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Thread: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

  1. #1
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    Default Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Hi all,

    I am running opensuse 11 (gnome), and somehow have lost my sound when playing video files in totem, vlc, mplayer or flash players (eg youtube). Vid files were fine in totem and flash player (ie sound was working fine) up to a couple of days ago, now I get nothing (video works fine, sound doesn't).

    I did install vlc-beta, but had some issues and reverted back to current vlc, but not sure if this has anything to do with my problem. I opened banshee for the first time the other day (since putting on suse 11) and loaded my music library, but when I try and play I get no sound (just skips through the playlist really fast as though it can't 'read' the song).

    I have no idea what happened - as far as I can tell all volume sliders are up (although the one in banshee looks muted, and won't let me slide the volume control at all). If I right-click on the volume control in the bottom panel and go to 'open volume control' I get a pop-up saying "connection failed: connection refused".

    Anyone know where I should start?

    As far as I can tell I have all gstreamer codec plugins installed (good, bad, ugly etc).

  2. #2

    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    I had, and still occasionally have the same problem. I would consider this a workaround, that works at least for me.

    1. For each of these applications you may have to go and change audio output and try what is the best one for you (usually the old OSS will work).

    2. What also works: as a root, type alsa-init, as most likely something killed alsa.

    I'll be back to see if this helped, and also to see if somebody has a better solution.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Quote Originally Posted by nimajiman View Post
    when I try and play I get no sound (just skips through the playlist really fast as though it can't 'read' the song)..... Anyone know where I should start?
    If it were me, I would check for basic sound ...

    Please run the following sound test (copy and paste into an xterm/konsole), and advise of any audible output:
    speaker-test -Dplug:front -c2 -l5 -twav

    Don't forget to check your mixer settings, while it is trying to play audio.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Thanks for your replies.

    @oldcpu: I ran the command you suggested but got no sound. Output from terminal was:

    Code:
    user@opensuse-laptop:~> speaker-test -Dplug:front -c2 -l5 -twav
    
    speaker-test 1.0.16
    
    Playback device is plug:front
    Stream parameters are 48000Hz, S16_LE, 2 channels
    WAV file(s)
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    (this continued repeatedly until i closed the terminal window)...
    The funny thing is when I first log in after a reboot I get the usual 'login' sound playing fine. Also, immediately after logging in I can right click on the icon in the panel and open volume control, which gives me the pulseaudio volume control window. However try again a few minutes later (after opening totem or something) and it crashes trying to open pulseaudio volume control and I can't get sound.

    It seems like something is killing my system's sound after logging in?

    @ivom66: I tried sudo alsa-init in terminal but got
    Code:
    sudo: alsa-init: command not found
    Am I missing something? Also I opened an avi in VLC and tried playing around with audio settings, but had no success with OSS or ALSA.

    I'm still stuck!

    Oh yeah... I was using skype today, just going through my laptops built in mic and speakers, and the sound worked fine. This just confuses me even more!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Quote Originally Posted by nimajiman View Post
    @oldcpu: I ran the command you suggested but got no sound. Output from terminal was:
    Code:
    user@opensuse-laptop:~> speaker-test -Dplug:front -c2 -l5 -twav
    speaker-test 1.0.16
    
    Playback device is plug:front
    Stream parameters are 48000Hz, S16_LE, 2 channels
    WAV file(s)
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Playback open error: -16,Device or resource busy
    Ok, ... so the snd device is busy, because some other app has control and has not released control (at least thats how it looks to me). What is this "other" app? Please look for it.

    Maybe run that sound test again, and while getting that error, type this in a second xterm/konsole:
    lsof /dev/dsp* /dev/audio* /dev/mixer* /dev/snd/*

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Ok latest development...

    I thought I'd fiddle around a little bit, so opened system monitor to see what was running. The only audio related thing I could see was pulseaudio (pulseaudio -D), so I thought I should try restarting this process.

    Here's what I did from terminal:

    sudo pulseaudio -k (...nothing happens)
    pulseaudio --check (...nothing happens)
    pulseaudio -k (pulseaudio disappears from system monitor - seems as though I had to not be root to kill the process)

    Then I tried "pulseaudio -D" and got:

    Code:
    W: core-util.c: setpriority(): Permission denied
    "sudo pulseaudio -D" and got:

    Code:
    W: main.c: This program is not intended to be run as root (unless --system is specified).
    E: main.c: daemon startup failed.
    Then finally "sudo pulseaudio -D --system"

    and pulseaudio pops back in to system monitor. I open VLC and voila, sound is working again!

