being a really big annoyance. Of course, they are right to worry, since if Microsoft goes forward as planned, you will hear a specific sound every time you boot up Windows Vista, and won’t be able to turn it off. Better fight it now, the feeling goes, in case it becomes a real annoying fact of life with Windows in the future.

Basically, Microsoft wants to brand Windows, like it does with the Xbox 360, by having a specific, memorable sound play every time you boot. Now, if the sound comes up on boot, and not every damn time you logon or enter your password, like Windows XP’s does, at least you won’t hear it that often.

Now, there are some really good reasons to let users shut it off. Laptop users typically can’t adjust their volume until Windows has already booted up, and by then they’ve probably made a fool of themselves booting up in a meeting or college class. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had to slam my hands over the laptop speakers in a quiet environment to avoid embarressing myself.

How about a compromise? Don’t expose the setting in the System Sounds control panel, so the typical user can’t shut it off, but do allow registry editing to shut it off. If an advanced user really wants to get rid of the startup sound, he’ll be able to, while most users will just have to stick with it. After all, even though it isn’t a simple hack, there are people who modify their boot and logon screens, and the startup sound can be a similar hack.

August 27th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Vista, Windows, General | one comment



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1 Comment »

  1. Open registry editor and go to
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\ServiceGroupOrder]
    Look for “AudioGroup”, move it to the bottom of the list, now the startup sound can’t play because the “Windows Audio Service” doesn’t start until all the other services have started!
    This works great for me so far.
    Don’t forget to export and save this key before changing it!!!!

    Comment by CKirocZ | September 21, 2006

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