The startup sound in Vista …

I’m on the phone with Steve Ball, group program manager for the Windows Audio Video Excellence team (basically, the team that builds the stuff that plays audio and video in Windows).

First, a disclaimer, before I left Microsoft, I got an intimate view of the process that Microsoft is going through in finding the startup sound (famous guitarist Robert Fripp was working on it).

The idea here (to both paraphrase Steve, and pass along the goals here that I learned) is that Windows Vista should present a common, and beautiful, face to the world. I could go more into it (I think what they are trying to do will be apparent in the shipping release, but isn’t quite there yet — even the new sound isn’t in current builds).

Anyway, let’s go into what Steve just told me on the record: 

“The bottom line is that the rumors, stories, speculation about the new Windows Vista sound are true,” Ball said, “but with a number of extreme qualifications.”

The current plan, he tells me, is that there will be a pre-wired sound that plays when the system is ready for you to logon. This is the plan of record for quite a few months.

You can do other things with your attention and your eyes during cold boot without feeling like you have to watch and wait.

This will be a non-customizeable sound, and that’s been part of the plan for Windows Vista for many months, he said.

However, the plan might change and Steve Ball is reading all the feedback, both on blogs, and in the newsgroups for beta testers, and his team is considering all of this stuff and still has not made final decisions (although they’ve spent a lot of time already arguing this stuff out and are heading down a path of making this a non-customizeable sound that can’t be turned off, just like the Xbox has today).

“Why the hell would you want to do this in the first place?” he told me is a common question. It boils down to two sides of the coin.

1. A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.

2. Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine. Let’s say you muted your machine, and you don’t hear your startup sound, you know you aren’t ready to listen to stuff. The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.

It basically helps you realize your machine is ready to watch a video like, Ze Frank, without fidgeting with anything.

To add to that these sounds may be included in a bunch of the marketing that Microsoft is doing and will become very recognizable as “Windows Vista.”

QUESTION: Why don’t you give advanced users the ability to turn this off via a registry setting or something like that?

Steve: “we’re considering just that.”

“Did you know that Sony has a built in sound?” he said. “Did you know that Toshiba has one?”

We went on to talk about the audio experience, how it’ll be a lot nicer than they were in XP and the emotional experience of how sounds will fit into the overall experience of using your computer.

A little bit about Steve. He’s an accomplished musician and cares, more than anyone I know at Microsoft, about how the community perceives Microsoft and its products.

++++++++++++++++

This part is MY opinion, not Steve’s:

My own editorial? I can see this from both sides. As an advanced user I want control of everything on my computer. It pisses me off when companies assume they know me better than I know me.

On the other hand, now that I’ve spent the time with Steve and heard the market research, legal advice (yes, lawyers are involved here — they love having trademarked pieces of media experiences that can’t be copied), experience and UI teams (have you sat through user testing? I have, and decisions like these are made because of feedback of normal, everyday users, not just geeks like me and you).

Translation: I’m withholding judgment until I see the final product. This isn’t an “evil” feature like SmartTags that demands an instant pull-out, but it isn’t nice not to listen to your most influential and experienced users either. So, it’ll be interesting to see how this one goes.

Comments

  1. Just give me a link next to the default sound (greyed out by default) that says, “Enable custom sounds – $10. Click here.”

    Seriously though – I would find this pretty annoying on my Media Center PC – I disable all extraneous sounds on that machine – it’s startling to hear some of the Windows default sounds coming over my surround sound system – espacially if I had it cranked up when the system re-booted itself.

    Steve, I appreciate your opinions on this – let me suggest you allow me to shut it off after I’ve heard it for 100 times, or three months – ot whatever other metric you want to use. But please, let me shut it off (or minimize the volume), even if you don’t let me change the default.

    Thanks,
    Rob

  2. Just give me a link next to the default sound (greyed out by default) that says, “Enable custom sounds – $10. Click here.”

    Seriously though – I would find this pretty annoying on my Media Center PC – I disable all extraneous sounds on that machine – it’s startling to hear some of the Windows default sounds coming over my surround sound system – espacially if I had it cranked up when the system re-booted itself.

    Steve, I appreciate your opinions on this – let me suggest you allow me to shut it off after I’ve heard it for 100 times, or three months – ot whatever other metric you want to use. But please, let me shut it off (or minimize the volume), even if you don’t let me change the default.

    Thanks,
    Rob

  3. Some might say that’s what’s wrong with Microsoft: they need a months-long process for such a decision, involve lawyers, musicians, marketers and (worst) focus groups.

    Now I’ll bring up the obvious counter-example: Apple decided early on to use such a sound (without the ability to turn it of), an engineer sat down and did some cool stuff to build something (there is an inside account of that somewhere on the net) and, even though it’s a minor detail, it has become an important part of the “brand experience”. I’m not even shure there was a plan to do it, maybe it was JUST that one engineer.

    Would a consumer know what he wants? Probably not. If asked, I would think the idea alone would annoy me. Just imagine turning on your notebook in a crowded meeting or lecture would always play a sound, unless you plug in headphones.

    Has it ever bothered me? No, since I never turn off my powerbook, sleep mode just works beautifully.

    This isn’t supposed to be a Mac vs. Win rant – there is a lot of MS stuff I like (VS 2005 rocks). This is a focus-group and fat-company rant.

  4. Some might say that’s what’s wrong with Microsoft: they need a months-long process for such a decision, involve lawyers, musicians, marketers and (worst) focus groups.

    Now I’ll bring up the obvious counter-example: Apple decided early on to use such a sound (without the ability to turn it of), an engineer sat down and did some cool stuff to build something (there is an inside account of that somewhere on the net) and, even though it’s a minor detail, it has become an important part of the “brand experience”. I’m not even shure there was a plan to do it, maybe it was JUST that one engineer.

    Would a consumer know what he wants? Probably not. If asked, I would think the idea alone would annoy me. Just imagine turning on your notebook in a crowded meeting or lecture would always play a sound, unless you plug in headphones.

    Has it ever bothered me? No, since I never turn off my powerbook, sleep mode just works beautifully.

    This isn’t supposed to be a Mac vs. Win rant – there is a lot of MS stuff I like (VS 2005 rocks). This is a focus-group and fat-company rant.

  5. Yeah. No. I don’t like this.

    If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s starting up a machine after a giant party only to blast the stupid start-up noise at 140 decibels for all of the house/campus to hear.

    The only thing worse is being welcomed into a bright and sunny hangover by said start up sound.

    Turning this noise off was one of the first things that I would do to a machine when it moved anywhere near me. (*Knock knock* I notice that your machine makes obnoxious noises that wake me up in the morning. Can I please show you how to turn them off? Thanks!!)

  6. Yeah. No. I don’t like this.

    If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s starting up a machine after a giant party only to blast the stupid start-up noise at 140 decibels for all of the house/campus to hear.

    The only thing worse is being welcomed into a bright and sunny hangover by said start up sound.

    Turning this noise off was one of the first things that I would do to a machine when it moved anywhere near me. (*Knock knock* I notice that your machine makes obnoxious noises that wake me up in the morning. Can I please show you how to turn them off? Thanks!!)

  7. Uhh, is everyone forgetting that Macs have done this forever? *Before* it even boots the OS? This is especially interesting now if you use Boot Camp because it still plays the Mac sound before you boot into Windows.

    Later,
    Drew

  8. Uhh, is everyone forgetting that Macs have done this forever? *Before* it even boots the OS? This is especially interesting now if you use Boot Camp because it still plays the Mac sound before you boot into Windows.

    Later,
    Drew

  9. I can turn off the sound on my Mac from a key on the keyboard, and it will boot silently.

    This is important because sometimes, like when you are using the computer to control a stage show, have a sleeping baby in your lap, or on a darkened airplane, you need the thing to stay silent.

    Any device that cannot be silenced will be tossed. I don’t care if you can customize it, but the volume control is MINE.

  10. I can turn off the sound on my Mac from a key on the keyboard, and it will boot silently.

    This is important because sometimes, like when you are using the computer to control a stage show, have a sleeping baby in your lap, or on a darkened airplane, you need the thing to stay silent.

    Any device that cannot be silenced will be tossed. I don’t care if you can customize it, but the volume control is MINE.

  11. I hate this idea. I’ve had one too many times where I’m in a crowded room/airplane and I turn on my computer and that logon sounds blares through the room because I forgot about the rock-fest I had the other night and had my speakers cranked. Now I’m thoroughly embarrassed in a crowd and I have no way to prevent it from happening again because Steve Ball is worried about “marketing spirituality” crap.

  12. I hate this idea. I’ve had one too many times where I’m in a crowded room/airplane and I turn on my computer and that logon sounds blares through the room because I forgot about the rock-fest I had the other night and had my speakers cranked. Now I’m thoroughly embarrassed in a crowd and I have no way to prevent it from happening again because Steve Ball is worried about “marketing spirituality” crap.

  13. the only possible reason not to give advanced users the ability to turn it off is willful ignorance of their wishes. Let it default to on or whatever to satisfy the marketing wizards, but let the people who want to kill it kill it. Not being able to do something like that is a blatant middle finger to a customer.

  14. My reaction to “The company knows best” isn’t just “No it doesn’t”; it’s “No it doesn’t because the company is stupid and evil and deserves to have grated kittens sprinkled over its Corn Flakes every morning for a million years and for Google to buy it out and sell it for scrap so there NYAAA!”

    Or am I being emotional?

  15. the only possible reason not to give advanced users the ability to turn it off is willful ignorance of their wishes. Let it default to on or whatever to satisfy the marketing wizards, but let the people who want to kill it kill it. Not being able to do something like that is a blatant middle finger to a customer.

  16. My reaction to “The company knows best” isn’t just “No it doesn’t”; it’s “No it doesn’t because the company is stupid and evil and deserves to have grated kittens sprinkled over its Corn Flakes every morning for a million years and for Google to buy it out and sell it for scrap so there NYAAA!”

    Or am I being emotional?

  17. This is a typical case of product-focused vs. user-focused thinking.

    Has it occured to anyone that a user might just wake up early morning and wants to turn on his/her computer without waking up sleeping family members?

    For this very reason one of the first setup steps I always do on a new machine is to turn off the startup sign.

  18. This is a typical case of product-focused vs. user-focused thinking.

    Has it occured to anyone that a user might just wake up early morning and wants to turn on his/her computer without waking up sleeping family members?

    For this very reason one of the first setup steps I always do on a new machine is to turn off the startup sign.

  19. So, my question is along the lines of Drew’s comment. Haven’t startup sounds been around forever, and on operating systems other than Windows?

    Frankly, it seems to me like not a big deal in the big scheme of things. I like the startup sound Windows XP makes. If I don’t feel like hearing it, I turn the volume down. Seems like such a non issue to me.

    So explain to me what I am missing, because I’m not seeing much of anything here.

  20. So, my question is along the lines of Drew’s comment. Haven’t startup sounds been around forever, and on operating systems other than Windows?

    Frankly, it seems to me like not a big deal in the big scheme of things. I like the startup sound Windows XP makes. If I don’t feel like hearing it, I turn the volume down. Seems like such a non issue to me.

    So explain to me what I am missing, because I’m not seeing much of anything here.

  21. “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.”

    If I want an Xbox, I’ll buy an Xbox. And the built-in speakers on my laptop can’t be turned down until after I have logged in.

    I want a computer that let’s me control and configure everything! And to me a good user experience involves using an operating system that is stable and secure and let’s me do things the way I want to do them.

    It really has nothing to do with how the system sounds or looks. In fact, I much prefer the way Windows XP looks to the way Windows Vista looks.
    And I have a choice of two themes I like in XP: luna and energy.

    Having said that, I really like some of the under-the-hood improvements in Vista. I just detest this whole User Experience thing! I don’t want a game box. I want a computer.

    Well, that’s just me. I know there are a lot of younger people who think this kind of thing is cool. I don’t want to deprive them of their fun. I just want to be able to do my thing too.

    Oh well. Not to worry. I’m sure I’ll have the skill to hack a dll to have it my way. Not that I don’t think the sound will be beautiful. Hell, I even liked Clippy in Office 2000 for about a month! Now Clippy is in the ground along with Microsoft BOB. I wonder why he didn’t come back in Office 2003?

  22. “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.”

    If I want an Xbox, I’ll buy an Xbox. And the built-in speakers on my laptop can’t be turned down until after I have logged in.

    I want a computer that let’s me control and configure everything! And to me a good user experience involves using an operating system that is stable and secure and let’s me do things the way I want to do them.

    It really has nothing to do with how the system sounds or looks. In fact, I much prefer the way Windows XP looks to the way Windows Vista looks.
    And I have a choice of two themes I like in XP: luna and energy.

    Having said that, I really like some of the under-the-hood improvements in Vista. I just detest this whole User Experience thing! I don’t want a game box. I want a computer.

    Well, that’s just me. I know there are a lot of younger people who think this kind of thing is cool. I don’t want to deprive them of their fun. I just want to be able to do my thing too.

    Oh well. Not to worry. I’m sure I’ll have the skill to hack a dll to have it my way. Not that I don’t think the sound will be beautiful. Hell, I even liked Clippy in Office 2000 for about a month! Now Clippy is in the ground along with Microsoft BOB. I wonder why he didn’t come back in Office 2003?

  23. Just read this and you will get idea:

    One of my clients are FM radio station network. We use different automation software (on top of Windows) to get commercials / music / effects to air.
    Currently all PCs configured with “No sounds” Windows scheme – to make it sure it’s safe to reboot PC during air or click any buttons or anything else.

    Your proposition to make it impossible to turn off sound will result everybody in city will hear it !!

    So – results are predictable – the more features like this you will add – the less customers you will have as we need Windows to be predictable and do that WE want, not something that want Microsoft.

  24. Just read this and you will get idea:

    One of my clients are FM radio station network. We use different automation software (on top of Windows) to get commercials / music / effects to air.
    Currently all PCs configured with “No sounds” Windows scheme – to make it sure it’s safe to reboot PC during air or click any buttons or anything else.

    Your proposition to make it impossible to turn off sound will result everybody in city will hear it !!

    So – results are predictable – the more features like this you will add – the less customers you will have as we need Windows to be predictable and do that WE want, not something that want Microsoft.

  25. [...] As I talked about in my last post, there is a bit of publicity in the blogosphere around Vista and the idea of a forced startup sound. That post was triggered by a post of Robert Scoble’s Blog and he just posted an update where he talks with Steve Ball from Microsoft who is in charge of the audio for such things. I reccomend that you read this post before continuing on with my oppinions. [...]

  26. I hate, yes that strong, sound without my permission. I have both my Mac and Dell laptop set to mute and only turn on the sound when I want to listen to audio or video I have chosen. Then again, I also keep my phone on silent…

    If Windows Vista does not give me an opportunity to mute all sounds, I will pull the sound card… ;o)

  27. I hate, yes that strong, sound without my permission. I have both my Mac and Dell laptop set to mute and only turn on the sound when I want to listen to audio or video I have chosen. Then again, I also keep my phone on silent…

    If Windows Vista does not give me an opportunity to mute all sounds, I will pull the sound card… ;o)

  28. Genealogists do a lot of work in quiet places, libraries, record offices, etc. I need a quiet computer, I like a quiet keyboard. So fixed noise – bad idea. Is this a plan to get Linux on the desktop?

  29. Genealogists do a lot of work in quiet places, libraries, record offices, etc. I need a quiet computer, I like a quiet keyboard. So fixed noise – bad idea. Is this a plan to get Linux on the desktop?

  30. I think this is a necessity in regards to a corporate environment.

    We have desktop HP machines that have internal speakers that if you do not have a headset in play the start up sound.

    Now can you imagine 80 co-workers walking in at 8:30am and havnig all these PC’s play out loud that start up sound.

  31. I think this is a necessity in regards to a corporate environment.

    We have desktop HP machines that have internal speakers that if you do not have a headset in play the start up sound.

    Now can you imagine 80 co-workers walking in at 8:30am and havnig all these PC’s play out loud that start up sound.

  32. It is pretty irrelevant how nice a guy Steve Ball is or whether or not lawyers are involved. Microsoft is still doing what Microsoft does best, telling their customers that Microsoft owns their computer and not them.

  33. It is pretty irrelevant how nice a guy Steve Ball is or whether or not lawyers are involved. Microsoft is still doing what Microsoft does best, telling their customers that Microsoft owns their computer and not them.

  34. >>One of my clients are FM radio station network.. Your proposition to make it impossible to turn off sound will result everybody in city will hear it !!

    >>If I want an Xbox, I’ll buy an Xbox. And the built-in speakers on my laptop can’t be turned down until after I have logged in.

    There’s these things… called headphones… you can get some at the dollar store and cut off the headphone part.

    /just saying. It’s not the end of the world. Besides, if it comes from Fripp it’s going to be more like Tinkerbell blowing in your ear than the Apple Chinese gong.

    I can’t make my Apple MBP *not* play the startup sound. I’ve tried. The buttons on the keyboard don’t do squat before the bios posts and the sound plays. Always makes for an interesting pile of looks in meetings and other places I’d rather it keep quite.

  35. >>One of my clients are FM radio station network.. Your proposition to make it impossible to turn off sound will result everybody in city will hear it !!

    >>If I want an Xbox, I’ll buy an Xbox. And the built-in speakers on my laptop can’t be turned down until after I have logged in.

    There’s these things… called headphones… you can get some at the dollar store and cut off the headphone part.

    /just saying. It’s not the end of the world. Besides, if it comes from Fripp it’s going to be more like Tinkerbell blowing in your ear than the Apple Chinese gong.

    I can’t make my Apple MBP *not* play the startup sound. I’ve tried. The buttons on the keyboard don’t do squat before the bios posts and the sound plays. Always makes for an interesting pile of looks in meetings and other places I’d rather it keep quite.

  36. Count me as one more voting for a setting for this – even if it’s buried in the registry with no apparent switch, this *must* be made optional.

  37. Count me as one more voting for a setting for this – even if it’s buried in the registry with no apparent switch, this *must* be made optional.

  38. I understand branding and wanting Vista to be noticed. does anyone there at MS understand CUSTOMER DESIRE with THEIR computer?
    I like pictures of naked ladies – but I wouldn’t want MS to put them in the OS as a ‘spiritual’ experience for everyone.

  39. I understand branding and wanting Vista to be noticed. does anyone there at MS understand CUSTOMER DESIRE with THEIR computer?
    I like pictures of naked ladies – but I wouldn’t want MS to put them in the OS as a ‘spiritual’ experience for everyone.

  40. Larry,

    On a Mac, you need to set the volume to mute or 0 before you reboot. Make sure you have selected the internal speakers or it won’t work. On some Macs you can hold down the Mute key but it doesn’t seem to work on Intel Macs.

    You can create a script that runs when you logout that will do this automatically for you. See the following:
    http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20031005165919533

    I find it very convenient that the output level for the volume is kept separate for different output devices so I can keep the internal speakers muted while using my USB speakers normally.

    Hope this helps.

  41. Larry,

    On a Mac, you need to set the volume to mute or 0 before you reboot. Make sure you have selected the internal speakers or it won’t work. On some Macs you can hold down the Mute key but it doesn’t seem to work on Intel Macs.

    You can create a script that runs when you logout that will do this automatically for you. See the following:
    http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20031005165919533

    I find it very convenient that the output level for the volume is kept separate for different output devices so I can keep the internal speakers muted while using my USB speakers normally.

    Hope this helps.

  42. “Now can you imagine 80 co-workers walking in at 8:30am and havnig [sic] all these PC’s play out loud that start up sound. ”

    Great representative example of the underlying issues. It isnt a case of telling customers what to do, it’s more a case of not knowing what customers do or how customers work.

    If you’ve ever worked at MS, you’ll recognize the quoted example immediately. Thestartup sound is metaphorically part of drinking the kool-aid on a daily basis and part of the customer desensativation process. Almost all meetings start like what you describe – lots of windows startup sounds. Like writing emails during meetings, its just part of the MS process. Add in fast broadband, free latest software at work, almost free latest software for home, lack of any real connection between team spending and revenues, and the ability to get YOUR bugs fixed with a quick phone call. In short, you end up living in an abnormal topsy-turvy not-quite-like-the-customer world that becomes “normal” for you

    The out-of-touch factor is also due in my view to the following issues:

    - MS employees tend to join up right out of college…therefore they have never been enterprise customers, dealt with unique implentations of technology outside of an MS or academic environment, or had to manage IT functions. Things that are branded Windows are normal and almost not even noticed. Many don’t discover the real blocking issues with their own software until after they leave and actually have to implement it as a customer. There is little real understanding of the deployment process and its actual costs or any of the licensing issues.

    - Since most have never really been customers, MS employees tend to channel their MS-centric environment onto their perceptions, desires, and behavior of customers. In their world, if startup sounds are routine in their environment, then they should be regarded as routine in everyone’s world. A good example would be that my team only tested against clean installs of english language XP and long ago ditched their test cases for dialup.

    I still vividly remember the comments from my team after a 2002 customer visit by a particular windows team to one of MS largest customers. Only the visitors from Redmond had laptops in a meeting with their GM level execs. Ugg….no wonder our customers hate us.

    So, in my view, it’s quite hard for them to think through all of the customer cases because in many cases their collective customer experience and environment is often not representative of the norm. Not to mention that on many teams, you’ll be crying a river when going against the herd and quietly “moved on” if you do it too often.

    All part of the reason I left after a number of years…

    Booger

  43. “Now can you imagine 80 co-workers walking in at 8:30am and havnig [sic] all these PC’s play out loud that start up sound. ”

    Great representative example of the underlying issues. It isnt a case of telling customers what to do, it’s more a case of not knowing what customers do or how customers work.

    If you’ve ever worked at MS, you’ll recognize the quoted example immediately. Thestartup sound is metaphorically part of drinking the kool-aid on a daily basis and part of the customer desensativation process. Almost all meetings start like what you describe – lots of windows startup sounds. Like writing emails during meetings, its just part of the MS process. Add in fast broadband, free latest software at work, almost free latest software for home, lack of any real connection between team spending and revenues, and the ability to get YOUR bugs fixed with a quick phone call. In short, you end up living in an abnormal topsy-turvy not-quite-like-the-customer world that becomes “normal” for you

    The out-of-touch factor is also due in my view to the following issues:

    - MS employees tend to join up right out of college…therefore they have never been enterprise customers, dealt with unique implentations of technology outside of an MS or academic environment, or had to manage IT functions. Things that are branded Windows are normal and almost not even noticed. Many don’t discover the real blocking issues with their own software until after they leave and actually have to implement it as a customer. There is little real understanding of the deployment process and its actual costs or any of the licensing issues.

    - Since most have never really been customers, MS employees tend to channel their MS-centric environment onto their perceptions, desires, and behavior of customers. In their world, if startup sounds are routine in their environment, then they should be regarded as routine in everyone’s world. A good example would be that my team only tested against clean installs of english language XP and long ago ditched their test cases for dialup.

    I still vividly remember the comments from my team after a 2002 customer visit by a particular windows team to one of MS largest customers. Only the visitors from Redmond had laptops in a meeting with their GM level execs. Ugg….no wonder our customers hate us.

    So, in my view, it’s quite hard for them to think through all of the customer cases because in many cases their collective customer experience and environment is often not representative of the norm. Not to mention that on many teams, you’ll be crying a river when going against the herd and quietly “moved on” if you do it too often.

    All part of the reason I left after a number of years…

    Booger

  44. I’m pretty sure this has already been said but:

    What the hell is wrong with letting people turn off the sound? You can leave the default thing to whatever you want but just remember: you exist to serve customers. If your customers don’t give a shit about your ‘song branding experience’ LET them turn it off. I know you are passionate about the ‘experience’ people have, but not everyone will love the song you play at start up, and many people have special situations where it would be troublesome for them to worry about the start up sound (ie. library)

    As for the argument “they’ll just turn off their speakers if they don’t want to hear it”
    1. Many laptop volumes are controlled thru software which means you have to wait for windows to boot up first.
    2. This will mean I will have to turn off my speakers at launch and then turn them back up once i’m positive the sound has been played by windows (what a hassle).
    3. Most people don’t want to worrry about turning of their speakers every time they start up their computers. They just want an option to disable it permanantly so they never have to worry about the problem again.

    I’m positive the above post is written with horrible grammer and for that I apologize.

  45. I’m pretty sure this has already been said but:

    What the hell is wrong with letting people turn off the sound? You can leave the default thing to whatever you want but just remember: you exist to serve customers. If your customers don’t give a shit about your ‘song branding experience’ LET them turn it off. I know you are passionate about the ‘experience’ people have, but not everyone will love the song you play at start up, and many people have special situations where it would be troublesome for them to worry about the start up sound (ie. library)

    As for the argument “they’ll just turn off their speakers if they don’t want to hear it”
    1. Many laptop volumes are controlled thru software which means you have to wait for windows to boot up first.
    2. This will mean I will have to turn off my speakers at launch and then turn them back up once i’m positive the sound has been played by windows (what a hassle).
    3. Most people don’t want to worrry about turning of their speakers every time they start up their computers. They just want an option to disable it permanantly so they never have to worry about the problem again.

    I’m positive the above post is written with horrible grammer and for that I apologize.

  46. One more thing:

    As for the volume control part of the argument, the advanced users (who would turn off the option for start up sounds) are smart enough to check their volume first before playing something. Maybe instead of that, you could have a visual alert in your taskbar telling you that your sound blaster is at full volume (ie. make the sound icon get “redder” as the volume is increased).

  47. One more thing:

    As for the volume control part of the argument, the advanced users (who would turn off the option for start up sounds) are smart enough to check their volume first before playing something. Maybe instead of that, you could have a visual alert in your taskbar telling you that your sound blaster is at full volume (ie. make the sound icon get “redder” as the volume is increased).

  48. My computer is not a gaming machine, it is not an xbox, it is not something I want to have an “emotional experience” with. It is primarily a tool. Ever have to reboot in the middle of a conference? Can’t exactly use headphones there per someone’s suggestion. Does you machine wake from sleep or hiberation 100% of the time will no problems? Mine sure as heck doesn’t. Not in Windows XP and not in Vista either.

    Ship with a default sound by all means but don’t force me to go use registry hacks, open up dlls and remove sounds embedded in them, not if you want to promote Vista as secure because I can guarantee those hacks will be out on the net quickly. There are at least three I know of to kill the start sound on a Mac. (Google is your friend.) I’ve got one of those too.

    You know I actually sort of like Vista but I also need a system that can boot silently. Why remove the choice?

    Like many customizations I suspect the majority may never bother but for those who need do need to shut the machine up it is critical. For what its worth I don’t have any boot sound from my Toshiba m200 tablet at boot. Maybe Toshiba consumer pcs do but this one does not.

  49. My computer is not a gaming machine, it is not an xbox, it is not something I want to have an “emotional experience” with. It is primarily a tool. Ever have to reboot in the middle of a conference? Can’t exactly use headphones there per someone’s suggestion. Does you machine wake from sleep or hiberation 100% of the time will no problems? Mine sure as heck doesn’t. Not in Windows XP and not in Vista either.

    Ship with a default sound by all means but don’t force me to go use registry hacks, open up dlls and remove sounds embedded in them, not if you want to promote Vista as secure because I can guarantee those hacks will be out on the net quickly. There are at least three I know of to kill the start sound on a Mac. (Google is your friend.) I’ve got one of those too.

    You know I actually sort of like Vista but I also need a system that can boot silently. Why remove the choice?

    Like many customizations I suspect the majority may never bother but for those who need do need to shut the machine up it is critical. For what its worth I don’t have any boot sound from my Toshiba m200 tablet at boot. Maybe Toshiba consumer pcs do but this one does not.

  50. I hope that if I turn sound off with the keyboard shortcut on my Acer Laptop that it means sound off. Not all sounds off apart from the startup sound. If my baby is nearby I want my laptop silent.

  51. I hope that if I turn sound off with the keyboard shortcut on my Acer Laptop that it means sound off. Not all sounds off apart from the startup sound. If my baby is nearby I want my laptop silent.

  52. Geeesussssss…even I gave them the benefit of the doubt here, but gosh…are they THAT isolated from the real world? No off switch?

    And Scoble, they aren’t paying you for PR, so don’t give them any, actually when you were them, they paid too little. Call it as you see it, not wishy washy “I see both sides”. Bull.

    Everything on, also needs an off…

  53. Geeesussssss…even I gave them the benefit of the doubt here, but gosh…are they THAT isolated from the real world? No off switch?

    And Scoble, they aren’t paying you for PR, so don’t give them any, actually when you were them, they paid too little. Call it as you see it, not wishy washy “I see both sides”. Bull.

    Everything on, also needs an off…

  54. I hope they’d realize that there are certain environments where a hard-coded startup sound will be a total deal-breaker.

    TV and theatrical production come to mind.

    Should there ever be a need to reboot mid-show, it’s simply unacceptable to have a device that forces an audio output on boot. It’s that simple.

    To not even allow a regkey that turns the startup sound off will cost Microsoft customers in live production environments — end of story.

  55. I hope they’d realize that there are certain environments where a hard-coded startup sound will be a total deal-breaker.

    TV and theatrical production come to mind.

    Should there ever be a need to reboot mid-show, it’s simply unacceptable to have a device that forces an audio output on boot. It’s that simple.

    To not even allow a regkey that turns the startup sound off will cost Microsoft customers in live production environments — end of story.

  56. Maybe EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes should weigh on this debate. This could be construed as a move against those companies selling Windows custom sounds. Anyone have her email?

    I can see it now:

    Windows Vista N (No Media Player)
    Windows Vista S (No Startup Sound)
    Windows Vista NS (No Media Player and No Startup Sound)

    Maybe we should let those dudes in South Korea in on this too?

  57. Maybe EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes should weigh on this debate. This could be construed as a move against those companies selling Windows custom sounds. Anyone have her email?

    I can see it now:

    Windows Vista N (No Media Player)
    Windows Vista S (No Startup Sound)
    Windows Vista NS (No Media Player and No Startup Sound)

    Maybe we should let those dudes in South Korea in on this too?

  58. I am usually embarrassed when booting a laptop in a meeting, library, or airport and suffering through the XP noise, so I turn it off. It’s not branding; it’s the social impact of annoying others with the treasured and legally-copyrighted musical interlude that bothers me the most.

    It’s hard enough to be a geek without reminding everyone within earshot that you are every time you turn the thing on. People don’t like perfume permeating their space; they certainly aren’t going to like an uncontrollable MS sound.

    (See you in October!)

  59. I am usually embarrassed when booting a laptop in a meeting, library, or airport and suffering through the XP noise, so I turn it off. It’s not branding; it’s the social impact of annoying others with the treasured and legally-copyrighted musical interlude that bothers me the most.

    It’s hard enough to be a geek without reminding everyone within earshot that you are every time you turn the thing on. People don’t like perfume permeating their space; they certainly aren’t going to like an uncontrollable MS sound.

    (See you in October!)

  60. [...] Scobleizer has an article on the startup sound in Vista and how the user will not be able to turn it off.  Yes…it’ll be a mandatory sound that you have no control over.  I’m thinking someone, somewhere will hack this quickly and put out a patch.  It’s an interesting read, as the M$ team is really putting a lot into the opening sound to begin with. Posted by Chris Filed in Microsoft [...]

  61. Wow. I am completely flabbergasted at how disconnected Microsoft seems to be from what their users want and need in an operating system. This does not bode well for the rest of Vista.

    Please, please, please, please let me turn the sound off. I am a musician and often have huge speakers and amps hooked to my computer’s audio output. I do NOT want to hear the amazing Windows Vista Robert Fripp startup sound at that volume, and neither does my sleeping wife in the next room.

    For that matter, I think they need to spend some more time thinking about the branding. My XBox makes a noise when I turn it on, true. But I NEVER hear that noise because I restarted the XBox after a crash, or because it downloaded a weekly security update that required a reboot. In situations like that, the sound can easily become something users associate with annoyance, instability, and failure. If there’s any chance of Vista needing a reboot for security or stability reasons, they should reconsider.

    Also, want to give me a good experience? Let me control it. Let me have NO SOUND if I want, or let me put my favorite sound that means something to me there.

    People who use windows machines already spend way too much time feeling like they’re not in control. Don’t make it worse.

  62. Wow. I am completely flabbergasted at how disconnected Microsoft seems to be from what their users want and need in an operating system. This does not bode well for the rest of Vista.

