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austinium 05-17-2008 01:05 PM

no sound after installing new kernel 2.6.25

I am running BOSS Linux( a Debian based distribution ), I downloaded( & installed 2.6.25 kernel.
While configuring the kernel i used make oldconfig, so that it would use the current .config settings and ask only whats new.

Trouble is, theres no sound, XMMS says the sound card is not configured properly.

I guess i am missing some modules, i am new to this, this is the first time i compiled the kernel.

sound card Creative Sound Blaster PCI 4.1, its old and it works with the default kernel that came with my Distro.


iggy_mon 05-17-2008 01:50 PM

hopefully this will get you started...

look under the requirements section... it has a hint that 'sound core' module must be turned on. perhaps yours is off.

good luck

Emerson 05-17-2008 01:58 PM

Generally you should not use stand-alone ALSA drivers. Use in-kernel ones instead. Do make menuconfig and make sure your soundcard is enabled as module(s). Then run make modules and make modules_install, followed by alsaconf.

austinium 05-18-2008 03:36 AM

thanks for trying to help out guys, i tried make modules, make modules_install and alsaconf.
its not working, how do i check which modules are loaded? Everything i have tried works except sound.

Emerson 05-18-2008 06:35 AM


Originally Posted by austinium (Post 3156806)
thanks for trying to help out guys, i tried make modules, make modules_install and alsaconf.
its not working, how do i check which modules are loaded? Everything i have tried works except sound.

Did you make menuconfig beforehand? make oldconfig is not intended to work between major releases, like from 2.6.24 to 2.6.25. It is designed to help between minor versions, like from to Sometimes simply running make menuconfig and saving after make oldconfig seems to fix some dependencies in configuration.

austinium 05-18-2008 01:21 PM


I deleted the kernel i had "installed" and "re-installed" by using:
make defconfig
*make menuconfig - added ensoniq drivers (both of them)
make modules_install
make install
*i had ensoniq drivers built-in this time as i had tried it as a module the last time.

Sound doesnt work still.
alsaconf -> modinfo: could not find module snd //it couldn't find any PCI sound cards either

however i was reading up and managed to figure out lspci
$/usr/bin/lspci | grep -i audio
01:01.0 Multimedia audio controller: Ensoniq 5880 AudioPCI (rev 04)
so it is detecting my sound card :)

These are some of the messages that scroll up during startup that i think should be of some use:
FATAL: Error running install command for snd_ens1371 //i think this is sound card driver i have been chasing
FATAL: Could not load /lib/modules/2.6.25-4/modules.dep No such file or directory

I trying to build myself a nice and small kernel that has just the stuff i need for my hardware setup. Thanks for trying to help - what do i do next?

Emerson 05-18-2008 01:47 PM

All you need is (Creative) Ensoniq AudioPCI 1371/1373, I recommend building sound support as modules.
I'm not sure what the make install does for you, are you sure you are running correct kernel - the one you just built? I prefer copying the kernel image into /boot and editing Grub configuration manually. In short, make sure you are using correct kernel modules with correct kernel.

austinium 05-19-2008 03:11 AM

i did have both the (Creative)Ensoniq built-in during compilation.

make install -> puts the kernel image, the config file etc in /boot,
i modified GRUB manually to add kernel 2.6.25 on the list.
I am using the initramfs file from the older kernel, i dont think thats going to be any trouble(?)
i have tried uname and it comes up with the right version.

i'll try building the sound drivers as modules and try adding them(i guess i better start google-ing)and post back.


Emerson 05-19-2008 06:38 AM


I am using the initramfs file from the older kernel ...
You mean initrd? If yes, you shouldn't be using it. Besides, you do not need initrd with custom kernel.
If you build several kernels using same sources but with different configuration they all return same version with uname.

i92guboj 05-19-2008 06:49 AM

1. That lspci reports a valid name doesn't mean that the device is being detected or used at all. It just means that the lspci database contains a text string mathing a given device id:vendor pair.

2. Initrd just adds another level of complexity, which is usually not needed if you build a custom kernel. Unless for a very specific purpose.

Now, to the problem: you have identified your hardware, and you know which kernel module you need for it. So, the next thing you should do is to use lsmod to see if it's loaded. Then, if not, use find to find the module under /lib/modules/$(uname -r)/, if it's not there, then you did not add it correctly while making menuconfig (or you did not install it correctly with modules_install).

If the module is there, modprobe it. Then use lsmod to see if it loaded. If it didn't, use dmesg to show any error messages that apperared when modprobing the module.

Report back any doubt or error and I will try to help if I can.


austinium 05-19-2008 08:45 AM


yes i meant initrd when i was saying initramfs, thanks i didn't know u could not use it.

I have built-in snd_ens1370 & snd_ens1371 into the kernel during installation. Here is the relevant excerpt of the .config file
# Sound

# Advanced Linux Sound Architecture
# Generic devices
# CONFIG_SND_DUMMY is not set
# CONFIG_SND_MTPAV is not set
# CONFIG_SND_SERIAL_U16550 is not set
# CONFIG_SND_MPU401 is not set

# PCI devices

So these dont show up in /lib/modules/
I see this error during startup:
FATAL: Error running install command for snd_ens1371

I think i sound like an absolute greenhorn here, but how do i compile and add modules to the kernel after having made the kernel? I mean i have the kernel up and running, now how do i add the modules for the soudcard without having to redo the whole kernel?

Emerson 05-19-2008 08:52 AM

In post #7 I suggested you build sound support as modules. Alsaconf does better job when sound is not built into kernel. After all, you have built in two drivers, possible source for a conflict. The idea building a lean kernel is to exclude everything you do not need/have.

austinium 05-19-2008 08:55 AM

hey! thanks for the Quick response, i did try having it as a module once, I will try it again, and sorry if this is taking too long :)

austinium 05-19-2008 09:48 AM

Hi guys, its working, maybe i missed something the last time i setup the sound card drivers as modules. Thanks you Emerson, i92guboj & iggy_mon for helping out, I've learnt a lot from all of you.

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