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play audio without starting an app - how?


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I'd like to shedule a wav file to play at specific times (like an alarm clock) but I do not want to start an app when it plays - basically I just want the underlying OS to make the sound, NOT start media player (or anything else).

Is this possible?

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Well, you need a program to play the media file. The Operating system is just that, an operating system, not a media player.

I've got my PC setup as an alarm clock to wake me up to playlists of music or often specific songs. All you need to do is go to the control panel -> open scheduled tasks -> make a new task and tell it to open the music file or playlist that you want to start and set a specific time for it.

Then when that time hits, windows will fire up the program associated with that file and play it. You can always change which media program plays what file by modifiying file associations.

Even linux doesn't play files like mp3's from the underlying OS (the kernel), it needs some program to open and play the file.

Food for thought,


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  • 3 weeks later...


So by what function does the OS make it's various sounds?

Is there some function call i can access via vbscript/jscript etc?

(ie: WITHOUT coding a compiled app)

Thats what i want to do: use scheduler, or 'at' to play audio at a particular time...WITHOUT any application popping up or starting to do so.

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Good point:

So by what function does the OS make it's various sounds

However, there are a few limitations. If you take a look, notice that all the windows sounds are all .wav files and it isn't possible to specify an mp3 or anything else. But I would say that it is possible to play, at the very least, a .wav file via some built-in windows command. Anything else I'd say you would need an actual media player.

As to if its a command or VB function, no idea here!


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Hmm, no, it doesnt work on my system either... but then I do have a lot of services disabled, so maybe thats got something to do with it.

The code looks like it should work... but it still brings up a window (the echo dialogue to keep it open while playing) so it's not so useful.

...unless i was to interrogate the wav for it's length, and then make the code stay active for that period...

I don't know how easy that is.

I think there is a directX control in msc with the same name, so I will try activating it that way if i can figure it out... just to expriment a little.

Thanks for that suggestion.

Drop this thread a comment if you do see anything else please.

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