How to disable the pc speaker (beep!)

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Revision as of 00:39, 6 August 2008 by RichardNeill (Talk | contribs) (Liking the system beep)

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Get rid of the annoying beeps in Linux

Remove the pc speaker module "pcspkr"

Open a terminal and issue this command as root:

rmmod pcspkr

To prevent the "pcspkr" module from loading again at startup, open /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist with your favorite text editor (as root) and add following lines to the end of the file:

# disable the **** pc speaker
blacklist pcspkr

Re-enabling the pc speaker

Temporarily activate it by loading the module (run this from a terminal with root privileges):

modprobe pcspkr

If you don't want to prevent the module from loading during startup, delete the lines from /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist described in the previous section.

Disable console beeps in /etc/inputrc

Another solution is to disable console beeps in /etc/inputrc (change with your favourite editor, should work on all distributions)

# do not bell on tab-completion
set bell-style none

Disable the system beep in Gnome

In Ubuntu 7.10 and later, uncheck:

System > Preferences > Sound > System Beep > Enable System Beep

Or if it's just the terminal tab auto-completion that's bothering you, uncheck:

Terminal > Edit > Current Profile > Terminal bell


Learning to love the beeps

Actually, these beeps are quite useful sometimes (especially with shell-scripts that want to get your attention with echo -e "\a" ). The reason people tend to hate them are because they get overused.

1. Make bash tab-completion less beepy, by editing /etc/inputrc (or ~/.inputrc). Add:

# Show all if ambigious.
set show-all-if-ambiguous on

This makes tab-completion more useful, as well as less irritating: we now only get a beep on a true error (no possible completions); if multiple options are possible, all are printed, and it doesn't beep.


2. Make the beep quieter, shorter, and a nicer pitch. I tend to set 440 Hz, 50ms. Configure with kcontrol (in KDE), or just use xset in your startup files:

xset b 50 440 50