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Old 08-31-2008, 06:08 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Hi

I started with Linux in November 2003. I bought SUSE LINUX Professional
9.0 - Student Version. Since that 5 years I was never able to make music
with Linux. I bought a lot of new hardware and tried out several Linux.

After having no success with Linux, I tested the Athlon 32-bit hardware
with Windows 98 se and XP running Cubase with VST FX and instruments.
When making music Windows 98 se and XP never crashed, there was no
jitter or sync problem and much more functionality, e.g. I could load
the whole setup, there wasn't the need to spend time for doing manual
work each time after startup.

After I checked up the hardware by Windows, I only used Linux again,
that means that I didn't make music in my homestudio the last 5 years,
excepted when I tested the hardware with Windows. The actual hardware is
an Athlon 64-bit dual-core, I never tested this hardware with Windows.

Actually I'm running Suse 11.0, 64 Studio Lenny, 64 Studio Etch. All
Linux can't be used to make music.

The song I'm "working" on, one of many songs I started with Linux, can't
be done with Linux, like all the other songs before.

I need 8 minutes when startup is done, to start all needed applications,
to connect them by jack_snapshot, doing some connections that
jack_snapshot can't do manually, to do all fader positions again,
because there isn't a functional mixer.

I also did this today. I listened some minutes to the incomplete song,
than I took a look at Rosegarden's matrix editor to make some notes on a
sheet of paper, while doing this I played some notes, Rosegarden
received from the USB MIDI in and ALSA MIDI connected by QJackCtl send
the notes to QSampler.

After a short time QSampler didn't do a sound any more, but Rosegarden
with several Fluidsynth DSSI soundfonds, Jack Rack using GVerb, Jack EQ
needed as aux channel mixer and Jamin still were fine.
I restarted all applications without success. I restarted the session
without success. I rebooted 2 times without success, but with a Jack
error, the ALSA driver couldn't be started, after that I made a shutdown
and than I turned on the computer again. Everything was "relative fine
as usual". Artsmessages that there should be an error are standard, but
they won't have any effect. I also get this messages when running the 64
Studio default Etch install, were I'm only running GNOME.

Some application always will crash after a short while. I can play 1 or
2 beats a day, that will take some minutes, while wasting hours with
errors and restarting every thing.

It's okay that Linux is less functional than Apple and Microsoft based
DAWs. E.g. because of the fascism that is forced by Apple, I won't use
Apple and Microsoft. I won't quote agitation against minority ethnic
communities now, I did this some time ago by links to sides from the
Apple company.

What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol
audio sessions?

If there isn't a way to get a Linux DAW work, I have to install and use
Windows. I need a stable DAW this month, I can't wait for another 5 years.

I need the DAW for my homestudio now, also to do jobs, there isn't the
luxury any more I had the last years to do without my homestudio.

I installed the 64 Studio Etch some days ago and didn't changed any
dependencies, I only compiled jack_snapshot and today I changed to
Rosegarden4 1.7.1, that's all.

Is there really someone subscribed to the list having a stable Linux
MIDI sequencer, mixer, FX and .sf2, .gig sampleplayers (and not only
using Ardour with less use of a complete studio in the box)?

A friend has several hardware different to mine and isn't able to get a
stable Linux DAW.

The desktops are stable, no problems when using Gimp etc. ... .

I was glad to have the time to make some music today and didn't record a
single note, but was the whole day in front of my computer, while the
weather outside was fine.

It's frustrating, I even can't post some useful messages, excepted from
the obligatory warnings like Rosegarden's: "WARNING - track id not
found, this is probably a BUG".

Cheers,
Ralf

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Old 08-31-2008, 07:21 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Thanks Kevin

I'll read your mail later (I have to eat now), I just run down the mail.
Can you recommend a memcheck? Memtest seems to be not up to date for
scanning DDRII RAMs. It's detecting the sort 400 instead of 800. Indeed
memtest sometimes got errors (for my new hardware, that isn't tested
with Windows), but when using Linux with non-audio applications that
needs less, the same or more RAM than my audio setups, I never run into
trouble. There's warranty for my hardware, I can claim defect hardware,
but I don't think that anything is defect. The trouble I have is the
same a friend has got with several computers. Like me he is an engineer,
but he's especially an computer engineer. As far as possible, but not
complete, I can bar hardware defects.

