Robert McLaws: Windows Edition

Blogging about Windows since before Vista became a bad word

Sounds Like Windows Vista

Long Zheng has a comparison of sounds between Windows XP and Windows Vista. Jim Allchin tells us "why".

Sounds are obviously an important part of how people interact with their PC.  The idea is to use your ears to get information from a sound without even thinking about it.  For example, certain sounds on our PC tell us when we have a new email or instant message.

It was our goal for the sounds to be just noticeable enough that if they weren’t there you would miss them, but they’re subtle enough that they don’t get in your way.  Just like the visual cues of the new Start button, the audio cues of the new sounds are "rounded" and "translucent."  The default sound scheme in Windows Vista is intentionally much gentler and softer than in previous versions.



  • November 9, 2006 9:13 PM
  • AT39 said:

    I don't know yet, some of the stuff seems like it sounds better in XP, but that may just be because I am so used to the sounds in XP. Some of the sounds, you can barely hear.

    November 10, 2006 3:08 PM
  • James D. Morton said:

    Same old stuff, only in a new package.  They could do a lot better...

    November 10, 2006 4:20 PM
  • I like all of the Vista sounds better than their XP counterparts except for the USB insert, remove, and fail sounds.  The Vista versions are terrible.

    November 11, 2006 10:24 PM
  • Alex said:

    The battery sounds are the only ones that, in my opinion, needs work. They are too quiet, and these are two of the most important sounds.

    November 15, 2006 9:31 PM
  • nerdopolis said:

    It seems like these sounds are too soft and too wimpy sounding. THese sounds, if I had no screenshots of Vista I would think that its SleepyOS. My Palm OS 4 PDA (the speaker can not create good sounds, it just beeps.) can create more "this is an awsome operating system" then these here

    November 22, 2006 5:00 PM
  • Nerdopolis (Edit) said:

    The only ound that dos make a statment that "This is an awsome OS" is the Balloon sound. (there has to be more sounds , what happend to critical stop!?")

    November 22, 2006 5:06 PM
  • and Nerdopolis AGAIN said:

    Those sound NOTHING like the behind the sceens of Robert Fripp (the sound recorder)  the video was much more to the feel, and I can ACTUALY HEAR the sounds on the video

    those sounds belong on a more stable OS! On windows it makes errors sound like a good thing!!!

                                    (or mabie thats Microsofts advertiseing idea...)

    November 22, 2006 5:19 PM
  • Anthony said:

    well........i like but seriously i think they could do much better i dont know if thats the final sounds for vista but if it isnt i think they should work on them alot better.

    December 4, 2006 5:51 AM
  • Jack Williams said:


    The Windows Startup.wav included in your zip doesn't seem to be the actual sound file that runs as Vista is starting up. Or am I crazy?

    December 6, 2006 1:08 PM
  • Frank said:

    I like the new Vista sounds much more than the XP. In XP many sounds were too jarring and would irritate the hell out of me. The Vista sounds have a much more "close encounters..." type feel. I notice them but don't get that piercing spike of annoyance when I get an error.

    That being said I do believe the low battery and hardware connect could use some work

    January 11, 2007 11:03 AM
  • Edgar said:

    I don't know. I prefer the orchestral startup and shutdown sounds of xp. As far as everything else goes, I can't really tell a difference other than vista's sounds are a bit softer. I would prefer them to be stronger whenever it's an error.

    January 28, 2007 5:15 AM
  • Frank Zarate said:

    Vista Is Now Out, You May Now Try To Share Them On Box.... The RTM Versions Of The Sounds Includes The Harware And Low Power Sounds (That Are Fixed Since The RC1 Realese) And Some Midis (If It Has It) If You Can Get Me The Link TO The RTM Ones (Not The One That Were Posted During RC1), Please Let Me Know.

    January 30, 2007 1:42 PM