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Ringing the bell?


I am writing a turnkey interactive widget application in IDL 5.3 on an
OpenVMS platform.  I start command line IDL in a VMS batch queue using an
IDL batch file so that the user never
sees the IDL prompt.  The only thing that doesn't work with this scheme is
that I haven't figured out a way to ring the bell when the user does
something wrong.  One workaround is to start an iconized terminal from the
batch queue and send IDL's output there.  Then

print, string(7b), format = '(a,$)'

will ring the bell, but this introduces an extra terminal window and seems
awfully tacky.

Sometime back, IDL seems to have acquired the undocumented built-in 'beep'
which also doesn't work if there is no terminal to send the output to.

I did a little experiment on IDL 5.4 running on a Tru64 Unix platform.  Here
the command line IDL rings the bell with the print statement, but seems to
ring the bell for the beep command only when I *exit* IDL.  For idlde, the
beep command works, but the print statement just outputs a funky degree-like

Can anyone shed some light on the mysterious 'beep' procedure and help me
out in ringing the bell?

Many thanks.