I don't change my Linux often, I use Suse since 9.0 until today, I only
changed to 64 Studio, because of the troubles I have with Linux as a DAW.

I'm running Suse 11.0 and 64 Studio default and a separate 64 Studio
Lenny, sometimes I take a look at other distros.

Cheers,
Ralf

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Old 08-31-2008, 08:13 PM
Folderol
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

On Sun, 31 Aug 2008 19:46:39 +0100
Kevin Donnelly <kevin@dotmon.com> wrote:

> Hi Ralf
>
> On Sunday 31 August 2008 19:08, Ralf Mardorf wrote:
> > I installed the 64 Studio Etch some days ago and didn't changed any
> > dependencies, I only compiled jack_snapshot and today I changed to
> > Rosegarden4 1.7.1, that's all.
>
> You've certainly spent a lot of time writing posts instead of making music.
>
> I think you probably need to wind back a bit. First of all, double-check your
> PSU, memory, and hard disk. Random crashes are in my experience more often
> due to flaky hardware (ie hardware that is not broken, but is about to
> break). Even if everything works OK in Windows, that is no guarantee -
> Windows isn't as picky as Linux. Use memcheck, or try a new hard disk, or
> swap in another PSU.

<snip>

This was the feeling I was beginning to get. Over 4 different machines
I've never had so many problems as Ralf has, all at the same time.

--
Will J Godfrey
http://www.musically.me.uk

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Old 08-31-2008, 08:15 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Kevin Donnelly wrote:
> You've certainly spent a lot of time writing posts instead of making music.
>

Because I can't make music with Linux.

> I think you probably need to wind back a bit. First of all, double-check your
> PSU

The PSU is new, I can check it, but I don't think it's broken, voltage
informations by the BIOS are okay, but I can measure it too.

> , memory, and hard disk.

There's no difference if I only use my new SATA II or only the old IDE
or both together, especially no swap is needed and when no audio tracks
are in use, why will applications crash when I play MIDI events by the
master keyboard, while Rosegarden is in circle play mode, not recording,
just playing?

> Random crashes are in my experience more often
> due to flaky hardware (ie hardware that is not broken, but is about to
> break). Even if everything works OK in Windows, that is no guarantee -
> Windows isn't as picky as Linux. Use memcheck, or try a new hard disk, or
> swap in another PSU.
>

I changed my complete hardware, everything is new, only the soundcard
isn't new, I can check it by a Hameg oscilloscope with a components
tester, but I'm sure the soundcard is fine.

> If you're content that all is OK on that front, pick one distro, install it,
> and *stick to it* - don't jump around between distros, or even flavours of
> distros. DON'T change anything - on 64Studio, why do you need to compile
> JACK or upgrade Rosegarden?

I didn't compile jack, I only compiled jack_snapshot, simply to compile
by make, without any configure or dependency trouble.
http://tapas.affenbande.org/wordpress/?page_id=14

I'm using Rosegarden 1.7.1, because 1.7.0 isn't fine. My 64 Studio
default install is a default install.

> 64Studio was put together specifically in order
> to avoid your having to do that sort of thing. Get the basic, default distro
> working solidly first, and *then* (in a few months) start experimenting.
>

It's the default install. We, not only I, had troubles with Rosegarden
1.7.0, that's why 1.7.1 is in the backport since yesterday. There are no
troubles with dependencies and nothing changed to 1.7.0, problems are
the same.

> One of the big problems with new Linux users is that they have itchy fingers -
> just because you can upgrade from different repos or compile the latest point
> release of something doesn't mean you should.
>

I'm not really a full noob , more a semi-noob, but anyway, 64 Studio
is default.

> My main machine runs openSUSE, and the JAD distro worked fine on that,

JAD comes with enlightenment 17 by default and enlightenment 17 isn't
stable. Or is there a new JAD released, not using enlightenment?

> but
> there were intermittent problems that turned out to be a bad disk. My music
> machine (much lower spec) runs 64Studio, and it has worked fine so far.
>

By the way, some problems even must be there for you, e.g. Suse's
Hydrogen has a patch, so that it is in better sync than the 64 Studio
version is, when using Jack transport to sync Hydrogen and Ardour. I
don't use Jack transport, so I don't have to compile the stable svn
version of Hydrogen, but for some users this should be an argument to
compile an application instead of using the default version of 64 Studio.