    Please, please, please, please let me turn the sound off. I am a musician and often have huge speakers and amps hooked to my computer’s audio output. I do NOT want to hear the amazing Windows Vista Robert Fripp startup sound at that volume, and neither does my sleeping wife in the next room.

    For that matter, I think they need to spend some more time thinking about the branding. My XBox makes a noise when I turn it on, true. But I NEVER hear that noise because I restarted the XBox after a crash, or because it downloaded a weekly security update that required a reboot. In situations like that, the sound can easily become something users associate with annoyance, instability, and failure. If there’s any chance of Vista needing a reboot for security or stability reasons, they should reconsider.

    Also, want to give me a good experience? Let me control it. Let me have NO SOUND if I want, or let me put my favorite sound that means something to me there.

    People who use windows machines already spend way too much time feeling like they’re not in control. Don’t make it worse.

  63. Believe me. If I could turn off all bootup sounds, I would. You know that I actually leave my PSP in standby mode so I don’t have to listen to the bootup sound THAT much? (and mute it the rest of the time so there isn’t a bootup sound).

    Windows XP, it got old pretty fast. It’s neat when you first play with it but if you work with it and have to listen to it all day, every default sound gets shut down. Period. No ifs,ands,or buts about it. It’s like if someone took the opera Carmen and make it a boot-up sound. I love Carmen, but I’ll sooner tear out the speakers in my device before I listen to it over and over.

    If you default an annoyance, that’s the company’s perogative. But if you can’t turn it off, then it becomes a serious hinderance to first adopters, let alone those that actually want to use the products for any length of time.

    My two cents.

  64. Believe me. If I could turn off all bootup sounds, I would. You know that I actually leave my PSP in standby mode so I don’t have to listen to the bootup sound THAT much? (and mute it the rest of the time so there isn’t a bootup sound).

    Windows XP, it got old pretty fast. It’s neat when you first play with it but if you work with it and have to listen to it all day, every default sound gets shut down. Period. No ifs,ands,or buts about it. It’s like if someone took the opera Carmen and make it a boot-up sound. I love Carmen, but I’ll sooner tear out the speakers in my device before I listen to it over and over.

    If you default an annoyance, that’s the company’s perogative. But if you can’t turn it off, then it becomes a serious hinderance to first adopters, let alone those that actually want to use the products for any length of time.

    My two cents.

  65. Learnt more from pressy sources…

    Unf*****believeable…

    And then they wonder ‘why does everyone hate us’? They will have to cave…

    This sooooooooo reminds me of the X button in Pocket PC. 99.99999% of customers wanted X to be a real close-out X, but noooo Microsoft in their infernal supreme wisdom decided to “Smart Minimize” it…

    As if they NEED bad Vista press now…

  66. Learnt more from pressy sources…

    Unf*****believeable…

    And then they wonder ‘why does everyone hate us’? They will have to cave…

    This sooooooooo reminds me of the X button in Pocket PC. 99.99999% of customers wanted X to be a real close-out X, but noooo Microsoft in their infernal supreme wisdom decided to “Smart Minimize” it…

    As if they NEED bad Vista press now…

  67. [...] Apparently, there is some news going around that the startup sound for Windows Vista will NOT be customizable or be able to be shut off.  This really sucks. I absolutely detest the Windows XP startup sound and turning that off is usually one of the first things that I do when I’ve got a new machine.  The primary reason I hate the sound is that it’s too long, the sound plays for, what feels like, about 4 seconds.  If it were about .5 second to 1 second it wouldn’t be so bad. [...]

  68. Am I the only one that finds these comments hilarious?:

    “…that Windows Vista should provide a common, and BEAUTIFUL (caps mine) face to the world”

    “… a spiritual side to the branding experience..”

    “..turn on your machine, go eat some cereal while your machine is cold booting…” BWHAHHAHAHA! Well, at least they admit it takes a LOOOONG TIME for Windows to boot. I thought one of the goals of Vista was it was going to turn on as fast as your TV. I can’t eat a bowl of cereal waiting for my machine to turn on. But, I take more comfort day after day in my Mac decision. Hell, I barely have time to reach for my mouse after waking up my Mac from sleep mode.

    “Go go eat some cereal while your machine is cold booting”…. Priceless!!!! Simply priceless!!!

    I’m just wondering what major problem this “feature” solves. Was this really a huge support issue? Or is this another answer to a question no one is asking?

  69. Am I the only one that finds these comments hilarious?:

    “…that Windows Vista should provide a common, and BEAUTIFUL (caps mine) face to the world”

    “… a spiritual side to the branding experience..”

    “..turn on your machine, go eat some cereal while your machine is cold booting…” BWHAHHAHAHA! Well, at least they admit it takes a LOOOONG TIME for Windows to boot. I thought one of the goals of Vista was it was going to turn on as fast as your TV. I can’t eat a bowl of cereal waiting for my machine to turn on. But, I take more comfort day after day in my Mac decision. Hell, I barely have time to reach for my mouse after waking up my Mac from sleep mode.

    “Go go eat some cereal while your machine is cold booting”…. Priceless!!!! Simply priceless!!!

    I’m just wondering what major problem this “feature” solves. Was this really a huge support issue? Or is this another answer to a question no one is asking?

  70. LayZ: well, that “cold cereal” comment had a bit of context around it. Even if something takes 15 seconds (like it does on Maryam’s Mac) I start it up and go do something else, then come back.

  71. LayZ: well, that “cold cereal” comment had a bit of context around it. Even if something takes 15 seconds (like it does on Maryam’s Mac) I start it up and go do something else, then come back.

  72. Design Flaw as Brand Experience

    The first time I started our Xbox I couldn’t believe the incredibly noisy start-up sound that emanated from the TV speakers. Obviously, the design team never tried to catch a quick video game at 2 a.m., while everyone else is asleep. It’s designed to…

  73. “The current plan, he tells me, is that there will be a pre-wired sound that plays when the system is ready for you to logon.”

    … noboody mentioned it yet, but Ubuntu(Gnome) has this feature now. No drama, no flair, it’s just there.

  74. “The current plan, he tells me, is that there will be a pre-wired sound that plays when the system is ready for you to logon.”

    … noboody mentioned it yet, but Ubuntu(Gnome) has this feature now. No drama, no flair, it’s just there.

  75. Okay, this is like back in the 80′s when you had a VCR and didn’t know how to change the time or stop it from blinking… The simple solution: Duct Tape.

    Yes, the Xbox has a startup sound. Yes, the PS2 has a startup sound. Those are consoles and consumers expect shiny graphics and cool sounds. (and yes in recent times they have fulfilled some of the roles of a dedicated pc)

    But a PC is a multifaceted box that doesn’t always have the same role for each consumer. Just because I power it on at 7am doesn’t mean I am logging in for work, or 5pm I am getting ready to read my personal email. Each experience is different and all should be customizable.

    Yes it’s cool to see the microwave scroll “Enjoy your dinner”, but if this “sound” is put into production without an on/off button, then it will be hacked before Vista even hits the market. Branding? Does Micro$oft really need to plug in another feature to brand themselves? I know who they are. Since like 85′ duh.

  76. Okay, this is like back in the 80′s when you had a VCR and didn’t know how to change the time or stop it from blinking… The simple solution: Duct Tape.

    Yes, the Xbox has a startup sound. Yes, the PS2 has a startup sound. Those are consoles and consumers expect shiny graphics and cool sounds. (and yes in recent times they have fulfilled some of the roles of a dedicated pc)

    But a PC is a multifaceted box that doesn’t always have the same role for each consumer. Just because I power it on at 7am doesn’t mean I am logging in for work, or 5pm I am getting ready to read my personal email. Each experience is different and all should be customizable.

    Yes it’s cool to see the microwave scroll “Enjoy your dinner”, but if this “sound” is put into production without an on/off button, then it will be hacked before Vista even hits the market. Branding? Does Micro$oft really need to plug in another feature to brand themselves? I know who they are. Since like 85′ duh.

  77. If Fripp’s sound is good enough, people will leave their speakers on and MS can have their ‘branding thing’, too.
    Mr. Ball, if you are keen on the branding aspect, get the sound right, not trying to force a bad sound. Most people here are annoyed here because of the XP sound.

    Maybe the XP sound was not so bad. But people might associate it with the time when they had to restart after some stupid software got installed or mcafee updated itself or after the blue screen of death.
    Maybe its not just about the quality of the sound/music alone after all.

  78. If Fripp’s sound is good enough, people will leave their speakers on and MS can have their ‘branding thing’, too.
    Mr. Ball, if you are keen on the branding aspect, get the sound right, not trying to force a bad sound. Most people here are annoyed here because of the XP sound.

    Maybe the XP sound was not so bad. But people might associate it with the time when they had to restart after some stupid software got installed or mcafee updated itself or after the blue screen of death.
    Maybe its not just about the quality of the sound/music alone after all.

  79. I´m just thinking of our little boy, finally sleeping after hours (ok, minutes) of talking and doing nice to get it sleep. Now i turn on my vista machine and hear the startup sound hailing through the house. Waking up the kid again… just to make me not working with vista…
    well…

  80. I´m just thinking of our little boy, finally sleeping after hours (ok, minutes) of talking and doing nice to get it sleep. Now i turn on my vista machine and hear the startup sound hailing through the house. Waking up the kid again… just to make me not working with vista…
    well…

  81. First of all, most laptops don’t have a volume control that is disassociated from the OS volume control. My HP laptop has volume down, volume up, and mute; but they don’t work until the OS has loaded.

    It is IMPORTANT that you can shut off your sound even if you don’t have a way to do that on physical speakers. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use your computer in libraries, around people who are sleeping, etc., if you forget to bring earbuds to mask the sound.

    Also, if there is an unchangeable start up sound, it needs to be very short, like the mac ‘ding’ not some long protracted soudn like the current vista startup sound.

  82. First of all, most laptops don’t have a volume control that is disassociated from the OS volume control. My HP laptop has volume down, volume up, and mute; but they don’t work until the OS has loaded.

    It is IMPORTANT that you can shut off your sound even if you don’t have a way to do that on physical speakers. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use your computer in libraries, around people who are sleeping, etc., if you forget to bring earbuds to mask the sound.

    Also, if there is an unchangeable start up sound, it needs to be very short, like the mac ‘ding’ not some long protracted soudn like the current vista startup sound.

  83. btw, robert,

    I think you’re mistake to think this is just an issue for experienced users who want to have full control of their machines.

    Like me and many others here have pointed out there are real practical reasons for ordinary folk (as if experienced users aren’t ordinary or are by necessity out of touch with what it means to be ordinary). I hear less comments whining about wanting control, and more comments about sleeping babies and going to libraries.

    Turning off your speaker is not always an option. And you should not be in major trouble if you forget to bring earbuds for your laptop.

  84. btw, robert,

    I think you’re mistake to think this is just an issue for experienced users who want to have full control of their machines.

    Like me and many others here have pointed out there are real practical reasons for ordinary folk (as if experienced users aren’t ordinary or are by necessity out of touch with what it means to be ordinary). I hear less comments whining about wanting control, and more comments about sleeping babies and going to libraries.

    Turning off your speaker is not always an option. And you should not be in major trouble if you forget to bring earbuds for your laptop.

  85. I turned my cell phone’s start up sound off when I first got it, for some of the same reasons.

  86. I turned my cell phone’s start up sound off when I first got it, for some of the same reasons.

  87. Is there anyone left who still remembers the “Keep the user in control” mantra?

    And that Microsoft didn’t get where it stands through spiritual experiences and Audio Video Excellence teams?

    This doesn’t affect experienced users only. The biggest gripe of non-experienced users: This thing doesn’t do what I want it to do.

  88. Is there anyone left who still remembers the “Keep the user in control” mantra?

    And that Microsoft didn’t get where it stands through spiritual experiences and Audio Video Excellence teams?

    This doesn’t affect experienced users only. The biggest gripe of non-experienced users: This thing doesn’t do what I want it to do.

  89. The customer should have the choice, but I agree with the branding experience comment – companies do want control of their brand, and sounds a re a big part these days.

    Jon

  90. The customer should have the choice, but I agree with the branding experience comment – companies do want control of their brand, and sounds a re a big part these days.

    Jon

  91. [...] What the heck will the startup sound be for Windows Vista? Who the heck will win a VMA? What the heck is a GEOS? Why the heck wouldnt I want a flaming lawn-mower? What the heck, trio of homemakers outsmarted rocket scientists? What the heck, no DirectX10 for XBOX 360? What the heck, digital music sales wont ease the pain til 2010? What the heck, an OS built for speed to work on old hardware? [...]

  92. I’m glad to hear Microsoft is catching up to where Apple was in 1984 regarding startup sounds. Let me know when you get a separate folder for developer extensions.

    May I suggest, by the way, a FAST startup sound? There’s a reason Apple’s always done a quick cord and that’s it. Lets you know the computer’s starting and the speakers are working, but doesn’t linger on, cause too much disruption if you’re ono the phone, etc. And make sure it’s not TOO loud.

    (And by the way, I used to have to put my thumb over the speakers of my Duo – Powerbook Duo, not Core Duo – and discovered that muting an iBook shuts off the startup sound, too, which is handy for those library/late night/other quiet situations.)

  93. I’m glad to hear Microsoft is catching up to where Apple was in 1984 regarding startup sounds. Let me know when you get a separate folder for developer extensions.

    May I suggest, by the way, a FAST startup sound? There’s a reason Apple’s always done a quick cord and that’s it. Lets you know the computer’s starting and the speakers are working, but doesn’t linger on, cause too much disruption if you’re ono the phone, etc. And make sure it’s not TOO loud.

    (And by the way, I used to have to put my thumb over the speakers of my Duo – Powerbook Duo, not Core Duo – and discovered that muting an iBook shuts off the startup sound, too, which is handy for those library/late night/other quiet situations.)

  94. This is a horrible decision!

    Anyone who doesn’t customize it will get the ‘branded’ sound, and anyone who wants to customize it should bloody well be able to.

    And what about the vendors who want to give their own sound?

    This is the sort of thing that makes people hate Microsoft – them telling you what you can and can’t do. Another reason for people to like Linux, yay.

  95. This is a horrible decision!

    Anyone who doesn’t customize it will get the ‘branded’ sound, and anyone who wants to customize it should bloody well be able to.

    And what about the vendors who want to give their own sound?

    This is the sort of thing that makes people hate Microsoft – them telling you what you can and can’t do. Another reason for people to like Linux, yay.

  96. Larry,

    FM radio station relay sound not to headphone – but to air !! This is the reason to use automation – playing sounds/effects from PC !

  97. Larry,

    FM radio station relay sound not to headphone – but to air !! This is the reason to use automation – playing sounds/effects from PC !

  98. Ok, why isn’t anyone looking at this comment:

    “2. Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.”

    After how many YEARS, the volume control is such an unmanageable mess, that MSFT has to have a calibration sound at startup? My car steo has had the ability to limit volume at startup for years. Vista has been in development for years, how hard could it possibly be to fix system volume? Really, this should not be something a user has to interact with – a choice between volume control on the computer, or through manual controls on your speakers, but that’s it.

  99. Ok, why isn’t anyone looking at this comment:

    “2. Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.”

    After how many YEARS, the volume control is such an unmanageable mess, that MSFT has to have a calibration sound at startup? My car steo has had the ability to limit volume at startup for years. Vista has been in development for years, how hard could it possibly be to fix system volume? Really, this should not be something a user has to interact with – a choice between volume control on the computer, or through manual controls on your speakers, but that’s it.

  100. you know, only Microsoft would decide that it’s better to force the startup sound and spend money on making it perfect for everyone, (an impossible task by definition), as opposed to, oh, i don’t no, making the volume control SIMPLE AND EASY TO USE.

    Dear god…dude, don’t ever bitch aboout Apple and Mac Users being a cult. If this goober really believes that people use the *startup sound* to “… help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.” Dude, it’s a VOLUME CONTROL, not a disk partition tool. Some friggin’ perspective?

    The whole hallucintation this describes: ” A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    First of all, you’re STILL WAITING, there’s just an audible notificiation of it. Here’s an idea..perhaps, and I know i’m being silly here, but maybe, JUST MAYBE the friggin’ LOGIN SCREEN is a way to tell you that the machine is ready for you to, oh, i don’t know, LOG IN???

    Microsoft needs to stop hiring hippies for PMs. If that sound really is unavoidable, Capt. Kumbaya just delayed the enterprise adoption by however long the update that fixes that stupid, brain-dead idiocy takes to be released. Morons.

  101. you know, only Microsoft would decide that it’s better to force the startup sound and spend money on making it perfect for everyone, (an impossible task by definition), as opposed to, oh, i don’t no, making the volume control SIMPLE AND EASY TO USE.

    Dear god…dude, don’t ever bitch aboout Apple and Mac Users being a cult. If this goober really believes that people use the *startup sound* to “… help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.” Dude, it’s a VOLUME CONTROL, not a disk partition tool. Some friggin’ perspective?

    The whole hallucintation this describes: ” A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    First of all, you’re STILL WAITING, there’s just an audible notificiation of it. Here’s an idea..perhaps, and I know i’m being silly here, but maybe, JUST MAYBE the friggin’ LOGIN SCREEN is a way to tell you that the machine is ready for you to, oh, i don’t know, LOG IN???

    Microsoft needs to stop hiring hippies for PMs. If that sound really is unavoidable, Capt. Kumbaya just delayed the enterprise adoption by however long the update that fixes that stupid, brain-dead idiocy takes to be released. Morons.

  102. For God’s sake, let us modify the start up sound.

    Each person is different and only the hard core amongst us will bother changing it. But it IS just a component and it SHOULD be modifiable.

    Don’t screw up on something so simple Microsoft!

    Hell, I didn’t even realize this was an issue…

  103. For God’s sake, let us modify the start up sound.

    Each person is different and only the hard core amongst us will bother changing it. But it IS just a component and it SHOULD be modifiable.

    Don’t screw up on something so simple Microsoft!

    Hell, I didn’t even realize this was an issue…

  104. I’ve been in this discussion from the beginning. And that perspective lets me see the end.

    Microsoft will not remove this sound. Period.

    But it’s not just them. This is marketing!

    Remember when a couple of cable stations put their logos on screen permanently? Now they all do it.

    So pretty soon, *every* device capable of producing a sound will play the trademarked sound of it’s manufacturer when first turned on.

    1. When you turn on your car radio you will have to listen to the “Toyota Sound.”

    2. When you turn on your TV you will have to listen to the “RCA Sound.”

    3. When you pick up your phone you will have to listen to the “AT&T Sound.” (No more dial tone.)

    4. And every “blank” audio CD you buy will have a pre-recorded track at the beginning with the “Memorex Sound.”

    5. Every electronic device bought from Wal*Mart will play the “Wal*Mart Sound,” followed by the manufacturer’s sound.

    6. Soon even power tools will play the “Black and Decker” sound before they begin to work.

    So people save your breath for Congress and the FTC. It does no good complaining to marketing!

    (If Hitler were alive today, he’d be loving this technology.)

  105. I’ve been in this discussion from the beginning. And that perspective lets me see the end.

    Microsoft will not remove this sound. Period.

    But it’s not just them. This is marketing!

    Remember when a couple of cable stations put their logos on screen permanently? Now they all do it.

    So pretty soon, *every* device capable of producing a sound will play the trademarked sound of it’s manufacturer when first turned on.

    1. When you turn on your car radio you will have to listen to the “Toyota Sound.”

    2. When you turn on your TV you will have to listen to the “RCA Sound.”

    3. When you pick up your phone you will have to listen to the “AT&T Sound.” (No more dial tone.)

    4. And every “blank” audio CD you buy will have a pre-recorded track at the beginning with the “Memorex Sound.”

    5. Every electronic device bought from Wal*Mart will play the “Wal*Mart Sound,” followed by the manufacturer’s sound.

    6. Soon even power tools will play the “Black and Decker” sound before they begin to work.

    So people save your breath for Congress and the FTC. It does no good complaining to marketing!

    (If Hitler were alive today, he’d be loving this technology.)

  106. “You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    Pleasssse…

    My six year old imac is up and running, ready to work before I can get out of my chair, I’ll eat my cerial whenever I feel like it, not when a PC tells me to go waste some time.

    And yes, I can start up without any sound or with the sound at any level I like. My advice: buy any old used Apple computer you can get your hands on as long as it’s USB equipped and load OSX. Why do you think 6 year old Apples still sell for 500 bucks and people send 6 year old PCs to the dump? It’s because Apples are the far better machine.

  107. “You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    Pleasssse…

    My six year old imac is up and running, ready to work before I can get out of my chair, I’ll eat my cerial whenever I feel like it, not when a PC tells me to go waste some time.

    And yes, I can start up without any sound or with the sound at any level I like. My advice: buy any old used Apple computer you can get your hands on as long as it’s USB equipped and load OSX. Why do you think 6 year old Apples still sell for 500 bucks and people send 6 year old PCs to the dump? It’s because Apples are the far better machine.

  108. >This isn’t an “evil” feature like SmartTags that demands an instant pull-out, but it isn’t nice not to listen to your most influential and experienced users either.

    I assume you’re talking about underlined advertising link “SmartTags”, not the conventient little icons in MS Office that pop up when you paste in content, right?

    This is the only other reference to SmartTags on your blog:
    http://scobleizer.wordpress.com/2006/05/20/smarttags-make-return-on-blogs/

  109. >This isn’t an “evil” feature like SmartTags that demands an instant pull-out, but it isn’t nice not to listen to your most influential and experienced users either.

    I assume you’re talking about underlined advertising link “SmartTags”, not the conventient little icons in MS Office that pop up when you paste in content, right?

    This is the only other reference to SmartTags on your blog:
    http://scobleizer.wordpress.com/2006/05/20/smarttags-make-return-on-blogs/

  110. The first thing I did on my Sony Vaio and my Powerbook was turn off the startup sound because both of those companies appear to have more sense than Microsoft in realizing that the user controls the machine – not the other way around.

  111. The first thing I did on my Sony Vaio and my Powerbook was turn off the startup sound because both of those companies appear to have more sense than Microsoft in realizing that the user controls the machine – not the other way around.

  112. A promise to Mr. Ball or In case somebody is for a forced startup sound on vista …

    you should go and read the comments on Scoble of Steve Ball about the coming forced vista startup sound. Go read the comments and if you are in favour for any of the features describe there, you should voice your opinion now. So far it looks hands down…

  113. Brad: right, those are the SmartTags I was talking about (the Internet ones). Unfortunately much of my writing about SmartTags was erased from the Internet when UserLand unplugged its Manila Sites server. Sigh.

  114. Brad: right, those are the SmartTags I was talking about (the Internet ones). Unfortunately much of my writing about SmartTags was erased from the Internet when UserLand unplugged its Manila Sites server. Sigh.

  115. (If Hitler were alive today, he’d be loving this technology.)

    Goodwin after only 64 comments! lol I love the internet.

    Seriosuly though – I think the startup sound is a great branding idea. BUT I’m pretty sure anyone who is sufficiently advanced enough to find the place in the control panel to turn off the sound is pretty darn sure what OS they are using and isn’t likely to forget it anytime soon.

  116. (If Hitler were alive today, he’d be loving this technology.)

    Goodwin after only 64 comments! lol I love the internet.

    Seriosuly though – I think the startup sound is a great branding idea. BUT I’m pretty sure anyone who is sufficiently advanced enough to find the place in the control panel to turn off the sound is pretty darn sure what OS they are using and isn’t likely to forget it anytime soon.

  117. Wow, some great comments here. As expected, some are extremely negative, some balanced, some scathing, and some surprising.

    Never a dull moment in the Scoble mosh-pit.

    To recap, here are three important facts:

    1. What you are experiencing in Beta and CTP builds is not the final design.

    2. A decision about adding a reg key to disable this sound is not final.

    3. We are listening.

    In addition:

    - We have studied and understand the scenarios, including all of those I have seen and read here and in the beta newsgroups.

    - Users do have the ability to mute and/or set the level of every sound that comes out of their PCs. There are multiple ways to do this.

    - This sound also has (at least) two simple functional values:

    1. when you boot your Windows Vista machine, you can use your eyes and attention for other things until the logon screen is ready. This (gentle, short) sound will tell you when the logon screen is ready — you don’t have wait and watch the animated status bar.

    2. this sound will also gently tell you if your system (or device or receiver) setting is too loud, too quiet, or muted. If this sound plays at a comfortable level, you won’t have to later muck with a volume control when you actually would rather watch TV, listen to music, play a DVD or listen to a voicemail. Use this sound as a reference, and set your volume once to ‘comfortable’ (after cold-boot) and forget it. Done.

    The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.

    If the sound (or any sound generated from your PC) blasts you out of your chair, you can do something about it: turn down or mute your device volume control and/or speakers!

    You can also easily sleep or hibernate your Windows Vista machines. Yes, this has sucked in the past – it is and will be much better in Windows Vista machines.

    Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue. And we plans to continue to clean up this mess over the next few years in subsequent releases.

    However, in the grand scheme of what we’re working to deliver in Windows Vista, this is hardly the most critical issue in getting to RTM.

    But we also realize it is *very* important to some users.

    Finally, please remember that this conversation was paraphrased from a 20 minute phone call. For example, here is a clarification regarding the odd phrase: “A spiritual side of the branding experience.”

    My actual answer to this question ““Why does anyone really need this sound in the first place?” was much longer, and more like this:

    “Well, you can look at this question from a number of different views: there is a spiritual point of view, a branding point of view, and a purely practical point of view.”

    I’ll address each of these over in the beta news groups for those who wish to go deeper.

    Obviously, many have a deep passion about this issue, and we’re continuing to listen to your feedback and comments.

    Thanks again (everyone) for taking time to weigh-in on this.

    -Steve

  118. Wow, some great comments here. As expected, some are extremely negative, some balanced, some scathing, and some surprising.

    Never a dull moment in the Scoble mosh-pit.

    To recap, here are three important facts:

    1. What you are experiencing in Beta and CTP builds is not the final design.

    2. A decision about adding a reg key to disable this sound is not final.

    3. We are listening.

    In addition:

    - We have studied and understand the scenarios, including all of those I have seen and read here and in the beta newsgroups.

    - Users do have the ability to mute and/or set the level of every sound that comes out of their PCs. There are multiple ways to do this.

    - This sound also has (at least) two simple functional values:

    1. when you boot your Windows Vista machine, you can use your eyes and attention for other things until the logon screen is ready. This (gentle, short) sound will tell you when the logon screen is ready — you don’t have wait and watch the animated status bar.

    2. this sound will also gently tell you if your system (or device or receiver) setting is too loud, too quiet, or muted. If this sound plays at a comfortable level, you won’t have to later muck with a volume control when you actually would rather watch TV, listen to music, play a DVD or listen to a voicemail. Use this sound as a reference, and set your volume once to ‘comfortable’ (after cold-boot) and forget it. Done.

    The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.

    If the sound (or any sound generated from your PC) blasts you out of your chair, you can do something about it: turn down or mute your device volume control and/or speakers!

    You can also easily sleep or hibernate your Windows Vista machines. Yes, this has sucked in the past – it is and will be much better in Windows Vista machines.

    Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue. And we plans to continue to clean up this mess over the next few years in subsequent releases.

    However, in the grand scheme of what we’re working to deliver in Windows Vista, this is hardly the most critical issue in getting to RTM.

    But we also realize it is *very* important to some users.

    Finally, please remember that this conversation was paraphrased from a 20 minute phone call. For example, here is a clarification regarding the odd phrase: “A spiritual side of the branding experience.”

    My actual answer to this question ““Why does anyone really need this sound in the first place?” was much longer, and more like this:

    “Well, you can look at this question from a number of different views: there is a spiritual point of view, a branding point of view, and a purely practical point of view.”

    I’ll address each of these over in the beta news groups for those who wish to go deeper.

    Obviously, many have a deep passion about this issue, and we’re continuing to listen to your feedback and comments.

    Thanks again (everyone) for taking time to weigh-in on this.

    -Steve

  119. [...] However, under Windows Vista, the thinking seems to be that we’ll have to live with this annoying jungle at startup (short of hacking the file).  So why does Microsoft think that we need this jingle at start up?  Well, Robert Scoble discovered something interesting the other day when he talked to Steve Ball, Group Program Manager for the Windows Audio Video Excellence team: “Why the hell would you want to do this in the first place?” he told me is a common question. It boils down to two sides of the coin. [...]

  120. Steve Ball wrote:
    >Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue.

    You criticize machines because they do not have HW to shut off sound. Yet you do the exact same error in SW. How ironic…

    Microsoft is every day more Orwellian. Next thing will be forcing a wallpaper with a smiling photo of Bill Gates watching you.

  121. Steve Ball wrote:
    >Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue.

    You criticize machines because they do not have HW to shut off sound. Yet you do the exact same error in SW. How ironic…

    Microsoft is every day more Orwellian. Next thing will be forcing a wallpaper with a smiling photo of Bill Gates watching you.

  122. I have to say that this is a dumb decision and smacks or over analysis and design by committee.

    1. Sounds most be able to be turned completely off in system to suite a silent startup environment, classroom, bedroom etc.

    2. Branding? Fuck that, it’s MY computer,a nd should be able to make it play any dam noise I want at whatever point it’s firing. Who the fuck is MS to tell me what sound my computer needs to be making, it’s none of their dam business past providing a default. Because other companies don’t respect their uses control it’s ok for MS to do it too?

    3. Please.Not broken DON’T fix it.

  123. I have to say that this is a dumb decision and smacks or over analysis and design by committee.

    1. Sounds most be able to be turned completely off in system to suite a silent startup environment, classroom, bedroom etc.

    2. Branding? Fuck that, it’s MY computer,a nd should be able to make it play any dam noise I want at whatever point it’s firing. Who the fuck is MS to tell me what sound my computer needs to be making, it’s none of their dam business past providing a default. Because other companies don’t respect their uses control it’s ok for MS to do it too?

    3. Please.Not broken DON’T fix it.

  124. FYI, some useful comments from Joe Wilcox:

    http://www.microsoftmonitor.com/archives/016933.html

    “Assuming Microsoft execs are thinking like marketers, the startup sound should be more than just part of the operating system. It should be part of the marketing of the operating system. If Microsoft takes that approach, I would recommend keeping the sound permanently turned on and unchangeable without customization, at least in the early days.”

    This is exactly the thinking behind this decision from the Marketing team. Thanks for good observations, Joe.

    * * *

  125. FYI, some useful comments from Joe Wilcox:

    http://www.microsoftmonitor.com/archives/016933.html

    “Assuming Microsoft execs are thinking like marketers, the startup sound should be more than just part of the operating system. It should be part of the marketing of the operating system. If Microsoft takes that approach, I would recommend keeping the sound permanently turned on and unchangeable without customization, at least in the early days.”

    This is exactly the thinking behind this decision from the Marketing team. Thanks for good observations, Joe.

    * * *

  126. We definitely need a way for the volume control and or turning it off. What if my wife is sleeping when i turn on my laptop and i just want to silently bootup..PLEASE provide a means to turn it off…i don’t care if it can be customized or not..

  127. We definitely need a way for the volume control and or turning it off. What if my wife is sleeping when i turn on my laptop and i just want to silently bootup..PLEASE provide a means to turn it off…i don’t care if it can be customized or not..

  128. Steve, Joe also says:

    “While some people may gripe the sound cannot be turned off, I should point out that Mac owners have listened to a distinctive startup sound for years.”

    Apple has almost no market share on the Corporate Desktop. I wonder if there is a connection…

    Microsoft used to offer three types of operating systems marketed and developed by separate groups: (1) Servers for the enterprise backroom, (2) Business Desktops Like Windows NT and Windows 2000 for serious users, and (3) Toys like Windows 9x for home users.

    Beginning with Windows XP, the code base for the existing Toys was retired and merged with the Business Desktop code base. Windows XP Professional is not really a Toy as its developers allowed the users and their IT departments the ability to customize it for their needs. Windows XP Home was better than 9x but I still classify it as a Toy OS.

    When Vista is released, Microsoft will offer two types of operating systems: servers and Toys. Vista was designed from the ground-up to appeal to home users, gamers, and multimedia enthuiasts. Business and other serious users were an afterthought.

    It’s not just this startup sound. It’s the whole User Experience Bullshit. Form over function was never the Windows way until now.

    Steve, how many members of your team have spent time working in a corporate IT department?

  129. Steve, Joe also says:

    “While some people may gripe the sound cannot be turned off, I should point out that Mac owners have listened to a distinctive startup sound for years.”

