I am having a problem getting sound to work on my new Sony laptop. I have tried both ALSA and OSS. Programs (such as xmms or aplay) appear as if they are playing sound files properly, but there is no actual sound generated from the speakers. There is no hardware volume control on this laptop, as far as I can tell. The Fn keys marked as mute and volume control generate signals that can be interpreted by the sonypi kernel module and sonypid (as with some other Sony laptops.) Most people then map these keys to mixer commands that adjust or mute the sound. Sound works in Windows, but similarly, the Fn keys do not seem to control the volume at a hardware level. The function keys seem to only adjust the volume levels on the Windows mixer. The only hardware sound control that I was able find is in the BIOS, and I have made sure that the volume is not muted there. I am able to hear sound when I start the laptop and the BIOS is doing the POST. I am currently trying ALSA and have unmuted the mixer the channels. I also ran alsaconf and it found my card. Udev generates nodes in /dev/ for the dsp, mixer, etc. and I have set rw access for users. In any case, the sound behaves the same way even when I try to play sound as root.
I am using Slackware 10 and a 2.6.7 kernel. Here is some other information that may be helpful:
Output of lsmod with respect to sound:
snd_intel8x0 28936 0
snd_ac97_codec 69188 1 snd_intel8x0
snd_pcm 82952 2 snd_pcm_oss,snd_intel8x0
snd_timer 20932 1 snd_pcm
snd_page_alloc 9288 2 snd_intel8x0,snd_pcm
snd_mpu401_uart 5888 1 snd_intel8x0
snd_rawmidi 19684 1 snd_mpu401_uart
snd_seq_device 6792 1 snd_rawmidi
snd 46116 9 snd_pcm_oss,snd_mixer_oss,snd_intel8x0,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm,snd_timer,snd_mpu401_uart,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq_device
Output of lspci with respect to sound:
00:1f.5 Multimedia audio controller: Intel Corp. 82801DB (ICH4) AC'97 Audio Controller (rev 03)
Resulting output of cat /dev/asound/cards:
0 [I82801DBICH4 ]: ICH - Intel 82801DB-ICH4 Intel 82801DB-ICH4 at 0xd0000c00, irq 9
My brother is also having similar symptoms using Gentoo linux with a 2.6.7 kernel and OSS. Any help would be appreciated; this problem is particularly maddening. Please let me know if any other information would be helpful to diagnose the problem. Also, the sound seems to behave similarly in FreeBSD, based off my tinkering with Freesbie. However, I am not certain about this as I have limited BSD experience.
I am able to hear the sound faintly through the headphones if I turn the mixer volume to the highest level; this seems to be some issue with being able to set the hardware volume. However, even at the highest volume, I can't hear anything from the speakers.