This one came from one of the users on the ThinkPad Mailing List and it’s a very welcomed fix! There are a number of key combinations that cause a ThinkPad to beep at seemingly random times. For example, if you hold down W E and R there’s no beep, but if you hold down T Y and U the machine beeps at you (and really has no reason to).
The fix – thanks Deanna! – is simple. Go to Device Manager and “Show Hidden Devices”. Under “Non-Plug and Play Drivers” you’ll see an item named “Beep”. Disable that and the “random beep” disappears. Once done, of course, you can hide the hidden devices again.
Update: Windows 8 no long exposes the “Non-Plug and Play Drivers” as part of the Device Manager, but there is another way to disable the “Beep ” driver/service. In fact, this likely works in Windows 7, Vista, and XP, but I can only confirm it’s use in Windows 8:
To stop the Beep sound for one session, open Command Prompt as Administrator and type:
sc stop Beep
To disable the Beep sound across reboots, open Command Prompt as Administrator and type:
sc config Beep start=disabled
To re-enable the Beep sound across reboots, open Command Prompt as Administrator and type:
sc config Beep start=system
Progress. It’s not every day I get to add value to a 8 year old thread.