    Apple has almost no market share on the Corporate Desktop. I wonder if there is a connection…

    Microsoft used to offer three types of operating systems marketed and developed by separate groups: (1) Servers for the enterprise backroom, (2) Business Desktops Like Windows NT and Windows 2000 for serious users, and (3) Toys like Windows 9x for home users.

    Beginning with Windows XP, the code base for the existing Toys was retired and merged with the Business Desktop code base. Windows XP Professional is not really a Toy as its developers allowed the users and their IT departments the ability to customize it for their needs. Windows XP Home was better than 9x but I still classify it as a Toy OS.

    When Vista is released, Microsoft will offer two types of operating systems: servers and Toys. Vista was designed from the ground-up to appeal to home users, gamers, and multimedia enthuiasts. Business and other serious users were an afterthought.

    It’s not just this startup sound. It’s the whole User Experience Bullshit. Form over function was never the Windows way until now.

    Steve, how many members of your team have spent time working in a corporate IT department?

  130. Microsoft Rant of the Day….

    While putting in a dozen miles on the stationary bike, I was reading my blogs on my LG CU500, and found Robert Scoble’s post on the startup sound in Microsoft Vista. Apparently the plan for Vista is to have a mandatory, unchanging startup sound …

  131. Never tell your customers that they are being ‘used’ (or marketed to). I will know if they teach this in marketing school if I do an MBA one day :)

  132. Never tell your customers that they are being ‘used’ (or marketed to). I will know if they teach this in marketing school if I do an MBA one day :)

  133. The comments referring to switching notebooks on in conference rooms, libraries etc. wins it for me.

    Thanks to my aprpeciation for 70s cartoon character “Hong Kong Phooey” (PS. No.1 super guy) I have had the pleasure of annoying a deathly quiet office of Financial IT guys mid-morning by firing up the laptop and forgetting I’ve got a startup sound in homage to Phooey’s powers of Kung-Fu on a particular profile.

    I think it’s best we’re able to disable these sounds for those of us that still use windows in a business environment.

  134. The comments referring to switching notebooks on in conference rooms, libraries etc. wins it for me.

    Thanks to my aprpeciation for 70s cartoon character “Hong Kong Phooey” (PS. No.1 super guy) I have had the pleasure of annoying a deathly quiet office of Financial IT guys mid-morning by firing up the laptop and forgetting I’ve got a startup sound in homage to Phooey’s powers of Kung-Fu on a particular profile.

    I think it’s best we’re able to disable these sounds for those of us that still use windows in a business environment.

  135. Oh now I get it. They want everyone to buy the more expensive version. As it “pay more and you might be able to have a patched version without sound”.

    Steve thanks for the though of me needing a signal when my computer is ready to finally do what I want. If you put down your ideas down for a second – could you please come and take a look at how normal people work?

    They turn on the PC and go do something else because it takes AGES to load it. Even Coming out of hybernation is endless. I don’t need that 15 sec is over sound, because I will give my computer the longer time to boot up and do something productive in the meantime like fetching coffee. And no start up sound will change that.

    Adjusting the speakers? Hello? How dumb am I suppose to be?

    People put glue on the caps lock key to finally turn it off. I had a patch for NT which would just kill the key, make it do nothing. It was on the systemlevel. It is one of the most annoying things on any keyboard I encounter.

    [If anyone has a reg patch working for an IBM tablet PLEASE tell me about it, and if you would have one which also makes the function key a working windows key instead of it just leaving it out I might consider loving you. Well, Marcipan perhaps].

    Is it branding? Of course it is! Is it working? Of course it is! It will show you at once the one person in the room who is not in charge of their computer. It says a lot about the skills of a person if they have a laptop and still have it on.

    Will it be working and recognizeable? Of course it will be. But tell me: Why are you so desperate to make it unchangeable instead of making it so compelling that everybody will tell people like me “don’t you dare touch that, I love that!”.

    Well, I guess you have to stick with ‘don’t let them touch it’ …
    Nicole

  136. Oh now I get it. They want everyone to buy the more expensive version. As it “pay more and you might be able to have a patched version without sound”.

    Steve thanks for the though of me needing a signal when my computer is ready to finally do what I want. If you put down your ideas down for a second – could you please come and take a look at how normal people work?

    They turn on the PC and go do something else because it takes AGES to load it. Even Coming out of hybernation is endless. I don’t need that 15 sec is over sound, because I will give my computer the longer time to boot up and do something productive in the meantime like fetching coffee. And no start up sound will change that.

    Adjusting the speakers? Hello? How dumb am I suppose to be?

    People put glue on the caps lock key to finally turn it off. I had a patch for NT which would just kill the key, make it do nothing. It was on the systemlevel. It is one of the most annoying things on any keyboard I encounter.

    [If anyone has a reg patch working for an IBM tablet PLEASE tell me about it, and if you would have one which also makes the function key a working windows key instead of it just leaving it out I might consider loving you. Well, Marcipan perhaps].

    Is it branding? Of course it is! Is it working? Of course it is! It will show you at once the one person in the room who is not in charge of their computer. It says a lot about the skills of a person if they have a laptop and still have it on.

    Will it be working and recognizeable? Of course it will be. But tell me: Why are you so desperate to make it unchangeable instead of making it so compelling that everybody will tell people like me “don’t you dare touch that, I love that!”.

    Well, I guess you have to stick with ‘don’t let them touch it’ …
    Nicole

  137. “The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.”

    I might be wrong, but I’m guessing the xbox team didn’t design the xbox to be used in libraries, or university lecture theatres populated by crotchety professors (bing! bing! BING! bing! bing! “Laptops are now banned from all of my lectures!”), and so on.

    Criminy. It’s a no brainer. Let people turn the sound off. With UI. Don’t force people to use regedit again, for God’s sake. Do people at MS think that users love the regedit UI or something? Let me make this clear: if you make something only available via a registry key, then *most* users will *never* be able to use it. If the Vista guys haven’t figured this out yet then…oh dear.

    I get fed up of not having simple controls for stuff like this. One of my wishes for laptops/pdas is the following: two small slide switches (i.e. physical switches) on the side – one controls RF emissions, the other controls the speakers. If I slide them both to off, then my device broadcasts *NO* sound or RF. Ever. I don’t care if you think I’ll want to hear the alarm sounds for an appointment. I’ve turned it off. I’m the user. I’m in charge.

    But if manufacturers use a similar brain-dead and downright annoying attitude that MS are showing here, I don’t think I’ll ever see such a device.

  138. “The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.”

    I might be wrong, but I’m guessing the xbox team didn’t design the xbox to be used in libraries, or university lecture theatres populated by crotchety professors (bing! bing! BING! bing! bing! “Laptops are now banned from all of my lectures!”), and so on.

    Criminy. It’s a no brainer. Let people turn the sound off. With UI. Don’t force people to use regedit again, for God’s sake. Do people at MS think that users love the regedit UI or something? Let me make this clear: if you make something only available via a registry key, then *most* users will *never* be able to use it. If the Vista guys haven’t figured this out yet then…oh dear.

    I get fed up of not having simple controls for stuff like this. One of my wishes for laptops/pdas is the following: two small slide switches (i.e. physical switches) on the side – one controls RF emissions, the other controls the speakers. If I slide them both to off, then my device broadcasts *NO* sound or RF. Ever. I don’t care if you think I’ll want to hear the alarm sounds for an appointment. I’ve turned it off. I’m the user. I’m in charge.

    But if manufacturers use a similar brain-dead and downright annoying attitude that MS are showing here, I don’t think I’ll ever see such a device.

  139. Hei Blake, a Spaces blog with content, cool ;)

    I forgot in both my article and my posts here: I would be just a little bis less annoyed by it if it would be piano. I would probably still be sick of it after awhile – even with the piano.

    There are so many posible ways to make this a cool and good experience – hell you have to update the pcs anyhow in regular times (or does anyone REALLY really believe we will not have updates anymore) and make it fun. Interesting. For everyone. Compelling you see?

    This is like forcing somebody to feel like a child again (and boy do we all love this). *sigh*

  140. Hei Blake, a Spaces blog with content, cool ;)

    I forgot in both my article and my posts here: I would be just a little bis less annoyed by it if it would be piano. I would probably still be sick of it after awhile – even with the piano.

    There are so many posible ways to make this a cool and good experience – hell you have to update the pcs anyhow in regular times (or does anyone REALLY really believe we will not have updates anymore) and make it fun. Interesting. For everyone. Compelling you see?

    This is like forcing somebody to feel like a child again (and boy do we all love this). *sigh*

  141. hadi up at comment #28 mentioned: “a visual alert in your taskbar telling you that your sound blaster is at full volume (ie. make the sound icon get “redder” as the volume is increased).” This is a good idea, perhaps as a graphic or control that displays on the startup screens and remains until dismissed by logging in. As many other posters have pointed out, having a silent indicator of sound levels is important.

    Other thoughts:
    If I wanted a level calibration sound for my computer in a professional audio/home theater environment, I would want to customize it. A pure tone of A440 at a certain volume at startup would be pretty handy – in certain circumstances.

    Other users have pointed out a vast number of scenarios where inattentiveness on the part of the user before shutting off the computer leads to being punished by the startup sound. Why would you want to punish your users for a trivial error? Particularly when it isn’t an _error_.

    If I want a calibration tone before starting a music-producing application, give me an option for that in the UI. Perhaps each time Media Player starts, in the center of the blank viewing area, you could place a button that says “Play sound test?” This would be helpful, and would require no further user intervention if they wanted to ignore it. Or perhaps a control panel setting that lets you choose what sound level to automatically return your computer to at startup.

    I am not convinced that an OS should be a music producing application, but some people do require or enjoy audio feedback.

    Mr. Ball, I do not understand why your preferences are more important than mine in this matter.

    Good day to you sir.
    -r.

  142. hadi up at comment #28 mentioned: “a visual alert in your taskbar telling you that your sound blaster is at full volume (ie. make the sound icon get “redder” as the volume is increased).” This is a good idea, perhaps as a graphic or control that displays on the startup screens and remains until dismissed by logging in. As many other posters have pointed out, having a silent indicator of sound levels is important.

    Other thoughts:
    If I wanted a level calibration sound for my computer in a professional audio/home theater environment, I would want to customize it. A pure tone of A440 at a certain volume at startup would be pretty handy – in certain circumstances.

    Other users have pointed out a vast number of scenarios where inattentiveness on the part of the user before shutting off the computer leads to being punished by the startup sound. Why would you want to punish your users for a trivial error? Particularly when it isn’t an _error_.

    If I want a calibration tone before starting a music-producing application, give me an option for that in the UI. Perhaps each time Media Player starts, in the center of the blank viewing area, you could place a button that says “Play sound test?” This would be helpful, and would require no further user intervention if they wanted to ignore it. Or perhaps a control panel setting that lets you choose what sound level to automatically return your computer to at startup.

    I am not convinced that an OS should be a music producing application, but some people do require or enjoy audio feedback.

    Mr. Ball, I do not understand why your preferences are more important than mine in this matter.

    Good day to you sir.
    -r.

  143. only advanced users or people that need silence for any number of reasons are going to out of their way to turn it off, Steve. Why not give them that option? They’re going to be using vista no matter what. Why flagrantly disregard what they want? It’s just silly to say “we don’t care what you want, we’re going to do it like we think you should have it.”

  144. only advanced users or people that need silence for any number of reasons are going to out of their way to turn it off, Steve. Why not give them that option? They’re going to be using vista no matter what. Why flagrantly disregard what they want? It’s just silly to say “we don’t care what you want, we’re going to do it like we think you should have it.”

  145. They are not saying that. They are saying “but it is such a good idea to make a unique branding for MS!”

    And hey, if the sound really cannot be turned off without screwing up the system I amsure there is no problem in programming something which will hook in for shutdown and turn off the speakers by default.

    But as said before: Instead of making something compelling and remarkeable which nobody *wants* to turn off they are setting the mark at “you cannot do it”.

    And those xbox comparisons are stupid because we don’t run around in daily life with them. Oh and I am sure there will be a version available for companies with this stuff turned off … Anyone taking a bet for that?

    So while there is praise from the marketing side about this clever move guess why they have the word ‘marketing’ in their name. They are not the ones using it afterwards …

  146. They are not saying that. They are saying “but it is such a good idea to make a unique branding for MS!”

    And hey, if the sound really cannot be turned off without screwing up the system I amsure there is no problem in programming something which will hook in for shutdown and turn off the speakers by default.

    But as said before: Instead of making something compelling and remarkeable which nobody *wants* to turn off they are setting the mark at “you cannot do it”.

    And those xbox comparisons are stupid because we don’t run around in daily life with them. Oh and I am sure there will be a version available for companies with this stuff turned off … Anyone taking a bet for that?

    So while there is praise from the marketing side about this clever move guess why they have the word ‘marketing’ in their name. They are not the ones using it afterwards …

  147. If I can’t silence Vista, I won’t buy any machine that has it. I use my computers in hotel rooms, four feet away from a sleeping woman, four hours before she’s ready to wake. Dumb idea. End of discussion.

  148. If I can’t silence Vista, I won’t buy any machine that has it. I use my computers in hotel rooms, four feet away from a sleeping woman, four hours before she’s ready to wake. Dumb idea. End of discussion.

  149. Never a dull moment in the Scoble mosh-pit.

    Funny how it’s called that when a stupid idea gets bitch-slapped.

    - Users do have the ability to mute and/or set the level of every sound that comes out of their PCs. There are multiple ways to do this.

    Then explain this comment: “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.” That’s either right or not, and since it’s your quote… Note that having to use external speakers, or cut off headphone jacks is not being able to mute it. Especially on a laptop, where neither of those options are anything but teh suck.

    1. when you boot your Windows Vista machine, you can use your eyes and attention for other things until the logon screen is ready. This (gentle, short) sound will tell you when the logon screen is ready — you don’t have wait and watch the animated status bar.

    You keep saying “gentle” but I don’t think it ends up being that when it’s multiplied by 300 in a cube farm. Then it’s maddening. As well, guess what? Many of us don’t sit there slack jawed staring at XP’s progress bar. We do other things, and we’re able to, without Microsoft telling us, remember to check to see if the computer’s at the login prompt or not. Wow. People actually doing stuff without the official Microsoft sound or some damned wizard. ASTOUNDING WATSON!

    2. this sound will also gently tell you if your system (or device or receiver) setting is too loud, too quiet, or muted. If this sound plays at a comfortable level, you won’t have to later muck with a volume control when you actually would rather watch TV, listen to music, play a DVD or listen to a voicemail. Use this sound as a reference, and set your volume once to ‘comfortable’ (after cold-boot) and forget it. Done.

    Oh please. Because mucking with a volume control is just too hard for normal people? Dude, if Microsoft can’t design a damned volume control, why the HELL should I believe they can do an OS worth a crap? Here’s one…people don’t listen to everything at the same volume. DVDs have different sound levels, so does music. TV can change from show to show. In an office, you want the sound OFF unless you specifically turn it on.

    Does it ever occur to Microsoft to laugh test this kind of stupidity? Because I don’t think it does. You’d have to be completely dim or detached from reality, or think that user focus groups are the end all and be all of everything.

    The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.

    Remove that total BS first reason, and you have all the reason you need…Branding. There’s no practical justification alive that a freshman in college couldn’t shoot holes through. Level adjustment? Really? Does the Xbox 360 provide all the EQ information and the sound specs on that sound? What’s the level on it. Is that displayed on screen? Are you able to loop it continuously until you have your levels set, then continue on?

    Somehow, I think the answer here is “no” which makes the level thing total crapola.

    If the sound (or any sound generated from your PC) blasts you out of your chair, you can do something about it: turn down or mute your device volume control and/or speakers!

    And if you have a laptop with no external speakers, there’s no point. Vista just overrides your settings. Yay! Thank you Unca SteveB, you sure as hell knew I wanted to wake up everyone on the damned plane. Thank god for your bald sweaty wisdom, shining like a humid, stinky light upon our ignorant silence.

    Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue. And we plans to continue to clean up this mess over the next few years in subsequent releases

    YEARS? Laptop users have to put up with this ignorance for YEARS? ARE YOU LUCID? May you be banished to a cube farm and have to listen to this “gentle sound” ten times a day for the rest of your life.

    However, in the grand scheme of what we’re working to deliver in Windows Vista, this is hardly the most critical issue in getting to RTM.

    Translation: Sucks to be you, you stupid portable users. Again, if you can’t even get a startup sound to not suck, why should I believe you can carry through on the HARD stuff?

    But we also realize it is *very* important to some users.

    Like most of the corporate ones. I guess corporate doesn’t count in the blessed halls of the startup sound team.

    Obviously, many have a deep passion about this issue, and we’re continuing to listen to your feedback and comments.

    “We’re studiously roundfiling all of them, because if you think you’re going to make us limit our branding, you’re smoking dope. We’re the Microsoft WIndows team, what, you think your concerns matter to us? We have a stock price to pump up!”

    If this is what Microsoft calls attention to detail and listening to customers, Vista is going to so TOTALLY suck.

  150. Never a dull moment in the Scoble mosh-pit.

    Funny how it’s called that when a stupid idea gets bitch-slapped.

    - Users do have the ability to mute and/or set the level of every sound that comes out of their PCs. There are multiple ways to do this.

    Then explain this comment: “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.” That’s either right or not, and since it’s your quote… Note that having to use external speakers, or cut off headphone jacks is not being able to mute it. Especially on a laptop, where neither of those options are anything but teh suck.

    1. when you boot your Windows Vista machine, you can use your eyes and attention for other things until the logon screen is ready. This (gentle, short) sound will tell you when the logon screen is ready — you don’t have wait and watch the animated status bar.

    You keep saying “gentle” but I don’t think it ends up being that when it’s multiplied by 300 in a cube farm. Then it’s maddening. As well, guess what? Many of us don’t sit there slack jawed staring at XP’s progress bar. We do other things, and we’re able to, without Microsoft telling us, remember to check to see if the computer’s at the login prompt or not. Wow. People actually doing stuff without the official Microsoft sound or some damned wizard. ASTOUNDING WATSON!

    2. this sound will also gently tell you if your system (or device or receiver) setting is too loud, too quiet, or muted. If this sound plays at a comfortable level, you won’t have to later muck with a volume control when you actually would rather watch TV, listen to music, play a DVD or listen to a voicemail. Use this sound as a reference, and set your volume once to ‘comfortable’ (after cold-boot) and forget it. Done.

    Oh please. Because mucking with a volume control is just too hard for normal people? Dude, if Microsoft can’t design a damned volume control, why the HELL should I believe they can do an OS worth a crap? Here’s one…people don’t listen to everything at the same volume. DVDs have different sound levels, so does music. TV can change from show to show. In an office, you want the sound OFF unless you specifically turn it on.

    Does it ever occur to Microsoft to laugh test this kind of stupidity? Because I don’t think it does. You’d have to be completely dim or detached from reality, or think that user focus groups are the end all and be all of everything.

    The xbox team designed their hard-wired cold-boot sound for these same reasons: level calibration and branding.

    Remove that total BS first reason, and you have all the reason you need…Branding. There’s no practical justification alive that a freshman in college couldn’t shoot holes through. Level adjustment? Really? Does the Xbox 360 provide all the EQ information and the sound specs on that sound? What’s the level on it. Is that displayed on screen? Are you able to loop it continuously until you have your levels set, then continue on?

    Somehow, I think the answer here is “no” which makes the level thing total crapola.

    If the sound (or any sound generated from your PC) blasts you out of your chair, you can do something about it: turn down or mute your device volume control and/or speakers!

    And if you have a laptop with no external speakers, there’s no point. Vista just overrides your settings. Yay! Thank you Unca SteveB, you sure as hell knew I wanted to wake up everyone on the damned plane. Thank god for your bald sweaty wisdom, shining like a humid, stinky light upon our ignorant silence.

    Of course, not every machine has HW volume controls that work in real-time during cold boot. But, many do. This is a known (and non-trivial) issue. And we plans to continue to clean up this mess over the next few years in subsequent releases

    YEARS? Laptop users have to put up with this ignorance for YEARS? ARE YOU LUCID? May you be banished to a cube farm and have to listen to this “gentle sound” ten times a day for the rest of your life.

    However, in the grand scheme of what we’re working to deliver in Windows Vista, this is hardly the most critical issue in getting to RTM.

    Translation: Sucks to be you, you stupid portable users. Again, if you can’t even get a startup sound to not suck, why should I believe you can carry through on the HARD stuff?

    But we also realize it is *very* important to some users.

    Like most of the corporate ones. I guess corporate doesn’t count in the blessed halls of the startup sound team.

    Obviously, many have a deep passion about this issue, and we’re continuing to listen to your feedback and comments.

    “We’re studiously roundfiling all of them, because if you think you’re going to make us limit our branding, you’re smoking dope. We’re the Microsoft WIndows team, what, you think your concerns matter to us? We have a stock price to pump up!”

    If this is what Microsoft calls attention to detail and listening to customers, Vista is going to so TOTALLY suck.

  151. “Assuming Microsoft execs are thinking like marketers, the startup sound should be more than just part of the operating system. It should be part of the marketing of the operating system. If Microsoft takes that approach, I would recommend keeping the sound permanently turned on and unchangeable without customization, at least in the early days.”

    This is exactly the thinking behind this decision from the Marketing team. Thanks for good observations, Joe.

    That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard, and I was in the Military. I’ve seen grade – A career stupid, and you just beat them all. But thanks for admitting that customer needs, and “it’s a leveling help” comments have nothing to do with it, and the ONLY consideration here was giving VIsta marketing a hard-on.

  152. “Assuming Microsoft execs are thinking like marketers, the startup sound should be more than just part of the operating system. It should be part of the marketing of the operating system. If Microsoft takes that approach, I would recommend keeping the sound permanently turned on and unchangeable without customization, at least in the early days.”

    This is exactly the thinking behind this decision from the Marketing team. Thanks for good observations, Joe.

    That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard, and I was in the Military. I’ve seen grade – A career stupid, and you just beat them all. But thanks for admitting that customer needs, and “it’s a leveling help” comments have nothing to do with it, and the ONLY consideration here was giving VIsta marketing a hard-on.

  153. Oh, and while folks are comparing the Vista “ready to login” sound to the Mac OS Startup Sound, understand that the Mac OS startup sound isn’t just a “Oh look, you can log in now” marketing bit. It actually has a diagnostic use, and always has had. Proper tone means that your CPU and Power Supply and other very low – level basic hardware functionality is there. When things go really wrong low down, you get other sounds like breaking glass, or (long ago) a very ugly atonal set of notes instead of a chord.

    And, on current Apple hardware, setting the volume to mute kills that sound on desktops and laptops both, no “external devices” needed.

  154. Oh, and while folks are comparing the Vista “ready to login” sound to the Mac OS Startup Sound, understand that the Mac OS startup sound isn’t just a “Oh look, you can log in now” marketing bit. It actually has a diagnostic use, and always has had. Proper tone means that your CPU and Power Supply and other very low – level basic hardware functionality is there. When things go really wrong low down, you get other sounds like breaking glass, or (long ago) a very ugly atonal set of notes instead of a chord.

    And, on current Apple hardware, setting the volume to mute kills that sound on desktops and laptops both, no “external devices” needed.

  155. One more time.. John C. Welch for President.

    On another note, does anyone have the odds on the number of execs whose heads will roll after Vista evenutally ships? I’d like to get in on some of that action.

  156. One more time.. John C. Welch for President.

    On another note, does anyone have the odds on the number of execs whose heads will roll after Vista evenutally ships? I’d like to get in on some of that action.

  157. [...] Vista will have a startup sound. You will not be able to turn it off. Microsoft has apparently given this deep thought and has paternalistically determined you will listen to their startup sound when you boot Vista – even if you don’t want it or are in an environment, like a seminar, where Vista announcing itself would be annoying to everyone else. [...]

  158. Dum.

    Sorry, I just wanted to be comment #100.

    My prediction: Vista will ship with this sound.

    Only Volume Licenses (Corporate America) will recieve the patch.

  159. Dum.

    Sorry, I just wanted to be comment #100.

    My prediction: Vista will ship with this sound.

    Only Volume Licenses (Corporate America) will recieve the patch.

  160. This is just lame – off course you should be able to shut off that sound.

    I am currently deploying a system where we are using a lot Windows XP Professional machines to display media in airports and other public places. For various reasons (memory consumption reasons being among the most important) the machines are currently set to reboot every night at 3am.

    After the first week of deployment the security personel begged us to turn of the welcome sound so that the night-watch wouldn’t be scared shitless every time the machines rebooted.

    Windows machines are used in a lot of different environments – and are turned on in many different contexts. Think again.

    .Jesper

  161. This is just lame – off course you should be able to shut off that sound.

    I am currently deploying a system where we are using a lot Windows XP Professional machines to display media in airports and other public places. For various reasons (memory consumption reasons being among the most important) the machines are currently set to reboot every night at 3am.

    After the first week of deployment the security personel begged us to turn of the welcome sound so that the night-watch wouldn’t be scared shitless every time the machines rebooted.

    Windows machines are used in a lot of different environments – and are turned on in many different contexts. Think again.

    .Jesper

  162. Well what a stupid, stupid concept!
    They really are taking their customers for absolute suckers!!!

    Another reason not use Micro$oft crap software!

  163. Well what a stupid, stupid concept!
    They really are taking their customers for absolute suckers!!!

    Another reason not use Micro$oft crap software!

  164. [...] Microsoft may not give me the option to disable the startup sound in Windows Vista though. Why would they do such a thing? Robert Scoble had the pleasure of talking with Steve Ball, program manager for the Windows Audio Video Excellence team, who gave a reason for this decision: A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now conscious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. [...]

  165. Professional audio engineers will switch off those custom sounds because they are all sampled at 22 kHz and will completely reset your professional soundcard after booting.

    I also felt that the XP-mixer is really bad, any professional soundcard comes with a better mixer which makes the XP-mixer not only redundant but also not working! XP’s mixer can’t control any of the professional devices I am using or have been using.

    Vista might be cool but I don’t want to upgrade anymore. Driver model has been changed again! Why?

    Give me native ASIO instead of WDM… I don’t want another ‘consumer’ driver-model…

  166. Professional audio engineers will switch off those custom sounds because they are all sampled at 22 kHz and will completely reset your professional soundcard after booting.

    I also felt that the XP-mixer is really bad, any professional soundcard comes with a better mixer which makes the XP-mixer not only redundant but also not working! XP’s mixer can’t control any of the professional devices I am using or have been using.

    Vista might be cool but I don’t want to upgrade anymore. Driver model has been changed again! Why?

    Give me native ASIO instead of WDM… I don’t want another ‘consumer’ driver-model…

  167. You are doing this to create an emotional experience?? Too bad for you the emotional experience it will create in me is hatred.

  168. You are doing this to create an emotional experience?? Too bad for you the emotional experience it will create in me is hatred.

  169. Realizing that all of my comments here have been negative, I want all of you to know that now my sentiments are positive.

    I’ve been in touch with Steve Ball on another blog. And although he made me no promises, I am convinced that, as he said, Microsoft “will do the right thing.”

  170. Realizing that all of my comments here have been negative, I want all of you to know that now my sentiments are positive.

    I’ve been in touch with Steve Ball on another blog. And although he made me no promises, I am convinced that, as he said, Microsoft “will do the right thing.”

  171. [...] Robert Scoble has written an article in the wake of initial negative feedback on Vista’s having a non-disableable sound that plays on startup. One of the reasons given: Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine. Let’s say you muted your machine, and you don’t hear your startup sound, you know you aren’t ready to listen to stuff. The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista. [...]

  172. [...] As I talked about in my last post, there is a bit of publicity in the blogosphere around Vista and the idea of a forced startup sound. That post was triggered by a post of Robert Scoble’s Blog and he just posted an update where he talks with Steve Ball from Microsoft who is in charge of the audio for such things. I recommend that you read this post before continuing on with my oppinions. [...]

  173. [...] Microsoft gatavojas, vai vismaz tiem ir padomā, padarīt skaņu, kas signalizē par datora gatavību darbam, neizbēgamu. Ar vārdu neizbēgamu, šeit tiek domāts tas, ka to nebūs iespējams atslēgt un tā skanēs vienmēr, un vienīgais veids, kā to neklausīties, būs izslēgt skandas. Un nebūs arī iespējams nomainīt. [...]

  174. I wish I could say I was surprised by all this. But it’s hardly the first time Microsoft has expressed nothing but contempt for its customers. What arrogance!

  175. I wish I could say I was surprised by all this. But it’s hardly the first time Microsoft has expressed nothing but contempt for its customers. What arrogance!

  176. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.

    Some machines (like laptops) have no hardware way of muting or turning the volume down (just [software] multimedia keys, mere shortcuts to the OS volume control). So, it’s not just a matter of how much control the user wants, or how much control is intended to be given to the user — but how much control is really being allowed to the user.

    In this (I confess, extreme) scenario, the user is allowed absolute zero control.

    May Microsoft hide the possibility to turn the sound off under 42 layers of menus and control panel options — but it *has* to be there.

  177. There is one way to mute it: to turn down the speakers that are connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.

    Some machines (like laptops) have no hardware way of muting or turning the volume down (just [software] multimedia keys, mere shortcuts to the OS volume control). So, it’s not just a matter of how much control the user wants, or how much control is intended to be given to the user — but how much control is really being allowed to the user.

    In this (I confess, extreme) scenario, the user is allowed absolute zero control.

    May Microsoft hide the possibility to turn the sound off under 42 layers of menus and control panel options — but it *has* to be there.

  178. “Did you know that Sony has a built in sound?” he said. ”Did you know that Toshiba has one?”

    Is that a good reason to do it? Because Sony and Toshiba did? Even if they build it in with no options to turn it off (I think that will piss off a lot of office managers) some one will find a hack to do it. But MS best listen to the IT community here not just home users, unless its not in the “Pro” version most companies will use.

  179. “Did you know that Sony has a built in sound?” he said. ”Did you know that Toshiba has one?”

    Is that a good reason to do it? Because Sony and Toshiba did? Even if they build it in with no options to turn it off (I think that will piss off a lot of office managers) some one will find a hack to do it. But MS best listen to the IT community here not just home users, unless its not in the “Pro” version most companies will use.

  180. Oh, really. So when I turn on my laptop, 50 people in a library will expirience spiritual state of mind. Or not! Ill be happy if I escape alive.

  181. Oh, really. So when I turn on my laptop, 50 people in a library will expirience spiritual state of mind. Or not! Ill be happy if I escape alive.

  182. Here’s the answer.
    The FIRST time Windows opens on a new machine it should play the Fripp sound.

    After that, it should ABSOLUTELY be possible to shut it off.

    Why? For the obvious reason that sometimes you don’t want someone else to hear that you are turning on your machine. For instance, say you’re in bed and your significant other is sleeping next to you. You don’t want to wake them up! Also, there are many other times when you don’t want someone else to hear you starting up a computer.

  183. Here’s the answer.
    The FIRST time Windows opens on a new machine it should play the Fripp sound.

    After that, it should ABSOLUTELY be possible to shut it off.

    Why? For the obvious reason that sometimes you don’t want someone else to hear that you are turning on your machine. For instance, say you’re in bed and your significant other is sleeping next to you. You don’t want to wake them up! Also, there are many other times when you don’t want someone else to hear you starting up a computer.

  184. …and the thousands of people who still retain msn.com as their browser homepage will accept it as perfectly normal.

  185. …and the thousands of people who still retain msn.com as their browser homepage will accept it as perfectly normal.

  186. “It basically helps you realize your machine is ready to watch a video like, Ze Frank, without fidgeting with anything.”

    Oh, thank goodness, because the 3 extra seconds it would’ve taken me to check my speakers’ LED and whether “mute” is checked on my soundcard after a video starts rolling with no sound would sooo cut into my incredibly valuable YouTube time.

    And you would still have to fidget with something to get the sound back.

    What if someone messes with the sound settings after the start-up? Or am I supposed to watch/listen to all multimedia content immediately after start-up? Because my boyfriend might use the computer after I boot, and mute it so he doesn’t have to listen to some jerk’s embedded MIDI files on a web page. Should I restart my machine everytime I sit down, so Vista can tell me whether the sound’s on or not?

    This idea is asinine. Anything that insults the user’s intelligence does not enhance my “spiritual” experience.

  187. “It basically helps you realize your machine is ready to watch a video like, Ze Frank, without fidgeting with anything.”

