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Old 07-30-2010, 03:43 PM
Oliver Ruebenacker
 
Default Sound Streaming Problem

Hello,

I have a recurring problem with sound streaming with Fedora 13 (and
earlier versions - I am having this problem for quite a while, across
different Fedora versions) on my Dell Latitude 820 laptop. This
affects equally the sound of YouTube videos and music CDs. Sometimes
it works flawlessly, sometimes there is no sound, and sometimes the
sound cycles through short intervals, like a stuck record, but with
faster repetitions.

Occasionally, restarting the application (Firefox, Rhythmbox, etc)
helps, often it does not. Sometimes, logging out and back in helps,
sometimes it does not help. On rare occasions, changing the volume
control helps (when I'm not listening, I usually keep the volume at
zero, and it sometimes seems as if the system has not noticed that the
volume has been turned up, until I turn it up some more).

I tried different plugins/add-ons with Firefox, and different
application to play the music CD, but it does not seem to make a
difference.

What can I do? Thanks!

--
Oliver Ruebenacker, Computational Cell Biologist
Systems Biology Linker at Virtual Cell (http://vcell.org/sybil)
Turning Knowledge Data into Models
Center for Cell Analysis and Modeling
http://www.oliver.curiousworld.org
--
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Old 07-30-2010, 05:09 PM
Rick Sewill
 
Default Sound Streaming Problem

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

On 07/30/2010 10:43 AM, Oliver Ruebenacker wrote:
> Hello,
>
> I have a recurring problem with sound streaming with Fedora 13 (and
> earlier versions - I am having this problem for quite a while, across
> different Fedora versions) on my Dell Latitude 820 laptop. This
> affects equally the sound of YouTube videos and music CDs. Sometimes
> it works flawlessly, sometimes there is no sound, and sometimes the
> sound cycles through short intervals, like a stuck record, but with
> faster repetitions.

Someday, I will be proficient with Fedora Sound, but I'm not there yet.

I think you looked for a pattern to get an idea what is happening.
- From your message, I don't think you found any pattern.
It can be quite frustrating.

Could you be having multiple problems?

When you said you had youtube videos stuttering, I thought of
Internet latency, but you wouldn't have that issue with music CDs.

When having a problem, I would focus on the simplest problem first.
If possible, focus on the problem with music CDs to rule out networking.

You might have music CD stuttering issues if a program were hogging the
CPU. Is there any program, in the background, that might hog the CPU?

>
> Occasionally, restarting the application (Firefox, Rhythmbox, etc)
> helps, often it does not. Sometimes, logging out and back in helps,
> sometimes it does not help. On rare occasions, changing the volume
> control helps (when I'm not listening, I usually keep the volume at
> zero, and it sometimes seems as if the system has not noticed that the
> volume has been turned up, until I turn it up some more).
>

Does the problem happen in the middle of playing something or always at
the beginning? Does the problem ever clear itself, in the middle of
playing something, without you intervening?

There are multiple sound drivers in Linux.
There are multiple sound servers in Linux.
When I say sound system below, I am referring collectively to what sound
drivers and sound servers you are using.

What sound systems being used may have a bearing on your problem.

As far as your configuration, what sound system are you using?
Are you using Pulse Audio -or- are you using Alsa directly?
Are you using something else?

I am using pulseaudio so I have /usr/bin/pulseaudio running.
I can also see that pulseaudio is running by using the pacmd.
pacmd is in "rpm -q -i pulseaudio-utils"
I can do "pacmd stat" to get a quick status of pulseaudio.

> I tried different plugins/add-ons with Firefox, and different
> application to play the music CD, but it does not seem to make a
> difference.
>

- From this, I will assume it is the sound system, or something happening
in the background in your PC, not a specific program.

> What can I do? Thanks!
>

I will assume you keep your RPMs up to date.

I believe more information on your configuration is needed.

Please check what programs are running in the background.
Try to rule out programs hogging the CPU.

