Linux

Disable Ubuntu/Gnome PC Speaker, Beeper Emulation


I recently installed Ubuntu 9.4 onto my fairly new Dell XPS laptop. Everything has been fine until I encountered one of the more annoying things I find about Linux, its sound and audio set-up. The operating system depends on multiple sound interfaces that essentially compete to do the same functions. It reminded me of PC audio back in my youth under MS-DOS.

The annoying thing is a driver that literally emulates the beeping, squeaking and downright horrible noise of PC speaker. This 1981 budget sound device emulation can at times ignore all your audio and mute settings. Worse because it is emulated, removing the Linux pc speaker audio driver does not work. After hours of being driven crazy by random speak alert prompts I discovered what was causing this and more importantly how to disable it. Simply…

  1. On the Gnome panel right click the volume control (should be a speaker icon)
  2. Open Volume Control
  3. Select the Alsa Mixer
  4. Then click Preferences
  5. In the Volume Control Preferences select the PC Beep playback and then close the dialogue
  6. Now you should see the PC Beep volume control in the Volume Control dialogue
  7. Press the mute button and you should be done, blissful quietness
PC Beep muted, thank goodness!
PC Beep muted, thank goodness!
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3 thoughts on “Disable Ubuntu/Gnome PC Speaker, Beeper Emulation

  1. This doesn’t work for all users, my Volume Control Mixer does not display the PC Beep control. I have to keep going into Terminal every time I boot up into Ubuntu and type “xset b off” Hope this helps some of you who may have the same issue

  2. I like the helpful info you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your blog and check again here regularly. I am quite sure I will be told a lot of new stuff proper here! Best of luck for the following!

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