    Oh, thank goodness, because the 3 extra seconds it would’ve taken me to check my speakers’ LED and whether “mute” is checked on my soundcard after a video starts rolling with no sound would sooo cut into my incredibly valuable YouTube time.

    And you would still have to fidget with something to get the sound back.

    What if someone messes with the sound settings after the start-up? Or am I supposed to watch/listen to all multimedia content immediately after start-up? Because my boyfriend might use the computer after I boot, and mute it so he doesn’t have to listen to some jerk’s embedded MIDI files on a web page. Should I restart my machine everytime I sit down, so Vista can tell me whether the sound’s on or not?

    This idea is asinine. Anything that insults the user’s intelligence does not enhance my “spiritual” experience.

  188. Look, it’s only a branding experience.

    The kind of “branding experience” that cattle endure.

    Please stop treating us like sheep and other submissive farm animals, Microsoft…

  189. Look, it’s only a branding experience.

    The kind of “branding experience” that cattle endure.

    Please stop treating us like sheep and other submissive farm animals, Microsoft…

  190. Hi Everyone,

    I tried to post a link to my blog that gives instructions for removing the startup sound in Vista builds 5742 and 5536.

    However, apparently WordPress does not like the name of my WordPress blog. So let’s try this. Substitute “h” for the “x” in the url below:

    http://vistaxacks.wordpress.com

    This information is provided “AS-IS” and totally without warranty from me or anyone else on this planet. Use at your own risk.

    Herbert N Swearengen III

  191. Hi Everyone,

    I tried to post a link to my blog that gives instructions for removing the startup sound in Vista builds 5742 and 5536.

    However, apparently WordPress does not like the name of my WordPress blog. So let’s try this. Substitute “h” for the “x” in the url below:

    http://vistaxacks.wordpress.com

    This information is provided “AS-IS” and totally without warranty from me or anyone else on this planet. Use at your own risk.

    Herbert N Swearengen III

  192. Hi Everyone. I tried to post a comment here giving the link to my new blog where I have posted directions for removing the Vista startup sound from builds 5742 and 5536. But apparently WordPress thinks my WordPress blog is spam or worse because of the name I selected for it.

    Anyway, if anyone still has any interest in this “AS-IS,” totally without warranty of any kind patch, substitute “h” for the “x” in the url below.

    http://vistaxacks.wordpress.com

    Herbert N Swearengen III

  193. Hi Everyone. I tried to post a comment here giving the link to my new blog where I have posted directions for removing the Vista startup sound from builds 5742 and 5536. But apparently WordPress thinks my WordPress blog is spam or worse because of the name I selected for it.

    Anyway, if anyone still has any interest in this “AS-IS,” totally without warranty of any kind patch, substitute “h” for the “x” in the url below.

    http://vistaxacks.wordpress.com

    Herbert N Swearengen III

  194. [...] The Sweet Sound of Windows Vista There has been a lot of talk lately on sound in Windows Vista. Recently Robert Scoble talked with Steve Ball, Group Program Manager for the Windows Audio/Video Excellence Team regarding plans to hard-code the start-up sound played just before the OS is ready for the user to log on to their PC.  To elaborate: right before the log on screen appears in Windows Vista, an animation of the new Windows “orb” appears with a non-customizable start-up sound.  The idea behind this is that it will help the PC user know that their sound is working correctly, its current volume setting, and that the PC is prepped for music and video playback upon log-in.  The Xbox 360 does the same thing when it boots up — a hard-coded start-up sound.  Steve explains the idea in more detail at the above post. Also:  Amir Majidimehr, a digital media expert and MS Corporate Vice President, explains audio processing in Windows Vista at the AV Science forum and details some cool changes coming in the Windows Vista sound stack. Lastly, I should point you to this fantastic new whitepaper on the audio subsystem advances made in Windows Vista — it really does a excellent job of elaborating on many of the changes and new features that Amir mentions in his forum post. Windows Vista is starting to sound better and better … [...]

  195. [...] As I posted before, please give us the ability to control this ourselves. On the Vista Team Blog they mention the startup sound issue that Robert Scoble blogged about last week. I don’t want a signature sound of any kind on my machine — especially if I’m in an environment as I pointed out in that post.  It’s disruptive, plain and simple.  If you were manufacturing the hardware as well as the software, like the Xbox, it would be easier to swallow.  But please provide us the ability to control this ourselves. [...]

  196. [...] The Windows Vista team responded to a recent Robert Scoble blog entry talking about a non-customizable “Signature” sound for the logon screen. They said here… The idea behind this is that it will help the PC user know that their sound is working correctly, its current volume setting, and that the PC is prepped for music and video playback upon log-in. [...]

  197. Please (repeat please) make this end-user configurable! Steve, I know you’re a musician and have heard you play (friends’ wedding), and think/hope you’d understand how the average person needs to manage the sounds/noise around them. The average open workplace is very noisy, what with cell phone ringtones, conversations, etc. Mandatory noise would be an unfortunate addition to the mix. Another illustration from personal experience: I like to start/reboot various PCs at home without waking our child. With busy schedules, the a child’s sleeptime is some of the most constructive time for doing stuff on PCs.

  198. Please (repeat please) make this end-user configurable! Steve, I know you’re a musician and have heard you play (friends’ wedding), and think/hope you’d understand how the average person needs to manage the sounds/noise around them. The average open workplace is very noisy, what with cell phone ringtones, conversations, etc. Mandatory noise would be an unfortunate addition to the mix. Another illustration from personal experience: I like to start/reboot various PCs at home without waking our child. With busy schedules, the a child’s sleeptime is some of the most constructive time for doing stuff on PCs.

  199. That stupid music that plays when XP is being installed is bad enough. And, of course, if you’re installing it on a laptop the volume control keys don’t do anything until after the XP install has finished and it’s too late.
    And as for saying “you can turn your speakers down” – sheer arrogance. I have my speakers set to the volume I want. You would require me to turn them down at each boot, and then turn them up again and try to match the setting I had before, just because you think your precious startup sound is the most important thing anyone will ever hear.
    “Other manufacturers/products make sounds” is no justification. Firstly, just because it is being done doesn’t mean it is right. Secondly, in the case (at least) of laptops there are other manufacturers who will sell very similar machines that don’t do this. But there’s no other Microsoft who’ll sell you a similar version of Windows without the sound.

  200. That stupid music that plays when XP is being installed is bad enough. And, of course, if you’re installing it on a laptop the volume control keys don’t do anything until after the XP install has finished and it’s too late.
    And as for saying “you can turn your speakers down” – sheer arrogance. I have my speakers set to the volume I want. You would require me to turn them down at each boot, and then turn them up again and try to match the setting I had before, just because you think your precious startup sound is the most important thing anyone will ever hear.
    “Other manufacturers/products make sounds” is no justification. Firstly, just because it is being done doesn’t mean it is right. Secondly, in the case (at least) of laptops there are other manufacturers who will sell very similar machines that don’t do this. But there’s no other Microsoft who’ll sell you a similar version of Windows without the sound.

  201. Leave it there for those who like the “branding experience,” but let me turn it off when it starts bugging the heck out of me, I honestly don’t care if it’s customizable, an on/off switch would be fine. Besides, how long is this thing supposed to load? It’s not like doing the laundry, where I need a buzzer to remind me when it’s done.

  202. Leave it there for those who like the “branding experience,” but let me turn it off when it starts bugging the heck out of me, I honestly don’t care if it’s customizable, an on/off switch would be fine. Besides, how long is this thing supposed to load? It’s not like doing the laundry, where I need a buzzer to remind me when it’s done.

  203. Dumbest goddamn thing i’ve ever heard.

    The startup sound is for ego. It doesn’t help “calibrate the user experience.” If i start teh video and hear nothing, then I will know to turn up the volume.

    Hey guys, focus on making the volume control easily accessible, rather than this sort of masturbatory time-waste.

  204. Dumbest goddamn thing i’ve ever heard.

    The startup sound is for ego. It doesn’t help “calibrate the user experience.” If i start teh video and hear nothing, then I will know to turn up the volume.

    Hey guys, focus on making the volume control easily accessible, rather than this sort of masturbatory time-waste.

  205. I have 3 words for you:

    Active Nearfield Monitors.

    These are pretty much studio quality reference monitors that are self-powered by their own internal amplifiers and are designed to be run directly off a mixer feed or off the output ports of a firewire audio interface (like the motu 828 or the m-audio 1814)

    Many models of active monitors (such as tannoy which i use in my recording studio) do not have their own internal volume controls. When using with a firewire audio interface you are at the mercy of whatever the operating system decides to set the output volume to.

    If this ‘feature’ is to play a ‘sound’ on bootup with no way to turn it off, or control its volume, then i can see quite a bit of damage done to my speakers during bootup and being forced to play this sound at full-blast.
    This all sounds like another reason to go back to MAC for recording.

  206. I have 3 words for you:

    Active Nearfield Monitors.

    These are pretty much studio quality reference monitors that are self-powered by their own internal amplifiers and are designed to be run directly off a mixer feed or off the output ports of a firewire audio interface (like the motu 828 or the m-audio 1814)

    Many models of active monitors (such as tannoy which i use in my recording studio) do not have their own internal volume controls. When using with a firewire audio interface you are at the mercy of whatever the operating system decides to set the output volume to.

    If this ‘feature’ is to play a ‘sound’ on bootup with no way to turn it off, or control its volume, then i can see quite a bit of damage done to my speakers during bootup and being forced to play this sound at full-blast.
    This all sounds like another reason to go back to MAC for recording.

  207. That’s an absolutely terrible idea. I would never ever buy a computer that had a mandatory startup sound. My computer is hooked up to a stereo which is always set at a very high volume level, and then I control the sound level from individual audio applications. I know MANY other people do the same thing, and the last thing they want is a startup noise blasting every time they turn their computer on.

  208. That’s an absolutely terrible idea. I would never ever buy a computer that had a mandatory startup sound. My computer is hooked up to a stereo which is always set at a very high volume level, and then I control the sound level from individual audio applications. I know MANY other people do the same thing, and the last thing they want is a startup noise blasting every time they turn their computer on.

  209. I agree with nearly all of the other posters. This is a incredibly stupid idea, and will be the bane of seminars and conferences, as people boot up mid talk and blast us with their idiot startup sounds.

    As for the BS about ‘having sat through user testing’ and ‘seeing both sides of the argument’, this is simply rubbish. It _is_ an evil feature. It is beyond stupid, and bluffing about having sat through user testing doesn’t make your non-arguments any more persuasive. Right, not blasting their surrounding with a meaningless noise every time you boot up is a purely geek pre-occuptation. I do research in HCI and reducing this sort of intrusive, idiotic behavior from computers is one of the biggest foci of HCI at the moment (quiet interfaces, ambient displays, etc).

    It shouldn’t just be customizable. There should be a dialog box that comes up the first ten times you boot up that allows you to select the ‘never make that stupid noise ever again’ option.

  210. It’s fitting how much they’ve said about brand experience, this is precisely my experience of the microsoft brand, they assume they already know how you’ll be using your machine and try to obstruct using it in other ways.

    I know how to adjust the volume so that all of my software and devices (pc, amp, tv etc) are at the right relative levels.

  211. I agree with nearly all of the other posters. This is a incredibly stupid idea, and will be the bane of seminars and conferences, as people boot up mid talk and blast us with their idiot startup sounds.

    As for the BS about ‘having sat through user testing’ and ‘seeing both sides of the argument’, this is simply rubbish. It _is_ an evil feature. It is beyond stupid, and bluffing about having sat through user testing doesn’t make your non-arguments any more persuasive. Right, not blasting their surrounding with a meaningless noise every time you boot up is a purely geek pre-occuptation. I do research in HCI and reducing this sort of intrusive, idiotic behavior from computers is one of the biggest foci of HCI at the moment (quiet interfaces, ambient displays, etc).

    It shouldn’t just be customizable. There should be a dialog box that comes up the first ten times you boot up that allows you to select the ‘never make that stupid noise ever again’ option.

  212. It’s fitting how much they’ve said about brand experience, this is precisely my experience of the microsoft brand, they assume they already know how you’ll be using your machine and try to obstruct using it in other ways.

    I know how to adjust the volume so that all of my software and devices (pc, amp, tv etc) are at the right relative levels.

  213. The problem I have with this sound if it would only play when I decide to boot my computer, it wouldn’t be that bad but with M$ tendency to automate everything, I don’t really like my PC rebooting at 2AM because of a patch and playing this sound…

  214. Please. NO!

    Microsoft’s ‘branding’ becomes “Damn! that &*^^ machine just woke the baby again and it took all night to get him/her to sleep.”

    One man’s pretty sound (I adore Fripp’s work, BTW) becomes another’s noise pollution.

    We shouldn’t be exacerbating the already over-polluted world.

    Fred

  215. The problem I have with this sound if it would only play when I decide to boot my computer, it wouldn’t be that bad but with M$ tendency to automate everything, I don’t really like my PC rebooting at 2AM because of a patch and playing this sound…

  216. Please. NO!

    Microsoft’s ‘branding’ becomes “Damn! that &*^^ machine just woke the baby again and it took all night to get him/her to sleep.”

    One man’s pretty sound (I adore Fripp’s work, BTW) becomes another’s noise pollution.

    We shouldn’t be exacerbating the already over-polluted world.

    Fred

  217. This entire issue is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with Microsoft user operating systems. I use my computer to do things, I do not use a computer to be exposed to marketing and ‘experience’ it. I do not want dozens of processes running in the background that I will never use. I do not want to be constantly interrupted by modal windows that leap up into my workspace. I do not want to be informed that I have unused desktop icons. I do not want my browser, mail program, media viewer, integrated into the enviornment and sucking up resources the entire time the machine is on.

    *PLEASE* give my resources back to the applications I *CHOOSE* to run, not the ones the marketing department says it’s a good idea for me to be exposed to. Sure, this conversation is just about a startup sound, but if a startup sound causes this much mess, what the hell is going on in the rest of the operating system??

  218. This entire issue is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with Microsoft user operating systems. I use my computer to do things, I do not use a computer to be exposed to marketing and ‘experience’ it. I do not want dozens of processes running in the background that I will never use. I do not want to be constantly interrupted by modal windows that leap up into my workspace. I do not want to be informed that I have unused desktop icons. I do not want my browser, mail program, media viewer, integrated into the enviornment and sucking up resources the entire time the machine is on.

    *PLEASE* give my resources back to the applications I *CHOOSE* to run, not the ones the marketing department says it’s a good idea for me to be exposed to. Sure, this conversation is just about a startup sound, but if a startup sound causes this much mess, what the hell is going on in the rest of the operating system??

  219. I don’t care if I can’;t change it just enable it to be silenced.

    I oftend get up in the morning and fire up my laptop while the lady is sleeping,if the sound came on it would disturb her slumber….

    Such a silly consideration, really. I wonder if it’s just another thing to get evryone talking about Vista. me personally I’ll be sticking with XP for some time yet.

  220. I don’t care if I can’;t change it just enable it to be silenced.

    I oftend get up in the morning and fire up my laptop while the lady is sleeping,if the sound came on it would disturb her slumber….

    Such a silly consideration, really. I wonder if it’s just another thing to get evryone talking about Vista. me personally I’ll be sticking with XP for some time yet.

  221. [...] So; you will not be allowed to change or turn off the startup sound in Windows Vista. This has taken Microsoft months to decide, and the decision has involved lawyers, marketing, engineers, and no doubt countless managers. If you were ever wondering why Vista is so delayed… It’s also a good idication of the path Microsoft has chosen – it’s all about you can’t rather than you can. I’ll take my GNU/Linux distribution, thank you, where I can do simple things like disable or modify startup sounds. And where that decision has not taken up countless hours of time that could have been spent on improving the product. [...]

  222. #5: Nobody is forgetting that macs make that sound. However, the mac startup sound is a short “Bong” (or “Bing” “ding” whatever). Whereas the windows start up sound is “Bongdingdindgindgindgin clingle clingle clingle DING CHIME!”

    To all the rest of the comments: Sorry, TLDR.

  223. #5: Nobody is forgetting that macs make that sound. However, the mac startup sound is a short “Bong” (or “Bing” “ding” whatever). Whereas the windows start up sound is “Bongdingdindgindgindgin clingle clingle clingle DING CHIME!”

    To all the rest of the comments: Sorry, TLDR.

  224. Well, this mandatory startup sound scheme has given me a reason to put off upgrading to Vista as long as possible and to counsel my less tech-savvy family, friends and co-workers to do the same. Many of us find computer audio, even brief tones, an unwanted annoyance.

    It’s especially an issue for laptop users, as others have pointed out, since so many are operating in situations where they rely on machine silence (lecture halls, archives, bedrooms, theatres). When my acquaintances can no longer achieve that without a lot of fumbling, they’ll all come running to me for a fix that’ll be, from the sounds of this, pretty difficult to provide.

    No thanks from me on this decision!

  225. This is idiotic. Here’s a tip for MS; a law of the computing experience they seemed to have missed:

    If x is a feature of an operating system, then x should be configurable by the user of the operating system.

    This explains the success of GNU/Linux.

  226. Well, this mandatory startup sound scheme has given me a reason to put off upgrading to Vista as long as possible and to counsel my less tech-savvy family, friends and co-workers to do the same. Many of us find computer audio, even brief tones, an unwanted annoyance.

    It’s especially an issue for laptop users, as others have pointed out, since so many are operating in situations where they rely on machine silence (lecture halls, archives, bedrooms, theatres). When my acquaintances can no longer achieve that without a lot of fumbling, they’ll all come running to me for a fix that’ll be, from the sounds of this, pretty difficult to provide.

    No thanks from me on this decision!

  227. This is idiotic. Here’s a tip for MS; a law of the computing experience they seemed to have missed:

    If x is a feature of an operating system, then x should be configurable by the user of the operating system.

    This explains the success of GNU/Linux.

  228. I can’t help but feel this is a terrible idea. Yeah, the Mac’s got a boot-up sound…but that’s more akin to the POST beep in a PC than the Windows start-up sound. It plays before the OS even begins to load… It’s very short, and plays different sounds if there is an error condition with the hardware – just like the beep codes most motherboards have. And, as others have pointed out, you CAN mute the Mac boot-up sound.

    Most motherboards, as well, have a “silent boot” option.

    Personally, I don’t want my machine making a lot of noise. I leave the POST beep turned on, because sometimes I wind up booting headless… And I usually leave an error beep enabled, to let me know something bad has happened… But everything else gets turned off. Logon sounds, emptying trash, keyclicks, minimizing & maximizing windows…all of it is turned off. Unless something bad happens that I need to know about, I want my machine to silently do its job.

  229. I can’t help but feel this is a terrible idea. Yeah, the Mac’s got a boot-up sound…but that’s more akin to the POST beep in a PC than the Windows start-up sound. It plays before the OS even begins to load… It’s very short, and plays different sounds if there is an error condition with the hardware – just like the beep codes most motherboards have. And, as others have pointed out, you CAN mute the Mac boot-up sound.

    Most motherboards, as well, have a “silent boot” option.

    Personally, I don’t want my machine making a lot of noise. I leave the POST beep turned on, because sometimes I wind up booting headless… And I usually leave an error beep enabled, to let me know something bad has happened… But everything else gets turned off. Logon sounds, emptying trash, keyclicks, minimizing & maximizing windows…all of it is turned off. Unless something bad happens that I need to know about, I want my machine to silently do its job.

  230. I’m so glad I’m done college and don’t have to worry about taking my laptop to a library…wait, I’m going to law school…damnit…guess I can’t upgrade to a Vista machine for three years.

  231. Microsoft seems to be confused about who owns what. The reality is that I own the hardware and therefore should have reasonable control over how that hardware behaves. Forcing an obnoxious piece of musical crap that some far-removed-from-reality moron at Borg Central thinks sounds pretty on me every time I restart is not my idea of reasonable control. It’s like DVD content that forces you to watch the damn trailers by deactivating the menu and scan functions. Step off Microsoft and learn where the boundaries should be drawn.

  232. I’m so glad I’m done college and don’t have to worry about taking my laptop to a library…wait, I’m going to law school…damnit…guess I can’t upgrade to a Vista machine for three years.

  233. Microsoft seems to be confused about who owns what. The reality is that I own the hardware and therefore should have reasonable control over how that hardware behaves. Forcing an obnoxious piece of musical crap that some far-removed-from-reality moron at Borg Central thinks sounds pretty on me every time I restart is not my idea of reasonable control. It’s like DVD content that forces you to watch the damn trailers by deactivating the menu and scan functions. Step off Microsoft and learn where the boundaries should be drawn.

  234. Absolutely absurd. People who want it will leave it on, those who don’t should have the option to shut it off.

    I don’t buy this user-testing baloney. If certain users like it, they will not change it. But why deprive everyone else the ability to shut it off?

    Oh man… why is it that every ‘feature’ of Vista that I read about makes me less inclined to purchase it?

  235. Absolutely absurd. People who want it will leave it on, those who don’t should have the option to shut it off.

    I don’t buy this user-testing baloney. If certain users like it, they will not change it. But why deprive everyone else the ability to shut it off?

    Oh man… why is it that every ‘feature’ of Vista that I read about makes me less inclined to purchase it?

  236. How asinine. These people don’t understand that computers are tools. My office is next to the nursery. The default sound is disabled because there are babies sleeping right across from the office. Most of the time the speakers are real low, but my wife turned the volume up when showing a video to our older son. Microsoft stupidity.

  237. How asinine. These people don’t understand that computers are tools. My office is next to the nursery. The default sound is disabled because there are babies sleeping right across from the office. Most of the time the speakers are real low, but my wife turned the volume up when showing a video to our older son. Microsoft stupidity.

  238. This is ridiculous. How can they spin forcing a settng on the user as a feature. What if I wish to do something simple, such as have a silent machine? What if I wish to install a theme, and have all the sounds on the machine part of one idea? What if I am deaf, and simply do not wish to waste battery power on worthless sounds? What If I am not deaf, and do not wish to waste battery power on worthless sounds? What if I find the sound really annoying? What if I am trying to avoid waking someone, or I am trying to not be noticed? What if The PC must be in an environment where sound is innapropriate broadcasting, call centers, hospitals (people sleeping and all).

    Please don’t tell me adjust the speakers, this is not always an option. What this is not feasible (non-adjustable speakers, fine tuned speakers, off site sound…)? or if sound is rewuired for other applications. I have worked in call centers where the phone call was controlled by software on the computer, I think this would nescescitate a workign sound card, and it would be annoying for a customer to hear the reboot noise from the machine some other employee is using.

    Oh yeah, and Steve being a musician does not give you any special right to force sound on people any more than I being a programmer allows me to force source code onto people.

    I personally think this is a great example of a slippery slope, first they will lock me out of something simple. But once they have demonstrated the capacity, what else will they lock us out of (nothing if we complain enough now).

    I will just use something that I can customize freely. (I personally use Linux). Oh yeah, and I will figure out a few ways to change this anyway, and publicize it freely.

    http://freetechsupport.us

  239. This is ridiculous. How can they spin forcing a settng on the user as a feature. What if I wish to do something simple, such as have a silent machine? What if I wish to install a theme, and have all the sounds on the machine part of one idea? What if I am deaf, and simply do not wish to waste battery power on worthless sounds? What If I am not deaf, and do not wish to waste battery power on worthless sounds? What if I find the sound really annoying? What if I am trying to avoid waking someone, or I am trying to not be noticed? What if The PC must be in an environment where sound is innapropriate broadcasting, call centers, hospitals (people sleeping and all).

    Please don’t tell me adjust the speakers, this is not always an option. What this is not feasible (non-adjustable speakers, fine tuned speakers, off site sound…)? or if sound is rewuired for other applications. I have worked in call centers where the phone call was controlled by software on the computer, I think this would nescescitate a workign sound card, and it would be annoying for a customer to hear the reboot noise from the machine some other employee is using.

    Oh yeah, and Steve being a musician does not give you any special right to force sound on people any more than I being a programmer allows me to force source code onto people.

    I personally think this is a great example of a slippery slope, first they will lock me out of something simple. But once they have demonstrated the capacity, what else will they lock us out of (nothing if we complain enough now).

    I will just use something that I can customize freely. (I personally use Linux). Oh yeah, and I will figure out a few ways to change this anyway, and publicize it freely.

    http://freetechsupport.us

  240. What a waste of my time. I can’t believe you wrote about this. It’s the danm STARTUP SOUND.

  241. I can’t believe Steve Ball went for the “spirituality” argument. no, wait, it’s Steve Ball — and having known him and observed how he interacted in a relationship, I understand. “Sprituality” in that case meant “how you adore Steve at a gut level” — in this case, it means “how you adore Microsoft at a gut level.”

    Guess what? Using the computer is perhaps the exact opposite of a spiritual experience. Knowing who made the software is not a feel-good thing that adds value to your life — it is an imposition that should be tolerated as little as possible.

    And as for using Fripp: how is that not just an ego-trip by a lesser member of the League of Crafty Guitarists?

  242. I can’t believe Steve Ball went for the “spirituality” argument. no, wait, it’s Steve Ball — and having known him and observed how he interacted in a relationship, I understand. “Sprituality” in that case meant “how you adore Steve at a gut level” — in this case, it means “how you adore Microsoft at a gut level.”

    Guess what? Using the computer is perhaps the exact opposite of a spiritual experience. Knowing who made the software is not a feel-good thing that adds value to your life — it is an imposition that should be tolerated as little as possible.

    And as for using Fripp: how is that not just an ego-trip by a lesser member of the League of Crafty Guitarists?

  243. I rather agree with A, who made comment 139: “Reason #28766 to use LINUX”. Why aggravate users who wish to silence Windows? There is simply no logical, justifiable reason to take this control away, especially as it has been available since Windows 95.

  244. I rather agree with A, who made comment 139: “Reason #28766 to use LINUX”. Why aggravate users who wish to silence Windows? There is simply no logical, justifiable reason to take this control away, especially as it has been available since Windows 95.

  245. Heh. I just watched one of my coworkers get royally chewed out for playing the XP startup sound in a meeting.

    You know, I don’t mind interface designers making most of my choices for me, and I don’t customize much. But for this zero-customization approach to work, the designers need to have taste.

    Mandatory startup sounds on laptops are just silly. I suppose you could get away with it on some Mac laptops (which are essentially designed to never be powered down), but if this sound occurs in normal use, it’s definitely a design flaw.

  246. Heh. I just watched one of my coworkers get royally chewed out for playing the XP startup sound in a meeting.

    You know, I don’t mind interface designers making most of my choices for me, and I don’t customize much. But for this zero-customization approach to work, the designers need to have taste.

    Mandatory startup sounds on laptops are just silly. I suppose you could get away with it on some Mac laptops (which are essentially designed to never be powered down), but if this sound occurs in normal use, it’s definitely a design flaw.

  247. You have to be shitting me.

    I refuse to advertise *anybody*. If I buy something that has an obvious mark, I excise it after the fact.

    When I buy something from somebody, I’ll tell other people if it works for me. I will not use a product that demands to advertise itself. Jesus Christ! What a collection of egomaniacs. Fuck! Goddamn!

    If Vista insists on this, I’ll be cutting wires.

    Damn. This might make me a Linux user. Finally.

    Patrick

  248. You have to be shitting me.

    I refuse to advertise *anybody*. If I buy something that has an obvious mark, I excise it after the fact.

    When I buy something from somebody, I’ll tell other people if it works for me. I will not use a product that demands to advertise itself. Jesus Christ! What a collection of egomaniacs. Fuck! Goddamn!

    If Vista insists on this, I’ll be cutting wires.

    Damn. This might make me a Linux user. Finally.

    Patrick

  249. I can’t stress how much this would piss me off.

    I use my PC to listen to music. I ABSOLUTELY HATE any extraenous sounds coming off it. I don’t visit a website twice if it’s got sounds on it. Not ever. The first thing I do after a fresh Windows install is to turn off all sounds.

    Oh and btw – my speaker’s volume knob is way out of comfortable reach. I would have to get below my desk to turn it off. I don’t want to be forced to do that.

    It’s a terrible idea and I hope they don’t do it.

  250. I can’t stress how much this would piss me off.

    I use my PC to listen to music. I ABSOLUTELY HATE any extraenous sounds coming off it. I don’t visit a website twice if it’s got sounds on it. Not ever. The first thing I do after a fresh Windows install is to turn off all sounds.

    Oh and btw – my speaker’s volume knob is way out of comfortable reach. I would have to get below my desk to turn it off. I don’t want to be forced to do that.

    It’s a terrible idea and I hope they don’t do it.

  251. Seriously – I’m not going to buy this crap if they keep mucking it up even worse than it already is. Screw mandatory startup sounds. Product branding should take SECOND place to KEEPING YOUR CUSTOMERS HAPPY. Get it you farktards?!

  252. Seriously – I’m not going to buy this crap if they keep mucking it up even worse than it already is. Screw mandatory startup sounds. Product branding should take SECOND place to KEEPING YOUR CUSTOMERS HAPPY. Get it you farktards?!

  253. The single most irritating thing about the windows sound system is….there’s no way to force it to make a sound! When I’m fiddling with the audio controls, it only means one thing: that the speakers are failing to emit any noise. What I want to do is fiddle a setting and then press a button to test it.

    Microsoft is spending how many thousands of hours on the startup sound; how about throwing a bit of that time to making the actual audio experience actually better?

    (Or will I be embarassed and be told that it’s already been done?)

  254. The single most irritating thing about the windows sound system is….there’s no way to force it to make a sound! When I’m fiddling with the audio controls, it only means one thing: that the speakers are failing to emit any noise. What I want to do is fiddle a setting and then press a button to test it.

    Microsoft is spending how many thousands of hours on the startup sound; how about throwing a bit of that time to making the actual audio experience actually better?

    (Or will I be embarassed and be told that it’s already been done?)

  255. I will just stay away from vista. I certainly can’t see any important reason to replace my current XP install with it right now, and Vista will get ‘mandatory’ in 5 or 6 years so I have plenty of time to find myself a laptop with a volume control for its speakers.

  256. I will just stay away from vista. I certainly can’t see any important reason to replace my current XP install with it right now, and Vista will get ‘mandatory’ in 5 or 6 years so I have plenty of time to find myself a laptop with a volume control for its speakers.

  257. If a hacker comes up with a way to replace the sound, I’d pay them for one with a pig squealing.

    Yeah, one sound may be a small thing, but to me it is also a sign of how ms plans on treating me as a customer. When they have to be convinced to give me control of my pc, when they decide how I should experience my pc, it says a lot.

  258. If a hacker comes up with a way to replace the sound, I’d pay them for one with a pig squealing.

    Yeah, one sound may be a small thing, but to me it is also a sign of how ms plans on treating me as a customer. When they have to be convinced to give me control of my pc, when they decide how I should experience my pc, it says a lot.

  259. I’m not sure if anyone’s mentioned this, but one of the biggest group of customers is business. Sys Admins like Windows due to things like group policy. Imagine telling a Sys Admin that he can’t stop all the computers in an office from playing a startup sound every time an employee boots/reboots their machine?

  260. You wait for the machine to “start up”, not “startup”.

    You “log in” to your machine, not “login”.

    Language matters. Thank you.

  261. I’m not sure if anyone’s mentioned this, but one of the biggest group of customers is business. Sys Admins like Windows due to things like group policy. Imagine telling a Sys Admin that he can’t stop all the computers in an office from playing a startup sound every time an employee boots/reboots their machine?

  262. You wait for the machine to “start up”, not “startup”.

    You “log in” to your machine, not “login”.

    Language matters. Thank you.

  263. Steve Ball,

    Although this is going to sound a lot like ‘me too’, I’m going to voice my agreement with the vast majority of the commenters.

    Setting up the startup sound in such a way that the user has no option control is both a horribly bad idea and shows nothing but outright contempt for your customers (the flatulent bullshit you spout about earphones and volume controls is so irredeemably stupid that the lifetime of the universe would be insufficient to erode it away).

    Your foolish little marketing sounds (and ‘experience’) should be reserved exclusively to advertisements, trade shows, and product displays. It has zero place in the world once the system changes hands to the customer. At that point, the customer has every right in the world to be able to configure their system in whatever manner best suits them.

    I will state this flatly and specifically; if this idiotic example of contempt for your customers remains unalterable in the final version of Vista, I will *NEVER* purchase another version of windows ever again. Period, end of story. If by some remote chance, I acquire a PC with
    Vista installed, I will expunge it and replace it with either linux or Windows XP, whichever is most suitable to the task at hand.

