Why is PulseAudio so stupid?

PulseAudio screenshotI have had a hate-hate relationship with PulseAudio on Ubuntu/Kubuntu over the last few months. Today I finally got fed up with a problem I was having and out of frustration just asked Google “why is pulse audio so stupid.” Without it being a serious inquiry I eventually made my way to a debugging page at the Ubuntu wiki that helped me out.

Here is what it had me do. Enter this command in a terminal window:

sudo fuser -v /dev/dsp* /dev/snd/* /dev/seq*

Anything other than “pulseaudio” appearing in the right column is the problem. Use the killall command to kill those other items. I ended up issuing a:

killall kmix

After that my sound started working as expected. I will now have to figure out how to keep kmix from starting at boot each time, but I at least know how to solve the problem quickly when it does come up.

If you are an Ubuntu (or variants) user it appears that PulseAudio is here to stay. I have read why it is supposed to be better, but don’t understand it or really care. I will let smarter people than me argue the finer points of sound servers. I just want the thing to work.

2 thoughts on “Why is PulseAudio so stupid?”

  1. The Almighty Google knows all…

    I think the portable App SOngBird (which I believe is Cross Platform) should be adding podcasts to it’s abilities.

    Could you not toss the feed into Google Reader and have a Folder Called Podcast? This wouldn’t help with syncing to MP3 player, but for listening in Ubuntu.

    I currently have a few podcasts that I do this with… I have Ubuntu on my laptop…

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