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audio utilities in Windows 7, 8 and 10

mute.exe works fine in Windows 7. setvol.exe "sort of" works. More below about setvol.exe.

You can get mute to work in Windows 7 this way.

Any shortcut created from the executable will have the same compatibility setting. Many thanks to Jared Pickerell for writing me with this solution!

setvol.exe issue

At least on my Windows 7 Professional 32-bit, setvol.exe works but not precisely. For some reason the values do not have the expected results.

Another Way - nircmd.exe

Nir Sofer has a wonderful Web site (nirsoft.net) with dozens of free utilities. One of them is nircmd.exe. It has an extensive set of command-line options to, as he says:

"... write and delete values and keys in the Registry, write values into INI file, dial to your internet account or connect to a VPN network, restart windows or shut down the computer, create shortcut to a file, change the created/modified date of a file, change your display settings, turn off your monitor, open the door of your CD-ROM drive, and more..."

Using this utility we can achieve the goals of both volume control setting and muting. Download the utility at Nir's Web site. It is a ZIP file. I simply created a folder in my Program Files folder called SetVol and unzipped the contents into it.

Next, create the shortcuts for setting the volume level using the following table as a guide. In the shortcut's "Shortcut" tab in the "Target" block enter:

"G:\Program Files\SetVol\nircmd.exe" setsysvolume 0

substituting the correct drive letter for your system. This example sets the system volume to zero.

This table shows some common volume level percentages and the value to use for the nircmd shortcut. It is based on a maximum volume level value of 65,635 units.

65635 100
49226 75
32818 50
13127 20
6564 10
0 0

You can also create a shortcut using nircmd.exe to mute the volume. Here's what the "Target" value should be in a shortcut to mute the volume:

"G:\Program Files\SetVol\nircmd.exe" mutesysvolume 1

To unmute the system volume:

"G:\Program Files\SetVol\nircmd.exe" mutesysvolume 0

Again, change the drive letter to suit your system.

On my Windows 7 system I have a custom toolbar just to the left of the Notification Area (formerly the System Tray) called SetVol. It is linked to a folder that contains a copy of nircmd.exe and shortcuts to use it to set the volume level. Simply right-click the Taskbar, hover over Toolbars in the pop-up menu, click New Toolbar. You will get a Windows Explorer window. Browse to the SetVol folder and click Select Folder.

This page last changed: Monday, January 8, 2018 - 01:14 PM USA Eastern Time

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