PulseAudio – A great sound server

PulseAudio is the fedora’s default sound server…

I installed it today on my arch and i have to say that it’s great!!!

Finally i can manage my different audio sources… without searching the program that is busying my sound card… and finally i can manage volumes… as in this screenshot:


For the other (very interesting) features:


ArchLinux Installation:

Simply following ArchWiki’s instruction you’ll be able to get PulseAudio working.

I’ll only write a few tips for some errors that cause me problems about starting PulseAudio.

1. Avahi-daemon (PulseAudio Device Chooser opening problem)

  • avahi-daemon[6241]: cap_set_proc() failed: Operation not permitted

This is the error that was located in /var/log/errors.log and that gave me problem for starting avahi-daemon. This is related to a section related to security options in the kernel.

First of all we’ve to rebuilt our kernel with “Security Options —-> Enable different security models —-> Default Linux capabilities” and “Socket and networking security hooks” that is in the same option… both enabled.

Then we’ve to put avahi-daemon after dbus in /etc/rc.conf and restart.

2. Pulseaudio Error

I think this is written also in the ArchWiki but i’ll talk about it the same:

  • an error about “main.c”

Simply go to /etc/pulse/default.pa and comment .fail

  • sudo nano /etc/pulse/default.pa
  • put ‘#’ next to .fail —–> #.fail
  • put ‘#’ next to load-module module-x11-publish —>#load-module module-x11-publish

3. Alsa-plugins update causes pulseaudio stop working (BUG TASK)

After updating to alsa-plugins 1.0.16-1 I can listen no sounds with every player… amarok… mplayer… just everything.

The problem is a compatibility error between alsa-lib @ 1.0.15-1 and alsa-plugins @ 1.0.16-1

Waiting for an official solution… to get pulseaudio working back… we’ve just to update alsa-lib to 1.0.16-1.

Here is a PKGBUILD for alsa-lib with no arch patches based on the official one.


pkgdesc=”An alternative implementation of Linux sound support”
arch=(i686 x86_64)

build() {
cd $startdir/src/$pkgname-$pkgver
./configure –prefix=/usr
make || return 1
make DESTDIR=$startdir/pkg install


Just create a new file called PKGBUILD in a folder and paste it…

Open a terminal and type makepkg -i

Done! :)

4. Libtool update to 2.2-2 problem

To fix this problem we’ve to install pulseaudio from svn

  • Get the PKGBUILD from here
  • extract it to a folder
  • cd to the folder
  • makepkg -si
  • sudo nano /etc/group
  • add your user to pulse and pulse-access groups
  • sudo nano /etc/pulse/default.pa
  • put ‘#’ next to .fail —–> #.fail
  • logout
  • login
  • sudo /etc/rc.d/pulseaudio restart

Done ;)

PS. Don’t forget to add your user to pulse-access group in /etc/group

If you have some tips for pulseaudio just comment… and i’ll update post :)


11 responses to “PulseAudio – A great sound server”

  1. Eric says :

    I come back to esd because my firefox chashes with libflashsupport-pulse :-(, does anybody has the same problem?

  2. gianvito says :

    I haven’t that problem… after installing libflashsupport-pulse (that is on my repository too) my firefox hadn’t no more crashes…

  3. Henrique C. Alves says :

    I guess I fail to understand what _exactly_ PulseAudio is. I know that it isn’t an ALSA replacement, neither a Xine/Gstreamer replacement. Is it a replacement for things like Esd, Artsd? Also, does anyone know if it clashes with KDE upcoming Phonon?

  4. gianvito says :

    yes… you’ve got it… however the only way to know if it crashes is to try… even if kde4 is still a “beta”… 2 times on 3 it crashes…

  5. Gour says :


    I’ve avahi-daemon[6241]: cap_set_proc() failed: Operation not permitted issue.

    Avahi-daemon is after hal which, afaik, automatically starts dbus.

    Otoh, 2.6.24 kernel has no capability module which was required to solve the above issue. Any hint?


  6. gianvito says :

    my deamons line is:

    DAEMONS=(@syslog-ng @network @netfs @crond @postgresql preload portmap fam dbus avahi-daemon hal gdm alsa pulseaudio)

    try to emulate that… with this tips i’ve resolved my problem… Putting avahi-daemon after dbus and then hal (restart after that)

    PS. I’ve also rebuilt my zen kernel with “Security Options —-> Enable different security models —-> Default Linux capabilities” and “Socket and networking security hooks” that is in the same option… both enabled

    Let me see if it works

  7. Gour says :


    The trick was to rebuild the (zen) kernel with those Security options ;)

    Thank you for the help.


  8. gianvito says :

    np :)

  9. mike says :

    Rebuilding the Kernel sucks here.

    That must be easier with arch!!

  10. gianvito says :

    With the arch default kernel there is no need to rebuild…

  11. gianvito says :

    Post updated

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