    To me, it looks like pulseaudio should be running as a systemwide process to work, but instead it was running at the user level (which is why I could only kill it initially as normal user but not as root). When I started it again as root with the system wide option things seemed back to normal (although I still had troubles using ALSA in mplayer, but OSS was ok. ALSA seems fine in VLC though.)

    Anyway, obviously there is still a problem with my system and I don't want to run these commands everytime I log in. Not sure where-to from here though...

    EDIT: After writing this I tried totem but still no sound there. Not sure how to set audio preferences in totem - there is nothing in the preferences dialogue.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    @oldcpu

    Sorry didn't see your 2nd post.

    Running "speaker-test -Dplug:front -c2 -l5 -twav" now works after my fiddling from the last post, so I will reboot and, assuming I get the same problem as before, will try and find what 'other' app is not releasing control.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    You cannot run sudo alsa-init. It is in /usr/sbin, so you would
    have to run:

    Code:
    sudo /usr/sbin/alsa-init
    if you don't want to run as a root.
    To become a root, type:

    Code:
    su -
    If you still don't find that command (which just does this:
    Code:
    /usr/bin/set_default_volume -f $1 >/dev/null 2>&1
    exec /usr/sbin/alsactl -F restore $1 >/dev/null 2>&1
    then you might consider installing alsa-tools and alsa-utils.

    oldcpu:
    I'll keep an eye on this thread as I've already tried many things, and restoring alsa was the only thing that helped me.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    Oh, I wrote my post without seeing that you already have a solution.

    I believe for totem you have the settings in Gstreamer Properties.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Lost sound in totem, vlc, mplayer, flash, banshee etc

    I wouldn't say that I have a solution just yet, although I do believe we are making some progress .

    Ok, rebooted and same problem as before. Running "speaker-test -Dplug:front -c2 -l5 -twav" gives "device or resource busy" error as before.

    I tried "lsof /dev/dsp* /dev/audio* /dev/mixer* /dev/snd/*" while it was going and got:

    Code:
    user1@opensuse-laptop:~> lsof /dev/dsp* /dev/audio* /dev/mixer* /dev/snd/*
    lsof: WARNING: can't stat() fuse.gvfs-fuse-daemon file system /var/lib/gdm/.gvfs
          Output information may be incomplete.
    COMMAND    PID  USER   FD   TYPE DEVICE SIZE/OFF NODE NAME
    pulseaudi 3599 user1   29u   CHR  116,9      0t0 4301 /dev/snd/controlC0
    pulseaudi 3599 user1   36u   CHR  116,9      0t0 4301 /dev/snd/controlC0
    skype     3769 user1  mem    CHR  116,5          4277 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
    skype     3769 user1   32u   CHR  116,5      0t0 4277 /dev/snd/pcmC0D0p
    mixer_app 3834 user1   22u   CHR  116,9      0t0 4301 /dev/snd/controlC0
    It looks like skype may be the culprit! I quit skype and ran your speaker test at cl again and this time it worked. Opened a file in VLC again and sound was working there as well.

    Ok, now we are getting somewhere. Sound is working in VLC using ALSA, but I still have a few problems:

    1. Totem still has no sound. I don't know if this is skype related or a different problem. I've tried changing settings in gstreamer properties but get no sound regardless of if I set it to ALSA, OSS or pulseaudio.
    2. Although its not essential, I would still like to use skype. Don't know if there is a workaround to stop it from taking over?
    3. Mplayer crashes if I set it to ALSA. If I set it to OSS it plays video, but says "could not open/initialise audio device" and I get no sound.
    EDIT: If no other apps are using sound, mplayer works using OSS. Mplayer wasn't able to initialise the audio device as I had a test youtube video loading. Once I closed the browser it worked.

    Anyway, looks like we are part way there. I can live without skype and VLC is working, so I can at least play video through that. Also flash player has sound again so youtube etc is usable again.

    As for the other problems, I'm still not sure whats going on. ivom66: I tried /usr/sbin/alsa-init but this didn't seem to do much for totem or mplayer using alsa (I got no output from this at all on the command line, and same sound problems were still there after). I tried the more complex commands you suggested as well but same result.

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