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1 fox2mike 1.51 <?xml version='1.0' encoding="UTF-8"?>
2 swift 1.90 <!-- $Header: /var/cvsroot/gentoo/xml/htdocs/doc/en/alsa-guide.xml,v 1.89 2013/02/23 18:20:55 swift Exp $ -->
3 fox2mike 1.51
4 drobbins 1.1 <!DOCTYPE guide SYSTEM "/dtd/guide.dtd">
5    
6 swift 1.90 <guide disclaimer="obsolete" redirect="https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/ALSA">
7 drobbins 1.1 <title>Gentoo Linux ALSA Guide</title>
8 fox2mike 1.51
9 swift 1.20 <author title="Author">
10 fox2mike 1.52 <mail link="fox2mike@gentoo.org">Shyam Mani</mail>
11 erwin 1.26 </author>
12 nightmorph 1.71 <author title="Author">
13     <mail link="nightmorph@gentoo.org">Joshua Saddler</mail>
14     </author>
15     <author title="Contributor">
16     <mail link="flameeyes@gentoo.org">Diego Pettenò</mail>
17     </author>
18 drobbins 1.1
19     <abstract>
20 fox2mike 1.51 This document helps a user setup ALSA on Gentoo Linux.
21 swift 1.20 </abstract>
22 drobbins 1.1
23 fox2mike 1.51 <!-- The content of this document is licensed under the CC-BY-SA license -->
24 fox2mike 1.54 <!-- See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5 -->
25 swift 1.25 <license/>
26    
27 swift 1.90 <version>7</version>
28     <!-- Last content change 2013-02-23 -->
29     <date>2013-07-23</date>
30 drobbins 1.1
31     <chapter>
32 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Introduction</title>
33 drobbins 1.1 <section>
34 swift 1.20 <title>What is ALSA?</title>
35 drobbins 1.1 <body>
36 swift 1.20
37 drobbins 1.1 <p>
38 nightmorph 1.85 ALSA, which stands for <e>Advanced Linux Sound Architecture</e>, provides audio
39     and MIDI (<e>Musical Instrument Digital Interface</e>) functionality to the
40 ago 1.86 Linux operating system. ALSA is the default sound subsystem in the 3.x and 2.6
41 nightmorph 1.85 kernels, thereby replacing OSS (<e>Open Sound System</e>), which was used in
42     the 2.4 kernels.
43 drobbins 1.1 </p>
44    
45     <p>
46 nightmorph 1.80 ALSA's main features include efficient support for all types of audio
47     interfaces ranging from consumer sound cards to professional sound
48     equipment, fully modularized drivers, SMP and thread safety, backward
49     compatibility with OSS and a user-space library <c>alsa-lib</c> to make
50 fox2mike 1.51 application development a breeze.
51     </p>
52    
53     </body>
54     </section>
55 drobbins 1.1 </chapter>
56 fox2mike 1.51
57 drobbins 1.1 <chapter>
58 swift 1.35 <title>Installing ALSA</title>
59 fox2mike 1.51 <section id="lspci">
60     <title>Before you proceed</title>
61     <body>
62 swift 1.20
63     <p>
64 nightmorph 1.81 First, you need to know what drivers your sound card uses. In most cases, sound
65     cards (onboard and otherwise) are PCI based and <c>lspci</c> will help you in
66     digging out the required information. Please <c>emerge sys-apps/pciutils</c> to
67     get <c>lspci</c>, if you don't have it installed already. In case you have a USB
68     sound card, <c>lsusb</c> from <c>sys-apps/usbutils</c> <e>might</e> be of help.
69     For ISA cards, try using <c>sys-apps/isapnptools</c>. Also, the following pages
70     <e>may</e> help users with ISA based sound cards:
71 fox2mike 1.54 </p>
72    
73     <ul>
74     <li>
75     <uri link="http://www.roestock.demon.co.uk/isapnptools/">The ISAPNPTOOLS
76     Page</uri>
77     </li>
78     <li>
79     <uri link="http://www2.linuxjournal.com/article/3269">LinuxJournal PnP
80     Article</uri>
81     </li>
82     <li>
83     <uri link="http://www.tldp.org/HOWTO/Sound-HOWTO/x320.html">TLDP Sound
84     HowTo</uri>
85     </li>
86     </ul>
87    
88     <note>
89     For ease of use/explanation, we assume the user has a PCI based sound card for
90     the remainder of this guide.
91     </note>
92    
93     <p>
94     We now proceed to find out details about the sound card.
95 drobbins 1.1 </p>
96 swift 1.20
97 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Soundcard Details">
98     # <i>lspci -v | grep -i audio</i>
99     0000:00:0a.0 Multimedia audio controller: Creative Labs SB Live! EMU10k1 (rev 06)
100 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
101 swift 1.20
102 drobbins 1.1 <p>
103 nightmorph 1.78 We now know that the sound card on the machine is a Sound Blaster Live! and the
104     card manufacturer is Creative Labs. Head over to the <uri
105     link="http://bugtrack.alsa-project.org/main/index.php/Matrix:Main">ALSA
106 nightmorph 1.80 Soundcard Matrix</uri> page and select Creative Labs from the list. You will
107     be taken to the Creative Labs matrix page where you can see that the SB Live!
