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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


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Old 07-06-2004, 02:44 PM   #1
Registered: Jun 2004
Location: Belgium
Posts: 49

Rep: Reputation: 15
Soundcard working now, what next ?

I try to get an old Soundblaster card 1.0/1.5 working with ALSA.
I have installed Slackware 9.1, and the ISA card is not detected during boot (no sign of it in dmesg).
Once booted I do the following as root:

modprobe soundcore
modprobe snd-sb8
#I get a number of c errors here starting with "Sound Blaster soundcard not found or device busy"

# No supported PnP or PCI card found. Would you like to probe legacy ISA sound cards/chips --> Yes
#only select the Soundblaster 1.0/2.0/Pro drivers to probe
#shall I try to probe all possible dma/irq combinations ? --> No
#alsaconf returns 'no legacy card found'

modprobe snd-sb8
#no error message received
#snd-sb8 is loaded together with the modules it's depending on

#four controls are shown 'Master', 'PCM', 'Synth' and 'CD', all show 100%, #so I guess they are not muted. This seems normal to me as this card's volume could not be controlled under windows either: a physical volume button at the back needed to be used.

aplay test.wav
# plays the test file !

So I guess I got it working. What I can't figure out is what alsaconf does so that modprobing snd-sb8 works the second time. I want to have a solution that does not require the gui-steps of alsaconf, so that I can automate it at boot.

As a second solution I want to look into, While reading about ALSA, I also saw hints about changing modules.conf, requiring 'alias' and 'option' lines. Is this a better way to have the sound card driver configured at boot ? Where could I read a simple introduction behind using this file for configuring drivers ?
Old 07-09-2004, 05:34 AM   #2
Registered: Jun 2004
Location: Belgium
Posts: 49

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
I'l start replying on my own question as I learn more about it and ask some new ones along the way.

I've learned taht alsaconf is just a script, so I could examine it. apparently, alsaconf uses isapnp, which I don't have installed. As I assumed that this old card was not plug and play, I also assumed isapnp was not needed. I don't read sh scripts well enough yet to decide whether this module missing is the only reason for alsaconf failing, but I'll just give it a try this weekend. I still didn't figure out why the modprobe works after alsaconf anyway.

as for my question with modules.conf. I've seen that on startup, init calls /ets/rc.d/rc.M, which calls rc.alsa (i guess this file was installed together with alsa). rc.alsa contains a modprobe string which is way too complicated for me, but I thing it means it looks in /etc/modules.conf for the parameters that are needed for this sound card.

I think alsconf's goal is to fill in this modules.conf file.

Apart from just trying, my next action will be to read man bash completely in order to understand these scripts better.


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