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Old 08-01-2013, 11:40 PM   #1
Sunfist
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What is Pulse AUdio


My computer has gotten very sluggish and every time I run the top command the process that is taking 10% of my cpu time is called pulse audio. WHat is that and how do I get rid of it?
 
Old 08-02-2013, 01:27 AM   #2
evo2
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Hi,

it is the a sound server/mixer/layer. You can get rid of it by uninstalling the pulseaudio package. However to do so you would probably end up with a system lacking many features that you need/want.

Having said all this, 10% seems like a significant chunk of your cpu. What are you running when you see pulse audio using that much cpu?

One more thing, what distro and version are you running? ... I hope that "Ubuntu 8.04" showing in your side bar is just something you didn't get around to changing.

Cheers,

Evo2.
 
Old 08-02-2013, 01:29 AM   #3
thelinuxist
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PulseAudio is controlling most of your audio system - like the volume of your speakers, individual volume settings for most applications and such.
To get rid of it, try
Code:
killall pulseaudio
or find out the process id (PID) using
Code:
top
and then type
Code:
kill <PID>
(Where <PID> is the PID you found out in top).
If this actually makes your computer quicker, you can completely remove it using
http://www.hecticgeek.com/2012/01/ho...-ubuntu-linux/
 
Old 08-02-2013, 02:08 AM   #4
konsolebox
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Killing pulseaudio was not enough for me back then as it kept summoning itself through alsa. There's one file in /usr/share/alsa that you have to modify to completely disable it. I can no longer tell unless I search through the net what file it was since I'm no longer running PulseAudio.
 
Old 08-02-2013, 10:16 PM   #5
Sunfist
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I did use the kill command but it just comes back in a few seconds. This all started when I got this new usb dac and was trying to get it to work. My old one worked fine but this one seems to be recognized but I get an error when ever I try to play anything. I did find out that the pulseaudio thing goes away if I unplug it, but still I think it if very odd that it just keeps popping up like that for no reason I can figure out.
Oh yeah and I am running Ubuntu 12.04 now, I'll update my profile.
 
Old 08-03-2013, 08:32 PM   #6
frankbell
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Pulse Audio is one of those things that improves stuff by adding an extra layer of complexity on top of something that already worked just fine, although I have to say it's not as annoying as it used to be.

This article may help:

http://www.hecticgeek.com/2012/01/ho...-ubuntu-linux/
 
Old 08-04-2013, 10:16 AM   #7
konsolebox
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And I wonder what is it exactly that PulseAudio tries to improve. My first impression of it was that it would be able to add volume control to every running application but it doesn't seem to really work like that.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 01:10 AM   #8
thelinuxist
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It tries to implement some kind of system like Windy OS 7 has - with a volume control for every program and device. It's a nice idea, but the implementation still needs some work done.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 03:39 AM   #9
daniel66
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You just asked what i want to know. No need to start a new thread.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 04:36 AM   #10
zhjim
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Pulse makes it possible that more than one programm can use the sound device. With ALSA as the hardware layer of the soundsystem only one program is allowed to use the hardware. Now pulse grabs the hardware and every other programm sends their sounds to pulse which it pushes it through to the hardware.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 05:35 AM   #11
TobiSGD
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PulseAudio allows much more than Alsa can deliver:
- per application volume control
- on the fly changing of input/output devices (for example when plugging in an USB audio device)
- sending audio over network
- probably much more
 
Old 08-08-2013, 09:09 PM   #12
frankbell
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For what it's worth, I'm using Slackware --Current with ALSA and without pulseaudio (I just doublechecked--no trace of it) and I can play two movies simultaneously, with separate audio streams.
 
Old 08-08-2013, 09:57 PM   #13
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankbell View Post
For what it's worth, I'm using Slackware --Current with ALSA and without pulseaudio (I just doublechecked--no trace of it) and I can play two movies simultaneously, with separate audio streams.
The dmix plugin for Alsa makes this possible. I use PulseAudio on Slackware -current on all my (desktop) systems and have no problems at all with it.
 
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:53 PM   #14
frankbell
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Thanks, TobiSGD. As usual where you are involved, I learned something.
 
Old 08-09-2013, 11:18 PM   #15
konsolebox
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@TobiSGD Mind if I ask what audio applications you use? And PulseAudio I think is not for power users. It's difficult to make it work with UID 0.
 
  


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