Please provide more information on your sound system configuration.

Knowing your configuration, I would start looking through bugzilla.
I would start searching the internet for people having similar problems.

Assuming you are using Pulse Audio, I would look at
http://pulseaudio.org/wiki/PerfectSetup
http://pulseaudio.org/wiki/FAQ

Your configuration might have sound going directly to Alsa.
I'm not sure what to suggest in this case. Perhaps looking at
http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/Main_Page
Perhaps, http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/FAQ

If you are using Pulse Audio, I believe the following:
Currently, I believe Pulse Audio is an abstract layer acting like a
generic interface for sound, providing certain higher level features.

Pulse Audio talks to Alsa. Also, in turn, talks to the Alsa sound
device drivers that talk to the hardware.

Pulse Audio provides APIs for programs that think they are talking to
Alsa so those programs really talk to Pulse Audio, which in turn,
talks to Alsa.

If you are using Alsa directly, I believe the following:
Alsa provides its own API for programs. Alsa talks to the Alsa sound
drivers which control the hardware.

You might not be using Pulse Audio or Alsa at all.
You might be using OSS. I believe OSS is a competitor to Alsa.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Sound_System
I believe OSS has its own sound drivers that talk to the hardware.

I found a URL talking about Linux sound, which predates Pulse Audio.
http://www.linux.com/archive/articles/113775
It is "old" webpage, but still interesting.

I think Linux sound is still evolving.
I know my understanding of Linux sound is still evolving.
I expect and welcome others correcting me each time I comment on sound.

There are many people who stay with one sound server or another,
one set of sound drivers or another, who are far more knowledgeable.
Hopefully, they will be stirred to comment once they know more about
your sound system configuration.

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Old 07-30-2010, 08:13 PM
Mark Eggers
 
Default Sound Streaming Problem

On Fri, 30 Jul 2010 12:09:13 -0500, Rick Sewill wrote:

