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Old 07-13-2008, 10:29 PM
Hal Vaughan
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it (Gutsy,
I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

Many times I start a program and I don't get sound output. Most of the
time I'm using either Amarok, Flash (from Firefox or Konqueror),
Kaffeine, and sometimes KMail (some message filters trigger sounds for
me). I'm not using any big games that take up the full screen, but I
have a few like PySol or one or two that work under Wine.

I may start one program, like Amarok, and play music in it, then stop
that music and run a game or try to watch something in Flash and may
not get sound -- or if I've been playing a game, then try to run
Amarok, I may have had sound for the game and not Amarok.

It used to be that I could have Amarok playing music in the background
and play a game and I'd get the sounds from both, but not anymore. At
most one program can play sounds at a time (as best I can tell, I
haven't tried every combination of programs).

Usually if I pull up the KDE control center and change from OSS Sound to
Autodetect, hit "Apply" to restart, then switch BACK to OSS, and
hit "Apply" again, I can get sound. Even with this, though, there's a
trick to it. If I've played a game and had sounds with it, then I
quite the program and start a song in Amarok (which was in the
background all the time, just not playing) I won't get sound. I have
to quite Amarok, then do the KDE Control Center thing, THEN restart
Amarok and it'll play.

I don't know the sound system well, but it seems to me that there's a
problem with channels or resources not being freed up after they should
be released or some multiplexing that is not happening.

I'm using a Soundblaster and nothing exotic. This worked fine until I
upgraded from Feisty Fawn to Gusty Gibbon. I just haven't had time to
worry about it until now, when I was playing a song in Amarok, hit
the "Next Song" button and got a message "Audio Output Unavailable"
I'm not sure about the rest of the message because I can't make it come
up every time and it goes away quickly enough I haven't copied the
whole thing, but it's something like "Device unavailable." This has
made it frustrating enough I just need to get it fixed.


I know that puts it onto something Kubuntu did wrong, but overall, I'd
think that I should be able to use apt-get or dpkg-reconfigure to
either remove and reinstall the sound system or to reconfigure it, but
I'm not sure of all the packages that might be involved or if there's
an easier solution.

Ideas, anyone?

Thanks!


Hal


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Old 07-14-2008, 12:19 AM
Hal Vaughan
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

On Sunday 13 July 2008, you wrote:
> Hal Vaughan wrote:
> > I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
> > (Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.
> >
> > Many times I start a program and I don't get sound output. Most of
> > the time I'm using either Amarok, Flash (from Firefox or
> > Konqueror), Kaffeine, and sometimes KMail (some message filters
> > trigger sounds for me). I'm not using any big games that take up
> > the full screen, but I have a few like PySol or one or two that
> > work under Wine.
> >
> > I may start one program, like Amarok, and play music in it, then
> > stop that music and run a game or try to watch something in Flash
> > and may not get sound -- or if I've been playing a game, then try
> > to run Amarok, I may have had sound for the game and not Amarok.
> >
> > It used to be that I could have Amarok playing music in the
> > background and play a game and I'd get the sounds from both, but
> > not anymore. At most one program can play sounds at a time (as
> > best I can tell, I haven't tried every combination of programs).
> >
> > Usually if I pull up the KDE control center and change from OSS
> > Sound to Autodetect, hit "Apply" to restart, then switch BACK to
> > OSS, and hit "Apply" again, I can get sound. Even with this,
> > though, there's a trick to it. If I've played a game and had
> > sounds with it, then I quite the program and start a song in Amarok
> > (which was in the background all the time, just not playing) I
> > won't get sound. I have to quite Amarok, then do the KDE Control
> > Center thing, THEN restart Amarok and it'll play.
> >
> > I don't know the sound system well, but it seems to me that there's
> > a problem with channels or resources not being freed up after they
> > should be released or some multiplexing that is not happening.
> >
> > I'm using a Soundblaster and nothing exotic. This worked fine
> > until I upgraded from Feisty Fawn to Gusty Gibbon. I just haven't
> > had time to worry about it until now, when I was playing a song in
> > Amarok, hit the "Next Song" button and got a message "Audio Output
> > Unavailable" I'm not sure about the rest of the message because I
> > can't make it come up every time and it goes away quickly enough I
> > haven't copied the whole thing, but it's something like "Device
> > unavailable." This has made it frustrating enough I just need to
> > get it fixed.
> >
> >
> > I know that puts it onto something Kubuntu did wrong, but overall,
> > I'd think that I should be able to use apt-get or dpkg-reconfigure
> > to either remove and reinstall the sound system or to reconfigure
> > it, but I'm not sure of all the packages that might be involved or
> > if there's an easier solution.
> >
> > Ideas, anyone?
> >
> > Thanks!
> >
> >
> > Hal
>
> Have you tried changing the Auto-suspend time?
>
> Control enter -> Sound and Multimedia -> Sound System -> General ->
> Auto-suspend
>
> I find that the default time is usually much too long for me. The
> effect of this is that, sometimes, you can change from one sound
> source to another and find that the new source doesn't work. But if
> you wait just long enough, the new sound source "magically" works.

