Startup sound on the 2016 MacBook Pro

While the sound itself has been disabled, I found the iconic chime is still part of the firmware itself (File GUID: 03C70B0D-67E6-5C16-8E57-312DF246A961) as part of the MacBookPro13,1 (and 13,2 or 13,3) firmware. You can find it yourself with the following steps:

  1. Download macOS Sierra Build 16B2657 from the appStore
  2. Right-click on it and select Show Package Content
  3. Open InstallESD.dmg in Contents -> SharedSupport
  4. Go to Packages -> EFIPayloads
  5. Copy MBP131_0205_B02_LOCKED.fd (for the MacBookPro13,1) somewhere on your machine
  6. Launch UEFITool and open the file and click on “Intel Image”.
  7. Search for “03C70B0D-67E6-5C16-8E57-312DF246A961” (GUID)
  8. Double-click a result
  9. Right-click on the Raw section and select “Extract as is” and safe it somewhere
  10. Strip the 1st 4 bytes in hex editor for example (everything before the ‘caff’ identifier)
  11. Rename your file with a ‘.caf’ extension
  12. Play it using Quicktime

Startup sound preservation

It seems that on its 2016 MacBook Pro’s Apple has deactivated it’s famous startup sound / chime.

This cought my attention and I was interested to find out where this sound is stored (on older Mac’s). As I learned it is (or used to be at least) part of the Macs firmware. While so far I couldn’t find a way to extract the sound from an Intel / EFI based firmware, there seem to be ways to get the sound from PowerPC based Macs.

This is roughly how to do it:

  1. Get a firmware from a PowerPC Mac as these are based on OpenFirmware (not EFI) and thus easier to extract. For example this one from the Xserve G5 XServeFirmwareUpdate.dmg
  2. Open the downloaded DMG file
  3. Look for the file XServeFirmwareUpdate.pkg and show its package contents
  4. In the sub folder named Contents is the file: Archive.pax.gz
  5. Extract Archive.pax.gz (for ex. double click it in finder)
  6. In the extracted folder locate Applications\Utilities\Xserve Firmware-Updater and show its package contents
  7. locate the file Contents\Resources\BootROMFirmware

Well the BootROMFirmware contains the famous startup sound / chime.

The sound chime has a size of 0xE4B4 (58548) bytes and starts at offset  0xC881C (=821276). So we can just use dd in terminal to extract it:

dd if=~/Desktop/BootROMFirmware of=~/Desktop/start-chime.raw bs=1 skip=821276 count=58548

So now you have the extracted raw start-chime of 58,548 bytes file size. It is encoded using Apple’s version (IMA 4:1) of the IMA ADPCM compression format. To play it you would have to mux it into an AIFF file with correct header and chunk data (FORM, COMM, SSND,…) . You can use also ocenaudio to preview the sound (in messy quality).

If someone finds an easy way to play the raw file, just post a comment 🙂

Update: Seems you can convert the raw file on Mac OS 9 and SndSampler 5.4

You need these settings:

  • Sample Bits: 16
  • Channels: Mono
  • Sample Rate: 44,100
  • Compression: IMA 4:1
  • Data Offset: 16 (Sun Audio / Next)


So far I couldn’t get a decent raw sound import on a more current application & platform.

Update 2:

There seems to be a pastebin of the startup sound raw file here.

Its base64 encoded so to decode:

openssl base64 -d -in paste.txt -out snd.raw



Sierra Presents:


I am looking forward to the latest edition of OS X macOS called “Sierra”.

Also I definitley want to get it running on my Xeon machine. Currently I am however relocating which limits my time to look into this hobby. I got my hands on the dev DMG however already, and will look into booting it in VirtualBox.


I finished installing Sierra in VirtualBox. I basically prepared a ISO similar to El Capitan discussed here (while running it on my MacBookAir):

Some screens: Bildschirmfoto 2016-06-16 um 14.48.39(hmm is this really 10.12 ? Looks like El Cap.)

Bildschirmfoto 2016-06-16 um 14.55.00(OK it is 10.12)

Bildschirmfoto 2016-06-16 um 15.35.08(Don’t think Siri works in VM – but sure)

Bildschirmfoto 2016-06-16 um 15.40.45(Finished – good to see Spotlight search still exists and Siri is next to it)

OSX & iTunes

It appears there is no list available regarding which OSX version comes with which iTunes version out of the box – or I couldn’t find this list.

So I have to start one myself (the SHA1 value is the InstallESD.dmg, which was downloaded from Apple’s AppStore):

  • 10.8 build 12A269
    • SHA1: E5DD2BF5560033CADE7DD7D7DA5CEEC49F701B0E
    • iTunes 10.6.3 (25)
  • 10.8.1 build 12B19
    • SHA1: 7b993b9171270cc4892fcb48ab0c8d3739af29f1
    • iTunes iTunes 10.6.3 (25)
  • 10.8.2 build 12C60
    • SHA1: EAF54B1B1A630AF85547FED8EABBF6FE159F2B42
    • iTunes 10.6.3 (25)
  • 10.8.3 build 12D78
    • SHA1: 945B234B8CAE169983D5E70EA9116CA42FE5F82B
    • iTunes 11.0.1 (12)
  • 10.8.5 build 12F45
    • SHA1: 98e52d0fc443940265780539a311833ee5814ddd
    • iTunes: 11.0.4 (4)
  • 10.9.0 build 13A603
    • SHA1: e804dea01e38f8cd28d6c1b1697487e50898dbe7
  • 10.9.5 build 13F34
    • iTunes: 11.3.1 (2)
  • 10.10.5 build 14F27
    • iTunes
  • 10.11 build 15A284
    • iTunes
  • 10.11.1 build 15B42
    • iTunes