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My sympathy to those who have not got sound working: so many Linux users, so little sound.
I was there just a couple of weeks ago, but now I need to know...
In the alsamixer (gui) what exactly do the buttons mean?
There are little speaker pictures above the channels - what does it mean if they are clicked-on or not clicked-on?
I think it is a toggle - shows that the channel is for a digital signal, or sets it as digital.
But I don't know for sure.
Some channels have radio type buttons above them - what does it mean if they are clicked-on or not clicked-on? They go red if clicked on, but the red don't go away if clicked on again.
What does it all mean?
I have spent many hours browsing the net and have not found any info on this.
I know I can use the mixer without the gui - but I like to use the gui now that it's working okay.
Am I missing a basic man page or other document called "alsamixergui - what the buttons mean"?
The speaker icons are mute (no "soundwaves" near the speakers) or not mute ("soundwaves" coming from the speakers). The red circles are the designated capture source (cd, line, mic, etc.). The padlock symbol is for locking left and right channels together; move one, move them both.
Linux: so many features, so little documentation...
Thanks for the extra reply to this quite old question. One difficulty I had (and still have) is that only three out of the thirty channels actually show muting/colour changing of the icons.
I don't have any red buttons any more. Must have re-figured itself after I put my Audigy2 card in.
Everything seems to function okay, only some of the labels don't match what is actually happening. I expect I have some more tweaking to do with the sound system and settings: the Audigy2 has a lot of channels.
Still have not tried firewire, midi or recording with external instruments or mics. Wasn't planning to do anything with dvd/optical/5.1 channel output.
I never had a decent card in a windows machine so I don't even know what I should expect: e.g. there is a remote control but I have no idea what it is for. It certainly doesn't adjust the volume through any channel I have used. For that matter, it has volume control on the front (on the external box that is not inside the computer) which also appears to have no function. Maybe it's just for the 5-channel/dvd or optical channels.
I had to rely on LinuxQuestions to get it going at first. But but was just a few crucial tweaks. Alsa has a grip on the card's basics and Jack lists working sources and destinations for things like AlsaModularSynth. I have done some "internal" recording.
What cards do you know of, with all these bells and whistles, that are well supported by Linux? I probably should have looked into it more before I bought one.
I don't know sound card internals well. I'm relying heavily on this site for what's supposed to work. SuSE 10, however, seems to have its own ideas about that...
Actually, Ralph Waldo is a co-linear cousin - we share a common aunt one generation before RWE; the family tree branches at the point, RWE on one branch and RBE on another (and a few years later on)...