108     uses the <c>emu10k1</c> module. That is the information we need for now. If
109     you are interested in detailed information, you can click on the link next to
110 nightmorph 1.78 the "Details" and that will take you to the <c>emu10k1</c> specific page.
111 drobbins 1.1 </p>
112 swift 1.20
113 nightmorph 1.71 <p>
114     If you intend to use MIDI, then you should add <c>midi</c> to your USE flags in
115 swift 1.88 <path>/etc/portage/make.conf</path> before emerging any ALSA packages. Later in the
116 nightmorph 1.71 guide, we will show you how to set up <uri link="#midi">MIDI support</uri>.
117     </p>
118    
119 fox2mike 1.51 </body>
120     </section>
121     <section id="kernel">
122 nightmorph 1.81 <title>Configuring the kernel</title>
123 fox2mike 1.51 <body>
124    
125     <p>
126     Let us now configure the kernel to enable ALSA.
127     </p>
128    
129 fox2mike 1.54 <impo>
130 fox2mike 1.63 <c>genkernel</c> users should now run <c>genkernel --menuconfig all</c> and
131     then follow the instructions in <uri link="#doc_chap2_pre3">Kernel Options for
132     ALSA</uri>.
133 fox2mike 1.54 </impo>
134    
135 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Heading over to the source">
136     # <i>cd /usr/src/linux</i>
137     # <i>make menuconfig</i>
138 erwin 1.26 </pre>
139    
140 fox2mike 1.51 <note>
141     The above example assumes that <path>/usr/src/linux</path> symlink points to
142     the kernel sources you want to use. Please ensure the same before proceeding.
143     </note>
144 neysx 1.46
145 erwin 1.26 <p>
146 swift 1.89 Now we will look at some of the options we will have to enable in the
147 fox2mike 1.51 kernel to ensure proper ALSA support for our sound card.
148 erwin 1.26 </p>
149    
150 fox2mike 1.54 <p>
151 nightmorph 1.80 Please note that for ease of use, all examples show ALSA built as modules. It
152 nightmorph 1.71 is advisable to follow the same as it then allows the use of <c>alsaconf</c>
153 fox2mike 1.63 which is a boon when you want to configure your card. Please do <e>not</e> skip
154     the <uri link="#alsa-config">Configuration</uri> section of this document. If
155     you still like to have options built-in, ensure that you make changes to your
156     config accordingly.
157 fox2mike 1.54 </p>
158 fox2mike 1.51
159     <pre caption="Kernel Options for ALSA">
160     Device Drivers ---&gt;
161     Sound ---&gt;
162    
163     <comment>(This needs to be enabled)</comment>
164     &lt;M&gt; Sound card support
165    
166     <comment>(Make sure OSS is disabled)</comment>
167     Open Sound System ---&gt;
168     &lt; &gt; Open Sound System (DEPRECATED)
169    
170     <comment>(Move one step back and enter ALSA)</comment>
171     Advanced Linux Sound Architecture ---&gt;
172     &lt;M&gt; Advanced Linux Sound Architecture
173     <comment>(Select this if you want MIDI sequencing and routing)</comment>
174     &lt;M&gt; Sequencer support
175     <comment>(Old style /dev/mixer* and /dev/dsp* support. Recommended.)</comment>
176     &lt;M&gt; OSS Mixer API
177     &lt;M&gt; OSS PCM (digital audio) API
178    
179     <comment>(You now have a choice of devices to enable support for. Generally,
180 nightmorph 1.80 you will have one type of device and not more. If you have more than one
181 fox2mike 1.51 sound card, please enable them all here.)</comment>
182    
183 nightmorph 1.80 <comment>(Mostly for testing and development purposes, not needed for normal
184 fox2mike 1.51 users unless you know what you are doing.)</comment>
185     Generic devices ---&gt;
186    
187     <comment>(For ISA Sound cards)</comment>
188     ISA devices ---&gt;
189     <comment>(IF you had the Gravis, you would select this option)</comment>
190     &lt;M&gt; Gravis UltraSound Extreme
191    
192 nightmorph 1.80 <comment>(Move one level back and into PCI devices. Most sound cards today are
193 fox2mike 1.51 PCI devices)</comment>
194     PCI devices ---&gt;
195     <comment>(We now select the emu10k1 driver for our card)</comment>
196     &lt;M&gt; Emu10k1 (SB Live!, Audigy, E-mu APS)
197     <comment>(Or an Intel card would be)</comment>
198     &lt;M&gt; Intel/SiS/nVidia/AMD/ALi AC97 Controller
199     <comment>(Or if you have a VIA Card)</comment>
200     &lt;M&gt; VIA 82C686A/B, 8233/8235 AC97 Controller
201    
202     <comment>(Move one level back and select in case you have an USB sound card)</comment>
203     USB Devices ---&gt;
204 swift 1.35 </pre>
205 swift 1.20
206 fox2mike 1.51 <p>
207     Now that your options are set, you can (re)compile the kernel and ALSA support
208 swift 1.62 for your card should be functional once you reboot into the new kernel. Don't
209     forget to update your GRUB configuration to use the newly built kernel.
