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How to Silence the Sounds that Windows Makes

Windows plays a host of musical ditties as you go about your day. Sometimes, the sounds serve as important reminders or warnings. At other times, the sounds annoy the heck out of you. Disabling them can be done without muting the entire sound system. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Control Panel.

  2. Active the dialog box used to change sounds.

    • In Windows 7 and Windows Vista, choose Hardware and Sound, and then click the link Change System Sounds beneath the Sound heading.

    • In Windows XP, open Sound and Audio Devices. In the dialog box that appears, click the Sounds tab.

    You see a list of all events and activities in Windows that have sounds associated with them.

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  3. Choose an event to silence.

    For example, choose the Windows Logon sound that plays every silly time you log in to Windows.

    If you’re unsure of the event but remember the sound, use either the Test or Play button in the dialog box to preview the sound for a selected event.

  4. From the Sounds drop-down list, choose (None).

    Multiple sounds are available from the Sounds drop-down list. The top option, however, is (None), which is blissful silence.

  5. Repeat Steps 2 and 3 as often as necessary.

  6. Click OK to cement your choices, and close the window.

  7. Close the Control Panel window.

One sound that may not be obvious is the Windows Startup sound. To disable it in Windows 7 and Windows Vista, remove the check mark by the box Play Windows Startup Sound in the Sound dialog box. In Windows XP, assign the (None) sound to the item titled Start Windows.

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