  264. Steve Ball,

    Although this is going to sound a lot like ‘me too’, I’m going to voice my agreement with the vast majority of the commenters.

    Setting up the startup sound in such a way that the user has no option control is both a horribly bad idea and shows nothing but outright contempt for your customers (the flatulent bullshit you spout about earphones and volume controls is so irredeemably stupid that the lifetime of the universe would be insufficient to erode it away).

    Your foolish little marketing sounds (and ‘experience’) should be reserved exclusively to advertisements, trade shows, and product displays. It has zero place in the world once the system changes hands to the customer. At that point, the customer has every right in the world to be able to configure their system in whatever manner best suits them.

    I will state this flatly and specifically; if this idiotic example of contempt for your customers remains unalterable in the final version of Vista, I will *NEVER* purchase another version of windows ever again. Period, end of story. If by some remote chance, I acquire a PC with
    Vista installed, I will expunge it and replace it with either linux or Windows XP, whichever is most suitable to the task at hand.

  265. been using a mac at work for a few years now.
    If I could disable the sound it makes when you push the power button, I would.

    It’s a mac mini by the way, so there’s no way to turn down the built in speaker prior to logging in.

  266. been using a mac at work for a few years now.
    If I could disable the sound it makes when you push the power button, I would.

    It’s a mac mini by the way, so there’s no way to turn down the built in speaker prior to logging in.

  267. As an additional point, if a hack to replace this travesty becomes available (which will happen at about 0.08 microseconds after release of Vista), I will make it my duty to distribute that hack in as broad a fashion as humanly possible.

  268. As an additional point, if a hack to replace this travesty becomes available (which will happen at about 0.08 microseconds after release of Vista), I will make it my duty to distribute that hack in as broad a fashion as humanly possible.

  269. Just because “the Mac has a startup sound” does not make it ok to be mandatory on Windows. Personally, I prefer that my computer NOT have any alert or notification sounds. Forcing a sound scheme on me is a departure from the customizable, user-oriented experience which I prefer.

    As a consumer concerned with a customizable environment, this would convince me to stay away from Vista. I could ride Windows XP until its end, and then or before transition to Linux or Solaris.

    As it stands now, I spend a considerable amount of time disabling many of the automatic “features” of Windows XP, anyway: removable device auto-play, scanning of media for dimension, duration, and other data, and more. It irritates me that I have not been able to disable Windows Media Player’s automatic scan of a USB stick used for software and data, interrupting whatever videa I am watching or music to which I am listening — because of this I use alternative media players.

  270. Just when you think that Microsoft’s arrogance has reached a level so profound that any more of it will cause Redmond to disappear into a black hole…..

    Microsoft, understand something. We, the users of Windows, do not give a damn about a branding experience or a spiritual awakening or whatever BS the marketing department comes up with next. We do not run Windows to “experience” it. We run it to use the computer.

    There are countless reasons why someone would want their computer to start silently. It is arrogant and disrespectful to deliberately stymie people who want it to do that.

    The purpose for having the sound is irrelevant. The benefits of the sound are irrelevant. The wonderful things that a user will experience as a result of the sound are irrelevant.

    The computer belongs to me. I paid $1,800 for it. I am the person who will be using it, not the person in Redmond who thinks the sound is just cool as hell.

    If you seriously expect me, or anyone else, to lay out another $200 +/- for this operating system, you will need to understand a simple concept: I am the customer. My preference for having it boot silently trumps all of your reasons for having it boot noisily. My computer, my property, my rules.

    If you cannot grasp this concept, you have no business selling products to consumers.

  271. Just because “the Mac has a startup sound” does not make it ok to be mandatory on Windows. Personally, I prefer that my computer NOT have any alert or notification sounds. Forcing a sound scheme on me is a departure from the customizable, user-oriented experience which I prefer.

    As a consumer concerned with a customizable environment, this would convince me to stay away from Vista. I could ride Windows XP until its end, and then or before transition to Linux or Solaris.

    As it stands now, I spend a considerable amount of time disabling many of the automatic “features” of Windows XP, anyway: removable device auto-play, scanning of media for dimension, duration, and other data, and more. It irritates me that I have not been able to disable Windows Media Player’s automatic scan of a USB stick used for software and data, interrupting whatever videa I am watching or music to which I am listening — because of this I use alternative media players.

  272. Just when you think that Microsoft’s arrogance has reached a level so profound that any more of it will cause Redmond to disappear into a black hole…..

    Microsoft, understand something. We, the users of Windows, do not give a damn about a branding experience or a spiritual awakening or whatever BS the marketing department comes up with next. We do not run Windows to “experience” it. We run it to use the computer.

    There are countless reasons why someone would want their computer to start silently. It is arrogant and disrespectful to deliberately stymie people who want it to do that.

    The purpose for having the sound is irrelevant. The benefits of the sound are irrelevant. The wonderful things that a user will experience as a result of the sound are irrelevant.

    The computer belongs to me. I paid $1,800 for it. I am the person who will be using it, not the person in Redmond who thinks the sound is just cool as hell.

    If you seriously expect me, or anyone else, to lay out another $200 +/- for this operating system, you will need to understand a simple concept: I am the customer. My preference for having it boot silently trumps all of your reasons for having it boot noisily. My computer, my property, my rules.

    If you cannot grasp this concept, you have no business selling products to consumers.

  273. I don’t understand the problem. It appears that most posters on here are fairly techie. My question is, why are you using Windows in the first place?

  274. I don’t understand the problem. It appears that most posters on here are fairly techie. My question is, why are you using Windows in the first place?

  275. [quote]“Did you know that Sony has a built in sound?” he said. ”Did you know that Toshiba has one?”[/quote]

    ahh yes, the old “everybody else does/has, why can’t i/we?”. as much as i hated to hear it from my parents i just have to say: hopefully Sony and Toshiba will jump into the Grand Canyon and Microsoft will feel an uncontrollable desire to follow suit.

    Microsoft seems to think of Windows not as an OS. but more like a feature film, and therefore, “obviously” it needs an intro song or theme song.

    MS seems to take more and more actions to take control of your computer everyday. after all, you run Windows, which you don’t own, but purchase permission from the Almighty themselves to use, why should you feel you have ownership over the machine as well? look at the addition of Digital Rights Restricons that will be a mandatory part of Vista.i know this is marketed as Digital Rights Management, but thank you vey much i don’t need my rights managed for me. i’m an adult, i can manage my rights just fine all by my little self, so please let go of my hand.

    i once found a quote i thought to be very poignant: “In Windows, you can do anything Microsoft wants to let you do. In Unix, you can do anything the computer is able to do.” sums it up quite rather nicely if you ask me.
    i’ve one windows machine in this house and it win 2k pro, and only because i have people here who require it for their studies at uni(who think that the “world runs on Windows”(yeah, i’m sure that’s why they chose windows for all those mainframes at the DoD and Southwestern Bell for their base infrastructure. o wait! no they didn’t. they chose Unix) and the second they don’t need it for Uni i’ll be weaning them off of micrsoft products and having them use Linux(since i feel it’s more of a desktop oriented *nix than BSDs or Solaris. seriously, just look at redhat or novell, the almost-Microsofts of the linux realm(unnecessary services after a default install anyone?))
    no thanks Steve whatever your fucking name is. i’ll stick with my unix-derived systems since i can retain control of MY system(s) and also enjoy the fact that, while i didn’t write the system or software that runs on it, it is given to me, freely at no charge, and i am given ownership of it to do with it as i please(albeit within certain limitations to prevent sick corporate commercial profiteering and corruption).
    you’ll take away my control of my property when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers.

  276. [quote]“Did you know that Sony has a built in sound?” he said. ”Did you know that Toshiba has one?”[/quote]

    ahh yes, the old “everybody else does/has, why can’t i/we?”. as much as i hated to hear it from my parents i just have to say: hopefully Sony and Toshiba will jump into the Grand Canyon and Microsoft will feel an uncontrollable desire to follow suit.

    Microsoft seems to think of Windows not as an OS. but more like a feature film, and therefore, “obviously” it needs an intro song or theme song.

    MS seems to take more and more actions to take control of your computer everyday. after all, you run Windows, which you don’t own, but purchase permission from the Almighty themselves to use, why should you feel you have ownership over the machine as well? look at the addition of Digital Rights Restricons that will be a mandatory part of Vista.i know this is marketed as Digital Rights Management, but thank you vey much i don’t need my rights managed for me. i’m an adult, i can manage my rights just fine all by my little self, so please let go of my hand.

    i once found a quote i thought to be very poignant: “In Windows, you can do anything Microsoft wants to let you do. In Unix, you can do anything the computer is able to do.” sums it up quite rather nicely if you ask me.
    i’ve one windows machine in this house and it win 2k pro, and only because i have people here who require it for their studies at uni(who think that the “world runs on Windows”(yeah, i’m sure that’s why they chose windows for all those mainframes at the DoD and Southwestern Bell for their base infrastructure. o wait! no they didn’t. they chose Unix) and the second they don’t need it for Uni i’ll be weaning them off of micrsoft products and having them use Linux(since i feel it’s more of a desktop oriented *nix than BSDs or Solaris. seriously, just look at redhat or novell, the almost-Microsofts of the linux realm(unnecessary services after a default install anyone?))
    no thanks Steve whatever your fucking name is. i’ll stick with my unix-derived systems since i can retain control of MY system(s) and also enjoy the fact that, while i didn’t write the system or software that runs on it, it is given to me, freely at no charge, and i am given ownership of it to do with it as i please(albeit within certain limitations to prevent sick corporate commercial profiteering and corruption).
    you’ll take away my control of my property when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers.

  277. What’s next, a built in advertisement about how great Microsoft is?
    C’mon we only need a nice operating system because we probably have better music as mp3s than any annoying tune Microsoft can come up with.
    By the way, I prefer Linux to Windows partly because I can tweak it to my preferences.

  278. What’s next, a built in advertisement about how great Microsoft is?
    C’mon we only need a nice operating system because we probably have better music as mp3s than any annoying tune Microsoft can come up with.
    By the way, I prefer Linux to Windows partly because I can tweak it to my preferences.

  279. I could care less about Microsoft’s, or anyone else’s for that matter, attempts to brand anything. Hard wiring the computer to make sounds is a sure way to irritate their customer. Now that I know Apple does this with their computer, I’m less likely to consider their products unless the machine can be silenced.

    I seriously feel that the problem with Microsoft is that they are too enamored with their own cleverness that they’ve lost touch with reality. Yes, they make hoards of money, but they annoy most everyone with it in the process with their clever ideas and products that over complicate the simplest of tasks.

    Businesses tend to forget that it was their product, but once I pay money for it, it becomes mine. Yes I know that the license for Microsoft’s software is only a license to use it as opposed to a transfer of ownership, please keep in mind that this is a discussion of principals as opposed to legal hair splitting. My computer, my sounds, mine to control and do what I want with it. That is the reason I purchase it.

    Taking all that I’ve heard about Vista into account, I think I’ll pass on this new version. There are plenty of other OS’s, and programs for that matter, that take into account the real people using them as opposed to some committee reviewed and branded version of what they think a users experience should be.

  280. I could care less about Microsoft’s, or anyone else’s for that matter, attempts to brand anything. Hard wiring the computer to make sounds is a sure way to irritate their customer. Now that I know Apple does this with their computer, I’m less likely to consider their products unless the machine can be silenced.

    I seriously feel that the problem with Microsoft is that they are too enamored with their own cleverness that they’ve lost touch with reality. Yes, they make hoards of money, but they annoy most everyone with it in the process with their clever ideas and products that over complicate the simplest of tasks.

    Businesses tend to forget that it was their product, but once I pay money for it, it becomes mine. Yes I know that the license for Microsoft’s software is only a license to use it as opposed to a transfer of ownership, please keep in mind that this is a discussion of principals as opposed to legal hair splitting. My computer, my sounds, mine to control and do what I want with it. That is the reason I purchase it.

    Taking all that I’ve heard about Vista into account, I think I’ll pass on this new version. There are plenty of other OS’s, and programs for that matter, that take into account the real people using them as opposed to some committee reviewed and branded version of what they think a users experience should be.

  281. In a related story, Linus announced today that the 2.8 series kernel will play the theme from Three’s Company over the PC speaker once the system is ready to use. Come and knock on our dooooor.

  282. In a related story, Linus announced today that the 2.8 series kernel will play the theme from Three’s Company over the PC speaker once the system is ready to use. Come and knock on our dooooor.

  283. Having converted to using a Mac after using Windows for over a decade, I can tell you that the lack of stupid sounds coming out of the Mac alone makes them more suitable for AV work.

    I’ve done stuff with both platforms involving video editing, audio, live playback over a huge PA system. With Windows I was always paranoid that some stupid sound or another would blast through the speakers, even after turning off every single sound. With the Mac, this is so intelligently implemented I was shocked.

    By default, the Mac routes all “real” sounds like an mp3 player or QuickTime to the main audio interface. Although you could change it if you want, the Mac routes all its other little system sounds (like emptying the trash can, etc.) to the built-in speaker (which is way better than a built-in PC speaker). Of course, you can turn any and all of these things off and route them in the reverse order or anything else you like.

    The point is, I have confidence that plugging my Mac into a PA system will not embarass me in front of hundreds or thousands of people. I can’t really say that about Windows, and this new change is definitely a move in the wrong direction.

    As an aside, one of the reasons I shelled out the extra money to switch to the Mac in the first place is that I think Windows has been headed in the wrong direction for years. XP was worse than Windows 2000, and Vista looks like it’s going to be worse than XP. On this side of the fence, every subsequent release of OS X has been better (and more efficient on the same hardware) than the one before it.

    Finally, I think this video is becoming more and more accurate each day: Microsoft Re-Designs the Ipod Packaging.

  284. Having converted to using a Mac after using Windows for over a decade, I can tell you that the lack of stupid sounds coming out of the Mac alone makes them more suitable for AV work.

    I’ve done stuff with both platforms involving video editing, audio, live playback over a huge PA system. With Windows I was always paranoid that some stupid sound or another would blast through the speakers, even after turning off every single sound. With the Mac, this is so intelligently implemented I was shocked.

    By default, the Mac routes all “real” sounds like an mp3 player or QuickTime to the main audio interface. Although you could change it if you want, the Mac routes all its other little system sounds (like emptying the trash can, etc.) to the built-in speaker (which is way better than a built-in PC speaker). Of course, you can turn any and all of these things off and route them in the reverse order or anything else you like.

    The point is, I have confidence that plugging my Mac into a PA system will not embarass me in front of hundreds or thousands of people. I can’t really say that about Windows, and this new change is definitely a move in the wrong direction.

    As an aside, one of the reasons I shelled out the extra money to switch to the Mac in the first place is that I think Windows has been headed in the wrong direction for years. XP was worse than Windows 2000, and Vista looks like it’s going to be worse than XP. On this side of the fence, every subsequent release of OS X has been better (and more efficient on the same hardware) than the one before it.

    Finally, I think this video is becoming more and more accurate each day: Microsoft Re-Designs the Ipod Packaging.

  285. I’ve used Windows since version 2. I’ve also in recent years moved more and more onto OSX for personal things other than gaming, and to Linux for servers because of.

    This is the kind of crap that has caused it. I find myself fondly reminiscing about back when people were entrusted with the ability to set Windows up to work the best for THEM. It seems that with every release of Windows there’s less and less that can be done to it. Some time ago the ability to remove the web browser went away, with XP removal of Outlook Express and Windows Messenger has become an annoyance, and with Vista it’s now being stated that I won’t be able to turn off the annoying startup sound…

    Is this some kind of joke?

    Do you hate your customers? Or do you think they’re all too stupid to make their own decisions about what they want the computer they bought to do?

    My machines post. In the 26 years I’ve been using computers I’ve come to find this sound comforting. This includes the standard PC speaker beep, Apple’s bong, and even the interesting sound my salvage yard SGI makes. None of them play start up sounds in the OS. I don’t want it, and I will not have it… If I have to fire up a hex editor or download a patch or simply NEVER buy Vista, I won’t be hearing this sound.

    Oh BTW, I work in education, and we disable the start up sound from lab machines due to how disruptive it is… I’ve noticed multiple machines in large corporate offices that I’ve worked in that were configured the same way for the same reason…

    Anyway, hell has frozen over.
    Apple’s shipping Intel-powered boxes, running a mostly Open Source OS that’s reconfigurable to an amazing degree, which is based on UNIX and almost never crashes instead of every 5 minutes, and is selling those boxes for less than a comparable Dell.
    (Now only if they’d release a gamer machine.)

    Microsoft is selling a PPC based console, and has gone from having a very customizable tech friendly OS to selling one that force-bundles unwanted applications (that are often used in cracking system security) that it replaces when the owner of the machine removes, and is inundated with more and more wizards that require wading through 14 screens of crap where a single control panel or two previously sufficed, requiring new digitally signed drivers (Better hope the company that made that PCI card you want to use will release a new driver), and packing on more useless eye-candy than even Apple has the gall to use…

    I swear, the apocalypse must be near.

  286. I’ve used Windows since version 2. I’ve also in recent years moved more and more onto OSX for personal things other than gaming, and to Linux for servers because of.

    This is the kind of crap that has caused it. I find myself fondly reminiscing about back when people were entrusted with the ability to set Windows up to work the best for THEM. It seems that with every release of Windows there’s less and less that can be done to it. Some time ago the ability to remove the web browser went away, with XP removal of Outlook Express and Windows Messenger has become an annoyance, and with Vista it’s now being stated that I won’t be able to turn off the annoying startup sound…

    Is this some kind of joke?

    Do you hate your customers? Or do you think they’re all too stupid to make their own decisions about what they want the computer they bought to do?

    My machines post. In the 26 years I’ve been using computers I’ve come to find this sound comforting. This includes the standard PC speaker beep, Apple’s bong, and even the interesting sound my salvage yard SGI makes. None of them play start up sounds in the OS. I don’t want it, and I will not have it… If I have to fire up a hex editor or download a patch or simply NEVER buy Vista, I won’t be hearing this sound.

    Oh BTW, I work in education, and we disable the start up sound from lab machines due to how disruptive it is… I’ve noticed multiple machines in large corporate offices that I’ve worked in that were configured the same way for the same reason…

    Anyway, hell has frozen over.
    Apple’s shipping Intel-powered boxes, running a mostly Open Source OS that’s reconfigurable to an amazing degree, which is based on UNIX and almost never crashes instead of every 5 minutes, and is selling those boxes for less than a comparable Dell.
    (Now only if they’d release a gamer machine.)

    Microsoft is selling a PPC based console, and has gone from having a very customizable tech friendly OS to selling one that force-bundles unwanted applications (that are often used in cracking system security) that it replaces when the owner of the machine removes, and is inundated with more and more wizards that require wading through 14 screens of crap where a single control panel or two previously sufficed, requiring new digitally signed drivers (Better hope the company that made that PCI card you want to use will release a new driver), and packing on more useless eye-candy than even Apple has the gall to use…

    I swear, the apocalypse must be near.

  287. If I can’t change it, I don’t want it (and I won’t let work purchase it, since I make those kind of decisions) Bye bye VLK Customer….

  288. If I can’t change it, I don’t want it (and I won’t let work purchase it, since I make those kind of decisions) Bye bye VLK Customer….

  289. Oh for heaven’s sake…

    “A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react”

    There’s nothing remotely “spiritual” about branding — it’s painful for everyone involved. And I’m not talking about cattle — though that’s apparently what Microsoft thinks of its customers as being.

    Four years overdue for a product, and they’re trying to use pop psychology and new age mysticism to get us to be happy about swallowing a bucketful of dreck. If it has pretty lights and cool sounds, maybe we won’t notice just how awful the whole thing is.

    Back in the day, a product like this would have been laughed out a retail store, and the product manager at a self-respecting computer manufacturer would have hung up on the sales rep. Game companies used to get away with it, then reality bit them in the rear (anyone remember the “creative vacations” that Atari and others sent their development teams on?)

    The worst part about it is that if the Microsoft’s execs chose to, they could put out a really good product that wouldn’t need all the doodads. Talk about a wasted opportunity, and a pile of wasted money — and a lot of wasted years.

  290. Oh for heaven’s sake…

    “A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react”

    There’s nothing remotely “spiritual” about branding — it’s painful for everyone involved. And I’m not talking about cattle — though that’s apparently what Microsoft thinks of its customers as being.

    Four years overdue for a product, and they’re trying to use pop psychology and new age mysticism to get us to be happy about swallowing a bucketful of dreck. If it has pretty lights and cool sounds, maybe we won’t notice just how awful the whole thing is.

    Back in the day, a product like this would have been laughed out a retail store, and the product manager at a self-respecting computer manufacturer would have hung up on the sales rep. Game companies used to get away with it, then reality bit them in the rear (anyone remember the “creative vacations” that Atari and others sent their development teams on?)

    The worst part about it is that if the Microsoft’s execs chose to, they could put out a really good product that wouldn’t need all the doodads. Talk about a wasted opportunity, and a pile of wasted money — and a lot of wasted years.

  291. This is the reason I don’t turn my machine of at all just not to hear this damnd sound everytime, this would cause many people to become enviromentaly unfriendly, wasting electricity because they don’t want to hear this sound….

  292. This is the reason I don’t turn my machine of at all just not to hear this damnd sound everytime, this would cause many people to become enviromentaly unfriendly, wasting electricity because they don’t want to hear this sound….

  293. This has to be joke or some Psych 101 ‘study’.

    There is actually a debate in MS on whether to force users to have sound?

    This is probably one of hundreds of conversations going on at MS on what should be disabled for the user. This isn’t a good sign.

    I guess it’s time to start looking at Linux as an option. (Yes, I’m serious.)

  294. This has to be joke or some Psych 101 ‘study’.

    There is actually a debate in MS on whether to force users to have sound?

    This is probably one of hundreds of conversations going on at MS on what should be disabled for the user. This isn’t a good sign.

    I guess it’s time to start looking at Linux as an option. (Yes, I’m serious.)

  295. Man, what a completely idiotic crock of shit! And for Scoble to get all apologetic about this reminds me of a tongue up an ass.

    There is NO LEGITMATE reason for this kind of gross, utter, stupidity. If Microsquish thinks that ass raping their customers is a valid business process, they should only die in a fire.

    The only honourable solution is for Steve Ball to commit seppuku.

  296. Man, what a completely idiotic crock of shit! And for Scoble to get all apologetic about this reminds me of a tongue up an ass.

    There is NO LEGITMATE reason for this kind of gross, utter, stupidity. If Microsquish thinks that ass raping their customers is a valid business process, they should only die in a fire.

    The only honourable solution is for Steve Ball to commit seppuku.

  297. I can give one more very good reason to not have a startup sound that cannot be turned off:

    Federal judges. I’m an attorney and if I’m bringing my laptop into court (powerpoint for the jury, etc), the judge will hang me out to dry if my laptop is making noises. Trust me, judges have no sense of humor when it comes to their courtrooms. This alone would convince me to go Mac.

  298. What’s the bet this is all a marketing ploy by MS to draw attention to Vista… and when they graciously accede to user demands to remove, or add a disabling function for the startup sound, everyone will be so grateful they’ll all go out and buy new Windows machines?

    Additionally. Almost everyone commenting here feels strongly about this issue. That said, if someone’s already said something that you wanted to say, bite down on the impulse to jump up on your soapbox, and just shut up. Even if you could have said it better.

    For reference! People have already mentioned:

    * The startup sound on Macs and other systems that have been around for a while
    * How the aforementioned startup sound is usually more useful/customisable/disable-able than what’s being proposed for Vista
    * How much Microsoft suck
    * Sleeping babies, ladies, etc.
    * Libraries, lecture halls, seminars, airplanes, etc.

    A note on the latter. With the current political atmosphere affecting homeland security systems and processes in most countries, it’s doubtful you’ll even be able to take your laptop onto a plane with you in the first place. :)

    Finally, I agree. It’s a small issue, but it’s one that will resonate with and disturb the wider computer-using community for quite a few years to come. And it’s a simple matter of deciding ‘yes’ or ‘no’, and if you need a whole team of consultants to help you pick which one is best, you’ve no common sense of your own.

  299. I can give one more very good reason to not have a startup sound that cannot be turned off:

    Federal judges. I’m an attorney and if I’m bringing my laptop into court (powerpoint for the jury, etc), the judge will hang me out to dry if my laptop is making noises. Trust me, judges have no sense of humor when it comes to their courtrooms. This alone would convince me to go Mac.

  300. What’s the bet this is all a marketing ploy by MS to draw attention to Vista… and when they graciously accede to user demands to remove, or add a disabling function for the startup sound, everyone will be so grateful they’ll all go out and buy new Windows machines?

    Additionally. Almost everyone commenting here feels strongly about this issue. That said, if someone’s already said something that you wanted to say, bite down on the impulse to jump up on your soapbox, and just shut up. Even if you could have said it better.

    For reference! People have already mentioned:

    * The startup sound on Macs and other systems that have been around for a while
    * How the aforementioned startup sound is usually more useful/customisable/disable-able than what’s being proposed for Vista
    * How much Microsoft suck
    * Sleeping babies, ladies, etc.
    * Libraries, lecture halls, seminars, airplanes, etc.

    A note on the latter. With the current political atmosphere affecting homeland security systems and processes in most countries, it’s doubtful you’ll even be able to take your laptop onto a plane with you in the first place. :)

    Finally, I agree. It’s a small issue, but it’s one that will resonate with and disturb the wider computer-using community for quite a few years to come. And it’s a simple matter of deciding ‘yes’ or ‘no’, and if you need a whole team of consultants to help you pick which one is best, you’ve no common sense of your own.

  301. The laptop at the wedding last weekend with no hardware volume controls was fun…

    MAKE AN OPTION TO TURN THE SOUND OFF.

    Apparently nobody on the Vista team who travels with a laptop was consulted on this matter?

  302. The laptop at the wedding last weekend with no hardware volume controls was fun…

    MAKE AN OPTION TO TURN THE SOUND OFF.

    Apparently nobody on the Vista team who travels with a laptop was consulted on this matter?

  303. “A spiritual side of the branding experience.” You have got to be kidding me. The product defines the brand, not the other way around. All the branding the bullshit peddlers (marketing dept.) push is useless if the product sucks. Conversely, a great product doesn’t need a “spiritual side of branding” to speak for it. It speaks for itself. Step away from the Prozac and get your nose to the grindstone. What incredible hubris to be spend so much time and money on such an inconsequential piece of the puzzle. You will not sell one extra unit for all of your agonizing over the startup sound. Steve,quit investing your ego in such trivial pursuits.

  304. “A spiritual side of the branding experience.” You have got to be kidding me. The product defines the brand, not the other way around. All the branding the bullshit peddlers (marketing dept.) push is useless if the product sucks. Conversely, a great product doesn’t need a “spiritual side of branding” to speak for it. It speaks for itself. Step away from the Prozac and get your nose to the grindstone. What incredible hubris to be spend so much time and money on such an inconsequential piece of the puzzle. You will not sell one extra unit for all of your agonizing over the startup sound. Steve,quit investing your ego in such trivial pursuits.

  305. Everytime I read and hear about another Windows Vista report I am hating it MORE and MORE .

    If you just deleted the sound file that would probly fix the FORCE sound startup.

    Personaly I think it would be great if Microoft brought out a NEW range of OS targeted software

    eg Vista for the Newbies/people that dont want to learn how to use a pc

    eg Insert name – for the ADVANCE USERS

    eg Server 2003 or server 2008 ??? An OS that is a SERRVER , DOESNT HAVE direct X, etc CANT BE used for gaming

    The OS’s also eed to be configrable like back in win98days

    I would like to see the option to REMOVE IE, REMOVE MSN, REMOVE MESSAGER , REMOVE OE , ask windows to search a directory for manafactored drivers

    So much more needs to be mentioned and Ive probly bloged it in the past , but honesty i doubt microsoft care about customers unless their are newbie market

    Thank you for Portable freeware and opensource and Nlite & XPY for makign windows useable

  306. Everytime I read and hear about another Windows Vista report I am hating it MORE and MORE .

    If you just deleted the sound file that would probly fix the FORCE sound startup.

    Personaly I think it would be great if Microoft brought out a NEW range of OS targeted software

    eg Vista for the Newbies/people that dont want to learn how to use a pc

    eg Insert name – for the ADVANCE USERS

    eg Server 2003 or server 2008 ??? An OS that is a SERRVER , DOESNT HAVE direct X, etc CANT BE used for gaming

    The OS’s also eed to be configrable like back in win98days

    I would like to see the option to REMOVE IE, REMOVE MSN, REMOVE MESSAGER , REMOVE OE , ask windows to search a directory for manafactored drivers

    So much more needs to be mentioned and Ive probly bloged it in the past , but honesty i doubt microsoft care about customers unless their are newbie market

    Thank you for Portable freeware and opensource and Nlite & XPY for makign windows useable

  307. Taking away the control of the startup sound is taking away one of the coolest controls we have over our computers. Or at least the coolest control back when we first could change the startup sound.

    Or they could try and make the speech recognition software repeat what it hears. That could be a funny sound.

  308. Taking away the control of the startup sound is taking away one of the coolest controls we have over our computers. Or at least the coolest control back when we first could change the startup sound.

    Or they could try and make the speech recognition software repeat what it hears. That could be a funny sound.

  309. Microsoft would be better off seperating Windows sounds from media playback (seperate volume controls) or making them quieter (so you can have sounds, but not have them blow your speakers, and your ears, when listening to music).

  310. Microsoft would be better off seperating Windows sounds from media playback (seperate volume controls) or making them quieter (so you can have sounds, but not have them blow your speakers, and your ears, when listening to music).

  311. Dee Ddeee Dee….Microsoft. The Sony example sucks, I don’t use my video camera 10 hours a day and have to reboot it at least 2. I don’t want to hear anything. ANYTHING. No clicks, no songs, jingles.. nothing.

    Stop. Shut up.

  312. Dee Ddeee Dee….Microsoft. The Sony example sucks, I don’t use my video camera 10 hours a day and have to reboot it at least 2. I don’t want to hear anything. ANYTHING. No clicks, no songs, jingles.. nothing.

    Stop. Shut up.

  313. Now the first time I’m using headphones and this sound starts up and is to loud on my laptop (max volume), I’ll be grabbing a product liability lawyer and pursuing a product liablity suit for hearing damage.

    Personally, there is no reason to hard code a sound check into an operating system like Windows, unlike Apple, which I assume is in their bios equivelent, because how many systems will fail to boot properly because they don’t have a sound card?

  314. Now the first time I’m using headphones and this sound starts up and is to loud on my laptop (max volume), I’ll be grabbing a product liability lawyer and pursuing a product liablity suit for hearing damage.

    Personally, there is no reason to hard code a sound check into an operating system like Windows, unlike Apple, which I assume is in their bios equivelent, because how many systems will fail to boot properly because they don’t have a sound card?

  315. I don’t like startup sounds. Every time I walk into a classroom full of laptops, I have to hear that stupid startup sound 23 times.

    I will admit there are user benefits to having the sound. However, not having an option to turn it off presents NO USER BENEFITS. The ONLY reason to mandate that it is on is to “benefit” Microsoft and their brand recognition.

    If you give no option to turn it off, you tick off half of your users. If you give an option, then everybody is happy (except the marketing people and lawyers, but who cares about them?).

  316. I don’t like startup sounds. Every time I walk into a classroom full of laptops, I have to hear that stupid startup sound 23 times.

    I will admit there are user benefits to having the sound. However, not having an option to turn it off presents NO USER BENEFITS. The ONLY reason to mandate that it is on is to “benefit” Microsoft and their brand recognition.

    If you give no option to turn it off, you tick off half of your users. If you give an option, then everybody is happy (except the marketing people and lawyers, but who cares about them?).

  317. Welcome to Microsoft marketing, the land of clue free ass trolls.

    How much do you want to bet that Steve Ball is crying in his mind about the vast number of people who don’t ‘understand’ the dynamics of customer disdain (what they call marketing).

    The fact that a marketing dweeb not only wants you to be exposed to their ‘spiritual’ marketing campaign, they want to *force* you to be exposed to it, just tells me that these people have completely lost touch with reality, in any way, shape, or form.

    Tell you what, Steve. When you get a cochlear implant that plays the Vista startup sound 75 times a minute into your brain, day in and day out, I’ll give all due consideration to the merest possibility of allowing *MY* computer to play that sound every once in a while (at Christmas, when I’m on an expedition in the arctic looking for landsharks).