210 nightmorph 1.80 You can now proceed to <uri link="#alsa-utilities">ALSA Utilities</uri> and
211 fox2mike 1.51 see if everything is working as it should.
212     </p>
213 swift 1.20
214 drobbins 1.1 </body>
215     </section>
216 swift 1.35 </chapter>
217 fox2mike 1.51
218 swift 1.35 <chapter>
219 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Configuring/Testing ALSA</title>
220     <section id="alsa-utilities">
221     <title>ALSA Utilities</title>
222 drobbins 1.1 <body>
223 swift 1.20
224 drobbins 1.1 <p>
225 nightmorph 1.80 <c>alsa-utils</c> forms an integral part of ALSA as it has a truckload of
226     programs that are highly useful, including the ALSA Initscripts. Hence we
227 fox2mike 1.51 strongly recommend that you install <c>alsa-utils</c>
228 drobbins 1.1 </p>
229 swift 1.12
230 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Install alsa-utils">
231     # <i>emerge alsa-utils</i>
232 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
233 swift 1.20
234 fox2mike 1.51 <note>
235 nightmorph 1.81 If you did <e>not</e> compile ALSA as modules, please proceed to the <uri
236     link="#initscript">ALSA Initscript</uri> section. The rest of you need to
237     configure ALSA. This is made very easy by the existence of the <c>alsaconf</c>
238     tool provided by <c>alsa-utils</c>.
239 fox2mike 1.51 </note>
240    
241     </body>
242     </section>
243     <section id="alsa-config">
244     <title>Configuration</title>
245     <body>
246    
247 nightmorph 1.71 <p>
248     Recent versions of <c>udev</c> (<c>>=udev-103</c>) provide some degree of
249     kernel-level autoconfiguration of your sound card. If possible, try to rely on
250     just letting your kernel automatically setup your sound card for you. Otherwise,
251     use <c>alsaconf</c> to configure your card, as shown below.
252     </p>
253    
254 fox2mike 1.51 <note>
255 nightmorph 1.80 Please shut down any programs that <e>might</e> access the sound card while
256 fox2mike 1.51 running <c>alsaconf</c>.
257     </note>
258    
259 drobbins 1.1 <p>
260 nightmorph 1.80 To configure your sound card just type <c>alsaconf</c> in a shell as root.
261 swift 1.20 </p>
262    
263 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Invoking alsaconf">
264     # <i>alsaconf</i>
265 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
266 swift 1.20
267 fox2mike 1.51 <p>
268 nightmorph 1.80 You will now see a neat menu guided interface that will automatically probe
269     your devices and try to find out your sound card. You will be asked to pick
270     your sound card from a list. Once that's done, it will ask you permission to
271 nightmorph 1.83 automatically make required changes to <path>/etc/modprobe.d/alsa.conf</path>.
272 fox2mike 1.54 It will then adjust your volume settings to optimum levels, run
273 nightmorph 1.76 <c>update-modules</c> and start the <path>/etc/init.d/alsasound</path> service.
274 fox2mike 1.63 Once <c>alsaconf</c> exits, you can proceed with setting up the ALSA
275     initscript.
276 fox2mike 1.51 </p>
277    
278 swift 1.35 </body>
279     </section>
280 fox2mike 1.51 <section id="initscript">
281     <title>ALSA Initscript</title>
282 swift 1.35 <body>
283 swift 1.20
284 drobbins 1.1 <p>
285 nightmorph 1.80 We're now almost all setup. Whichever method you chose to install ALSA, you'll
286     need to have something load your modules or initialize ALSA and restore your
287     volume settings when your system comes up. The ALSA Initscript handles all of
288 neysx 1.56 this for you and is called <c>alsasound</c>. Add it to the boot runlevel.
289 drobbins 1.1 </p>
290 swift 1.20
291 neysx 1.56 <pre caption="Adding ALSA to the boot runlevel">
292 fox2mike 1.54 # <i>rc-update add alsasound boot</i>
293     * alsasound added to runlevel boot
294 fox2mike 1.51 * rc-update complete.
295 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
296 swift 1.20
297 fox2mike 1.51 <p>
298 nightmorph 1.80 Next, just check the <path>/etc/conf.d/alsasound</path> file and ensure that
299     SAVE_ON_STOP variable is set to yes. This saves your sound settings when you
300 fox2mike 1.51 shutdown your system.