I'll change the RAM, check the soundcard and PSU and look for a new BIOS
update. But if there will be such broken hardware, I must have crashes,
also when using non-audio applications.

It might be interesting if somebody else has an ASUS M2A-VM HDMI, I
especially bought the ASUS, because my old mobo is an ASRock, and I
won't by an ASRock again.

It seems to be, that my hardware isn't broken and I'm using the default
install, excepted Rosegarden. I can reinstall the default version 1.7.0.
Maybe this will help.

Thank you again . I still frustrated, because I don't think that my
hardware is broken and the reinstall to 1.7.0 will be a help, but maybe
I'm wrong.

I'll search Google for Memchecks.

Cheers,
Ralf

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Old 08-31-2008, 08:37 PM
Folderol
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

On Sun, 31 Aug 2008 22:15:34 +0200
Ralf Mardorf <ralf.mardorf@alice-dsl.net> wrote:

> Kevin Donnelly wrote:
> > You've certainly spent a lot of time writing posts instead of making music.
> >
>
> Because I can't make music with Linux.
>
> > I think you probably need to wind back a bit. First of all, double-check your
> > PSU
>
> The PSU is new, I can check it, but I don't think it's broken, voltage
> informations by the BIOS are okay, but I can measure it too.

<snip>

As a point of comparison, here is my setup:

Asus M2NPV-VM Motherboard
Athlon 64 Dual Core 4200 Energy Efficient CPU
OCZ® Platinum Series 2GB DDR2 PC6400 800Mhz RAM
250 GB Seagate Barracuda SATA2 7200rpm 16MB cache Hard Drive

I have a 'vanilla' install of 64studio V 2.1.

I have only ever had one problem with Rosegarden (as I mentioned
earlier). My solution to that was to remove it (using synaptic) and
compile version 1.6.1. I now have no problems.

--
Will J Godfrey
http://www.musically.me.uk

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Old 08-31-2008, 08:58 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Folderol wrote:
> On Sun, 31 Aug 2008 19:46:39 +0100
> Kevin Donnelly <kevin@dotmon.com> wrote:
>
>
>> Hi Ralf
>>
>> On Sunday 31 August 2008 19:08, Ralf Mardorf wrote:
>>
>>> I installed the 64 Studio Etch some days ago and didn't changed any
>>> dependencies, I only compiled jack_snapshot and today I changed to
>>> Rosegarden4 1.7.1, that's all.
>>>
>> You've certainly spent a lot of time writing posts instead of making music.
>>
>> I think you probably need to wind back a bit. First of all, double-check your
>> PSU, memory, and hard disk. Random crashes are in my experience more often
>> due to flaky hardware (ie hardware that is not broken, but is about to
>> break). Even if everything works OK in Windows, that is no guarantee -
>> Windows isn't as picky as Linux. Use memcheck, or try a new hard disk, or
>> swap in another PSU.
>>
>
> <snip>
>
> This was the feeling I was beginning to get. Over 4 different machines
> I've never had so many problems as Ralf has, all at the same time.
>
Hi Will

maybe valgrind --tool=memcheck rosegarden (and other applications) might
be a help to detect what's going wrong, I have to read about Valgrind's
functions. It would be good to have a protocol of complete audio sessions.

Something about Memtest:

Memtest can run about 30 hours and more without any error. Very seldom
it gets errors running after reboot, within the first seconds, but after
that first errors, it runs around 30 hours without getting more errors.
I can't do such long tests very often.

The setup I try to make music with at the moment uses:

QJackCtl 0.2.22, jackd 0.103.0 (not jackdmp)
QSampler 0.2.1 (only 1 .gig)
JackRack 1.4.5 (only GVerb)
JackEQ 0.4.1 (not the EQ, just the mixer)
JAMin (often in bypass mode)
all those applications are default 64 Studio installs.

Rosegarden 1.7.1 (only MIDI tracks, without LADSPAs, but with several
Fluidsynth-DSSIs)
is from the backports.

jack-snapshot
is compiled, but without manipulating any dependencies.

Is one of those applications known as unstable?

I'm running GNOME Terminal 2.14.2 too, sometimes also htop 0.6.3, all
are default, resp. Etch.