It doesn't seem to make any difference.

Part of the problem isn't only programs working one after the other, but
also programs not sharing sound output, which I don't think the timeout
would effect.


Hal


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Old 07-14-2008, 03:50 AM
"Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso"
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

2008/7/13 Hal Vaughan <hal@thresholddigital.com>:
> I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it (Gutsy,
> I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

Are you aware that Ubuntu and Debian are not the same distribution and
you should be asking in the Ubuntu mailing lists or forums instead of
here?

- Jordi G. H.


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Old 07-14-2008, 03:57 AM
Ron Johnson
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1

On 07/13/08 22:50, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> 2008/7/13 Hal Vaughan <hal@thresholddigital.com>:
>> I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it (Gutsy,
>> I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.
>
> Are you aware that Ubuntu and Debian are not the same distribution and

Yes, he is.


- --
Ron Johnson, Jr.
Jefferson LA USA

"Kittens give Morbo gas. In lighter news, the city of New New
York is doomed."
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Version: GnuPG v1.4.9 (GNU/Linux)

iEYEARECAAYFAkh6zrEACgkQS9HxQb37XmcCdgCfeF37nU6VoK Wy1LM8BFvHUQla
BZMAn2VxVMEcfL3T8HsHyX71wbAFtz3t
=8QD8
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----


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Old 07-14-2008, 04:06 AM
Hal Vaughan
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

On Sunday 13 July 2008, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> 2008/7/13 Hal Vaughan <hal@thresholddigital.com>:
> > I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
> > (Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.
>
> Are you aware that Ubuntu and Debian are not the same distribution
> and you should be asking in the Ubuntu mailing lists or forums
> instead of here?

Are you aware that many parts are the same and that I'm not the first to
ask about issues in Ubuntu here and that many Ubuntu users have gotten
quite a bit of help here?

Are you aware that many DDs are also working on Ubuntu and that many of
us use both Debian and Ubuntu and there's a lot of crossover between
the two distros?

So, having gotten that out of the way, are you aware you could have
posted something helpful instead of playing gatekeeper?

Hal


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Old 07-14-2008, 06:29 AM
Andrei Popescu
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

On Sun,13.Jul.08, 18:29:25, Hal Vaughan wrote:
> I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it (Gutsy,
> I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

Should we assume alsa doesn't work on your machine?

Regards,
Andrei
--
If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.
(Albert Einstein)
 
Old 07-14-2008, 07:13 AM
Marc Shapiro
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

Hal Vaughan wrote:

On Sunday 13 July 2008, you wrote:


Hal Vaughan wrote:


I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
(Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

Many times I start a program and I don't get sound output. Most of
the time I'm using either Amarok, Flash (from Firefox or
Konqueror), Kaffeine, and sometimes KMail (some message filters
trigger sounds for me). I'm not using any big games that take up
the full screen, but I have a few like PySol or one or two that
work under Wine.

I may start one program, like Amarok, and play music in it, then
stop that music and run a game or try to watch something in Flash
and may not get sound -- or if I've been playing a game, then try
to run Amarok, I may have had sound for the game and not Amarok.

It used to be that I could have Amarok playing music in the
background and play a game and I'd get the sounds from both, but
not anymore. At most one program can play sounds at a time (as
best I can tell, I haven't tried every combination of programs).

