Thursday, July 10, 2008

PulseAudio Again...

Just had another exciting PulseAudio crash where my sound card got continually spammed until my ears bled and then it spammed the sound card some more.

Seriously though, my coworkers were a bit annoyed by my laptop blaring really loud and obnoxious noise for the past hour (made worse because my keyboard volume control keys do not actually work with pulseaudio which is apparently a known issue with Lenovo T61 laptops I'm told).

However, this did provide me with a most excellent opportunity to test the patches I posted in my previous blog entry about my pain and suffering at the hands of PulseAudio.

Yet again, I was unable to launch any new apps - though instead of blocking in esd_open_sound(), they blocked in esd_send_auth(), so I went and patched that up to use non-blocking IO, build new packages, installed them, and tested and HALLELUJAH! they work!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I can now actually use my system even when PulseAudio takes a proverbial dump on my desktop.

I've submitted my patches upstream:

  • bug #542391: libesd should not block if the daemon dies/hangs/whatever
  • bug #542296: gnome_sound needs to handle pa hangs more gracefully

Unfortunately, these patches do not solve the root problem (pulseaudio suckage), but at least they allow me to get work done when pulseaudio craps out on me (which only happens every few hours if I'm lucky).

Oh, and if you are on 32bit x86 openSUSE 11 systems, you can grab some packages I made up at I've also uploaded the raw patches in case anyone wants to push them in their own distro packages.

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