Jitter is existing, but not hearable, the problem are to many crashes,
not if Rosegarden plays anything, only if I play or record something,
than Rosegarden or QJackCtl will crash, I don't know which application's
fault this is and also QSampler can crash.

Cheers,
Ralf

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Old 08-31-2008, 09:24 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Oops, in the last mail I wrote "than", but it should be "then".


> As a point of comparison, here is my setup:
>
> Asus M2NPV-VM Motherboard
>
ASUS M2A-VM HDMI (onboard sound and HDMI disabled), Northbridge: AMD
690G, Soutbridge ATI SB600

> Athlon 64 Dual Core 4200 Energy Efficient CPU
>

Athlon X2 BE-2350 (2.1GHz dual core 45W)

> OCZ® Platinum Series 2GB DDR2 PC6400 800Mhz RAM
>

AENEON by Qimonda 2 * 1GB DDR2 - 800 (- 128MB frame buffer for the
onboard Radeon X1250-based)

> 250 GB Seagate Barracuda SATA2 7200rpm 16MB cache Hard Drive
>

320GB Samsung HD321KJ SATA II 7200rpm 16MB cache
and a Maxtor IDE
and a LG DVD-RAM drive,
a TerraTec EWX 24/96 (Envy24), without the MIDI-Adapter-Kit, but a
Swisssonic USB MIDI device

PSU Jersey CP4-420WS 12cm fan

> I have a 'vanilla' install of 64studio V 2.1.
>
> I have only ever had one problem with Rosegarden (as I mentioned
> earlier). My solution to that was to remove it (using synaptic) and
> compile version 1.6.1. I now have no problems.
>

I've got the same, instead of 1.6.1, 1.7.1 (and as known,
jack_snapshot). Maybe I should try 1.6.1 too?!


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Old 08-31-2008, 09:44 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

I'll reboot into memtest86+.bin now. I guess there will be no errors for
the next 10 or more hours. But who knows?

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Old 08-31-2008, 10:12 PM
Ralf Mardorf
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Very strange, I just send this mail to the list Will, there seems to be something wrong for the mail I send before.

Your message did not reach the following recipient(s):

folderol@ukfsn.org on Sun, 31 Aug 2008 23:49:19 +0200
The destination server for this recipient could not be found in
Domain Name Service (DNS).

Subject:
Re: [64studio-users] Frustration - What can I do to get a stable
Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?
From:
"Ralf Mardorf" <ralf.mardorf@alice-dsl.net>
Date:
Sun, 31 Aug 2008 23:44:33 +0200

To:
"Folderol" <folderol@ukfsn.org>, <kevin@dotmon.com>
CC:
"64studio-users mailing list" <64studio-users@64studio.com>


I'll reboot into memtest86+.bin now. I guess there will be no errors for
the next 10 or more hours. But who knows?

> Before doing that, just to prove a point start off with nothing by
> qjackctl running. Then run ZynAddSubFX and switch it to advanced mode
> and enable its virtual keyboard.

I never got troubles when doing this. I have to check it again.

> Play about with that for a while, also
> change/edit instuments. This will ensure that pure software generated
> sounds along with the soundcard are fine.
>

I also never got troubles for that. I also will check this again.

> In qjackctl 'connect/ALSA' directly connect your MIDI input to
> Zyn. Play about again using your real keyboard. This will prove
> that your MIDI transport is also working correctly.
>

The same thing, in the past no troubles with that. I'll check this again
too.

> You could in fact make recordings this way using, say, timemachine as
> the recorder. This is a direct-to-disk recorder so would also test rt
> priorities with the hard disk.
>

When Rosegarden is playing MIDI events and recording them as audio
track, I also never got problems, but I guess while playing a loop to
adjust the recording level, there was trouble, but I'm not sure.

> Break the MIDI connection to Zyn. and start up Rosegarden - it
> should automatically connect to both Zyn. and your MIDI port (you might
> need to make selections in 'Manage MIDI Devices'.
>
> Try playing through Rosegarden from port to Zyn. then try recording.
>

This caused Rosegarden (can't say if it's like that for 1.7.1) often to
crash, but not Zyn, but QSampler did crash, while Rosegarden doesn't.
I'll test everything again, because I didn't made those tests with 64
Studio default. Suse's Rosegarden 1.6.1 crashes like 1.7.0 for 64 Studio
and Suse does.

