According to Microsoft insider Robert Scoble, users will not be able to change or mute the startup sound in Windows Vista.
Why on earth would you do that? Well, here’s the argument from Microsoft:
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.
Folks, I do not care about your “branding experience.” I customize just about everything in my system using programs like WIndowBlinds. Everything else you mentioned can be accomplished with a user-defined start-up sound.
Also, is the boot time really slow enough that I can finish a bowl of cereal while Vista is starting up? Make it boot faster!
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.
That’s stupid. There are plenty of times that I don’t want my computer making noises–the library, for example–and Vista shouldn’t be designed to work against me like that. If volume control is that much of a mess, you’d better fix it, fast, rather than forcing me to hear things that I don’t want to hear.
Frankly, what’s wrong with the old system? If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
(BTW: This annoying behavior has been a part of the Mac OS for years already. Is this Microsoft copying a bad idea from Apple?)
Thanks to Brainwagon for the link.