301     </p>
302    
303 drobbins 1.1 </body>
304     </section>
305     <section>
306 fox2mike 1.54 <title>Audio Group</title>
307     <body>
308    
309     <p>
310     Before we move on to testing, there's one last <e>important</e> thing that needs
311 nightmorph 1.79 to be setup. Rule of thumb in a *nix OS: Do not run as root unless needed.
312 fox2mike 1.54 This applies here as well ;) How? Well, most of the times you should be logged
313     in as a user and would like to listen to music or access your soundcard. For
314 vanquirius 1.59 that to happen, you need to be in the "audio" group. At this point, we'll add
315 fox2mike 1.54 users to the audio group, so that they won't have any issues when they want to
316     access sound devices. We'll use <c>gpasswd</c> here and you need to be logged in
317     as root for this to work.
318     </p>
319    
320     <pre caption="Adding users to the audio group">
321     <comment>(Substitute &lt;username&gt; with your user)</comment>
322     # <i>gpasswd -a &lt;username&gt; audio </i>
323     Adding user &lt;username&gt; to group audio
324     </pre>
325    
326     </body>
327     </section>
328     <section>
329 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Volume Check!</title>
330 drobbins 1.1 <body>
331 swift 1.20
332 drobbins 1.1 <p>
333 nightmorph 1.80 We've completed all the setups and prerequisites, so let's fire up ALSA. If
334     you ran <c>alsaconf</c>, you can skip this step, since <c>alsaconf</c> already
335 fox2mike 1.51 does this for you.
336 swift 1.20 </p>
337    
338 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Start the service">
339 nightmorph 1.80 # <i>/etc/init.d/alsasound start</i>
340 fox2mike 1.51 </pre>
341    
342     <p>
343 nightmorph 1.80 Now that the required things have been taken care of, we need to check up on
344 fox2mike 1.54 the volume as in certain cases, it is muted. We use <c>alsamixer</c> for this
345     purpose.
346 fox2mike 1.51 </p>
347    
348     <pre caption="Starting alsamixer">
349     <comment>(Opens up a console program. Only required settings are shown)</comment>
350     # <i>alsamixer</i>
351 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
352 swift 1.20
353 fox2mike 1.51 <p>
354 nightmorph 1.80 This is how the ALSA Mixer <e>might</e> look the first time you open it. Pay
355     attention to the Master and PCM channels which both have an MM below them.
356     That means they are muted. If you try to play anything with <c>alsamixer</c>
357 fox2mike 1.51 in this state, you will not hear anything on your speakers.
358     </p>
359    
360     <figure link="/images/docs/alsa-mixermuted.png" short="AlsaMixer Muted" caption="The Alsa Mixer Main Window, Muted"/>
361    
362     <p>
363     Now, we shall unmute the channels, and set volume levels as needed.
364     </p>
365    
366     <warn>
367 fox2mike 1.54 Both Master <e>and</e> PCM need to be unmuted and set to audible volume levels
368     if you want to hear some output on your speakers.
369 fox2mike 1.51 </warn>
370    
371     <ul>
372     <li>
373 nightmorph 1.80 To move between channels, use your left and right arrow keys. (&lt;-
374 fox2mike 1.51 &amp; -&gt;)
375     </li>
376     <li>
377 nightmorph 1.80 To toggle mute, move to the specific channel, for example Master and press
378     the <e>m</e> key on the keyboard.
379 fox2mike 1.51 </li>
380     <li>
381 nightmorph 1.80 To increase and decrease the volume levels, use the up and down arrow keys
382 fox2mike 1.51 respectively.
383     </li>
384     </ul>
385    
386     <note>
387 nightmorph 1.80 Be careful when setting your Bass and Treble values. 50 is usually a good
388     number for both. Extremely high values of Bass may cause <e>jarring</e>
389 fox2mike 1.51 on speakers that are not designed to handle them.
390     </note>
391    
392     <p>
393 nightmorph 1.80 After you're all done, your ALSA Mixer should look similar to the one below.
394     Note the 00 instead of the MM and also the volume levels for some optimum
395 fox2mike 1.51 settings.
396     </p>
397    
398     <figure link="/images/docs/alsa-mixerunmuted.png" short="AlsaMixer Unmuted" caption="Alsa Mixer ready to roll"/>
399    
400 drobbins 1.1 </body>
401     </section>
402     <section>
403 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Sound Check!</title>
404 drobbins 1.1 <body>
405 swift 1.20
406 drobbins 1.1 <p>
407 fox2mike 1.54 Finally. Some music. If everything above is perfect, you should now be able to
408     listen to some good music. A quick way to test is to use a command line tool
409     like <c>media-sound/madplay</c>. You could also use something more well known
410 nightmorph 1.70 like <c>mpg123</c>. If you are an ogg fan, you could use <c>ogg123</c> provided
411     by <c>media-sound/vorbis-tools</c>. Use any player you are comfortable with. As
412     always, <c>emerge</c> what you need.
