4 Replies Latest reply: Dec 13, 2010 4:25 PM by kidcanada
kidcanada Level 1 (0 points)
How do I enable my startup chime? I've done a fair amount of research and the majority of info is regarding people who want to DISable their startup chime. I seem to have done that somehow. I vaguely remember doing it on purpose but I have no recollection of what it is I did and there doesn't seem to be any option for doing that in the system preferences.

-there is no chime on startup
-I tried resetting the SMC and the PRAM
-PRAM reset produces no chimes; the screen goes blank in lieu of chimes
-I tried a safe boot to verify and repair the disk
-internal speakers work fine; I have no headphones connected
-the macbook is not muted before shutdown
-i'm not holding any keys on startup
-i did not install anything that allows you to manage the startup chime
-it seemed pointless but I cleared all 3 of my caches folders
-i've considered an archive and install but, as I understand it, the chime sounds before any of the OS has even loaded... making that pointless?
-the C chime is not located in my system sounds folder. is it supposed to be in there? if not, where would it be?


macbook, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • K Shaffer Level 6 (11,890 points)
    There was a downloadable sound preference control panel to shut off start-up sound.
    If you got and used that, there should be evidence; with access via a control panel.

    • StartupSound.prefPane:

    Perhaps such a panel control would allow one to re-engage the missing startup tone?

    +{Note: a *start-up chime indicates* that the POST (Power On Self Test) completed successfully;+
    +not hearing this, if disabled or somehow inaudible, eliminates notice this is happening.}+

    • Mac OS X 10.4:
    Startup chime doesn't play on startup

    With an older tech ^ article, some instance of no startup chime was explained, then; it may
    not apply to a later OS X or perhaps different hardware versions. And for some users, things
    did change in how Snow Leopard 10.6 affected sound behaviors in how which speakers were
    default (vs headphone, etc) on a startup; at least for some users and noticed after an upgrade.

    Maybe someone with another idea on how to restore startup chime tone will reply?
    Normally, muting before a normal shut-down should disable the start-up tone on restart.
    There may be some single-user mode or Terminal command to toggle the tone off/on.

    If there is a defect in the startup sequence regarding the lack of the start-up tone, it may
    be something addressable in a single-user boot mode. That tone usually loads before the
    OS, so the error may be in part of the system prior to your normal access control over it.

    Too many non-computer interrupts around here for me to 'wrap my head around' thinking!
    Good luck & happy computing!
  • kidcanada Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the response. You know what? Last year I was messing around in the terminal, trying to learn how to do simple things... because I'm a nerd like that :OP I think I may have done something in there... but I have no clue what it might have been. I'll investigate that a little more. And maybe that pref pane would allow me to enable it. I'll give that a shot as well. Thanks!

    In the mean time, if anyone else has suggestions, that would be great.
  • K Shaffer Level 6 (11,890 points)
    Could you have tried something such as a "log-out hook" as described in Mac OSX Hints?
    This uses modified script to select Mute just prior to logout, and also shows some of how.

    • Mute the startup sound using logout hook: (from 2003 to 2009)

    The last note at the above page shows how one person ran a logout hook.
    Mute the startup sound using a logout hook
    Authored by: koit on Jun 14, '09 10:47:41AM

    If you'd done that, maybe the suggested paths could help find such a device?

    Also other ideas, *using code to silence startup chime on Intel-based Macs*:

    Some of the other forum hints go on with
    more interesting stuff in their comments.

    A general search using terms, as follows, may bring in methods; one
    you may have utilized to disable the chime, and then maybe reverse it:
    *Mac OS X 10.5: disable startup tone in Terminal*

    +Hopefully someone with greater insight and short post answers will reply with an+
    +idea of how to search for or reset just the default volume on startup in your Mac.+
    +Short of an "archive & install/update" regimen. Or restore from backup clone, etc.+

    (Oh, we're heading into sub-zero °F temps again, here; not including a chill factor.)

    Good luck & happy computing!

    PS: In the Universal system preference panel, there is an option in Hearing to make
    the screen blink instead of hearing Alert sounds. I wonder if that carries over on restart
    and stops the startup tone? ...I don't use Universal Access preferences.

    +{ edited 2x}+
  • kidcanada Level 1 (0 points)
    Yes, I was searching around and found both of those links. I tried the following in terminal but it didn't work:

    sudo nvram SystemAudioVolume="{"

    To be honest, I don't think the system audio volume is the issue since my speakers work fine. I think it's going to be a boolean kind of thing where you just turn startup chime on or off. Maybe such a thing exists. Maybe I'll find Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster in the process.

    I also tried installing the pref pane you suggested and it didn't work (or if you're a glass half full kind of person, it DID work since the pref pane was designed to eliminate the startup chime :OP)

    I vaguely remember I was reading through a site that had lessons on the terminal. I remember what the site looked like but I don't have it bookmarked it. If I had a device to store a TM backup, I'd do an erase and install in a second because this is just eating away at my sanity but I don't so I'm going to try to find that site and see if it helps.

    Thanks KS!

    Message was edited by: kidcanada