  318. Welcome to Microsoft marketing, the land of clue free ass trolls.

    How much do you want to bet that Steve Ball is crying in his mind about the vast number of people who don’t ‘understand’ the dynamics of customer disdain (what they call marketing).

    The fact that a marketing dweeb not only wants you to be exposed to their ‘spiritual’ marketing campaign, they want to *force* you to be exposed to it, just tells me that these people have completely lost touch with reality, in any way, shape, or form.

    Tell you what, Steve. When you get a cochlear implant that plays the Vista startup sound 75 times a minute into your brain, day in and day out, I’ll give all due consideration to the merest possibility of allowing *MY* computer to play that sound every once in a while (at Christmas, when I’m on an expedition in the arctic looking for landsharks).

  319. If you want to have an OS that is fully customizable and doesn’t include “spiritual experiences” designed by a marketing team, get an OS with open source instead.

  320. If you want to have an OS that is fully customizable and doesn’t include “spiritual experiences” designed by a marketing team, get an OS with open source instead.

  321. I can tell you that 100 laptops booting up in my law school classes will piss my professors off pretty bad. Now that I think about it, I can just picture turning on my laptop in the law library with a sound like that and get the bird from everyone in the room.

  322. I can tell you that 100 laptops booting up in my law school classes will piss my professors off pretty bad. Now that I think about it, I can just picture turning on my laptop in the law library with a sound like that and get the bird from everyone in the room.

  323. You’re not going to like the feedback of everyone with a screaming baby.

    This isn’t a brand experience. This is a blocking bug in the new Windows sound system.

    This is a reason for people NOT to upgrade to Vista. You don’t want another one of those.

    If you don’t provide a means to turn it off, I will.

  324. You’re not going to like the feedback of everyone with a screaming baby.

    This isn’t a brand experience. This is a blocking bug in the new Windows sound system.

    This is a reason for people NOT to upgrade to Vista. You don’t want another one of those.

    If you don’t provide a means to turn it off, I will.

  325. I even hate the Xbox startup sound. I only want my computer to make noises when I tell it to.

    And why the hell do I want to wait for the computer to boot up? DOS was able to boot in SECONDS with minimal system requirements and no sounds, so now with all the lightning-fast computers with all that RAM and so on, why does it take a freakin’ hour for the Microsoft OS to be ready for login?

    Stop doing such sloppy-ass programing, and leave my system resources for real applications – not crappy “wake up the user” sounds. – and get rid of the freaking “virtual memory” page file crap.

  326. I even hate the Xbox startup sound. I only want my computer to make noises when I tell it to.

    And why the hell do I want to wait for the computer to boot up? DOS was able to boot in SECONDS with minimal system requirements and no sounds, so now with all the lightning-fast computers with all that RAM and so on, why does it take a freakin’ hour for the Microsoft OS to be ready for login?

    Stop doing such sloppy-ass programing, and leave my system resources for real applications – not crappy “wake up the user” sounds. – and get rid of the freaking “virtual memory” page file crap.

  327. Sorry mate,

    A mandatory windows startup sound that can’t be shut off is bloody stupid – and rather than call Steve (and Microsoft) stupid as well, I will simply observe that this is the height of arrogance. They are so sure that they know best that don’t even plan on giving us the option to turn it off!

    The only tolerable thing about most of Microsoft’s bright ideas over the last 10 years is that we always had the ability to turn them off and customize the interface as we saw fit!

  328. Sorry mate,

    A mandatory windows startup sound that can’t be shut off is bloody stupid – and rather than call Steve (and Microsoft) stupid as well, I will simply observe that this is the height of arrogance. They are so sure that they know best that don’t even plan on giving us the option to turn it off!

    The only tolerable thing about most of Microsoft’s bright ideas over the last 10 years is that we always had the ability to turn them off and customize the interface as we saw fit!

  329. I think I’ve found a solution to shut this sound off… what about a big hammer on Windows Vista workstation?

    Hey guys, give a look around… this is just the beginning.

    Let’s try to download some .iso image like ubuntu one. It’s a live distro too, it’s not needed to install it. Just try that.
    If you’ll like it, and you’ll switch to linux, you can be sure you’ll keep the freedom to decide what your computer has to do.

    Otherwise, good luck.

  330. I think I’ve found a solution to shut this sound off… what about a big hammer on Windows Vista workstation?

    Hey guys, give a look around… this is just the beginning.

    Let’s try to download some .iso image like ubuntu one. It’s a live distro too, it’s not needed to install it. Just try that.
    If you’ll like it, and you’ll switch to linux, you can be sure you’ll keep the freedom to decide what your computer has to do.

    Otherwise, good luck.

  331. OK, I don’t get the justification at all. What’s this “if you go get a bowl of cereal while you are cold booting” all about? Isn’t Vista supposed to boot more quickly than XP? If I can even get the milk and cereal onto the countertop after I press the power button on a laptop on my kitchen table, I wouldn’t consider it quick, let alone being able to pour it all into a bowl and eat it! Are they trying to tell us that Vista is going to be slower than XP?

  332. OK, I don’t get the justification at all. What’s this “if you go get a bowl of cereal while you are cold booting” all about? Isn’t Vista supposed to boot more quickly than XP? If I can even get the milk and cereal onto the countertop after I press the power button on a laptop on my kitchen table, I wouldn’t consider it quick, let alone being able to pour it all into a bowl and eat it! Are they trying to tell us that Vista is going to be slower than XP?

  333. [...] I have been using IBM (now Lenovo) Thinkpads for a long time now (10 years, which in IT means just about forever ). And there are features I still make me choose them over other laptops. But this article in Robert Scoble’s blog made me remember another nice feature not all laptops posess: an almost physical mute button. “Almost” because it’s controlled by the BIOS (or rather the so-called embedded controller, which is a piece of hardware under the control but functioning separately from the BIOS), but since it works independant of any OS, or even without an OS, it’s really neat and “feels” like hardware. [...]

  334. Why don’t they just go and turn on the keyboard click again too. I could just imagine a office of 80 workers all with click click click going all day long…..

  335. Why don’t they just go and turn on the keyboard click again too. I could just imagine a office of 80 workers all with click click click going all day long…..

  336. >Microsoft is every day more Orwellian. Next thing will be forcing a wallpaper with a smiling photo of Bill Gates watching you.

    I can see the rationale now:

    1. A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now conscious and ready to react. You can log in to your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your OS is loading will then this gentle image will appear telling you that you can start using your machine. You won’t need to wait for your machine to log in, he says.

    2. Graphical control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The desktop background is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine. Let’s say you didn’t turn on your monitor, and you don’t see your wallpaper, you know you aren’t ready to look at stuff. The Xbox has a hard-wired background. There is one way to turn it off: to turn off the TV connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.

    Ugh. Marketing.

  337. >Microsoft is every day more Orwellian. Next thing will be forcing a wallpaper with a smiling photo of Bill Gates watching you.

    I can see the rationale now:

    1. A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now conscious and ready to react. You can log in to your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your OS is loading will then this gentle image will appear telling you that you can start using your machine. You won’t need to wait for your machine to log in, he says.

    2. Graphical control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The desktop background is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine. Let’s say you didn’t turn on your monitor, and you don’t see your wallpaper, you know you aren’t ready to look at stuff. The Xbox has a hard-wired background. There is one way to turn it off: to turn off the TV connected to your Xbox. Same will be true for Windows Vista.

    Ugh. Marketing.

  338. I hate Nanny Os’s. While I understand the need to protect Newbies from themselves (I personally know someone who deleted their Windows directory), taking control from the advanced user ticks me right off (my biggest beef with IE is actually the fact that
    I can’t get rid of it).

    I know when my computer is on and ready to use- I can see it with my eyes.

    @ Achilles and Zeno: I would, but there are very few games for it, and no Photoshop (Yes, I’ve used GIMP- it’s not the same).

  339. I hate Nanny Os’s. While I understand the need to protect Newbies from themselves (I personally know someone who deleted their Windows directory), taking control from the advanced user ticks me right off (my biggest beef with IE is actually the fact that
    I can’t get rid of it).

    I know when my computer is on and ready to use- I can see it with my eyes.

    @ Achilles and Zeno: I would, but there are very few games for it, and no Photoshop (Yes, I’ve used GIMP- it’s not the same).

  340. don’t be greedy, do what the customer wants, or i will not be happy. shit not like im gonna use a mac tho. steve jobs did too much lsd.

  341. After purchasing Windows XP it quickly became apparent that it was impossible to theme the login screen (the XP default appearance is positively ugly, and yet I must look at it, albeit briefly, everyday as I login).

    If the decision is made to facilitate disabling or changing this proposed startup sound, for consistency I can only recommend that re-theming the whole login screen be possible.

    I don’t particularly mind the idea of a hard wired login screen sound – actually, I think I quite like it. These days, your PC isn’t really ‘yours’ until you’ve logged in.

    I do however think if aspects of the login screen become customisable, then this should be implemented properly and consistently. It makes no sense to me that one can change the audio experience, and not the visual.

    As a disclaimer I should point out I work in videogame audio.

  342. After purchasing Windows XP it quickly became apparent that it was impossible to theme the login screen (the XP default appearance is positively ugly, and yet I must look at it, albeit briefly, everyday as I login).

    If the decision is made to facilitate disabling or changing this proposed startup sound, for consistency I can only recommend that re-theming the whole login screen be possible.

    I don’t particularly mind the idea of a hard wired login screen sound – actually, I think I quite like it. These days, your PC isn’t really ‘yours’ until you’ve logged in.

    I do however think if aspects of the login screen become customisable, then this should be implemented properly and consistently. It makes no sense to me that one can change the audio experience, and not the visual.

    As a disclaimer I should point out I work in videogame audio.

  343. Regarding the sound on the Mac startup…. it is not the same as what some people are comenting here.

    That sound comes out of the system speaker only. I run a pro setup using an Echo Layla 24/96 for sound in/out. The Mac startup sound, which is easily disabled, only happens from the system speaker, and *never* from the configured sound devices other than that system speaker. The Mac treats the bootup sound like the PC does the “beep” when the bios kicks in.

    In other words, there is no chance the system startup sound will blow the neighbors away at 140 db on the Mac, because it only goes through the small speaker on the case, and it is disablable. Hell you could cut that speaker wire if you are using a sound card anyway!

    This windows (alta)Vista thing… if I had to hear my computer play some stupid noise every time I booted it… I would boot it to the sidewalk and never use it again. But it will have to wait to be seen if it goes only out the system speaker, or if it goes out the sound card. If it is just the system speaker, I’m sure you know how wire cutters work.

  344. Regarding the sound on the Mac startup…. it is not the same as what some people are comenting here.

    That sound comes out of the system speaker only. I run a pro setup using an Echo Layla 24/96 for sound in/out. The Mac startup sound, which is easily disabled, only happens from the system speaker, and *never* from the configured sound devices other than that system speaker. The Mac treats the bootup sound like the PC does the “beep” when the bios kicks in.

    In other words, there is no chance the system startup sound will blow the neighbors away at 140 db on the Mac, because it only goes through the small speaker on the case, and it is disablable. Hell you could cut that speaker wire if you are using a sound card anyway!

    This windows (alta)Vista thing… if I had to hear my computer play some stupid noise every time I booted it… I would boot it to the sidewalk and never use it again. But it will have to wait to be seen if it goes only out the system speaker, or if it goes out the sound card. If it is just the system speaker, I’m sure you know how wire cutters work.

  345. I cannot believe this story. I have only one response to it: if I cannot turn off the Windows startup sound, easily and WITHOUT the registry, I will NOT BUY Vista. That’s it.

    Steve Ball, stick to playing your musical instruments, you hippy.

  346. I cannot believe this story. I have only one response to it: if I cannot turn off the Windows startup sound, easily and WITHOUT the registry, I will NOT BUY Vista. That’s it.

    Steve Ball, stick to playing your musical instruments, you hippy.

  347. I’m thinking that the “unstoppable startup cacophony” of vista will enjoy the same sort of public acceptance that clippy did. With the exception of a few easily impressed bobble-head users who actually enjoyed the stupid thing, clippy’s single greatest contribution to user experience was the minor abbreviation of the learning curve incurred when people were forced to explore the UI in their crusade to get rid of the damned thing.

    As anyone who has ever come in late to a meeting with a laptop can tell you… or anyone who has ever been halfway through a meeting when some doofus PHB deigns to grace the room with their presence can tell you… startup sounds are a supreme annoyance.

    Frankly, with a number of the new UI features, Redmond has already given the Mac community enough reasons to mock vista as being “what OSX would look like on Bizarro world”. Why not let Apple have the honor of being the only platform with an unconfigurable startup noise? Users have come to expect that behavior from gaming consoles and Macs, and I’m a more satisfied Windows user because of it.

    Either way, I’m not too concerned. It’s a proposed OS feature, and I doubt very much that I won’t be able to circumvent it. I just wish I wouldn’t have too.

  348. I’m thinking that the “unstoppable startup cacophony” of vista will enjoy the same sort of public acceptance that clippy did. With the exception of a few easily impressed bobble-head users who actually enjoyed the stupid thing, clippy’s single greatest contribution to user experience was the minor abbreviation of the learning curve incurred when people were forced to explore the UI in their crusade to get rid of the damned thing.

    As anyone who has ever come in late to a meeting with a laptop can tell you… or anyone who has ever been halfway through a meeting when some doofus PHB deigns to grace the room with their presence can tell you… startup sounds are a supreme annoyance.

    Frankly, with a number of the new UI features, Redmond has already given the Mac community enough reasons to mock vista as being “what OSX would look like on Bizarro world”. Why not let Apple have the honor of being the only platform with an unconfigurable startup noise? Users have come to expect that behavior from gaming consoles and Macs, and I’m a more satisfied Windows user because of it.

    Either way, I’m not too concerned. It’s a proposed OS feature, and I doubt very much that I won’t be able to circumvent it. I just wish I wouldn’t have too.

  349. I don’t give a fuck about their marketing or their copyrights or any of that shit. I don’t want their crappy sound to play. I hate the XP sound and glad I can turn that crap off. I don’t expect the Vista sound to suck much less so I don’t want that crap on.

    As for the bullshit spin of making sure your computer isn’t muted or what well guess what? If it’s muted I push the fucking unmute button on my Microsoft ™ wireless keyboard and miss half a second from the song I am playing. If that second is important to me I press stop and play it again. This isn’t about doing something for the user, this is about MS getting their own You Got Mail! or Yaaahoooooew.

  350. I don’t give a fuck about their marketing or their copyrights or any of that shit. I don’t want their crappy sound to play. I hate the XP sound and glad I can turn that crap off. I don’t expect the Vista sound to suck much less so I don’t want that crap on.

    As for the bullshit spin of making sure your computer isn’t muted or what well guess what? If it’s muted I push the fucking unmute button on my Microsoft ™ wireless keyboard and miss half a second from the song I am playing. If that second is important to me I press stop and play it again. This isn’t about doing something for the user, this is about MS getting their own You Got Mail! or Yaaahoooooew.

  351. I’ll just write a little code that runs AFTER I’m booted and logged that turns a bit on my unused parallel port. Wire from that to a small bit of eletronics that controls the power to my speaker system. DONE!

    I could even have it play my OWN startup sound when It’s done. hmmmm
    /the smell of wood burning begins to fill the room/

  352. I’ll just write a little code that runs AFTER I’m booted and logged that turns a bit on my unused parallel port. Wire from that to a small bit of eletronics that controls the power to my speaker system. DONE!

    I could even have it play my OWN startup sound when It’s done. hmmmm
    /the smell of wood burning begins to fill the room/

  353. People.. If vista doesn’t allow to change the atartup sound this mean that there’s gona be a second most popular patch ater the crack to make work the pirate version, is going to be the sound patch to silent the damm thing permanently
    Besides that, the two excuses to make it hardwired are lame

  354. People.. If vista doesn’t allow to change the atartup sound this mean that there’s gona be a second most popular patch ater the crack to make work the pirate version, is going to be the sound patch to silent the damm thing permanently
    Besides that, the two excuses to make it hardwired are lame

  355. I find systems startup sounds to be incredibly annoying. All of them, any computer, any OS, and console. It’s entirely needless. It’s like one big “HEY – LISTEN TO MY MARKETING TUNE”, except strangely aimed at the very people who already have the product, and therefore don’t need to be brutalised with the marketing stick.

    Please for the love of God, make it an option. I can’t see corporate clients being very impressed at all.

  356. I find systems startup sounds to be incredibly annoying. All of them, any computer, any OS, and console. It’s entirely needless. It’s like one big “HEY – LISTEN TO MY MARKETING TUNE”, except strangely aimed at the very people who already have the product, and therefore don’t need to be brutalised with the marketing stick.

    Please for the love of God, make it an option. I can’t see corporate clients being very impressed at all.

  357. Doesn’t anyone see how absurd this whole situation is? Instead of being Microsoft’s bitch and begging them to disable this “feature,” why don’t you do the smart thing and not buy their products? It is behavior such as this that allows Microsoft/Windows to maintain its foothold without offering superior products. If you weren’t aware, you’re not required to upgrade … heck – you’re not even required to use Windows.

    I still think Benjamin Franklin said it most effectively:
    Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  358. Doesn’t anyone see how absurd this whole situation is? Instead of being Microsoft’s bitch and begging them to disable this “feature,” why don’t you do the smart thing and not buy their products? It is behavior such as this that allows Microsoft/Windows to maintain its foothold without offering superior products. If you weren’t aware, you’re not required to upgrade … heck – you’re not even required to use Windows.

    I still think Benjamin Franklin said it most effectively:
    Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

  359. It’s isn’t about what Joe Consumer wants…. rather, it’s about what gives Bill Gates a stiffie. I like a nice quiet boot that’s fast enough that I don’t have to go get a bowl of cereal while I wait to be “branded”… There’s hundreds of flavors of Linux to choose from that will give me the satisfaction and control that I want.

  360. It’s isn’t about what Joe Consumer wants…. rather, it’s about what gives Bill Gates a stiffie. I like a nice quiet boot that’s fast enough that I don’t have to go get a bowl of cereal while I wait to be “branded”… There’s hundreds of flavors of Linux to choose from that will give me the satisfaction and control that I want.

  361. Let’s just put it this way: I KNOW Microsoft is Arrogant enough to believe they have the right to dictate users around the world how their pc’s should behave. In fact I know they’re arrogant enough to believe that every PC is MS’es property, the user just happened to pay for it.

    But the arrogance to dictate a mandatory startup-sound is the limit. Especially since a lot of laptop hardware has software-controlled volume.

    This comes down to one thing: Microsoft wants every computer that has installed Vista to play a “Clearly Distinguishable Sound” every time they turn on, thus being part of the marketing force for Windows Vista (You can bet they will use that sound in commercials aswell).

    If this “feature” isn’t removed I see very little reason why I should “upgrade” or encourage ANYONE to do so. In fact, this is the final straw that will actually make me actively start removing Windows from boxes that don’t explicitly need them for applications, and I will stop advicing purchase of any software product that doesn’t come with a FreeBSD/Linux compatibility. How many customers this will remove from the pool of braindead sheep that mindlessly follows the “Get the latest Windows”-pool, I cannot state with 100% certainity, but I would hazard a guess that were talking three-digit figures here, and they will spread the word aswell.

    Thank you, Microsoft, for starting this HUGE advertizing-campaign for companies that DON’T bundle windows with their machines!

    //Svein

  362. Let’s just put it this way: I KNOW Microsoft is Arrogant enough to believe they have the right to dictate users around the world how their pc’s should behave. In fact I know they’re arrogant enough to believe that every PC is MS’es property, the user just happened to pay for it.

    But the arrogance to dictate a mandatory startup-sound is the limit. Especially since a lot of laptop hardware has software-controlled volume.

    This comes down to one thing: Microsoft wants every computer that has installed Vista to play a “Clearly Distinguishable Sound” every time they turn on, thus being part of the marketing force for Windows Vista (You can bet they will use that sound in commercials aswell).

    If this “feature” isn’t removed I see very little reason why I should “upgrade” or encourage ANYONE to do so. In fact, this is the final straw that will actually make me actively start removing Windows from boxes that don’t explicitly need them for applications, and I will stop advicing purchase of any software product that doesn’t come with a FreeBSD/Linux compatibility. How many customers this will remove from the pool of braindead sheep that mindlessly follows the “Get the latest Windows”-pool, I cannot state with 100% certainity, but I would hazard a guess that were talking three-digit figures here, and they will spread the word aswell.

    Thank you, Microsoft, for starting this HUGE advertizing-campaign for companies that DON’T bundle windows with their machines!

    //Svein

  363. There should not be a default sound that CANNOT be turned off. I can understand having a sound be a part fo default settings. However, if an end-user wants to be able to turn that off, they sould be be able. If an end-user has a reason that drives them to search out such a setting it ought be abvailable. What, from a users perspective, we be objectionable about having it be an advanced setting (maybe even behind a second password entry)? Nothing.

  364. There should not be a default sound that CANNOT be turned off. I can understand having a sound be a part fo default settings. However, if an end-user wants to be able to turn that off, they sould be be able. If an end-user has a reason that drives them to search out such a setting it ought be abvailable. What, from a users perspective, we be objectionable about having it be an advanced setting (maybe even behind a second password entry)? Nothing.

  365. “Doesn’t anyone see how absurd this whole situation is? Instead of being Microsoft’s bitch and begging them to disable this “feature,” why don’t you do the smart thing and not buy their products?”
    ———————–

    Because it’s not a big enough issue to not buy the product. Therefore, it’s better to make a big fuss to try to get MS to change this.

  366. “Doesn’t anyone see how absurd this whole situation is? Instead of being Microsoft’s bitch and begging them to disable this “feature,” why don’t you do the smart thing and not buy their products?”
    ———————–

    Because it’s not a big enough issue to not buy the product. Therefore, it’s better to make a big fuss to try to get MS to change this.

  367. With what do I associate the Windows XP sound ?

    The frantic embarassment of hurredly pressed keys trying to make it stop, the hissed ‘sorry’, as some unfortunate reboots their laptop in the meeting or library.

    The silver tongued, positively soothing brand management boys really need to get out in the real world. Do some real work and see with what you come to associate your lovingly crafted noise pollution.

  368. With what do I associate the Windows XP sound ?

    The frantic embarassment of hurredly pressed keys trying to make it stop, the hissed ‘sorry’, as some unfortunate reboots their laptop in the meeting or library.

    The silver tongued, positively soothing brand management boys really need to get out in the real world. Do some real work and see with what you come to associate your lovingly crafted noise pollution.

  369. A Windows startup sound that can’t be turned off is just as annoying as a Flash ad on a web page that suddenly starts to hiss, scream and make annoying noises while you’re trying to read an online newspaper.

    The first ting I do after installing Windows XP is turning off system sounds. (The second is removing the language bar.)

  370. A Windows startup sound that can’t be turned off is just as annoying as a Flash ad on a web page that suddenly starts to hiss, scream and make annoying noises while you’re trying to read an online newspaper.

    The first ting I do after installing Windows XP is turning off system sounds. (The second is removing the language bar.)

  371. You don’t need mandatory-on noise to turn the world into hell; default-on will do quite nicely. Most non-geeks just don’t bother setting-up anything, anywhere. Thus, the 120-decibel horn blasts of keyless car locks near every apartment and hotel bedroom (and most private homes) in the whole “civilized” world, every park campground. For all I know, some of those cursed things may not be disableable; more likely they are just owned by slobs and psychopaths.

    The point about Vista: if it’s default-on, you already insure massive annoyance in every library, meeting room, airplane, classroom, home with others sleeping, etc (just repeating earlier examples). With mandatory-on, you only add a little to the misery.

    Mandatory-on is good because it will provoke more recruits for Linux, etc. The ever-present sound of “spiritual branding” (isn’t that awesome?) will reinforce the spirit of revolt among the enlightened.

  372. You don’t need mandatory-on noise to turn the world into hell; default-on will do quite nicely. Most non-geeks just don’t bother setting-up anything, anywhere. Thus, the 120-decibel horn blasts of keyless car locks near every apartment and hotel bedroom (and most private homes) in the whole “civilized” world, every park campground. For all I know, some of those cursed things may not be disableable; more likely they are just owned by slobs and psychopaths.

    The point about Vista: if it’s default-on, you already insure massive annoyance in every library, meeting room, airplane, classroom, home with others sleeping, etc (just repeating earlier examples). With mandatory-on, you only add a little to the misery.

    Mandatory-on is good because it will provoke more recruits for Linux, etc. The ever-present sound of “spiritual branding” (isn’t that awesome?) will reinforce the spirit of revolt among the enlightened.

  373. Strangely enough, I haven´t seen 1 comment saying “yeah, that sounds like a really good idea”

    Out of the 212 comments (thats two HUNDRED and twelve) only a few say that they don´t see it as a big problem, and most say it´s probably not a good idea anyway.

    Personally, I think this shows how out of touch MS is.
    I also second another posters comment that this sound will be associated with instability and failure.
    Furthermore, when updating windows (or some applications) you may need to reboot multiple times and listening to some startup crap every time does not add to my enjoyment of the process.

    Finally, as an amateur musician, I often have my recording stuff set up in strange ways, with strange volume settings (input volume at one extreme, output volume at the other) meaning that if I´m recording (with input levels set as high as possible) and have the output of the music software set very low, the amp may be at a medium or high setting. This would give me a comfortable listening level. Except for windows sounds. If I restart (for any reason) and don´t remember to change at least the amp settings I´ll be greeted with a 90db blast of gentle startup sound, which is great at 3 in the morning.

    It seems MS is really trying to move people away from the PC/MS platform and it seems to be working.
    My Mac is on its way, a few of the reasons behind switching would be Vista, unacceptably high maintenance on XP (even though it should be mature and stable by now), interface issues and lastly, more stable drivers (audio for instance, CoreAudio against ASIO or DX or MME, no contest, DX and MME are too slow and ASIO is a kludge). Who expects esoteric stuff like low latency audio drivers to work out of the box on Vista? Show of hands, please!

  374. Strangely enough, I haven´t seen 1 comment saying “yeah, that sounds like a really good idea”

    Out of the 212 comments (thats two HUNDRED and twelve) only a few say that they don´t see it as a big problem, and most say it´s probably not a good idea anyway.

    Personally, I think this shows how out of touch MS is.
    I also second another posters comment that this sound will be associated with instability and failure.
    Furthermore, when updating windows (or some applications) you may need to reboot multiple times and listening to some startup crap every time does not add to my enjoyment of the process.

    Finally, as an amateur musician, I often have my recording stuff set up in strange ways, with strange volume settings (input volume at one extreme, output volume at the other) meaning that if I´m recording (with input levels set as high as possible) and have the output of the music software set very low, the amp may be at a medium or high setting. This would give me a comfortable listening level. Except for windows sounds. If I restart (for any reason) and don´t remember to change at least the amp settings I´ll be greeted with a 90db blast of gentle startup sound, which is great at 3 in the morning.

    It seems MS is really trying to move people away from the PC/MS platform and it seems to be working.
    My Mac is on its way, a few of the reasons behind switching would be Vista, unacceptably high maintenance on XP (even though it should be mature and stable by now), interface issues and lastly, more stable drivers (audio for instance, CoreAudio against ASIO or DX or MME, no contest, DX and MME are too slow and ASIO is a kludge). Who expects esoteric stuff like low latency audio drivers to work out of the box on Vista? Show of hands, please!

  375. there were only 212 comments when I STARTED writing the above post, 230 when I had finished……
    seems like people have opinions

  376. there were only 212 comments when I STARTED writing the above post, 230 when I had finished……
    seems like people have opinions

  377. “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound”

    And I HATE it. Especially when I fire up my Xbox. Nearly makes me jump out of my skin as it booms out of my surround sound.

    If I got Vista, I’d write a program that muted the sound, then shut down the PC (to use for shutting down) and another to un mute the sound for the startup folder.

    One more reason to stick with XP.

  378. “The Xbox has a hard-wired startup sound”

    And I HATE it. Especially when I fire up my Xbox. Nearly makes me jump out of my skin as it booms out of my surround sound.

    If I got Vista, I’d write a program that muted the sound, then shut down the PC (to use for shutting down) and another to un mute the sound for the startup folder.

    One more reason to stick with XP.

  379. With laptops this is going to be one hellish situation for Vista users. Think about the racket for example in airports… Desktop users can always turn on the speakers after logging in. Not good in either way.

  380. I think the spiritual experience will come from waking up at the Pearly Gates after being beaten to death by your irate fellow research-library patrons.

  381. I think the spiritual experience will come from waking up at the Pearly Gates after being beaten to death by your irate fellow research-library patrons.

  382. With laptops this is going to be one hellish situation for Vista users. Think about the racket for example in airports… Desktop users can always turn on the speakers after logging in. Not good in either way.

  383. What kind of bloody stupidity is this?

    I’m sorry, but I bought my machine, so I expect to be able to configure and control it as I want. If I don’t want some stupid annoying Microsoft(R)(TM) Windows(R)(TM) Vista(R)(TM) AudioHappy(R)(TM) MediaExperience(R)(TM) playing when I start my machine I’ll turn the damn thing off – what on earth give MS the idea that taking control away from the user is a good thing to do?

    I know MS (and other industry players) are tending away from user-empowerment with things like DRM and Trusted Computing[sic], but at least that was just them bending over for Big Media. This is utterly pointless and counterproductive – deliberately irritating a whole generation of users simply to ram one… last… bit… more of your branding down their throats?

    Why not just have my PC scream “WINDOWS PC BOOTING! WINDOWS PC BOOTING! WINDOWS PC HAS BOOTED! ALL HAIL MICROSOFT! UPGRADE NOW! WINDOWS PC READY TO USE!” whenever I turn it on – no matter what the Windows sound is like, after about the fourth time of hearing it’s going to grate just as much as that, I guarantee.

  384. What kind of bloody stupidity is this?

    I’m sorry, but I bought my machine, so I expect to be able to configure and control it as I want. If I don’t want some stupid annoying Microsoft(R)(TM) Windows(R)(TM) Vista(R)(TM) AudioHappy(R)(TM) MediaExperience(R)(TM) playing when I start my machine I’ll turn the damn thing off – what on earth give MS the idea that taking control away from the user is a good thing to do?

    I know MS (and other industry players) are tending away from user-empowerment with things like DRM and Trusted Computing[sic], but at least that was just them bending over for Big Media. This is utterly pointless and counterproductive – deliberately irritating a whole generation of users simply to ram one… last… bit… more of your branding down their throats?

    Why not just have my PC scream “WINDOWS PC BOOTING! WINDOWS PC BOOTING! WINDOWS PC HAS BOOTED! ALL HAIL MICROSOFT! UPGRADE NOW! WINDOWS PC READY TO USE!” whenever I turn it on – no matter what the Windows sound is like, after about the fourth time of hearing it’s going to grate just as much as that, I guarantee.

  385. Microsoft must be crazy. I work in a big open plan office, in a big open plan building. We hear everything. The idea that I might hear the same jingle literally (and I do mean literally, precisely) 250 times as everyone in the building logs in in the mornings would drive me nuts. Do Microsoft not know what 7/11 employees did to the cola fridgees that played a jingle every time the door was opened? They turned off the power to the machines. Result? Warm cola. Do you know anyone who buys warm cola?
    Fortunately part of my job is specifying hardware. I can therefore arrange for the computers here to be installed without speakers – no-one would miss them, and it would save money too.
    When will Microsoft learn that a programming nerd’s idea of “really cool” is just irritating and childish to the rest of us who think a computer is just a tool for work and no more inherently interesting than a Bic biro.

  386. Microsoft must be crazy. I work in a big open plan office, in a big open plan building. We hear everything. The idea that I might hear the same jingle literally (and I do mean literally, precisely) 250 times as everyone in the building logs in in the mornings would drive me nuts. Do Microsoft not know what 7/11 employees did to the cola fridgees that played a jingle every time the door was opened? They turned off the power to the machines. Result? Warm cola. Do you know anyone who buys warm cola?
    Fortunately part of my job is specifying hardware. I can therefore arrange for the computers here to be installed without speakers – no-one would miss them, and it would save money too.
    When will Microsoft learn that a programming nerd’s idea of “really cool” is just irritating and childish to the rest of us who think a computer is just a tool for work and no more inherently interesting than a Bic biro.