413 fox2mike 1.51 </p>
414    
415     <pre caption="Getting the software">
416     <comment>(Install the applications you want)</comment>
417 nightmorph 1.70 # <i>emerge madplay mpg123</i>
418 fox2mike 1.51 <comment>(To play .ogg files)</comment>
419     # <i>emerge vorbis-tools</i>
420     </pre>
421    
422     <p>
423     And then play your favorite sound track...
424 drobbins 1.1 </p>
425 swift 1.20
426 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Playing Music">
427     # <i>madplay -v /mnt/shyam/Music/Paul\ Oakenfold\ -\ Dread\ Rock.mp3</i>
428     MPEG Audio Decoder 0.15.2 (beta) - Copyright (C) 2000-2004 Robert Leslie et al.
429     Title: Dread Rock
430     Artist: Paul Oakenfold
431     Album: Matrix Reloaded
432     Year: 2003
433     Genre: Soundtrack
434     Soundtrack
435     00:04:19 Layer III, 160 kbps, 44100 Hz, joint stereo (MS), no CRC
436    
437     # <i>ogg123 Paul\ Oakenfold\ -\ Dread\ Rock.ogg</i>
438     Audio Device: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA) output
439    
440     Playing: Paul Oakenfold - Dread Rock.ogg
441     Ogg Vorbis stream: 2 channel, 44100 Hz
442     Genre: Soundtrack
443     Transcoded: mp3;160
444     Title: Dread Rock
445     Artist: Paul Oakenfold
446     Date: 2003
447     Album: Matrix Reloaded
448     Time: 00:11.31 [04:28.75] of 04:40.06 (200.6 kbps) Output Buffer 96.9%
449 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
450 swift 1.20
451 fox2mike 1.51 </body>
452     </section>
453     <section>
454 vanquirius 1.59 <title>ALSA and USE</title>
455 fox2mike 1.54 <body>
456    
457     <p>
458 swift 1.88 You can now add the <c>alsa</c> use flag to <path>/etc/portage/make.conf</path> to
459 fox2mike 1.54 ensure that your applications that support ALSA get built with it. Some
460     architectures like x86 and amd64 have the flag enabled by default.
461     </p>
462    
463     </body>
464     </section>
465     <section>
466 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Issues?</title>
467     <body>
468    
469 drobbins 1.1 <p>
470 nightmorph 1.80 If for some reason you're unable to hear sound, the first thing to do would
471     be to check your <uri link="#doc_chap3_pre6">alsamixer</uri> settings. 80% of
472     the issues lie with muted channels or low volume. Also check your Window
473 fox2mike 1.51 Manager's sound applet and verify that volumes are set to audible levels.
474 drobbins 1.1 </p>
475 swift 1.20
476 drobbins 1.1 <p>
477 nightmorph 1.80 <path>/proc</path> is your friend. And in this case, <path>/proc/asound</path>
478     is your best friend. We shall just take a short look at how much info is made
479 fox2mike 1.51 available to us there.
480 drobbins 1.1 </p>
481 swift 1.20
482 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Fun with /proc/asound">
483 nightmorph 1.80 <comment>(First and foremost, if /proc/asound/cards shows your card, ALSA has
484 fox2mike 1.51 picked up your sound card fine.)</comment>
485     # <i>cat /proc/asound/cards</i>
486     0 [Live ]: EMU10K1 - Sound Blaster Live!
487     Sound Blaster Live! (rev.6, serial:0x80271102) at 0xb800, irq 11
488    
489 nightmorph 1.79 <comment>(This displays the current running ALSA version)</comment>
490 fox2mike 1.51 # <i>cat /proc/asound/version</i>
491     Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Version 1.0.8 (Thu Jan 13 09:39:32 2005 UTC).
492 cam 1.47
493 fox2mike 1.51 <comment>(ALSA OSS emulation details)</comment>
494     # <i>cat /proc/asound/oss/sndstat</i>
495     Sound Driver:3.8.1a-980706 (ALSA v1.0.8 emulation code)
496     Kernel: Linux airwolf.zion 2.6.11ac1 #2 Wed May 4 00:35:08 IST 2005 i686
497     Config options: 0
498    
499     Installed drivers:
500     Type 10: ALSA emulation
501    
502     Card config:
503     Sound Blaster Live! (rev.6, serial:0x80271102) at 0xb800, irq 11
504    
505     Audio devices:
506     0: EMU10K1 (DUPLEX)
507 neysx 1.46
508 fox2mike 1.51 Synth devices: NOT ENABLED IN CONFIG
509 neysx 1.46
510 fox2mike 1.51 Midi devices:
511     0: EMU10K1 MPU-401 (UART)
512 swift 1.20
513 fox2mike 1.51 Timers:
514     7: system timer
515 neysx 1.46
516 fox2mike 1.51 Mixers:
517     0: SigmaTel STAC9721/23
518     </pre>
519 swift 1.20
520 nightmorph 1.81 <!-- TODO: remove this a few months after alsa-driver leaves the tree -->
521    
522 fox2mike 1.61 <p>
523     The other most common issue users face is the dreaded "Unknown symbol in module"
524     error. An example of the same is shown below.