Usually if I pull up the KDE control center and change from OSS
Sound to Autodetect, hit "Apply" to restart, then switch BACK to
OSS, and hit "Apply" again, I can get sound. Even with this,
though, there's a trick to it. If I've played a game and had
sounds with it, then I quite the program and start a song in Amarok
(which was in the background all the time, just not playing) I
won't get sound. I have to quite Amarok, then do the KDE Control
Center thing, THEN restart Amarok and it'll play.

I don't know the sound system well, but it seems to me that there's
a problem with channels or resources not being freed up after they
should be released or some multiplexing that is not happening.

I'm using a Soundblaster and nothing exotic. This worked fine
until I upgraded from Feisty Fawn to Gusty Gibbon. I just haven't
had time to worry about it until now, when I was playing a song in
Amarok, hit the "Next Song" button and got a message "Audio Output
Unavailable" I'm not sure about the rest of the message because I
can't make it come up every time and it goes away quickly enough I
haven't copied the whole thing, but it's something like "Device
unavailable." This has made it frustrating enough I just need to
get it fixed.


I know that puts it onto something Kubuntu did wrong, but overall,
I'd think that I should be able to use apt-get or dpkg-reconfigure
to either remove and reinstall the sound system or to reconfigure
it, but I'm not sure of all the packages that might be involved or
if there's an easier solution.

Ideas, anyone?

Thanks!


Hal


Have you tried changing the Auto-suspend time?

Control enter -> Sound and Multimedia -> Sound System -> General ->
Auto-suspend

I find that the default time is usually much too long for me. The
effect of this is that, sometimes, you can change from one sound
source to another and find that the new source doesn't work. But if
you wait just long enough, the new sound source "magically" works.



It doesn't seem to make any difference.

Part of the problem isn't only programs working one after the other, but
also programs not sharing sound output, which I don't think the timeout
would effect.



Hal

I don't run KDE. I have, in fact, purged all KDE apps from my system
specifically because of sound problems. I had frequent bouts of no
sound due to conflicts between arts and anything else that wanted to use
sound. I had to kill arts almost any time that I wanted to get sound
out of a non-KDE app. I didn't use any KDE apps that were sound
oriented, either. I used kate, and occasionally konqueror, but they
would start up arts and then other sound apps were unable to get a sound
device. Possibly the auto-suspend time reduces the amount of time after
a KDE app uses sound and the time that arts releases the device? Any
comment from the original poster of that idea?


--
Marc Shapiro
mshapiro_42@yahoo.com




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Old 07-14-2008, 07:28 AM
Hal Vaughan
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

On Monday 14 July 2008, Andrei Popescu wrote:
> On Sun,13.Jul.08, 18:29:25, Hal Vaughan wrote:
> > I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
> > (Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.
>
> Should we assume alsa doesn't work on your machine?

I may be behind the times, but I thought that OSS was superseding Alsa.
Am I wrong? I've never really done anything with sound before and
haven't really kept track of it. Would I be better off installing
Alsa? I'm not wedded to using OSS and have no problem switching to
something that would work better.

Hal


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Old 07-14-2008, 09:42 AM
Arthur A
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

Hal Vaughan wrote:

On Monday 14 July 2008, Andrei Popescu wrote:

On Sun,13.Jul.08, 18:29:25, Hal Vaughan wrote:

I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
(Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

Should we assume alsa doesn't work on your machine?


I may be behind the times, but I thought that OSS was superseding Alsa.
Am I wrong? I've never really done anything with sound before and
haven't really kept track of it. Would I be better off installing
Alsa? I'm not wedded to using OSS and have no problem switching to
something that would work better.


Hal




My understanding was:

Hardware <----> ALSA <--> OSS <--> Apps

Which was replaced on gnome with something like

Hardware <----> ALSA <--> ESD & Gstreamer <--> Apps

Which is now being replaced by

Hardware <----> ALSA <--> Pulse Audio <--> Gstreamer & Apps

I'm not sure how helpful and accurate that is. KDE, AFAIK, doesn't look anything
like this after the ALSA part.


Did you walk through the Complete Sound Troubleshooting Guide on the UbuntuForums?

I know that under Hardy Heron they half-deployed pulse audio, the main pieces
are there but apps to control the pulse sound server aren't installed by default
(LTS = Long Troubles with Sound).


