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  1. Agustin's Linux Manual
  2. Multimedia & Hardware Installation
  3. About the Author
  4. Contents
  5. Multimedia
  6. Default Audio Setting
  7. Audio Application
  8. The Play Directory
  9. The Equalizer
  10. Options Sub-menu
  11. Movies & DVDs
  12. Starting Xine
  13. Video Conferencing
  14. GnomeMeeting's Main Window
  15. The Desktop
  16. Office
  17. Networking
  18. Multimedia Submenu
  19. Web Browsers
  20. Installing New Hardware
  21. Loading Modules for Hardware
  22. Introduction to IDEs
  23. Tweaking the Hard Drive
  24. Setting (U) DMA
  25. Installing a CD/RW
  26. Floppy Disk, Zip Drives
  27. Installing USB Devices
  28. Fire wire IEEE 1394
  29. Using the CD-Writer

Chapter 7


Configuring the sound card

Concerning Multimedia, the first thing probably would be getting your sound card to work. What good is it to go over this section if the sound is not working right? Most of the time as I said before your hardware will be automatically probed.

It does not matter if the sound card is added or built on to the motherboard, the configuration will be very much the same. Some of them may require downloaded drivers from the manufacturer, but many come as modules in your Linux distribution. In the case of downloaded drivers, you must follow the installation instructions from the manufacturer. However you may end editing the same file that I will show you how to add in the following section, /etc/modules.conf.

Many hardware drivers are loaded in modules.conf including the USB devices, net card, sound cards and many more.

When configuring manually, it requires additional steps than when configured by the system. If your sound card is not configured automatically, you need to do some research about it to make sure it is supported by Linux and if yes what drives are required to make it work.

Even if the sound card is configured automatically by the system, it will include two lines in /etc/modules.conf

For example:

       above snd-trident snd-pcm-oss
       alias sound-slot-0 snd-trident

These two lines indicate initializing the sound system by using a trident and OSS drivers, the sound card is identified as in slot 0.

The following is another example.

       alias sound-slot-0 snd-cmipci
       above snd-cmipci snd-pcm-oss

Adding modules in modules.conf may be just enough to have your sound card working. Rebooting will force the system to load the module and everything should be fine if the loaded module is correct. Read chapter 7 to learn how to use modprobe in case you need it, executing modprobe and the module name will auto-probe the device. If you don't receive any error then probably the correct module is loaded.

Another easy way to configure your sound card is by using the Mandrake control center. Use the Hardware List to probe the system, if the sound card is detected, you may be able to configure it there by using Run configuration tool.

Fig 5.1

Note on the right panel, it gives a description of the hardware and tells you which Kernel Module is required to make it work, run the configuration tool to select that module and click Ok to accept it.

Clicking Ok will accept the selected module and will add the required configuration in /etc/modules.conf

After configuring this module, you should be able to see the sound device in

KStart => Configuration => KDE => Sound

If you do see the sound system, congratulations you successfully installed your sound card. Refer to figure 5.3 to tweak the sound server if required.