525     </p>
526    
527     <pre caption="Unknown Symbol in module error">
528     # <i>/etc/init.d/alsasound start</i>
529     * Loading ALSA modules ...
530     * Loading: snd-card-0 ... [ ok ]
531     * Loading: snd-pcm-oss ...
532     WARNING: Error inserting snd_mixer_oss
533     (/lib/modules/2.6.12-gentoo-r6/kernel/sound/core/oss/snd-mixer-oss.ko): Unknown
534     symbol in module, or unknown parameter (see dmesg) FATAL: Error inserting
535     snd_pcm_oss
536     (/lib/modules/2.6.12-gentoo-r6/kernel/sound/core/oss/snd-pcm-oss.ko): Unknown
537     symbol in module, or unknown parameter (see dmesg)
538     [ !! ]
539     * Loading: snd-mixer-oss ...
540     FATAL: Error inserting snd_mixer_oss
541     (/lib/modules/2.6.12-gentoo-r6/kernel/sound/core/oss/snd-mixer-oss.ko): Unknown
542     symbol in module, or unknown parameter (see dmesg)
543     [ !! ]
544     * Loading: snd-seq ... [ ok ]
545     * Loading: snd-emu10k1-synth ... [ ok ]
546     * Loading: snd-seq-midi ... [ ok ]
547     * Restoring Mixer Levels ... [ ok ]
548     </pre>
549    
550     <p>
551     And when you take a look at <c>dmesg</c> as suggested, you're quite likely to
552     see:
553     </p>
554    
555     <pre caption="dmesg output">
556     <comment>(Only relevant portions are shown below)</comment>
557     # <i>dmesg | less</i>
558     ACPI: PCI Interrupt 0000:02:06.0[A] -> Link [APC3] -> GSI 18 (level, low) -> IRQ 209
559     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_unregister_oss_device
560     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_register_oss_device
561     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_mixer_oss_notify_callback
562     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_oss_info_register
563     snd_pcm_oss: Unknown symbol snd_unregister_oss_device
564     snd_pcm_oss: Unknown symbol snd_register_oss_device
565     snd_pcm_oss: Unknown symbol snd_mixer_oss_ioctl_card
566     snd_pcm_oss: Unknown symbol snd_oss_info_register
567     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_unregister_oss_device
568     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_register_oss_device
569     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_mixer_oss_notify_callback
570     snd_mixer_oss: Unknown symbol snd_oss_info_register
571     </pre>
572    
573     <p>
574 nightmorph 1.81 The above issue is caused when you switch from the <c>alsa-driver</c> to in-kernel
575 fox2mike 1.61 ALSA because when you unmerge <c>alsa-driver</c> the module files are config
576     protected and hence get left behind. So, when you switch to in-kernel
577     drivers, running <c>modprobe</c> gives you a mix of <c>alsa-driver</c> and
578     in-kernel modules thus causing the above errors.
579     </p>
580    
581     <p>
582     The solution is quite easy. We just need to manually remove the problem causing
583     directory after you unmerge <c>alsa-driver</c>. Be sure to remove the correct
584     kernel version and not the current one!
585     </p>
586    
587     <pre caption="Removing the alsa-driver modules">
588 rane 1.68 # <i>rm -rf /lib/modules/$(uname -r)/alsa-driver</i>
589 fox2mike 1.61 </pre>
590    
591 fox2mike 1.66 <p>
592     Another reason for error messages similar to the ones above could be a file in
593 nightmorph 1.83 <path>/etc/modprobe.d</path> supplying a <c>device_mode</c> parameter when it
594 fox2mike 1.66 isn't required. Confirm that this is indeed the issue and find out which file
595     is the culprit.
596     </p>
597    
598 neysx 1.67 <pre caption="Confirming and searching for device_mode">
599 fox2mike 1.66 <comment>(Check dmesg to confirm)</comment>
600     # <i>dmesg | grep device_mode</i>
601     snd: Unknown parameter `device_mode'
602     <comment>(Now, to get to the source of the issue)</comment>
603 nightmorph 1.83 # <i>grep device_mode /etc/modprobe.d/*</i>
604 fox2mike 1.66 </pre>
605    
606     <p>
607     Usually it is a file called <path>alsa</path> with the line <c>options snd
608 nightmorph 1.81 device_mode=0666</c>. Remove this line and restart the <c>alsasound</c> service
609     and that should take care of this issue.
610 fox2mike 1.66 </p>
611    
612 nightmorph 1.81 <!-- End of removal notice -->
613    
614 erwin 1.26 </body>
615     </section>
616     </chapter>
617 fox2mike 1.51
618 erwin 1.26 <chapter>
619 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Other things ALSA</title>
620 nightmorph 1.71 <section id="midi">
621 fox2mike 1.51 <title>Setting up MIDI support</title>
622 erwin 1.26 <body>
623    
624     <p>
625 nightmorph 1.71 First, check to make sure that you enabled the <c>midi</c> USE flag in
626 swift 1.88 <path>/etc/portage/make.conf</path>. If you didn't, go ahead and add it now. You will
627 jkt 1.75 also need to re-emerge any ALSA packages that use the <c>midi</c> flag, such as
628 nightmorph 1.81 <c>alsa-lib</c> and <c>alsa-utils</c>.