  387. This would PISS ME OFF. I never use the external speakers on my laptop. They all run on mute 100% of the time. The first thing I do when I get a new desktop machine is to unplug the built-in speaker if there is one. I want my machines to be SILENT. If I want to listen to music, I plug in headphones or external speakers. It is UNACCEPTABLE to force the computer to play sounds on boot. If there is no way to turn off the start up sound I will simply start cutting speaker wires. I generally like Windows, but the most annoying thing about using all Microsoft apps is the arrogance with which they are written — as if Microsoft knows what I want better than I do. I have little tolerance for this sort of thing.

  388. This would PISS ME OFF. I never use the external speakers on my laptop. They all run on mute 100% of the time. The first thing I do when I get a new desktop machine is to unplug the built-in speaker if there is one. I want my machines to be SILENT. If I want to listen to music, I plug in headphones or external speakers. It is UNACCEPTABLE to force the computer to play sounds on boot. If there is no way to turn off the start up sound I will simply start cutting speaker wires. I generally like Windows, but the most annoying thing about using all Microsoft apps is the arrogance with which they are written — as if Microsoft knows what I want better than I do. I have little tolerance for this sort of thing.

  389. This is _not a good idea_. I have my MCE PC connected to my surround/hifi setup, and the MCE 2005 startup sound is frequently scaring the shit out of me and others on very high volume. Because I didn’t remember to turn it down after watching a movie or something. It is of course not registered in the default Windows sound control panel.. It is really really annoying and detracting from an otherwise positive user experience.

  390. This is _not a good idea_. I have my MCE PC connected to my surround/hifi setup, and the MCE 2005 startup sound is frequently scaring the shit out of me and others on very high volume. Because I didn’t remember to turn it down after watching a movie or something. It is of course not registered in the default Windows sound control panel.. It is really really annoying and detracting from an otherwise positive user experience.

  391. Can you imagine this in an office, that alone would be enough to put some companies off upgrading to vista.

  392. A computer is meant to be a tool to be used by people to suit their needs – Microsoft seems to have forgotten this.
    Given the number of items like this I will be using XP as long as I possibly can.

  393. A computer is meant to be a tool to be used by people to suit their needs – Microsoft seems to have forgotten this.
    Given the number of items like this I will be using XP as long as I possibly can.

  394. Also being a computer control freak, I would definitely like to have this turned off. The two points above really only boil down to one, and thats of branding.
    Calibration is a non-issue – I don’t maintain the same volume settings all the time – it varies a lot. If I am writing music, I boost the volume so that I get more clarity from my monitoring speakers to hear more detail. If I’m working late at night with winamp on, I’ll turn it down so I don’t annoy my neighbours or anyone in an adjacent room. If I listen to Pink Floyd or anything classical, I turn it up because they have a much wider dynamic range than the usual pop on the radio.
    Now, all of this wouldn’t be so bad, but being a normal user I don’t set it back to the default level before turning off the computer every time. Result? Some times I turn it on and don’t hear a start up sound. Other times, I turn it on and promptly go deaf.
    Now, I’m under no illusions about the market dominance of Microsoft products – given enough years, Vista will be pretty much everywhere (save for linux boxes and Mac users), so please, at least give us the control to make the experience less painful.

  395. Also being a computer control freak, I would definitely like to have this turned off. The two points above really only boil down to one, and thats of branding.
    Calibration is a non-issue – I don’t maintain the same volume settings all the time – it varies a lot. If I am writing music, I boost the volume so that I get more clarity from my monitoring speakers to hear more detail. If I’m working late at night with winamp on, I’ll turn it down so I don’t annoy my neighbours or anyone in an adjacent room. If I listen to Pink Floyd or anything classical, I turn it up because they have a much wider dynamic range than the usual pop on the radio.
    Now, all of this wouldn’t be so bad, but being a normal user I don’t set it back to the default level before turning off the computer every time. Result? Some times I turn it on and don’t hear a start up sound. Other times, I turn it on and promptly go deaf.
    Now, I’m under no illusions about the market dominance of Microsoft products – given enough years, Vista will be pretty much everywhere (save for linux boxes and Mac users), so please, at least give us the control to make the experience less painful.

  396. [cynic]
    Sure, why not… All Apple computers have the same… and eventually someone will write a program that does the trick. But it should be useful, let’s say to tell if there are errors…

    While busy: just download os x and add start menu and your done.

    Waste of time to implement a change dialog.

    [real]
    Do make it so that you can put the volume down real soft if you decide to do this. And make the sound no longer than 1 second. I would hate it if i wake up my partner if i decide to check my mail middle in the night.

  397. [cynic]
    Sure, why not… All Apple computers have the same… and eventually someone will write a program that does the trick. But it should be useful, let’s say to tell if there are errors…

    While busy: just download os x and add start menu and your done.

    Waste of time to implement a change dialog.

    [real]
    Do make it so that you can put the volume down real soft if you decide to do this. And make the sound no longer than 1 second. I would hate it if i wake up my partner if i decide to check my mail middle in the night.

  398. Do none of you have volume/power control on your speakers?

    If you’re speakers are left on at all – that’s your problem not MS’s. You should turn em off anyway, wasting valuable energy aint a good thing.

    Besides, this is waving the red flag in front of the “hackers” to come up with a method to get around it. I’ll bet £10 it’ll be deactivate-able within 2 weeks of it’s official release.

    Let’s not worry – there will be a solution, there always is.

  399. Do none of you have volume/power control on your speakers?

    If you’re speakers are left on at all – that’s your problem not MS’s. You should turn em off anyway, wasting valuable energy aint a good thing.

    Besides, this is waving the red flag in front of the “hackers” to come up with a method to get around it. I’ll bet £10 it’ll be deactivate-able within 2 weeks of it’s official release.

    Let’s not worry – there will be a solution, there always is.

  400. What happens if my definiton of “A spritiual side of branding experience” says that “Silencer is better” ?

    I want perfect products and for this startup sound, I won’t even use Windows Vista (or 2003ME Beta2 SP1, whatever) even if it’s bundled with my new PC.

  401. What happens if my definiton of “A spritiual side of branding experience” says that “Silencer is better” ?

    I want perfect products and for this startup sound, I won’t even use Windows Vista (or 2003ME Beta2 SP1, whatever) even if it’s bundled with my new PC.

  402. Don’t worry, Microsoft. We’ll find the default startup WAV file. We’ll find the registry entry. We’ll find the DLL with the embedded sound, if necessary. And we will remove the sound if we so choose and post the instructions for all to use.

  403. Don’t worry, Microsoft. We’ll find the default startup WAV file. We’ll find the registry entry. We’ll find the DLL with the embedded sound, if necessary. And we will remove the sound if we so choose and post the instructions for all to use.

  404. Imagine in the office… If this thing is true, no one will use it in this situation…

    It’s just a marketing crap…

  405. Imagine in the office… If this thing is true, no one will use it in this situation…

    It’s just a marketing crap…

  406. Nothing like that sound announcing that you are having computer issues while at a customers site.

    Nothing like taking the ability to customize the look and sound of your machine to fit you current mood.

    On the bright side of this, it will give others oppertunity to make a buck selling tools that will enable users to do these things. XPChanger, a program that allows you to change your boot/login/background/shutdown screens, was released not that long after XP. So while kinda annoying, not really that big a deal for most end users.

    In a corp environment… If your workers nerves are set off by that you might want to fire them before they go postal.

  407. Nothing like that sound announcing that you are having computer issues while at a customers site.

    Nothing like taking the ability to customize the look and sound of your machine to fit you current mood.

    On the bright side of this, it will give others oppertunity to make a buck selling tools that will enable users to do these things. XPChanger, a program that allows you to change your boot/login/background/shutdown screens, was released not that long after XP. So while kinda annoying, not really that big a deal for most end users.

    In a corp environment… If your workers nerves are set off by that you might want to fire them before they go postal.

  408. Straight up here it is. If Microsoft spent even a tenth of the time they waste on trivial things like this on actual programing and stability of the OS they may actually have a product worth buying. Secondly, Know in advance I a use my computer soley for audio production. As another person has posted here the sounds windows makes can be rather scarey or unsetteling when they are backed by 1000 watts of power. Not having the option to change or remove the sounds is an absolutly brain dead plan with nothing good to gain. Let me ask everyone this. With todays computers how long are you waiting for bootup. I wait 35 seconds with XP and now you are saying with Vista I will have time to eat a bowl of serial while I wait. Hah what a joke. I will never take the Vista Dive and I pitty those who do. Best of luck to you.

  409. Straight up here it is. If Microsoft spent even a tenth of the time they waste on trivial things like this on actual programing and stability of the OS they may actually have a product worth buying. Secondly, Know in advance I a use my computer soley for audio production. As another person has posted here the sounds windows makes can be rather scarey or unsetteling when they are backed by 1000 watts of power. Not having the option to change or remove the sounds is an absolutly brain dead plan with nothing good to gain. Let me ask everyone this. With todays computers how long are you waiting for bootup. I wait 35 seconds with XP and now you are saying with Vista I will have time to eat a bowl of serial while I wait. Hah what a joke. I will never take the Vista Dive and I pitty those who do. Best of luck to you.

  410. The second “reason” given in the article is a complete and utter bullshit. If a user wants to use the start-up sound to confirm that the sound volume is set up correctly, that is ok with me. But how does it signify disallowing everyone to turn the volume off? I mean, if someone wants to use the start-up sound in this way, he can leave it on, but let the rest of us turn it off.

    That leaves us with just one valid reason — the whole “spiritual side of the branding” bullshit. So basically, you want to impose your will over users. The users don’t want to listen to that sound, but your marketing department thinks they should hear it anyway. Why do you think people hate TV commercials that much — yes, correct, commercials force us to repeatedly listen to the same annoying sounds. Those sounds are also the “spiritual side of the branding”. Yes, you can mute the TV during the commercials. No, that option does not take the hate away. If you want people to hate Vista in a similar way that they hate TV commercials, just take the mute option away from the start-up sound settings.

  411. The second “reason” given in the article is a complete and utter bullshit. If a user wants to use the start-up sound to confirm that the sound volume is set up correctly, that is ok with me. But how does it signify disallowing everyone to turn the volume off? I mean, if someone wants to use the start-up sound in this way, he can leave it on, but let the rest of us turn it off.

    That leaves us with just one valid reason — the whole “spiritual side of the branding” bullshit. So basically, you want to impose your will over users. The users don’t want to listen to that sound, but your marketing department thinks they should hear it anyway. Why do you think people hate TV commercials that much — yes, correct, commercials force us to repeatedly listen to the same annoying sounds. Those sounds are also the “spiritual side of the branding”. Yes, you can mute the TV during the commercials. No, that option does not take the hate away. If you want people to hate Vista in a similar way that they hate TV commercials, just take the mute option away from the start-up sound settings.

  412. Classic misdirection – give people something to complain loudly about, pretend to listen to their views like you intended doing the opposite all along.

    Meanwhile, the larger issues of control (DRM, anyone?) slip quietly by..

    I would suggest that anyone with any doubts as to exactly where Microsoft are headed with their OS start checking out alternatives, or you may find you are running their OS on *their* computer. The days of the general purpose computing device (at least, anything running a proprietary OS) are numbered.

  413. Classic misdirection – give people something to complain loudly about, pretend to listen to their views like you intended doing the opposite all along.

    Meanwhile, the larger issues of control (DRM, anyone?) slip quietly by..

    I would suggest that anyone with any doubts as to exactly where Microsoft are headed with their OS start checking out alternatives, or you may find you are running their OS on *their* computer. The days of the general purpose computing device (at least, anything running a proprietary OS) are numbered.

  414. The use case for laptops is simple: Opening your laptop, logging in, and starting to work should be absolutely silent. You shouldn’t have to race for the volume controls, and you should have plenty of time to hit “mute” if you’re in a meeting, library, etc.

    If your OS crashes more than once in a blue moon, or if your users typically turn their laptops off when not in use, the startup process needs to be silent, too.

    And if your laptop is well-designed, silence should be the default, not an expert option.

    Like I said upthread: I’ve seen people publically called onto the carpet over the XP sound in meetings. It’s just bad design.

  415. The use case for laptops is simple: Opening your laptop, logging in, and starting to work should be absolutely silent. You shouldn’t have to race for the volume controls, and you should have plenty of time to hit “mute” if you’re in a meeting, library, etc.

    If your OS crashes more than once in a blue moon, or if your users typically turn their laptops off when not in use, the startup process needs to be silent, too.

    And if your laptop is well-designed, silence should be the default, not an expert option.

    Like I said upthread: I’ve seen people publically called onto the carpet over the XP sound in meetings. It’s just bad design.

  416. [...] THE ALMIGHTY VOLE has decided that guitarist Robert Fripp’s work on the opening tune for Vista is so good, it will be compulsory and won’t be able to be switched off. Steve Ball, group program manager for the Windows Audio Video Excellence team told punters that Windows Vista should present a "common, and beautiful, face to the world." In other words, Microsoft has spent shedloads on its corporate image and you are darn well going to appreciate it. Ball said that there will be a pre-wired sound that plays when the system is ready for you to logon which will be non-customisable, just like the X-Box. He said that there was no big deal about it. Sony and Toshiba both have compulsory sounds. Vista start-up music compulsory The startup sound in Vista … « Scobleizer – Tech Geek Blogger ————————- Advertisement ————————- __________________ [...]

  417. Until Windows does not need to be restarted 10 times in a row to troubleshoot some uniquely weirdarse problem – playing said happy tune each time – I will be yanking speaker wires in very short order.

    You can just picture the pre-postal technician having to reboot the computer one final time and hearing those happy chimes that Windows is just about ready for you to start using it (again) before clashing drivers and apps drive it to it’s knees and bludgeon it to death.

    Whereupon said technician immediately proceeds to the post-postal stage; with no memory of the intervening moments wherein five innocent bystanders were seriously injured, a police car sprayed with anti-Microsoft grafitti and a rapper slain in a gangland-style killing.

    Do we really want this on our conscience?
    I, for one, vote: Nay.

  418. Until Windows does not need to be restarted 10 times in a row to troubleshoot some uniquely weirdarse problem – playing said happy tune each time – I will be yanking speaker wires in very short order.

    You can just picture the pre-postal technician having to reboot the computer one final time and hearing those happy chimes that Windows is just about ready for you to start using it (again) before clashing drivers and apps drive it to it’s knees and bludgeon it to death.

    Whereupon said technician immediately proceeds to the post-postal stage; with no memory of the intervening moments wherein five innocent bystanders were seriously injured, a police car sprayed with anti-Microsoft grafitti and a rapper slain in a gangland-style killing.

    Do we really want this on our conscience?
    I, for one, vote: Nay.

  419. 250 comments, and I didn’t see a single one that looked like the person actually READ the posting!

    He never said the startup sound was mandatory, he just said it couldn’t be altered. All sounds in Vista can be disabled, and all sounds except Startup (and possibly Shutdown) can be personalized.

    Move along, nothing to see here.

  420. 250 comments, and I didn’t see a single one that looked like the person actually READ the posting!

    He never said the startup sound was mandatory, he just said it couldn’t be altered. All sounds in Vista can be disabled, and all sounds except Startup (and possibly Shutdown) can be personalized.

    Move along, nothing to see here.

  421. What pisses me off a lot more than the intro sound is the “Start Navigation” click sound that plays every time you click in a browser.

    Disabling that is one of the first things I do after an XP reinstall. Perhaps Microsoft would have a different feeling if a 10-second clip from David Hasselhoff’s latest record was installed on their PCs in it’s place.

  422. What pisses me off a lot more than the intro sound is the “Start Navigation” click sound that plays every time you click in a browser.

    Disabling that is one of the first things I do after an XP reinstall. Perhaps Microsoft would have a different feeling if a 10-second clip from David Hasselhoff’s latest record was installed on their PCs in it’s place.

  423. Steve, I am your demographic. I am also uniquely qualified to talk to you about this. I was, for 10 years, a Unix/NT/Novell administrator for fortune 500 companies. I am now the marketing manager for a small technology company in Michigan. I sell technology products (we are a microsoft business partner). I am also, like you, a musician. I think about your products in the realm of both it’s business application for my customers, society as a whole, and my own personal experience, because lets face it, computer technology is the most influential thing that has happened to humanity since the advent of the public education system. The way I see it, you really can’t lose by allowing the 0.5% upper crust power users the ability to customize their experience. Alternately, you can’t win by alienating these power users, possible developers, and likely formative employees, for yours or other technology companies. Would I change the sound scheme? I don’t know, it’s not the most important thing in the world to me. But the opportunity exists here to either be inclusive or exclusive, and that’s the kind of branding you want, not a little beepy noise. People don’t buy little beepy noises (with all due respect to Kraftwerk, of course), they buy ideas.

  424. Steve, I am your demographic. I am also uniquely qualified to talk to you about this. I was, for 10 years, a Unix/NT/Novell administrator for fortune 500 companies. I am now the marketing manager for a small technology company in Michigan. I sell technology products (we are a microsoft business partner). I am also, like you, a musician. I think about your products in the realm of both it’s business application for my customers, society as a whole, and my own personal experience, because lets face it, computer technology is the most influential thing that has happened to humanity since the advent of the public education system. The way I see it, you really can’t lose by allowing the 0.5% upper crust power users the ability to customize their experience. Alternately, you can’t win by alienating these power users, possible developers, and likely formative employees, for yours or other technology companies. Would I change the sound scheme? I don’t know, it’s not the most important thing in the world to me. But the opportunity exists here to either be inclusive or exclusive, and that’s the kind of branding you want, not a little beepy noise. People don’t buy little beepy noises (with all due respect to Kraftwerk, of course), they buy ideas.

  425. So…. they’re making design decisions based on a video game console system like the X-Box.. or the Sega. Everyone remembers that cute little sound the Sega would make when it was started. SSSeeeeegggggaaaaaa. I really loved that sound – really, it made the experience of playing video games so much more fulfilling. To this day I sing Sega over the startup sound my X-Box makes because it sounded so much cooler, so I guess branding is effective and I shouldn’t enjoy my X-Box games because they aren’t made by Sega.

    What a stupid thing for everyone to be discussing. But it does distract us from being upset over the bugs in the OS I guess.

    And that’s just what an Operating System needs – more non-configurable things that have the potential to screw things up – like if the sound card/driver has a config problem. Nothing like a little extra branding causing me to boot over to safe mode to hunt down a problem that otherwise I could ignore in order to do work. But why would we want to do work on our computers when we have such fancy sounds?

    But that’s just my opinion… I could be wrong. And heck, other than boot-ups for windows updates my PC hasn’t been off in over a year so it’s not a biggie for my PC. Now my laptop on the other hand… that would really be awkward booting up in some public places, like say a library. And God help those in Cubeville with tons of PCs spread all over the place.

    I guess MS likes the idea of free advertising (aka Branding) in those places. Me, I’d rather see it in the honest form (“Buy MS cause we say so or bad things may happen to your thesis paper”) rather than the subliminal (“We’re ready to help you”), but I fast-forward through commercials so what do I know.

    I do know that a hack by some enterprising soul will come out about a month after release to disable or modify the sound. So there is some hope.

  426. So…. they’re making design decisions based on a video game console system like the X-Box.. or the Sega. Everyone remembers that cute little sound the Sega would make when it was started. SSSeeeeegggggaaaaaa. I really loved that sound – really, it made the experience of playing video games so much more fulfilling. To this day I sing Sega over the startup sound my X-Box makes because it sounded so much cooler, so I guess branding is effective and I shouldn’t enjoy my X-Box games because they aren’t made by Sega.

    What a stupid thing for everyone to be discussing. But it does distract us from being upset over the bugs in the OS I guess.

    And that’s just what an Operating System needs – more non-configurable things that have the potential to screw things up – like if the sound card/driver has a config problem. Nothing like a little extra branding causing me to boot over to safe mode to hunt down a problem that otherwise I could ignore in order to do work. But why would we want to do work on our computers when we have such fancy sounds?

    But that’s just my opinion… I could be wrong. And heck, other than boot-ups for windows updates my PC hasn’t been off in over a year so it’s not a biggie for my PC. Now my laptop on the other hand… that would really be awkward booting up in some public places, like say a library. And God help those in Cubeville with tons of PCs spread all over the place.

    I guess MS likes the idea of free advertising (aka Branding) in those places. Me, I’d rather see it in the honest form (“Buy MS cause we say so or bad things may happen to your thesis paper”) rather than the subliminal (“We’re ready to help you”), but I fast-forward through commercials so what do I know.

    I do know that a hack by some enterprising soul will come out about a month after release to disable or modify the sound. So there is some hope.

  427. I have a Sony. There are 3 user profiles I can click. Only after I click mine, do I get any sound. I have mixed feelings on this. Sometimes I turn on my PC and then leave the room to get something and there’s no sound. If I’m away from my computer too long, the computer could shut off automatically. It usually doesn’t happen but it could.

    On the other hand, I’d like to disable the sound sometime or be able to choose the sound. My computer came with these great logitech speakers so I tend to listen to music a lot, it does get a little annoying when I hear beeps because of an error with a program or I’m clicking in a browser. There should be some kind of control that when you’re listening to something on your computer, the computer noises are minimized at a level that’s not competing with the music, but still audible. Does this sound strange? Or is there something like this that exists?

  428. I have a Sony. There are 3 user profiles I can click. Only after I click mine, do I get any sound. I have mixed feelings on this. Sometimes I turn on my PC and then leave the room to get something and there’s no sound. If I’m away from my computer too long, the computer could shut off automatically. It usually doesn’t happen but it could.

    On the other hand, I’d like to disable the sound sometime or be able to choose the sound. My computer came with these great logitech speakers so I tend to listen to music a lot, it does get a little annoying when I hear beeps because of an error with a program or I’m clicking in a browser. There should be some kind of control that when you’re listening to something on your computer, the computer noises are minimized at a level that’s not competing with the music, but still audible. Does this sound strange? Or is there something like this that exists?

  429. “You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    He’s then also saying you need a preset sound that can’t be changed to realize your computer is on, and you won’t hear this equally well with a custom sound that you’ve picked yourself. In what tragic accident did this guy lose his brain cells?

    “Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.”

    Good point. This is useful for a one-time startup sound indeed, or a sound you can keep on for as long as you wish yourself. When you’re happy with your sound settings, you’re then forced to keep it o… whaa, wait a minute, why is that? My sound effects are already OK, why should I keep hearing it? This can’t be anything else than a cover up reason for the real object:

    *** Make the Windows startup an annoying and enforced branding sound so people will hear “oh, this is Vista!” ***

    Maybe a kind of cool thought the first 2 minutes or so of Vista user installs at a company or home, but hardly after 2 years.

  430. “You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    He’s then also saying you need a preset sound that can’t be changed to realize your computer is on, and you won’t hear this equally well with a custom sound that you’ve picked yourself. In what tragic accident did this guy lose his brain cells?

    “Volume control in a Windows machine is a wild west. A mess. The startup sound is designed to help you calibrate or fix something that got out of wack when you startup your machine.”

    Good point. This is useful for a one-time startup sound indeed, or a sound you can keep on for as long as you wish yourself. When you’re happy with your sound settings, you’re then forced to keep it o… whaa, wait a minute, why is that? My sound effects are already OK, why should I keep hearing it? This can’t be anything else than a cover up reason for the real object:

    *** Make the Windows startup an annoying and enforced branding sound so people will hear “oh, this is Vista!” ***

    Maybe a kind of cool thought the first 2 minutes or so of Vista user installs at a company or home, but hardly after 2 years.

  431. “All sounds in Vista can be disabled, and all sounds except Startup (and possibly Shutdown) can be personalized.

    Move along, nothing to see here. ”

    Huh? You just said the startup sound can’t be customized. It can in earlier versions of Windows, *or* individually turned off.

  432. “All sounds in Vista can be disabled, and all sounds except Startup (and possibly Shutdown) can be personalized.

    Move along, nothing to see here. ”

    Huh? You just said the startup sound can’t be customized. It can in earlier versions of Windows, *or* individually turned off.

  433. Tieros wrote:
    “…I didn’t see a single one that looked like the person actually READ the posting!

    He never said the startup sound was mandatory, he just said it couldn’t be altered. All sounds in Vista can be disabled…”

    Tieros, there’s a reason over 250 commenters read this differently than you. All 250+ didn’t read it wrong. Here’s what you missed in the post:

    ‘QUESTION: Why don’t you give advanced users the ability to turn this off via a registry setting or something like that?

    Steve: “we’re considering just that.”’

    Tieros, that exchange makes it clear that the current plan is to have the sound permanently on with no way to disable it.

  434. Tieros wrote:
    “…I didn’t see a single one that looked like the person actually READ the posting!

    He never said the startup sound was mandatory, he just said it couldn’t be altered. All sounds in Vista can be disabled…”

    Tieros, there’s a reason over 250 commenters read this differently than you. All 250+ didn’t read it wrong. Here’s what you missed in the post:

    ‘QUESTION: Why don’t you give advanced users the ability to turn this off via a registry setting or something like that?

    Steve: “we’re considering just that.”’

    Tieros, that exchange makes it clear that the current plan is to have the sound permanently on with no way to disable it.

  435. What can I add that hasnt been said already. Having the sound there would certainly provoke an emotional reaction, just a negative one.

    Its not the only useless thing in windows thats there to annoy the user, like a moving file animation that usually takes longer to load than it does to actually move the file. or a rotating logo in internet explorer thats there purely to take up space in the address bar.

    I too hate the idea of an opening sound forced on us against out will.

  436. What can I add that hasnt been said already. Having the sound there would certainly provoke an emotional reaction, just a negative one.

    Its not the only useless thing in windows thats there to annoy the user, like a moving file animation that usually takes longer to load than it does to actually move the file. or a rotating logo in internet explorer thats there purely to take up space in the address bar.

    I too hate the idea of an opening sound forced on us against out will.

  437. I’m propped up in bed with my laptop booting in my lap and my significant other trying to sleep beside me. Out comes Microsoft’s startup sound. No matter how mellow and soothing Microsoft thinks this sound is, my partner is going to eject me from bed. My laptop’s speakers don’t have a volume knob: I can’t mute them until after Windows boots. So I’m forced to allow Microsoft to stuff its brand identity in my partner’s ear while she tries to sleep.

    Does anyone recall that successful companies give customers what they want?

  438. I’m propped up in bed with my laptop booting in my lap and my significant other trying to sleep beside me. Out comes Microsoft’s startup sound. No matter how mellow and soothing Microsoft thinks this sound is, my partner is going to eject me from bed. My laptop’s speakers don’t have a volume knob: I can’t mute them until after Windows boots. So I’m forced to allow Microsoft to stuff its brand identity in my partner’s ear while she tries to sleep.

    Does anyone recall that successful companies give customers what they want?

  439. In an HTPC scenario where you have powerful amps and speakers connected to the PC, any startup sound can be potentially damaging. I was very pleased when I figured out how to turn off startup/shutdown sounds for XP.

    Also, for meetings – be they real, telco or VC, startup sounds are exceptionally irritating.

    The Vista user experience will be good enough without having to endure startup sounds that cannot be turned off. The alternative is to have users run their machines with sound off as default – how can Vista then add audible value?

  440. In an HTPC scenario where you have powerful amps and speakers connected to the PC, any startup sound can be potentially damaging. I was very pleased when I figured out how to turn off startup/shutdown sounds for XP.

    Also, for meetings – be they real, telco or VC, startup sounds are exceptionally irritating.

    The Vista user experience will be good enough without having to endure startup sounds that cannot be turned off. The alternative is to have users run their machines with sound off as default – how can Vista then add audible value?

  441. Aw, quit whining. You are buying and using a PROPRIETARY OS. You are lucky you can change anything.

    Anyway, Windozers will do the same things they always do: wait for some binary hacker to make a cute little program to work around the sound so they can get their l33t status back. Why, really, see, it is a blessing in surprise. They’ll have a blatantly obvious token of their supreme Google^H^H^H^H^H^HHacking skills.

  442. Aw, quit whining. You are buying and using a PROPRIETARY OS. You are lucky you can change anything.

    Anyway, Windozers will do the same things they always do: wait for some binary hacker to make a cute little program to work around the sound so they can get their l33t status back. Why, really, see, it is a blessing in surprise. They’ll have a blatantly obvious token of their supreme Google^H^H^H^H^H^HHacking skills.

  443. So reading between the lines we get that Vista boots so slowly that it needs a special alert to notify users that they FINALLY can use the computer…

  444. “However, the plan might change and Steve Ball is reading all the feedback, both on blogs, and in the newsgroups for beta testers, and his team is considering all of this stuff and still has not made final decisions”

    It is so typical. With these kind of things Microsoft ruins the user experience even before lanching their product. Of course users want it under user control. So why test the waters? There might be more to it. I worry about the nest step? A short marketing message? You know, if you take the cheap Vista Home version you get a new ad with every update?

    I know there is at least one marketing guy in Seatle thinking: Hang on, thats a disgustingly good idea…”

    The’ve got no taste…

  445. “However, the plan might change and Steve Ball is reading all the feedback, both on blogs, and in the newsgroups for beta testers, and his team is considering all of this stuff and still has not made final decisions”

    It is so typical. With these kind of things Microsoft ruins the user experience even before lanching their product. Of course users want it under user control. So why test the waters? There might be more to it. I worry about the nest step? A short marketing message? You know, if you take the cheap Vista Home version you get a new ad with every update?

    I know there is at least one marketing guy in Seatle thinking: Hang on, thats a disgustingly good idea…”

    The’ve got no taste…

  446. So reading between the lines we get that Vista boots so slowly that it needs a special alert to notify users that they FINALLY can use the computer…

  447. As a somewhat regular user, there’s one thing that really annoys me: I’m on a plane, startup my laptop, and that stupid chime comes on – I can’t mute my speakers until the chime has already played!!

    Granted, I may be able to turn it off, and just haven’t looked, but that doesn’t mean I don’t loath Win XP a little every time that happens….

  448. As a somewhat regular user, there’s one thing that really annoys me: I’m on a plane, startup my laptop, and that stupid chime comes on – I can’t mute my speakers until the chime has already played!!

    Granted, I may be able to turn it off, and just haven’t looked, but that doesn’t mean I don’t loath Win XP a little every time that happens….

  449. I love the interwebs!1 lol you guys are soo funy. its a sound i lik it so u can all shut up. see you in vista!

  450. Ha! Well, that was easy – startup sound disabled. Note that I don’t mind it really on my desktop computers, and it’s not worth turning off. But on my laptop – kill it!

  451. imagine what this will be like if you work in a cubicle farm… everytime the hundred odd computers in the room first boot up in the morning… or when tech support pushes a software update that requires a reboot…

    I can only hope this will be configurable for business installations of Vista otherwise this will be another irritation to add to that of the very trying latest and greatest cellphone ring tones

    please Mr. Ball don’t do it cubicle life is hideous enough without this

  452. Ha! Well, that was easy – startup sound disabled. Note that I don’t mind it really on my desktop computers, and it’s not worth turning off. But on my laptop – kill it!

  453. imagine what this will be like if you work in a cubicle farm… everytime the hundred odd computers in the room first boot up in the morning… or when tech support pushes a software update that requires a reboot…

    I can only hope this will be configurable for business installations of Vista otherwise this will be another irritation to add to that of the very trying latest and greatest cellphone ring tones

    please Mr. Ball don’t do it cubicle life is hideous enough without this

  454. Hmm, how about HAM radio operators. It is illegal for me to play music on the air. If I have a radio/repeator/whatever connected, it would be illegal for me to have more than a couple of notes played through the speakers and broadcast through the airwaves. Guess I’ll stick to Linux for those features instead of having my FCC license revoked.

  455. Hmm, how about HAM radio operators. It is illegal for me to play music on the air. If I have a radio/repeator/whatever connected, it would be illegal for me to have more than a couple of notes played through the speakers and broadcast through the airwaves. Guess I’ll stick to Linux for those features instead of having my FCC license revoked.

  456. If you need to go eat some cereal or something similar while you’re waiting for your machine to boot up, either your hardware is WAY too slow, or the operating system is WAY too slow. In the case of M$, I’m guessin the later is true, especially considering the hardware requirements they’re spouting off these days. The only real use for this sound would potentially be for blind people, and in that case they’re going to have a screen reader anyways.

