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Code to silence the startup chime on Intel-powered Macs
Authored by: hasseg on Jan 16, '09 08:51:04AM
I silence the startup chime via a LogoutHook that sets the volume to zero. Find more info on how to do this here: Here's the text of the article (in case it doesn't ever come up again and the google cache gets reset or something)

“Let’s turn on my shiny Apple MacBook … DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG!”

If you own a MacBook you know what I’m talking about, that annoying (and sometimes extremely loud!) sound that it plays when it boots. I’m quite egocentric, but I don’t like to let the whole building know that I’m using my computer in the middle of the night, or be hated by all the library when I check my emails.

There are ridiculous applications around like this, 3.3mb and not even free to simply turn that stupid sound off. It only turns the volume off before Mac OS shuts down and turns it on when it starts. Does this need a *censored*ing GUI application?

I just wrote this two lines of AppleScript: add this to /etc/rc.shutdown.local :

osascript -e "set volume output muted 1"

and this to /etc/rc.local :

osascript -e "set volume output muted 0"

and it’s done!

The cool thing is that it doesn’t change the volume level, so when you boot into Mac OS you’ll find the same volume level you left before the shutdown :)

I hope this helps

Edit: with Leopard, Apple removed the support for /etc/rc.shutdown.local, but /etc/rc.local still works. To disable the startup sound we can use a LogoutHook, something that is executed when we logout/shutdown/restart: just create a script wherever you want (/opt/local/bin/ and ~/bin/ are a good choice) and add it with a LogoutHook: in you script write:

#!/bin/tcsh -f osascript -e "set volume output muted 1"

make it executable with:

sudo chmod +x /PATH/TO/YOUR/

and then:

sudo defaults write LogoutHook /PATH/TO/YOUR/

In this way we can make this trick work, even without rc.shutdown.local. There is also an old article that explains how to do that, but its weak point is that the volume is not restored properly, but it’s alway set to 3/10.

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