629 nightmorph 1.71 </p>
630    
631     <p>
632 nightmorph 1.80 If your sound card is one of those that come with on-board MIDI synthesizers
633     and you would like to listen to some .mid files, you have to install
634     <c>awesfx</c> which is basically a set of utilities for controlling the AWE32
635     driver. We need to install it first. If you don't have a hardware synthesizer,
636     you can use a virtual one. Please see the section on
637 fox2mike 1.51 <uri link="#vsynth">Virtual Synthesizers</uri> for more information.
638 erwin 1.26 </p>
639    
640 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Installing awesfx">
641 erwin 1.26 # <i>emerge awesfx</i>
642     </pre>
643    
644 fox2mike 1.51 <note>
645 nightmorph 1.80 You will need to copy over SoundFont (SF2) files from your sound card's driver
646     CD or a Windows installation into <path>/usr/share/sounds/sf2/</path>. For
647 fox2mike 1.51 example a sound font file for the Creative SBLive! card would be 8MBGMSFX.SF2.
648     </note>
649    
650 erwin 1.26 <p>
651 fox2mike 1.51 After copying over the Soundfont files, we can then play a midi file as shown.
652 nightmorph 1.80 You can also add the <c>asfxload</c> command to
653     <path>/etc/conf.d/local.start</path>, so that the sound font is loaded
654 fox2mike 1.51 every time the system starts up.
655 erwin 1.26 </p>
656    
657 fox2mike 1.51 <note>
658 nightmorph 1.80 <path>/mnt</path> paths mentioned in the code listing(s) below will <e>not</e>
659     be the same in your machine. They are just an example. Please be careful to
660 fox2mike 1.51 change the path to suit your machine.
661     </note>
662 erwin 1.26
663 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Loading Soundfonts">
664     <comment>(First, copy the Soundfont)</comment>
665 fox2mike 1.61 # <i>cp /mnt/win2k/Program\ Files/CreativeSBLive2k/SFBank/8MBGMSFX.SF2 /usr/share/sounds/sf2/</i>
666     <comment>(Or get it from your SoundBlaster CD)</comment>
667     # <i>cp /mnt/cdrom/AUDIO/ENGLISH/SFBANK/8MBGMSFX.SF2 /usr/share/sounds/sf2/</i>
668 fox2mike 1.51 <comment>(We load the specific Soundfont)</comment>
669     # <i>asfxload /usr/share/sounds/sf2/8MBGMSFX.SF2</i>
670 erwin 1.26 </pre>
671    
672 swift 1.35 <p>
673 nightmorph 1.80 You can now play midi files using a program like <c>aplaymidi</c>. Run
674     <c>aplaymidi -l</c> to get a list of available ports and then pick one
675 fox2mike 1.51 to play the file on.
676 swift 1.35 </p>
677 erwin 1.26
678 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Playing MIDI">
679     <comment>(Check open ports)</comment>
680     # <i>aplaymidi -l</i>
681     Port Client name Port name
682     64:0 EMU10K1 MPU-401 (UART) EMU10K1 MPU-401 (UART)
683     65:0 Emu10k1 WaveTable Emu10k1 Port 0
684     65:1 Emu10k1 WaveTable Emu10k1 Port 1
685     65:2 Emu10k1 WaveTable Emu10k1 Port 2
686     65:3 Emu10k1 WaveTable Emu10k1 Port 3
687     <comment>(Pick a port, and play a mid file)</comment>
688     # <i> aplaymidi --port=65:0 /mnt/shyam/music/midi/mi2.mid</i>
689     </pre>
690 swift 1.32
691 erwin 1.26 </body>
692     </section>
693 fox2mike 1.51 <section id="vsynth">
694     <title>Virtual Synthesizers</title>
695 erwin 1.26 <body>
696    
697     <p>
698 fox2mike 1.51 If your sound card lacks a hardware synthesizer, you could use a virtual one
699     like <c>timidity++</c>. Installation is a breeze.
700 erwin 1.26 </p>
701    
702 fox2mike 1.51 <pre caption="Installing timidity++">
703 erwin 1.26 # <i>emerge timidity++</i>
704     </pre>
705    
706     <p>
707 nightmorph 1.71 For timidity to play sounds, it needs a sound font. Fortunately, the ebuild will
708     install some sound font packages for you. There are a few other font packages
709     available in Portage, such as <c>timidity-freepats</c> and
710     <c>timidity-eawpatches</c>. You can have multiple sound font configurations
711 nightmorph 1.80 installed, and you can place your own in <path>/usr/share/timidity/</path>. To
712 nightmorph 1.73 switch between different timidity configurations, you should use
713     <c>eselect</c>.