  457. If you need to go eat some cereal or something similar while you’re waiting for your machine to boot up, either your hardware is WAY too slow, or the operating system is WAY too slow. In the case of M$, I’m guessin the later is true, especially considering the hardware requirements they’re spouting off these days. The only real use for this sound would potentially be for blind people, and in that case they’re going to have a screen reader anyways.

  458. Hello? Are these people stupid? What about laptops? I can’t stand it when they make noise under any circumstances without my approval.

    It sucks to be in a class or a meeting and have annoying sounds pop open making it very obvious that you’ve started your machine. If you have to restart once or twice, you’ll start to annoy everyone in the room.

  459. Hello? Are these people stupid? What about laptops? I can’t stand it when they make noise under any circumstances without my approval.

    It sucks to be in a class or a meeting and have annoying sounds pop open making it very obvious that you’ve started your machine. If you have to restart once or twice, you’ll start to annoy everyone in the room.

  460. [...] The story is that you cannot turn off the startup sound in Windows Vista. There is a decent chance that this means that our law firm will not adopt Windows Vista. Seriously. I don’t think that the yahoos in Redmond realize how people use thier product. We use it in sensitive, formal situations. We use it in courtrooms. If your courtroom blares a guitar riff in the middle of a hearing or trial because they screwed up programming it and you had to reboot it, you risk going to jail. Judges can and will find you in contempt of court for that. They don’t care if it is a computer, a cell phone, a blackberry, or a Speak-N-Spell. if it makes noise, you are interupting thier courtroom. [...]

  461. If there’s one thing that is going to push me over the edge of never, ever buying Vista this will be it.

  462. If there’s one thing that is going to push me over the edge of never, ever buying Vista this will be it.

  463. [...] Apparently in the new version of Vista, the startup sound may be hardcoded into the system. I think this is a very interesting thing, mainly because there is a battle between customization and keeping a standard face. The reason for having a boot sound has multiple uses, the blogentry talks about some of them, but I don’t agree with them. In a corporate environment, when fifty people all turn on their machines around the same time, hearing that boot sound doesn’t really tell you that your computer is ready. It tells you that someone’s machine is ready. [...]

  464. I knew Steve Ball at MS and he’s smart and open-minded.

    I’m not sure but I’ll fantasize that, knowledgable as he is about the world of audio, Steve gets that this won’t fly, and is airing the debate publicly to collect ammo against marketing or management over the issue. Please let this be true.

    Windows has always been second to Mac in media production. Taking this control away from audio engineers would be more evidence that MS doesn’t care much about the market.

    If I can’t turn off all system sounds, including the startup sound, I will absolutely wait for the hack before I move to Vista. There’s no way I’ll let my system play something over my studio monitors without permission. It’s unacceptable for reasons already stated.

    I hope the org believes that the viral quality of a signature sound relies on the user being proud to display it, and others envious to hear it. If consumers think the sound is right, Vista is great, and the whole thing has caché, people will want the sound to play. That’s success.

    (But not in a studio.)

    Anyway, no matter what the decision, you KNOW the developer will implement a registry setting. sshhh…

  465. I knew Steve Ball at MS and he’s smart and open-minded.

    I’m not sure but I’ll fantasize that, knowledgable as he is about the world of audio, Steve gets that this won’t fly, and is airing the debate publicly to collect ammo against marketing or management over the issue. Please let this be true.

    Windows has always been second to Mac in media production. Taking this control away from audio engineers would be more evidence that MS doesn’t care much about the market.

    If I can’t turn off all system sounds, including the startup sound, I will absolutely wait for the hack before I move to Vista. There’s no way I’ll let my system play something over my studio monitors without permission. It’s unacceptable for reasons already stated.

    I hope the org believes that the viral quality of a signature sound relies on the user being proud to display it, and others envious to hear it. If consumers think the sound is right, Vista is great, and the whole thing has caché, people will want the sound to play. That’s success.

    (But not in a studio.)

    Anyway, no matter what the decision, you KNOW the developer will implement a registry setting. sshhh…

  466. I won’t load an os that does this. Can you imagine booting up windows in a meeting? Come on. Who comes up with this stuff?

  467. I won’t load an os that does this. Can you imagine booting up windows in a meeting? Come on. Who comes up with this stuff?

  468. Microsoft, please don’t do this.

    Think of all the time I’ll have to waste hex editing your code to remove the sound from whatever obscure binary file you feel like embedding it into.

  469. Microsoft, please don’t do this.

    Think of all the time I’ll have to waste hex editing your code to remove the sound from whatever obscure binary file you feel like embedding it into.

  470. Bad idea. Infact, the first thing I do when I get a new work PC is physically disconnect the internal speaker. …headphones or nuttin’.

  471. Bad idea. Infact, the first thing I do when I get a new work PC is physically disconnect the internal speaker. …headphones or nuttin’.

  472. And what happens when you’ve got your Vista laptop in a library, or other sanctum, and absolutely do NOT want it to make any sounds? I’ve not seen a laptop that you can disable the sound on bootup; there probably are ways around that, but your average user isn’t going to tinker that much.

    Mandatory sounds… aesthetic, but should not be mandatory. It’s just a bad idea.

  473. And what happens when you’ve got your Vista laptop in a library, or other sanctum, and absolutely do NOT want it to make any sounds? I’ve not seen a laptop that you can disable the sound on bootup; there probably are ways around that, but your average user isn’t going to tinker that much.

    Mandatory sounds… aesthetic, but should not be mandatory. It’s just a bad idea.

  474. Maybe this is a good thing after all! All I hear is how MS has f****d one thing up, restricted access on another, not patched the other. Perhaps forcing T.V, theatre and sound companies away from the lataest and greatest from MS would do the IT world a lot of good.

    I know I dread booting into even XP but simply as i’m still a newbie with linux. I’m aware that there’s virtually nothing you can do with Windows that you can’t do with linux…….if you know how to do it. But I sure as hell know how to turn off sounds in linux at least.

    At the end of the day, this is a ridiculous proposal, even to consider it. MS might as well be saying “well we could turn it off, and we know you want us t o….but up yours!” well worth nearly $300

  475. Maybe this is a good thing after all! All I hear is how MS has f****d one thing up, restricted access on another, not patched the other. Perhaps forcing T.V, theatre and sound companies away from the lataest and greatest from MS would do the IT world a lot of good.

    I know I dread booting into even XP but simply as i’m still a newbie with linux. I’m aware that there’s virtually nothing you can do with Windows that you can’t do with linux…….if you know how to do it. But I sure as hell know how to turn off sounds in linux at least.

    At the end of the day, this is a ridiculous proposal, even to consider it. MS might as well be saying “well we could turn it off, and we know you want us t o….but up yours!” well worth nearly $300

  476. The Canon PowerShot G2 digital camera has the same problem. If you turn it on with the LCD screen open, everyone hears the boot chime, blowing any chance of a candid shot.

    There’s no menu option to silence it, so I learned to lick my finger and press it against the speaker holes.

  477. The Canon PowerShot G2 digital camera has the same problem. If you turn it on with the LCD screen open, everyone hears the boot chime, blowing any chance of a candid shot.

    There’s no menu option to silence it, so I learned to lick my finger and press it against the speaker holes.

  478. Everyone knows that it will be about half an hour after the release of Vista that 2000+ different ‘startup sound patch’ programs emerge. We all threw a fit about signed themes (another stupid idea), and the 10 connection limit, etc. Microsoft just can’t get their heads around the idea that what they do only limits their relatively naive, paying customers, and not viruses, hax0rz, and everything/one else that uses Windows.

  479. Everyone knows that it will be about half an hour after the release of Vista that 2000+ different ‘startup sound patch’ programs emerge. We all threw a fit about signed themes (another stupid idea), and the 10 connection limit, etc. Microsoft just can’t get their heads around the idea that what they do only limits their relatively naive, paying customers, and not viruses, hax0rz, and everything/one else that uses Windows.

  480. I use windows for Home Automation. General windows has to be rebooted several times a week to keep it running. This has to be automated as well and is usually done 2 ro 3 in the morning. Now the PC audio system is connected to the whole house audio system.

    The last thing you want, is to hear the windows boot sound at 3 in the morning….. every morning.

    This ‘feature’ alone would prevent it’s use in home automation systems.

    Bad idea Microsoft.

  481. I use windows for Home Automation. General windows has to be rebooted several times a week to keep it running. This has to be automated as well and is usually done 2 ro 3 in the morning. Now the PC audio system is connected to the whole house audio system.

    The last thing you want, is to hear the windows boot sound at 3 in the morning….. every morning.

    This ‘feature’ alone would prevent it’s use in home automation systems.

    Bad idea Microsoft.

  482. How can we take our laptops to meetings and conferences if we cannot turn off the startup sound? Remember that with a laptop, you cannot disable sound until after the computer starts up so we are going to blast the meeting or conference room before we can hit that mute button.

  483. How can we take our laptops to meetings and conferences if we cannot turn off the startup sound? Remember that with a laptop, you cannot disable sound until after the computer starts up so we are going to blast the meeting or conference room before we can hit that mute button.

  484. What a terrible idea this is, putting Microsoft’s needs above the customer’s.

    I didn’t take the time to read all the comments, but is there really anyone who thinks this is a good idea?

  485. What a terrible idea this is, putting Microsoft’s needs above the customer’s.

    I didn’t take the time to read all the comments, but is there really anyone who thinks this is a good idea?

  486. Why does every frickin electronic gadget in the world have to announce that they are turning on and off with some sort of highly annoying theme music or sound? I personally refuse to purchase any item, be it cell phone, digital camera or whatever that makes sound when it is powered up or down that cannot be silenced. I can’t stand it when people power their cell phones and it makes this cutesy little chime that announces “Hey, I have an expensive phone, come steal it from me.”

  487. Why does every frickin electronic gadget in the world have to announce that they are turning on and off with some sort of highly annoying theme music or sound? I personally refuse to purchase any item, be it cell phone, digital camera or whatever that makes sound when it is powered up or down that cannot be silenced. I can’t stand it when people power their cell phones and it makes this cutesy little chime that announces “Hey, I have an expensive phone, come steal it from me.”

  488. If people like the sound, find it useful, think it’s cool, whatever they are not going to turn it off. Being able to turn it off is not going to hurt the people that want it. So all this talk about how useful the sound is can filed under red hering.

    They will not let you turn it off because marketing don’t want you to. It’s free advertizing.

  489. If people like the sound, find it useful, think it’s cool, whatever they are not going to turn it off. Being able to turn it off is not going to hurt the people that want it. So all this talk about how useful the sound is can filed under red hering.

    They will not let you turn it off because marketing don’t want you to. It’s free advertizing.

  490. This will become a security issue. Users desiring a different sound or no sound will find “free” software available on the net to do what they want with it, install it, and complain because of all of the popups or their bank account gets emptied out. It’s ok, though, because Microsoft’s EULA removes Microsoft from any responsibility for the problem.

  491. This will become a security issue. Users desiring a different sound or no sound will find “free” software available on the net to do what they want with it, install it, and complain because of all of the popups or their bank account gets emptied out. It’s ok, though, because Microsoft’s EULA removes Microsoft from any responsibility for the problem.

  492. It’s way past time Micro$oft dies and we all start using a good OS. Micro$oft has been writing total garbage for years now. I’m really surprised they haven’t had a class action lawsuit against them yet. And this is one more thing in a long line of things telling us, the consumer, that our only worth is the piles and piles of money we keep throwing at Micro$oft.

    Rebel! Switch! Even if the OS is a POS it is better than Micro$oft!

  493. I honestly cannot believe we need to argue this point. Sounds have always been configurable.

    I read Steve’s argument a few times, and I still do not understand why they don’t want a user to be able to control this. If someone doesn’t want that sound or wants a different one, why is it Microsoft’s business? These are OUR computers. We are all different, and should be free to mold the “experience” to whatever we prefer.

    If you want users who buy retail machines to hear the same sound when they first turn on the machine for “branding,” just tell Dell, Gateway, etc they can’t change it and need to let the user decide.

  494. I honestly cannot believe we need to argue this point. Sounds have always been configurable.

    I read Steve’s argument a few times, and I still do not understand why they don’t want a user to be able to control this. If someone doesn’t want that sound or wants a different one, why is it Microsoft’s business? These are OUR computers. We are all different, and should be free to mold the “experience” to whatever we prefer.

    If you want users who buy retail machines to hear the same sound when they first turn on the machine for “branding,” just tell Dell, Gateway, etc they can’t change it and need to let the user decide.

  495. It’s way past time Micro$oft dies and we all start using a good OS. Micro$oft has been writing total garbage for years now. I’m really surprised they haven’t had a class action lawsuit against them yet. And this is one more thing in a long line of things telling us, the consumer, that our only worth is the piles and piles of money we keep throwing at Micro$oft.

    Rebel! Switch! Even if the OS is a POS it is better than Micro$oft!

  496. About Canon cameras (comment 290): I have an A510, which I think is newer than the G2. You can disable any sounds you want, and it will stay that way until you change it. Maybe Canon has learned its lesson.

    Very interesting comment 283:
    “… knowledgable as he is about the world of audio, Steve gets that this won’t fly, and is airing the debate publicly to collect ammo against marketing or management over the issue. Please let this be true.”

    I have a hunch something like this is the case. The only explanation for such lunacy is a bunch of extraverted marketing types gathered together only among themselves.

  497. About Canon cameras (comment 290): I have an A510, which I think is newer than the G2. You can disable any sounds you want, and it will stay that way until you change it. Maybe Canon has learned its lesson.

    Very interesting comment 283:
    “… knowledgable as he is about the world of audio, Steve gets that this won’t fly, and is airing the debate publicly to collect ammo against marketing or management over the issue. Please let this be true.”

    I have a hunch something like this is the case. The only explanation for such lunacy is a bunch of extraverted marketing types gathered together only among themselves.

  498. Just another way to get free publicity, Microsoft has always been good at getting lots of publicity for free. Personally i’m migrating to linux very soon. I’m sick and tired of Microsoft telling me what i can and cannot do on my own computer.

    This only shows that Microsoft does not care about their users.

  499. Just another way to get free publicity, Microsoft has always been good at getting lots of publicity for free. Personally i’m migrating to linux very soon. I’m sick and tired of Microsoft telling me what i can and cannot do on my own computer.

    This only shows that Microsoft does not care about their users.

  500. The debate over this start up sound is not a publicity stunt by Microsoft. In fact, I’m sure Microsoft would rather this whole thing would go away.

    How do I know? I was in the techincal beta program when the debate over this sound began to heat up. Many of the comments on the beta test newsgroups are very similar to what you read here.

    I quit the beta program over this issue and contacted Scoble. He blogged the issue and the next day interview Steve Ball. In the mean time, Steve Ball had joined the beta test newsgroup and began answering questions. Although I had left the beta program, I did exchange a couple of emails with him.

    This is a quote from Steve that is on the offical Visa blog:

    “It may simply be the ‘best’ compromise to give everyone the potential to have a 100% silent boot without thinking or interacting in advance.

    And, for the record this (reg key for RTM) is going to be my personal recommendation.”

  501. The debate over this start up sound is not a publicity stunt by Microsoft. In fact, I’m sure Microsoft would rather this whole thing would go away.

    How do I know? I was in the techincal beta program when the debate over this sound began to heat up. Many of the comments on the beta test newsgroups are very similar to what you read here.

    I quit the beta program over this issue and contacted Scoble. He blogged the issue and the next day interview Steve Ball. In the mean time, Steve Ball had joined the beta test newsgroup and began answering questions. Although I had left the beta program, I did exchange a couple of emails with him.

    This is a quote from Steve that is on the offical Visa blog:

    “It may simply be the ‘best’ compromise to give everyone the potential to have a 100% silent boot without thinking or interacting in advance.

    And, for the record this (reg key for RTM) is going to be my personal recommendation.”

  502. there might be a way to turn this feture off by modifying a file in C:/Windows/media. Just open sound recorder and save a blank file as Windows vista Startup.wav and replacing the pre-installed one.
    note: to change the Logon Windows XP Logon Sound do the same but save it as Windows XP Logon Sound.wav

  503. there might be a way to turn this feture off by modifying a file in C:/Windows/media. Just open sound recorder and save a blank file as Windows vista Startup.wav and replacing the pre-installed one.
    note: to change the Logon Windows XP Logon Sound do the same but save it as Windows XP Logon Sound.wav

  504. Since my first PC (early 90′s) I disconnected the internal speaker or, if necessary cut the wires.
    For windows no sound is my sound.

  505. Since my first PC (early 90′s) I disconnected the internal speaker or, if necessary cut the wires.
    For windows no sound is my sound.

  506. Stupid, stupid, stupid idea. Onec again – broadcasting. We use Windows on all of our on-air machines. They are set for “No Sounds” so that we do not hear the boot-up symphony, the chimes & beeps, etc. WE DO NOT WANT SOUNDS THAT WE CANNOT TURN OFF. I, for one, will NEVER EVER install Vista in this facility if they implement this hair-brained idea.

  507. Stupid, stupid, stupid idea. Onec again – broadcasting. We use Windows on all of our on-air machines. They are set for “No Sounds” so that we do not hear the boot-up symphony, the chimes & beeps, etc. WE DO NOT WANT SOUNDS THAT WE CANNOT TURN OFF. I, for one, will NEVER EVER install Vista in this facility if they implement this hair-brained idea.

  508. Wow. So much hate over a startup sound. If Microsoft’s marketers are wise they would take a good long look at this thread.

    fun items:
    - there are still people that spell Microsoft as Micro$oft. How lame.
    - People complain that it would be bothersome when the startup sound goes off when booting in a meeting. To you I say: boot a friggin’ computer in MY meeting and I’ll smack you good. We’re in a meeting.
    - The guy who cut the wires of the speakers. I actually did this in the DOS era because of the annoying beep. Well, I took the connector off the main board. Seemed less destructive.

    Anyway, people seem quite passionate about having a choice about a startup sound. It reminds me of a domain policy one of our admins once pushed out that forced a corporate background and screensaver; nearly started a riot. Seems people really cherish these little modifications. Like fonts. :P

  509. Wow. So much hate over a startup sound. If Microsoft’s marketers are wise they would take a good long look at this thread.

    fun items:
    - there are still people that spell Microsoft as Micro$oft. How lame.
    - People complain that it would be bothersome when the startup sound goes off when booting in a meeting. To you I say: boot a friggin’ computer in MY meeting and I’ll smack you good. We’re in a meeting.
    - The guy who cut the wires of the speakers. I actually did this in the DOS era because of the annoying beep. Well, I took the connector off the main board. Seemed less destructive.

    Anyway, people seem quite passionate about having a choice about a startup sound. It reminds me of a domain policy one of our admins once pushed out that forced a corporate background and screensaver; nearly started a riot. Seems people really cherish these little modifications. Like fonts. :P

  510. Law professors hate it when your laptop makes some stupid sound when you boot in class. sometimes you need a hard mute.

  511. Law professors hate it when your laptop makes some stupid sound when you boot in class. sometimes you need a hard mute.

  512. My computer.

    That’s all Microsoft needs to realise.

    It’s my computer, not theirs, and if they want their OS on it, then it has to be 100% configurable by me.

    Plain and simple.

    Every user has the right to complete control over their computer, whether they exercise it or not. Sure, go ahead and set some defaults, but do not ever under any circumstances remove my ability to make a choice about how my computer behaves.

    If Microsoft wants to treat their paying customers like children, incapable of making choices for themselves, then the only customers they are going to have are ones who accept being treated like children.

  513. My computer.

    That’s all Microsoft needs to realise.

    It’s my computer, not theirs, and if they want their OS on it, then it has to be 100% configurable by me.

    Plain and simple.

    Every user has the right to complete control over their computer, whether they exercise it or not. Sure, go ahead and set some defaults, but do not ever under any circumstances remove my ability to make a choice about how my computer behaves.

    If Microsoft wants to treat their paying customers like children, incapable of making choices for themselves, then the only customers they are going to have are ones who accept being treated like children.

  514. I say give us the opportunity to add our own sound bytes. After all it is our software after we buy it-we respect you build it give us the opportunity to add our own distinctive flair to it. thanks

  515. I say give us the opportunity to add our own sound bytes. After all it is our software after we buy it-we respect you build it give us the opportunity to add our own distinctive flair to it. thanks

  516. The dudes at http://www.nlite.com or some other geek will come up with a way to disable the f**king noise, if necessary… even though it may require to build a custom iso.

    Recap: Steve – Please at the minimum give us the option of a registry modification to turn that crap off.

  517. The dudes at http://www.nlite.com or some other geek will come up with a way to disable the f**king noise, if necessary… even though it may require to build a custom iso.

    Recap: Steve – Please at the minimum give us the option of a registry modification to turn that crap off.

  518. I really really don’t like this annoying tendency of both Apple and Microsoft to force mandatory default settings on their users. I don’t want windows making sounds, nor do I want webpages making sounds unless I explicitly permit it. My sound card is set up as an S/PDIF transport connected to an external dac and then to a preamplifier. I want to listen to movies, games and music, and I want the digital signal to be identical to the one put out by a high end dvd player, cd transport or game system. Didn’t Microsoft learn from the kmixer debacle? Stop screwing with my audio signal.

  519. I really really don’t like this annoying tendency of both Apple and Microsoft to force mandatory default settings on their users. I don’t want windows making sounds, nor do I want webpages making sounds unless I explicitly permit it. My sound card is set up as an S/PDIF transport connected to an external dac and then to a preamplifier. I want to listen to movies, games and music, and I want the digital signal to be identical to the one put out by a high end dvd player, cd transport or game system. Didn’t Microsoft learn from the kmixer debacle? Stop screwing with my audio signal.

  520. If this is what Steve Ball says,

    “A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    Is this what Microsoft believes their target audience will say?

    “Oh, thank you, Mr. startup sound man! I completely forgot that I booted (rebooted) my computer just a minute ago, if it wasn’t for your special sound, I would have been lost to the world, unable to do anything but stare at the screen, hoping some magical sound would tell me it’s safe to use my computer”!

  521. If this is what Steve Ball says,

    “A spiritual side of the branding experience. A short, brief, positive confirmation that your machine is now concious and ready to react. You can turn on your Vista machine, go eat some cereal, while your machine is cold booting and then this gentle sound will come out telling you that you can log in. You won’t need to wait for your machine to startup, he says.”

    Is this what Microsoft believes their target audience will say?

    “Oh, thank you, Mr. startup sound man! I completely forgot that I booted (rebooted) my computer just a minute ago, if it wasn’t for your special sound, I would have been lost to the world, unable to do anything but stare at the screen, hoping some magical sound would tell me it’s safe to use my computer”!

  522. Never mind turning it off – ALL the Windows Sounds are TOO DARN LOUD, so there should be a feature to globally TURN DOWN THE VOLUME of ALL Windows Sounds, relative to other sounds such as your Skype or Music, and you should be able to turn the Windows Sounds volume right down to ZERO if you like. There is nothing worse than hearing a loud obnoxious windows sound over top of your Skype conversation or over top of Music or what have you. These folks need to get their heads out of the clouds for once. Why in tarnation should Windows play ANY sounds at FULL BLAST. Nobody ever plays MP3′s at FULL BLAST, and so Windows Sounds should play at 30% of full volume by default. nuff said.

  523. Never mind turning it off – ALL the Windows Sounds are TOO DARN LOUD, so there should be a feature to globally TURN DOWN THE VOLUME of ALL Windows Sounds, relative to other sounds such as your Skype or Music, and you should be able to turn the Windows Sounds volume right down to ZERO if you like. There is nothing worse than hearing a loud obnoxious windows sound over top of your Skype conversation or over top of Music or what have you. These folks need to get their heads out of the clouds for once. Why in tarnation should Windows play ANY sounds at FULL BLAST. Nobody ever plays MP3′s at FULL BLAST, and so Windows Sounds should play at 30% of full volume by default. nuff said.

  524. I have a Windows XP laptop from Dell. Sometimes I want to start it in the bedroom in which my wife is sleeping. I’ve never been able to discover a way to turn off the sound using the keys. Before I found out how to turn off that damn start-up sound in software, starting up the laptop was sure to wake my wife. I will be mad as hell if the ability to turn that sound off is taken away from me. This is a BIG DEAL. It will really make my life worse if these guys do this.

  525. I have a Windows XP laptop from Dell. Sometimes I want to start it in the bedroom in which my wife is sleeping. I’ve never been able to discover a way to turn off the sound using the keys. Before I found out how to turn off that damn start-up sound in software, starting up the laptop was sure to wake my wife. I will be mad as hell if the ability to turn that sound off is taken away from me. This is a BIG DEAL. It will really make my life worse if these guys do this.

  526. This is another example of why we HATE windows/microsoft, Microsoft think they know best, and if you dont like it … there is no other competition to use, so we have to deal with it. Google, PLEASE MAKE AN OS! please please please

  527. This is another example of why we HATE windows/microsoft, Microsoft think they know best, and if you dont like it … there is no other competition to use, so we have to deal with it. Google, PLEASE MAKE AN OS! please please please

  528. GROAN! Mandatory WGA, mandatory security warnings, mandatory sounds! I’m starting to think there are more reasons to avoid Vista than reasons to buy it. I’m getting really f-ing sick and tired of hearing how Vista is going to further restrict my user experience. I’m thinking I’ll stick with XP until it dies and then complete the Apple switch (hell, my mac mini is a great machine, maybe I outta try a G5).

    BTW, Microsoft – The very first thing I do when I re-install XP is turn off the lame and loud sounds. Get a clue!

  529. GROAN! Mandatory WGA, mandatory security warnings, mandatory sounds! I’m starting to think there are more reasons to avoid Vista than reasons to buy it. I’m getting really f-ing sick and tired of hearing how Vista is going to further restrict my user experience. I’m thinking I’ll stick with XP until it dies and then complete the Apple switch (hell, my mac mini is a great machine, maybe I outta try a G5).

    BTW, Microsoft – The very first thing I do when I re-install XP is turn off the lame and loud sounds. Get a clue!

  530. And next year, every intel cpu that starts up requires a bios routine to play the intel jingle from the pc speaker, same for nvidia, ati, amd, creative, western digital, samsung and hell, even your onboard raid controllers, north bridge and south bridge chips.

    The music will be played without the user’s ability to cancel or intervene at a maximum of 16 tracks concurrently. Other devices’ branding audio will be queued. Computer boot up time is expected to increase by 5 to 10 minutes. You can now have your nice warm cereal or jump off the building to an eternal sleep.

  531. And next year, every intel cpu that starts up requires a bios routine to play the intel jingle from the pc speaker, same for nvidia, ati, amd, creative, western digital, samsung and hell, even your onboard raid controllers, north bridge and south bridge chips.

    The music will be played without the user’s ability to cancel or intervene at a maximum of 16 tracks concurrently. Other devices’ branding audio will be queued. Computer boot up time is expected to increase by 5 to 10 minutes. You can now have your nice warm cereal or jump off the building to an eternal sleep.

  532. The whole “Macs do it too” argument is silly. Just because some other system forces you to hit yourself over the head with a hammer doesn’t mean that new systems should do the same.

    -Allandaros, running a blissfully silent PC

  533. The whole “Macs do it too” argument is silly. Just because some other system forces you to hit yourself over the head with a hammer doesn’t mean that new systems should do the same.

    -Allandaros, running a blissfully silent PC

  534. I hate this idea.
    I kill all the sounds on my machine. It’s a personal choice and one that I want to keep (especially as the volume levels in Windows seem to change with the weather). I’m not scared by a registry tweak if that’s what it takes.
    My Media Centre PC is set up to run with no sounds bar what I want to watch (hearing that sound cranked up through my 5.1 once was enough). If Vista is going to stuff some marketing execs idea of a cool sounds down my throat every time I have to reboot (because they’ve still not worked out how to do a seamless patch/upgrade) I’ll go mad! If it happens to every machine in the studio I suspect the Mac crowd will either stick something sharp in our speakers and/or convert us!
    My Vaio let’s me turn off the Sony startup noise and animation – means when I fire up the laptop at home at midnight to do some work my partner and daughter don’t get woken up. I don’t have a Tosh so I can’t comment but I imagine it’s got a mute option inthe BIOS as well. And with the Xbox360 I never turn the speakers on until the system was up and running (same as I turn them off before shutting down the xbox or the MCE to avoid a ‘pop’).
    Silence *is* golden!

  535. I hate this idea.
    I kill all the sounds on my machine. It’s a personal choice and one that I want to keep (especially as the volume levels in Windows seem to change with the weather). I’m not scared by a registry tweak if that’s what it takes.
    My Media Centre PC is set up to run with no sounds bar what I want to watch (hearing that sound cranked up through my 5.1 once was enough). If Vista is going to stuff some marketing execs idea of a cool sounds down my throat every time I have to reboot (because they’ve still not worked out how to do a seamless patch/upgrade) I’ll go mad! If it happens to every machine in the studio I suspect the Mac crowd will either stick something sharp in our speakers and/or convert us!
    My Vaio let’s me turn off the Sony startup noise and animation – means when I fire up the laptop at home at midnight to do some work my partner and daughter don’t get woken up. I don’t have a Tosh so I can’t comment but I imagine it’s got a mute option inthe BIOS as well. And with the Xbox360 I never turn the speakers on until the system was up and running (same as I turn them off before shutting down the xbox or the MCE to avoid a ‘pop’).
    Silence *is* golden!

  536. —–

    A spiritual side of the branding experience.

    …the emotional experience of how sounds will fit into the overall experience of using your computer.

    —–

    Words fail me.

    This is an operating system.

    It processes I/O. It manages hardware and memory.

    It is not an “experience”. It is not “spiritual”.

    It is, however, shipping eons later than expected and without a sizable chunk of features they’ve hyped since, Hell, “Cairo”

    Yet they expend resources on rubbish like this?

    A feature that will annoy professional users and be totally ignored by the rest.

    They need to pink slip a legion of marketing/liberal arts types and replace them with people who actually reside in the real world – People who can deliver on stale promises.

    I wish they would stop trying to inject sex appeal into an operating system. It’s about as pointless as slapping lingere on a Holstein.

    And for crying out loud, if I hear the word “experience” used one more time in this context…

  537. —–

    A spiritual side of the branding experience.

    …the emotional experience of how sounds will fit into the overall experience of using your computer.

    —–

    Words fail me.

    This is an operating system.

    It processes I/O. It manages hardware and memory.

    It is not an “experience”. It is not “spiritual”.

    It is, however, shipping eons later than expected and without a sizable chunk of features they’ve hyped since, Hell, “Cairo”

    Yet they expend resources on rubbish like this?

    A feature that will annoy professional users and be totally ignored by the rest.

    They need to pink slip a legion of marketing/liberal arts types and replace them with people who actually reside in the real world – People who can deliver on stale promises.

    I wish they would stop trying to inject sex appeal into an operating system. It’s about as pointless as slapping lingere on a Holstein.

    And for crying out loud, if I hear the word “experience” used one more time in this context…

  538. rediculous. i spent hundreds to make my computer very silet and now it has to make noise everytime it boots?
    i bet if they didn’t spend so much money and didn’t bother with making noise thy’d be able to sell it for 50$ less. now that would be awesome.

    and what a pain. i like blasting my music thru the house but sometimes windows crashes and reboots by itself, and for some reason the start up sound is like 5 times louder then when music plays, and i’m sure people can hear it like 1 mile away. i know my neighbor has the same problem with his computer because i can hear it blasting the boot up sound sometimes at night and it wakes me up.

    now, i’ve since disabled it, but if i can’t disable it, that’s a real pain in the butt.

    i don’t know why this is an issue. it’s really f****** stupid to argue about. common sense says you should be able to change it or disable it. why do they need to think twice about it? i swear i’ll be on there tech support line untill they tell me how to turn it off.

  539. rediculous. i spent hundreds to make my computer very silet and now it has to make noise everytime it boots?
    i bet if they didn’t spend so much money and didn’t bother with making noise thy’d be able to sell it for 50$ less. now that would be awesome.

    and what a pain. i like blasting my music thru the house but sometimes windows crashes and reboots by itself, and for some reason the start up sound is like 5 times louder then when music plays, and i’m sure people can hear it like 1 mile away. i know my neighbor has the same problem with his computer because i can hear it blasting the boot up sound sometimes at night and it wakes me up.

    now, i’ve since disabled it, but if i can’t disable it, that’s a real pain in the butt.

    i don’t know why this is an issue. it’s really f****** stupid to argue about. common sense says you should be able to change it or disable it. why do they need to think twice about it? i swear i’ll be on there tech support line untill they tell me how to turn it off.