Update on Ability to Mute the Windows Vista Start-up Sound

We heard you loud and clear when it came to discussing our plans to include a default start-up sound that plays as you boot-up Windows Vista:  you said you wanted to have the opportunity to mute it if and when you felt it necessary.  Your collective voice truly made a difference in this matter, as we've incorporated a way for users to turn off the start-up sound when it's more appropriate to boot silently -- be it when you're mobile, at home or in the office.


Here's a shot of the control panel that will allow you to enable/disable the start-up sound:


Comments (31)
  1. Anonymous says:

    Everyone loves the Windows Vista startup sound, right?  Well, if you are in the hate camp, the latest…

  2. Anonymous says:

    Over the weekend we released an interim build of Windows Vista, also known as an EDW, or External Developer…

  3. Anonymous says:

    Originally meant to be analogous to the non-mutable Mac bios chime. The startup sound is now Optional! …

  4. Anonymous says:

    The Windows Vista team has listened to the community (read my previous post on this) and included the option to mute the startup sound of Windows Vista. And also there are a new build (post RC1) out f…

  5. Anonymous says:

    See – your feedback does work!

    Over the last few weeks, it’s been flying round the web that we were…

  6. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. I use Windows machines as performance tools for both music and live visuals. Disabling this means escaping a huge faux pas. (There are other tricks, too, for live visualists / VJs, like disabling the login screens and going to black wallpaper … hey, this stuff is a big deal when you’ve got an audience or club crowd and you’re hooked into a projector and/or P.A.)

    I even mentioned these tricks in my book, so I’m really pleased that the dialog is so similar.

  7. war59312 says:

    Thank you very much! 🙂

  8. thomthom says:

    So, why is the startup sound hardwired? Why doesn’t Vista allows you to change it as you where able in previous versions?

  9. nicktaylor says:

    How about making this as simple as the mac – the startup sound is as loud as the system volume before restarting. So if I mute my Mac and shut it down, when it starts up next, there’s no sound. Simple. 🙂

  10. barlog says:

    I’m downloading now from Connect !

    Is that made by Robert Fripp ?

  11. Garry Trinder says:

    Screw up again.

    Is you was willing to make us hear that sound system is working fine and acceptable level (and it was not purely marketing-branding decision) – why there is no way to change it to 1/2 second Ding.wav from WINDOWSMedia folder ?

  12. SteveBall says:

    nicktaylor said:  "How about making this as simple as the mac – the startup sound is as loud as the system volume before restarting. So if I mute my Mac and shut it down, when it starts up next, there’s no sound. Simple. 🙂 "

    Hey NickTaylor: Even before this change, the ‘mac’ behavior you just described is exactly what happens in Windows Vista.   This sound (and all sounds coming from Windows and applications) is 100% mutable and controlled by the default device volume slider setting that is adjustable in the Windows Volume Control.  

    If you mute or turn down your device volume in the systray Volume Control or in the new Volume Mixer, this sound respects that setting.   Even better, unlike all Windows XP sounds, the new Windows Vista Startup sound is authored at a ‘comfortable’ level, so that if you set your device volume so that the new Startup sound plays comfortably, the rest of your sounds will also be ‘comfortable.’  

    This new checkbox simply gives users the ability to mute only the pre-logon Windows Vista Startup sound.


    * * *

  13. SteveBall says:

    One other note for those who may still be thinking that the sound experience in Windows Vista is different than XP:

    You can still have exactly the same, 100% customizable sound experience that you have today in XP.  

    You can set the "Windows Logon’ event sound to be whatever WAV file you wish, this effectively replaces what used to be the XP Startup sound (which always played post-logon before you land on the desktop.)    

    If you still want your own ‘custom’ post-logon ‘startup’ sound, this "Windows Logon" event provides just that: it plays just before you land on the desktop.

    In addition to adding this checkbox, we will also be removing the actual ‘Start Windows’ event from the Sounds tab listbox to avoid confusion.  And, we’re now officially calling the new Windows Vista pre-logon sound the "Windows Startup" sound.  

    What was previously the XP ‘Start Windows’ sound is now simply the ‘Windows Logon’ sound and event (and this is 100% customizable.)

    With this, for all practical purposes, the Windows Vista sound UX is 100% parallel to XP.    If you want ‘no sound’ simply uncheck the checkbox and select the "No Sounds" scheme – done!

    There are many complicated gory details about why we implemented this the way we did (checkbox, vs using existing event, etc.) that I’ll gladly share if anyone wishes to go deeper.  

    * * *

  14. Zyphrax says:

    Good choice to include this option, it gives the control back to the user. Do you have any idea when the real Windows Vista startup sound (the one channel9 was referring to) will be included? Last-minute for RTM?

    And what about the black titlebar when a window is maximized :). I know why you like it black (weird CRT reasons, "transparency is useless when maximized"). Just turning off transparecy when maximized, would look a lot better IMO.

  15. Muhannad says:

    Indeed a very appreciable feature added to the list of excellence. There could be another chance for us to rejoice if the shut down sound could also be equipped with a similar power to mute itself or better still if an independent sound control option is added for both the shutdown and the start-up sounds it could really make the whole idea sparkle.

  16. anony.muos says:

    Good now do something regarding the Backspace key and the Up one level functionality. Breadcrumb bar is only for mouse users what about keyboards?

  17. Garry Trinder says:

    Muhannad, you’ve always had the ability to mute the shutdown sound (even in previous versions of Windows).

    In Vista, right-click the volume icon in the notification area, click Sounds. Scroll down the list of sound events until you come to "Exit Windows". Change the sound for that event to "[None]". There’s also a sound event for logoff in case you also want to disable that. It’s event is called "Windows Logoff".

    someone, use Alt+Up Arrow to go up one level using the keyboard. Backspace just traverses backwards in the navigation history as it does in IE.

  18. Lone Shepherd says:

    To Steve Ball and the Windows audio team:


    Being able to easily disable the startup sound is music to my ears 😉

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