I've been trying to get arch running on a relatively bleeding edge laptop (Inspiron 9400) and I've run into some problems that I can't find a solution to. Sound works, but I can't get software midi working. Jackd runs on its own. Fluidsynth runs on its own. But, when one is running, nothing else can use the sound. The ultimate goal is to get Rosegarden working completely.
I have this working flawlessly on a desktop machine with a sound blaster live (both hardware and software synthesis), but on the laptop when I run jackd and then fluidsynth, fluidsynth outputs:
ALSA lib pcm_dmix.c:819:(snd_pcm_dmix_open) unable to open slave fluidsynth: error: The "default" audio device is used by another application Failed to create the audio driver
and if I run fluidsynth first then jack, fluidsynth works but jack complains that the device is busy. I then tried running jack then fluidsynth with -a jack. It started but midi still doesn't work and rosegarden complains that it can't get to the device (actually the same error as the first line displayed above.). With just fluidsynth running, rosegarden hard-freezes the whole system.
On the same laptop in Ubuntu, it works fine.
So, it seems that alsa isn't allowing more than one thing to access it at a time. Google doesn't help much and what it did turn up didn't help.
I'm just wondering if anyone here has any ideas or solutions.
I think there's an article in the wiki on setting up alsa dmix to allow multiple access to the sound device. That may be all you need. Hope it helps.
yeah, I already went through that. It told me to modify an asound.conf file which I don't have. I tried adding one anyway, and it didn't help. Also, I read somewhere that after alsa 1.0.9, they got rid of that config file. I also checked the ubuntu install, and it doesn't have an asound.conf either.
So anyway, I noticed that in ubuntu and suse, I didn't need to have jackd runnning for rosegarden to work, just fluidsynth. However, on my desktop running arch, it still needed jack and fluidsynth running or rosegarden would hang the system.
So, I tried to compile rosegarden from cvs and now it works without jackd which means that I can use it on the laptop where it will only let me run fluidsynth or jackd (not both). I guess this means there is something wrong with the version or binary of rosegarden that is in the repositories.
Well, I have another question. On my desktop, running fluidsynth takes about 6% of my cpu (2200+ athlon) when it is playing something, and it works at real time. However, on the laptop (centrino duo at 2.0ghz) it lags by about 1/3 of a second (which is easily noticeable though not fatal). What I worry about more is that fluidsynth is constantly using 100% cpu time even when it is idle. This same behavior appears in different distros and on multiple pentium-m laptops, so it probably isn't strictly Arch related; but, if anyone knows why this occurs, I would like to know.