I've never used KDE, but a quick google search leads me to believe nothing of my
experience with gnome, ubuntu or debian can be directly applied.



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Old 07-14-2008, 05:23 PM
Florian Kulzer
 
Default Sound Problems (Sound is Often Gone)

On Mon, Jul 14, 2008 at 00:13:44 -0700, Marc Shapiro wrote:
> Hal Vaughan wrote:
>> On Sunday 13 July 2008, you wrote:
>>> Hal Vaughan wrote:
>>>
>>>> I'm using Kubuntu, but not the latest version, the one before it
>>>> (Gutsy, I think) and KDE 3.5.8 and have been using OSS.

I think it would be better to switch to ALSA (see below).

>>>> Many times I start a program and I don't get sound output. Most of
>>>> the time I'm using either Amarok, Flash (from Firefox or
>>>> Konqueror), Kaffeine, and sometimes KMail (some message filters
>>>> trigger sounds for me). I'm not using any big games that take up
>>>> the full screen, but I have a few like PySol or one or two that
>>>> work under Wine.

[...]

>>> Have you tried changing the Auto-suspend time?
>>>
>>> Control enter -> Sound and Multimedia -> Sound System -> General ->
>>> Auto-suspend
>>>
>>> I find that the default time is usually much too long for me. The
>>> effect of this is that, sometimes, you can change from one sound
>>> source to another and find that the new source doesn't work. But if
>>> you wait just long enough, the new sound source "magically" works.
>>>
>>
>> It doesn't seem to make any difference.
>>
>> Part of the problem isn't only programs working one after the other,
>> but also programs not sharing sound output, which I don't think the
>> timeout would effect.

All recent versions of ALSA support direct mixing of multiple streams
via Dmix. Software mixing should be enabled automatically for all sound
cards that do not support hardware mixing:
http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php?title=Dmix

Sometimes people have to use a few additional tricks:
http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/Dmix_Kde_-_arts%2C_ESD_and_SDL_quick_and_dirty_HOWTO

The sharing of audio devices worked out of the box for me (KDE 3.5.9 on
Sid/amd64). I am listening to a song played by amarok, the soundtrack of
a youtube video, and a KDE system sound simultaneously. As you can see,
the sound devices are shared without blocking:

# lsof $(find /dev -group audio)
COMMAND PID USER FD TYPE DEVICE SIZE NODE NAME
artsd 342 florian mem CHR 116,24 4815 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0c
artsd 342 florian mem CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
artsd 342 florian 13r CHR 116,33 4726 /dev/snd/timer
artsd 342 florian 14u CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
artsd 342 florian 15r CHR 116,33 4726 /dev/snd/timer
artsd 342 florian 16u CHR 116,24 4815 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0c
artsd 342 florian 17u CHR 116,0 4821 /dev/snd/controlC0
amarokapp 13710 florian mem CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
amarokapp 13710 florian 17u CHR 116,0 4821 /dev/snd/controlC0
amarokapp 13710 florian 20r CHR 116,33 4726 /dev/snd/timer
amarokapp 13710 florian 27u CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
npviewer. 13813 florian mem CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
npviewer. 13813 florian 14r CHR 116,33 4726 /dev/snd/timer
npviewer. 13813 florian 15u CHR 116,16 4797 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p

> I don't run KDE. I have, in fact, purged all KDE apps from my system
> specifically because of sound problems. I had frequent bouts of no
> sound due to conflicts between arts and anything else that wanted to use
> sound. I had to kill arts almost any time that I wanted to get sound
> out of a non-KDE app. I didn't use any KDE apps that were sound
> oriented, either. I used kate, and occasionally konqueror, but they
> would start up arts and then other sound apps were unable to get a sound
> device.

To keep artsd from starting, set "StartServer=false" in
~/.kde/share/config/kcmartsrc. If that file does not exist on your
system then you can create it as a simple two-liner:

[Arts]
StartServer=false

> Possibly the auto-suspend time reduces the amount of time after
> a KDE app uses sound and the time that arts releases the device?

That is indeed what it does. I had initially set this time to 5 seconds
to be on the safe side, but it does not really seem to matter anymore
(see above).

--
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Florian |


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