If your modem's wailing and screeching sets your teeth on edge, save your ears by reducing the volume -- or muting it entirely.
Double-click My Computer, double-click Dial-Up Networking, right-click the icon for the connection you use for your online sessions, and select Properties.
Now click Configure and drag the volume slider to adjust your modem's volume. (Some modems support only On and Off settings, while others offer three or four volume levels to choose from.) Click two successive OKs to save your new setting.