Some of my coworkers refuse to acknowledge that their systems' noise is disruptive to others. After repeatedly asking them to turn their sound down or mute it, I have come up with a solution.
NirSoft has put out a free utility, NirCmd, which among other things, allows you to mute and unmute a system. Running "nircmdc.exe mutesysvolume" followed by a "1" will mute the system, and a "0" will unmute it.
Mark Russinovich's excellent SysInternals psexec allows me to seamlessly run commands on other target computers. Put the two together, and we'll soon no longer have other people's IM and email beeps overriding my headphones! (I wish I were exaggerating.)
Being lazy and having the necessary skills, I wrote a script to make this easier:
psexec \\%1 -c nircmdc.exe mutesysvolume 1
Saved as "mute.bat", I run from a command prompt running under my DA account, I run
, where computername is the, you guessed it, the name of their computer. The %1 means to take the first argument of the script (the computer name), and "-c" means to copy the file specified to the target's machine, ensuring that it's available for psexec's use. This saves me from having to remember a dozen or so keystrokes every time I need to run it, not to mention having to remember the syntax.
NirCmd has plenty of other options as well. If you're a SysAd, check it out.