How do I get back my sound effects?

From today’s mail bag:

A few weeks ago, several teen-age nephews asked if they could use our computer and then proceeded to spend every spare moment “messing around.” I found various minor things that got changed. One I can’t figure out how to restore is “playing user interface sound effects,” that is, being able to hear the little sound when I put something into the trash.

I have gone into System Preferences’ Sound pane and checked the “play use interface sound effects” many times but have not been able to restore my friendly little sounds. Do you have any magic solutions to suggest? I’d be eternally thankful.

I’ve also learned an important lesson: No teenagers touch my computer again, since they don’t seem to understand there is such a thing as “computer borrower’s etiquette.” I did give a little lecture on this, but it was a little after the fact for my computer.



Filed under Apple Software, Mail Bag, Troubleshooting

4 responses to “How do I get back my sound effects?

  1. On the Sound pane in System Preferences, check the Alert volume slider. If it’s set all the way to the left, drag it closer to the right. Also, check the Output volume setting on the Sound pane and make sure the Mute button is unchecked. If you make these System Preference changes and you still can’t hear any of the sound effects, then perform the following procedure to make sure the files that represent these sound effects are still stored on your Mac’s hard drive.

    From the Finder, choose the System folder, then navigate to the Library folder and then Sounds. In the Sounds folder, you should see various AIFF files that represent each sound effect. By default, these files can’t be deleted without knowledge of the computer admin account and password.

    To prevent this type of problem from occurring in the future, I suggest that you give your nephews with access to a temporary account that doesn’t have administrative privileges. That way, they can’t mess with the files and settings associated with your account. After they’ve finished using your computer, log back into your main account and delete the one you created for them.

  2. Pingback: Bookmarks about Soundeffects

  3. Jennifer,

    Do you have access to another Mac? If so, try copying the sound effects files from the other computer. From a Finder window, navigate to the following folder to locate the names of the sound effects files:


    The sound effects files will have names like Basso.aiff, Blow.aiff, and Bottle.aiff.

  4. Iyad

    I have this same problem. I have all the aiff files and all my sliders and mute buttons are set properly. Any other suggestions? Thanks.

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