> -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
> Hash: SHA1
>
> On 07/30/2010 10:43 AM, Oliver Ruebenacker wrote:
>> Hello,
>>
>> I have a recurring problem with sound streaming with Fedora 13 (and
>> earlier versions - I am having this problem for quite a while, across
>> different Fedora versions) on my Dell Latitude 820 laptop. This affects
>> equally the sound of YouTube videos and music CDs. Sometimes it works
>> flawlessly, sometimes there is no sound, and sometimes the sound cycles
>> through short intervals, like a stuck record, but with faster
>> repetitions.
>
> Someday, I will be proficient with Fedora Sound, but I'm not there yet.
>
> I think you looked for a pattern to get an idea what is happening. -
> From your message, I don't think you found any pattern. It can be quite
> frustrating.
>
> Could you be having multiple problems?
>
> When you said you had youtube videos stuttering, I thought of Internet
> latency, but you wouldn't have that issue with music CDs.
>
> When having a problem, I would focus on the simplest problem first. If
> possible, focus on the problem with music CDs to rule out networking.
>
> You might have music CD stuttering issues if a program were hogging the
> CPU. Is there any program, in the background, that might hog the CPU?
>
>
>> Occasionally, restarting the application (Firefox, Rhythmbox, etc)
>> helps, often it does not. Sometimes, logging out and back in helps,
>> sometimes it does not help. On rare occasions, changing the volume
>> control helps (when I'm not listening, I usually keep the volume at
>> zero, and it sometimes seems as if the system has not noticed that the
>> volume has been turned up, until I turn it up some more).
>>
>>
> Does the problem happen in the middle of playing something or always at
> the beginning? Does the problem ever clear itself, in the middle of
> playing something, without you intervening?
>
> There are multiple sound drivers in Linux. There are multiple sound
> servers in Linux. When I say sound system below, I am referring
> collectively to what sound drivers and sound servers you are using.
>
> What sound systems being used may have a bearing on your problem.
>
> As far as your configuration, what sound system are you using? Are you
> using Pulse Audio -or- are you using Alsa directly? Are you using
> something else?
>
> I am using pulseaudio so I have /usr/bin/pulseaudio running. I can also
> see that pulseaudio is running by using the pacmd. pacmd is in "rpm -q
> -i pulseaudio-utils" I can do "pacmd stat" to get a quick status of
> pulseaudio.
>
>> I tried different plugins/add-ons with Firefox, and different
>> application to play the music CD, but it does not seem to make a
>> difference.
>>
>>
> - From this, I will assume it is the sound system, or something
> happening in the background in your PC, not a specific program.
>
>> What can I do? Thanks!
>>
>>
> I will assume you keep your RPMs up to date.
>
> I believe more information on your configuration is needed.
>
> Please check what programs are running in the background. Try to rule
> out programs hogging the CPU.
>
> Please provide more information on your sound system configuration.
>
> Knowing your configuration, I would start looking through bugzilla. I
> would start searching the internet for people having similar problems.
>
> Assuming you are using Pulse Audio, I would look at
> http://pulseaudio.org/wiki/PerfectSetup http://pulseaudio.org/wiki/FAQ
>
> Your configuration might have sound going directly to Alsa. I'm not sure
> what to suggest in this case. Perhaps looking at
> http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/Main_Page Perhaps,
> http://alsa.opensrc.org/index.php/FAQ
>
> If you are using Pulse Audio, I believe the following: Currently, I
> believe Pulse Audio is an abstract layer acting like a generic interface
> for sound, providing certain higher level features.
>
> Pulse Audio talks to Alsa. Also, in turn, talks to the Alsa sound
> device drivers that talk to the hardware.
>
> Pulse Audio provides APIs for programs that think they are talking to
> Alsa so those programs really talk to Pulse Audio, which in turn, talks
> to Alsa.
>
> If you are using Alsa directly, I believe the following: Alsa provides
> its own API for programs. Alsa talks to the Alsa sound drivers which
> control the hardware.
>
> You might not be using Pulse Audio or Alsa at all. You might be using
> OSS. I believe OSS is a competitor to Alsa.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Sound_System I believe OSS has its own
> sound drivers that talk to the hardware.
>
> I found a URL talking about Linux sound, which predates Pulse Audio.
> http://www.linux.com/archive/articles/113775 It is "old" webpage, but
> still interesting.
>
> I think Linux sound is still evolving. I know my understanding of Linux
> sound is still evolving. I expect and welcome others correcting me each
> time I comment on sound.
>
> There are many people who stay with one sound server or another, one set
> of sound drivers or another, who are far more knowledgeable. Hopefully,
> they will be stirred to comment once they know more about your sound
> system configuration.
>

I was also having a lot of problems with pulseaudio with a rather anemic
2.66 GHz P4. Audio would quit working, skip, crackle, and otherwise be
unresponsive.

Alsa worked just fine on this card, but pulseaudio would give
inconsistent results depending on CPU load and multimedia application.

I posted a request in IRC and was directed to the following page:

http://fedorasolved.org/Members/fenris02/pulseaudio-fixes-and-workarounds/

Following the instructions on this page resolved the majority of my sound
issues. In particular editing /etc/pulse/daemon.conf with the following
changes helped quite a bit:

Skip down to about line 34 where it reads:
; realtime-scheduling = no

Change this to:
realtime-scheduling = yes

Skip down to about line 76 where it reads
; default-fragments = 4
; default-fragment-size-msec = 25

Change this to:
default-fragments = 8
default-fragment-size-msec = 5

I think the default-fragments and default-fragment-size-msec are the
parameters made the most difference.

I still occasionally have trouble with audio, mostly when I rapidly
change volume. Flash gives me some trouble as well, but as long as I
don't attempt to play Flash and another audio source at the same time
things work.

. . . just my two cents

/mde/

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