I’ve noticed an annoying beep that happens sometimes when I type. It’s always happened at random times with many of the ThinkPad’s I’ve used, but I’ve never found out what was causing it. It has become extremely annoying with my new T60, because the beep (which sounds like a plain old “system beep” kind of sound), is actually really really loud – especially when I have my headphone plugged directly into my laptop … the volume control doesn’t seem to make any difference either.
So, I decided to try a Google search to see if I could work out how to turn off this system beep … there didn’t seem to be any options in the ThinkPad Configuration application.
I quickly found the reason for the problem and the solution (Google to the rescue again !).
It turns out that for some very strange reason, there are certain keys on the ThinkPad keyboard that when you press three of them at once, the system beeps. I have no idea why they would do that.
It seems that I (like some other people who have reported the same problem), type so quickly, that the laptop considers that we are actually hitting three keys at once (or it may be that we are hitting two at once, with the third being a key hit accidentally at the same time).
According to Greg Hughes, if at least two of the keys “4567rtyufghjvbnm” are pressed, along with any third key in the same row at the two that were pressed, the system will beep. Hmmm – why would they do that (only thing I can think of is some undocumented system diagnostic tool ?)
Anyway, Greg linked to Elliot Lee who provides the surprisingly simple solution – there happens to be a “Beep” driver that can be disabled. The trick is that it is hidden from the normal list of drivers.
The solution (for Windows XP … unsure about other versions):
1. Go to Device Manager … Start -> Control Panel -> System -> Hardware -> Device Manager
2. (the trick !!) Show Hidden Devices. (Look in the menu … View -> Show hidden devices).
3. In the “Non-Plug and Play Drivers” section, you will find a “Beep” driver … double click on it to open the properties – then click on the “Driver” tab in the properties dialog.
4. Click on the “Stop” button to turn it off now, and set the Startup Type to “Disabled” to prevent it starting again.
Simple huh ? Thanks to Greg and Elliot for the answer (and to Google for letting me find them easily !).
ANGRY USER says
THANK YOU I WAS ABOUT TO SMASH MY LAPTOP!!! I WILL TYPE AS FAST AS I WANT STUPID LENOVO DO NOT TRY TO THROTTLE MY TYING SPEED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
thx a lot man,that beeping is anoying as crazy,it also works for win 7
David b says
Perfect, thank you
you can disable it in the BIOS nowadays….
Thanks so much! You saved my laptop from being thrown out the window.
Thank-you so much! Until now, every time I typed the word “was” my laptop would beep so loudly it was actually damaging my headphones. And because “was” is such a common word and I do a lot of writing, it was really getting on my nerves.
Further to my previous update, this beep that I am encountering is NOT the same beepthat happens when power is plugged on/off. With the suggested changes my constant beep has been resolved but the one assciated with poer on/off is still there . . . and that is fne, I can live with that. Still I am curious what is causing the constant beep while no functionality seems to have been compromised?
The solution worked fine . . . . although my problem was slightly different.
In my case the beep was happening *constantly* regardless whether someone was on the keyboard or not . . . and yet, all computer functions were working fine! Any ideas as to what might be causing the beep?
Awesome! I like to watch Netflix and such on my laptop so I have my headphones in a lot, and man did that beep sting! My left ear still hurts from hearing it a few minutes ago – right before I Googled for the solution and found this page right at the top of the results. Some of my passwords include three of the beep-inducing letters right in a row, that sucked.
Accidentally uninstalled the Beep and I don’t think it worked either way. How do I go about removing this beep now?
I hated that beeping, beeping, beeping, beep!!! Thank you!!!
Well it’s really nice to get rid of the beep, but as jason said the main problem is still exists that the third key isn’t recognized. So however there’s no beep you still need to reenter the third key when you are typing. This is not a solution :|
Thanks a lot! This was driving me insane!
Hey man, thanks a lot! I was in your same spot, fast typing on Word with my headphones one, and from time to time being stung by that loud “beep”.
Thank you for a good summary, with references.
Thanks! With a 678 area code this was really annoying!
I think I will forever expect that beep though.
Thanks! I’ve had this problem for some time now. Real easy solution!
I know this is an old post, but thank you so much for the info. The beep’s been driving me crazy and I finally had the sense to Google the problem and found this. I can’t tell you how grateful I am that I won’t jump out of my skin when typing fast any more. :)
I feel like my eyes popped and brain rebooted. That effin’ beep… had my good Bose headphones on and everything. You, sir, are a godsend! Well, a Google-send, but I’m not convinced there’s a difference. Thanks Simon!
Thanks a lot! this trick help me much
Thanks a bunch, 2 years later. I just finally got fed up with it and had to find a way to remove it.
Thanks!!! It helped on my T43 :)
Thank you! It was really making me jump, I had resorted to turning off all sound on the laptop.
Alright beep, you’ve scared the crap out of me for the last time… Now I’m coming to get ya!!
Thanks for the tip!!
This didn’t work for me, but I have a last ditch solution for anyone else in the same boat…
Buy a headphone extension cable from Tandy / Dick Smith / whoever. Plug the cable into the laptop, but don’t plug the headphones into the other end. NO beep!
Then after your operating system has started, you can plug in the headphones or unplug the extension cable.
Andhy Koestono says
What a superb solution!!.. Im very helped with this solution.. Since i have laptop, i dont now the way to shut off “beep” sounds, it’s very awfull.. til Elliot Lee give the worthiest solution..
and for Greg Hughes, why do IBM set those “magic” keys..
Anyway.. I give my salutation for both of you.. Thank you
oh my god…thank you so much. I’ve been playing this game and while I move, that beep sounds and it’s so annoying.
I’m a 3d modeler and this beep plagued me for the past three months at my new job. It would happen when I use 3d max, and after the beep it acted as if ctrl or shift was held down, really annoying (which might be another problem…stickykeys?)
but anyway, I can finally stop listening to that deafening beep!
THANK YOU! That beep is so loud when you have your headphones on. It has startled me for the last time though! Thank you for posting this. My coworkers are going to love me, as we all have Thinkpads.
Greatest Tip Ever!
Thanks, it is a lifesaver!
good lord –
i’m glad i found your website. that beep has been driving me NUTS. i spent the last hour rooting around in bios and control panel, trying to get rid of it.
Wow, THANKS. I play loads of computer games and the rapid key pressing triggers the beep extremely often. Now i might not go insane with the super loud beeping noise.
This has been annoying me for ages. I had the beep blasting in my headphones quite often. When working in Ableton you use multiple keys a lot to play chords.
Thanks a lot!
Thank you thank you! I have an IBM ThinkPad T43, and when I listen to headphones, no matter what level the master or wav volume is, (excluding mute), the beep would be way nearly deafening.
but this doesnt fix the ultimate problem. how can u set it that u can type 3 keys at the same time (or if u’re playing a game and are pressing >3 keys at the same time)
Trevor, the steps aren’t difficult– you can do do it within a couple minutes. AFAIK, typing speed has nothing to do with it; it happens when you press multiple keys at the same time. Although I /am/ a fast typist, so.. who knows :)
You’re welcome :) I still don’t understand why IBM included it in the first place. It seems to have caused a lot of people anguish over the years!
I’ve had that problem from time to time too and, like you wondered what the…
Still – it happens so infrequently to me that I won’t bother with going though the steps you used. Nice to know one can do something about it if it becomes a hassle. All it means is that my typing speed is increasing somewhere near the point it is a potential problem.