714 cam 1.33 </p>
715    
716 nightmorph 1.71 <pre caption="Changing configurations">
717     # <i>eselect timidity list</i>
718     # <i>eselect timidity set eawpatches</i>
719 cam 1.33 </pre>
720    
721     <p>
722 swift 1.35 Don't forget to add <c>timidity</c> to the default runlevel.
723 erwin 1.26 </p>
724    
725 swift 1.35 <pre caption="Adding timidity to the default runlevel">
726 erwin 1.26 # <i>rc-update add timidity default</i>
727     # <i>/etc/init.d/timidity start</i>
728     </pre>
729    
730 drobbins 1.1 <p>
731 fox2mike 1.51 You can now try out <uri link="#doc_chap4_pre3">Playing MIDI</uri> files.
732 erwin 1.26 </p>
733    
734 drobbins 1.1 </body>
735     </section>
736     <section>
737 swift 1.35 <title>Tools and Firmware</title>
738 drobbins 1.1 <body>
739 swift 1.20
740     <p>
741 swift 1.35 Some specific sound cards can benefit from certain tools provided by the
742 nightmorph 1.71 <c>alsa-tools</c> and <c>alsa-firmware</c> packages. You may install either with
743     a simple <c>emerge</c>.
744     </p>
745    
746     <pre caption="Installing ALSA Tools">
747     # <i>emerge alsa-tools</i>
748     </pre>
749    
750     </body>
751     </section>
752     <section>
753     <title>Multiple sound cards</title>
754     <body>
755    
756     <p>
757 nightmorph 1.74 You can have more than one sound card in your system simultaneously, provided
758 nightmorph 1.81 that you have built ALSA as modules in your kernel. You just need to specify
759 nightmorph 1.83 which should be started first in <path>/etc/modprobe.d/alsa.conf</path>. Your cards
760 nightmorph 1.81 are identified by their driver names inside this file. 0 is the first card, 1 is
761     the second, and so on. Here's an example for a system with two sound cards.
762 nightmorph 1.71 </p>
763    
764 nightmorph 1.83 <pre caption="Two sound cards in /etc/modprobe.d/alsa.conf">
765 nightmorph 1.71 options snd-emu10k1 index=0
766     options snd-via82xx index=1
767     </pre>
768    
769     <p>
770     Or, if you have two cards that use the same driver, you specify them on the same
771     line, using comma-separated numbers. Here's an example for a system with three
772     sound cards, two of which are the same Intel High Definition Audio card.
773 swift 1.20 </p>
774    
775 nightmorph 1.83 <pre caption="Multiple sound cards in /etc/modprobe.d/alsa.conf">
776 nightmorph 1.71 options snd-ymfpci index=0
777     options snd-hda-intel index=1,2
778 drobbins 1.1 </pre>
779 swift 1.20
780 nightmorph 1.71 </body>
781     </section>
782     <section>
783     <title>Plugins</title>
784     <body>
785    
786 erwin 1.26 <p>
787 nightmorph 1.71 You may want to install some plugins for extra functionality.
788     <c>alsa-plugins</c> is a collection of useful plugins, which include: PulseAudio
789     output, a sample rate converter, jack (a low-latency audio server), and an
790     encoder that lets you output 6-channel audio through digital S/PDIF connections
791     (both optical and coaxial). You can choose which of its plugins you want
792     installed by adding their USE flags to <path>/etc/portage/package.use</path>.
793 erwin 1.26 </p>
794    
795 nightmorph 1.71 <pre caption="Installing alsa-plugins">
796     # <i>emerge -avt alsa-plugins</i>
797 erwin 1.26 </pre>
798    
799     </body>
800     </section>
801     <section>
802 nightmorph 1.71 <title>A big thank you to...</title>
803 swift 1.21 <body>
804    
805     <p>
806 fox2mike 1.51 Everyone who contributed to the earlier version of the Gentoo ALSA Guide:
807 nightmorph 1.80 Vincent Verleye, Grant Goodyear, Arcady Genkin, Jeremy Huddleston,
808 fox2mike 1.51 John P. Davis, Sven Vermeulen, Benny Chuang, Tiemo Kieft and Erwin.
809 swift 1.21 </p>
810    
811 swift 1.17 </body>
812     </section>
813 drobbins 1.1 <section>
814 fox2mike 1.51 <title>References</title>
815 drobbins 1.1 <body>
816 swift 1.20
817 drobbins 1.1 <ul>
818 fox2mike 1.51 <li><uri link="http://www.alsa-project.org/">The ALSA Project</uri></li>
819 swift 1.35 <li><uri link="http://linux-sound.org">Linux Sound/MIDI Software</uri></li>
820 drobbins 1.1 </ul>
821 swift 1.20
822 drobbins 1.1 </body>
823     </section>
824     </chapter>
825     </guide>

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