> If all that works try adding Qsynth into the mix, then bit at a time,
> other apps until you find one that fails.
>

Instead of QSynth I'm using the Fluidsynth DSSI plugin, that seems to be
stable, QSampler seems to be buggy and Rosegarden and maybe jackd could
be buggy too.

Have a good night,
Ralf

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Old 09-01-2008, 12:53 AM
Arthur
 
Default Frustration - What can I do to get a stable Linux DAW? Is there a way to protocol audio sessions?

Ralf Mardorf wrote:
> Hi
>
> I started with Linux in November 2003. I bought SUSE LINUX Professional
> 9.0 - Student Version. Since that 5 years I was never able to make music
> with Linux. I bought a lot of new hardware and tried out several Linux.
>
> After having no success with Linux, I tested the Athlon 32-bit hardware
> with Windows 98 se and XP running Cubase with VST FX and instruments.
> When making music Windows 98 se and XP never crashed, there was no
> jitter or sync problem and much more functionality, e.g. I could load
> the whole setup, there wasn't the need to spend time for doing manual
> work each time after startup.
>
> After I checked up the hardware by Windows, I only used Linux again,
> that means that I didn't make music in my homestudio the last 5 years,
> excepted when I tested the hardware with Windows. The actual hardware is
> an Athlon 64-bit dual-core, I never tested this hardware with Windows.
>
> Actually I'm running Suse 11.0, 64 Studio Lenny, 64 Studio Etch. All
> Linux can't be used to make music.
>
>
Hi Ralf,

I sympathize with you, I'm in a similar situation and I've been running
linux for about seven years, ever since I found out about Agnula. I
think that 64Studio is a great distribution and you can't really do much
better on linux. The 64Studio kernel is very good and they do a nice job
with the packages, unfortunately I can't run it because it is based on
etch and my hardware is too new. I've used cubase and logic on both
windows and mac and yes, there are far fewer headaches (at least for the
way I work). The strength and weakness of linux is diversity. There are
too many programs that all provide similar functions and so the energy
is scattered, not to mention all of the different distros these programs
are supposed to run on.

I started using linux because on windows I had a hardware firewall,
software firewall, anti-virus software, anti-hijacking software,
anti-spyware software and the latency was pretty bad.

The people who write the software for logic and cubase have full-time
jobs writing code all day that pay well. The people who develop
Rosegarden do not. I really appreciate all of the hard work that goes
into writing something as complex as Rosegarden or Ardour but the truth
is (especially in the case of Rosegarden and Zynaddsubfx) that I don't
know if they will function as intended from one release to the next or
from one distro to the next or with the next version of jack or whatever
and this, of course, is quite frustrating. Perhaps you and I have just
had bad luck or some of the software is buggy with our particular
hardware or a certain feature only works when the moon is full.

If I recall correctly I once had everything working on Agnula and I was
excited because I thought everything would just get better. It has not.
There are new versions of programs that are released when serious bugs
in the previous version were never resolved. Linux is developing so
quickly that it has got to be quite a chore for all of the developers to
keep up. This affects not only audio programs but all of linux.

In my opinion microsoft operating systems just aren't very good. I
haven't run a mac since the days of OS9 and the 400 mghz iMac but if you
look at their forums and mailing lists you'll see that they have their
problems too. So all of this so far is not to criticize any particular
operating system or any particular programs but just to let you that I
sympathize with you and I understand your frustration and also to say
that I appreciate all of the hard work that has gone into linux audio.

Now for some positive suggestions. I'm not a very good keyboard player
but if I had spent half of the time that I spent on linux sequencing
practicing the keyboard I'd be pretty good by now and I could just play
the parts into Ardour. You can always just pick up an instrument and play.
You can also just forget about it. I've found computers to be very
addictive and I have a two and a half year old boy, so instead of
sitting him in front of a video and hacking away at the computer we went
outside and planted strawberries, peppers and grapes. Because of my
linux frustrations I now have strawberries, peppers and grapes. If those
solutions don't appeal to you, I now have things working pretty well on
Sidux. They have a nice rt kernel (not in the official repository)
though I'm still looking forward to 64Studio 3.0.

Ralf, I wish you lots of luck and thanks to 64Studio for doing such a
great job with the resources available in linux.

Sincerely,
Arthur

>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
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>


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