The computer is Mac OS X version 10.5.8. When I go to system preferences, sound - some of the text is in gray and I cannot adjust it, e.g. type of alert sound and a box that says mute, which is checked. I can check and uncheck the sound icon appearing in toolbar, but again, nothing happens either way.
Any ideas are welcome.
No it isn't, that is your operating system (Leopard). We still don't know what Mac you have, so only one of these applies, but should fix the issue:
Resetting the SMU on a G5 iMac:
and on resetting the PMU on a Power Mac G5, G4 and G3 :
Resetting the SMC (System Management Controller) on Intel-based Macs:
Resetting your Mac's PRAM and NVRAM:
By what you say, it might be possible that you have changed a setting; spcifically the volume output drop down.
To check if this is the case, launch 'System Prefrences'. Click on 'Sound', and near the bottom, there should be the option to change the volume output. Select 'Built in Speaker' or similar.
I hope this helps - as Klaus said, we still dont know which mac you have.
To find the model of mac that you have, go to the apple menu, and click 'About this Mac'. Click 'More Info...'. Look for 'Model Identifier' (on Leopard, it might say Machine Model, but I'm not sure, as I am running Lion on a couple of machines, and Tiger on the other!). Copy and Paste it into a message on this forum, and we should be able to help you.
Look directly into the sound output port on your Mac (which type of Mac is it, by the way?). This is the port that you would plug headphones into, or external speakers. Do you see a red light inside that port? (You should not see a red light, but if you do, that means there is a specific problem that has a specific fix you can do.)
OK, well at least we now know that it's an iMac G5 w/iSight.
Personally, I reckon that your best bet is to take it into the Genius Bar. They'lle probably have it fixed in minutes!
One thing to do before that though;
- Launch Disk Utility
- Click on your main (startup) drive in the left hand side of the window
- Near the big white box (roughly in the middle of the window), click 'Repair Disk', and then 'Repair Disk Permissions'.
Also what you could try is deleting 'Library/Preferences/com.apple.BezelServices.plist'
One more thing; ensure your mac is FULLY up to date with Software Update!
I hope this helps, but, as I said, your best bet is to take it into the Genius Bar.
I look forward to hearing what is wrong with it.
All the best,