August 26th, 2003, 18:53 PM
Problems with strange sounds
I've been asked to look at a machine and it's got me very puzzled. Perhaps one of those assembled here have come across something similar.
The machine is running Windows 95 but a short time ago, the normal system noises stopped happening and a series of other noises replaced them (hereafter referred to as silly noises). Going to control panel and examining "sounds" shows the correct wav files being selected but testing the sound causes the silly noise.
It is obviously very difficult to describe the sounds that do occur but they are consistent and different for each wave file. The are best described as a combination of short screeches and scraping sounds.
When I examined the windows media directory and double clicked on one of the files, it seemed to play correctly.
I removed (via windows setup) all media items, rebooted and then replaced them. At no time did the silly noises stop, however, double clicking on the wave files in explorer now causedthe silly noises to play.
Examination showed that the system actually had TWO media players installed. The Windows 95 version and a later version (6.01). Playing the wave files with the later on gives the correct sound whilst the Win95 one gives the silly noise.
I would say that the system sounds and the Win95 media player both use the same sound generation engine and it is this which is faulty, while v6.01 uses a different one. Or maybe the two are conflicting but it looks as though they have been cohabiting for several years with no problems.
It is claimed that what happened to cause this to start happening was a younger son tried to load something onto the machine but it didn't work. There is a suggestion that he tried to load a play station game but then the claim was made that it was just a blank CD. Like all these things, the actual series of events remains very much a mystery.
Any ideas of where to look, what to do or even how it works? I'd reinstall Win95 but without knowing what has happened, there's no reason to believe that it would fix things!
August 27th, 2003, 10:28 AM
I had this happen in windows 98. Reinstall fixed it. With 95 you are rather limited in what you can do in terms of system repair. You might try reinstalling upgraded sound drivers. You might try uninstalling all 3rd party applications, cleaning the registry using reg cleaner, and running a system works utility, like the Norton Suite to find and fix errors.
Also I think the Direct X tools to troubleshoot sound issues. You might want to check the directX and see if it is corrupted.
It could be that the Wave files are corrupted? Doubt it since it works in the other player:
But that file above allows you to monitor for wave file corruptions.
Other than that, I'd try a reinstall. Either way if it fixes it horray, if not, the user has a clean install and can look into a hardware solution or OS upgrade later on.
August 27th, 2003, 10:49 AM
Thanks for that. It's good to know that someone has experienced this sort of thing before!
I'll have a check round the system and then resinstall if nothing obvious appears.
January 22nd, 2004, 21:10 PM
For anyone who was interested in this problem, I think I may now have found the answer.
The machine was running Win95 and I just did an upgrade to Win98SE. During the process it refused to restart properly, insisting on rebooting when it should have been starting windoze (though safe mode was OK).
Eventually I tracked it down to a hardware problem - the floppy disk drive was causing problems and when I unplugged the signal cable the installation went through with no problems.
Although I can't prove it was the cause of the strange sound problems, it is jogging some distant memories of a similar thing elsewhere and I'm pretty sure that it was the cause.
Maybe this'll be of help to someone oneday.
January 22nd, 2004, 22:47 PM
Thanks for the update!
We like knowing the fixes to these strange window problems