Bug 213839 - Problem with sound. VIA'97 fails to initialize sometimes
Summary: Problem with sound. VIA'97 fails to initialize sometimes
Alias: None
Product: Fedora
Classification: Fedora
Component: kernel
Version: 6
Hardware: i386
OS: Linux
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Brian Maly
QA Contact: Brian Brock
Whiteboard: bzcl34nup
Depends On:
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2006-11-03 11:26 UTC by Staffan Hamala
Modified: 2008-05-06 16:41 UTC (History)
6 users (show)

Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2008-05-06 16:41:08 UTC

Attachments (Terms of Use)
logfiles generated by system-config-soundcard (23.45 KB, application/x-gzip)
2006-11-07 20:36 UTC, Eelco Hoekema
no flags Details
/etc/modprobe.conf (451 bytes, text/plain)
2006-11-21 11:25 UTC, Staffan Hamala
no flags Details

Description Staffan Hamala 2006-11-03 11:26:41 UTC
Description of problem:

There seems to be some problem with initializing the audio in FC6. Every once in
a while (every 3rd / 4th boot, or so), the audio doesn't work, and I get the
following message from arts:
Sound server informational message:
Error while initializing the sound driver:
device: default can't be opened for playback (No such file or directory)

If I look in /var/log/messages, I can find an error like this:
Nov  2 12:22:41 c-957a71d5 kernel: VIA 82xx Audio: probe of 0000:00:11.5 failed
with error -12

The problem usually resolves itself by rebooting, but that is very annoying to
have to do.
However, right now it's the third boot in a row without sound.

Where should I look for a solution? Recompiling the kernel?

I use the standard kernel with FC6. First, it selected the wrong (i586) kernel
on my i686 machine. Yesterday I replaced it with the i686 version.

However, the problem is there with both versions.

I have VIA'97 audio on the motherboard. The audio worked perfectly in FC5. It
still works perfectly the times I boot without the error message.

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:
Boot a few times.

Steps to Reproduce:
Actual results:
No sound

Expected results:

Additional info:

Comment 1 John W. Linville 2006-11-03 14:45:47 UTC
Please ensure that you have the latest available BIOS for your motherboard.

Comment 2 Staffan Hamala 2006-11-06 11:04:32 UTC
I don't want to risk ruining my computer by upgrading the BIOS, as long as
everything works. I have upgraded BIOSes before, but only when necessary.

And right now everything on the MB works. The sound works in FC5 and SuSE 10.1
and Windows, but not in FC6 (well, not everytime at least). So I don't believe a
BIOS upgrade would help.

I'm thinking of trying to downgrade to the kernel in FC5 just to see if it is
the kernel that has the problem.

Comment 3 Steven Bakker 2006-11-06 20:00:45 UTC
I have the same problem with an Intel HDA chip on a Dell XPS M1210, so it's not
just your setup:

Nov  2 14:24:16 cluestix kernel: cannot find the slot for index 0 (range 0-0)
Nov  2 14:24:16 cluestix kernel: hda-intel: Error creating card!
Nov  2 14:24:16 cluestix kernel: HDA Intel: probe of 0000:00:1b.0 failed with
error -12

ALSA/PCI problem?

-- Steven

Comment 4 Eelco Hoekema 2006-11-07 20:36:12 UTC
Created attachment 140600 [details]
logfiles generated by system-config-soundcard

I have the same problem as well. And i didn't have it in FC4 and FC5. Here you
find logfiles generated by system-config-soundcard. Files called *.nok: are
logfiles created at the time of problems with sound, files called *.ok created
when there were no problems. Nothing changed in between, except for a reboot.

Comment 5 Steven Bakker 2006-11-07 21:00:37 UTC
Sorry, ignore my post. It's a red herring :-(

Removing "index=0" from the options for snd_hda_intel in /etc/modprobe.conf got
things working again. My HDA card is now at index 1. I upgraded from FC5->FC6
and never figured I might need to tweak modprobe.conf. Apologies.

(Turns out index 0 is now occupied by a USB device, my guess is it's the
built-in webcam.)

-- Steven

Comment 6 Eelco Hoekema 2006-11-19 21:31:23 UTC
I updated to kernel 2.6.18-1.2849, but the problem still exists.

Comment 7 Staffan Hamala 2006-11-20 12:04:03 UTC
I updated as well. No difference.

I'm thinking of making a script that tests if the sound is working, and if not,
automatically reboot. Maybe it's possible to have this script run quite early,
so that it will be quicker.

But still, every other boot or so would take much longer than it should. But it
would be quicker than now, as I usually have started a few applications before I
find that the sound isn't working, and then manually reboot.

Comment 8 Staffan Hamala 2006-11-20 12:29:12 UTC
Now I've compared two boots with working and non-working sound.

I noticed that the following devices are missing when the sound is not working:

Also, commands like:
echo "sdfsdf" > /dev/dsp

Works when the sound is working, otherwise you get an error message.

Comment 9 Dan Carpenter 2006-11-21 09:45:40 UTC
Eelco, you've got the same thing as Steven.  For the old kernel the bt878 wasn't
getting loaded but in the new kernel it is.  Try deleting the index=0 from

Comment 10 Staffan Hamala 2006-11-21 11:23:53 UTC
Attaching my /etc/modprobe.conf.

Every line of it was added by FC6 installer, so if something is wrong there, the
fault is in whatever part of the installer that makes this file.

I do have an USB webcam that has a microphone built in (though I've never got it
to work - and I don't need it either). I suspect this is what is listed as a
second sound card.

Comment 11 Staffan Hamala 2006-11-21 11:25:09 UTC
Created attachment 141753 [details]

Comment 12 Eelco Hoekema 2006-11-28 17:21:07 UTC
OK. I changed these lines:
options snd-card-0 index=0
options snd-via82xx index=0

Into these:
options snd-card-0 
options snd-via82xx 

It works, most of the time. I had to make the VIA the default soundcard. The
only (small) problem left is that sometimes Fedora 'forgets' this default. But
it is much better now, since i don't have to reboot anymore.

As with Staffans modprobe.conf, this one was generated by the FC6 installer. It
was a clean install (not an upgrade like Stevens install).

Comment 13 Staffan Hamala 2006-12-01 22:38:06 UTC
But what does this index tag mean? I looked in the man pages for modprobe and
modprobe.conf, but there isn't anything said about index=?...

I thought index=0 made the via card the default, but I have no idea. I don't
want to guess what it means..

Comment 14 Staffan Hamala 2006-12-02 09:20:24 UTC
I just checked my modprobe.conf from FC5, and it looks just like the FC6 one.
So the problem is not there.
In other words, if the following lines worked in FC5, they should work in FC6 as
options snd-card-0 index=0
options snd-via82xx index=0

But where can I find the problem? Is it the kernel or ALSA?

Comment 15 Staffan Hamala 2006-12-13 11:20:41 UTC
A friend of mine had the same problem. However, it seems that for some reason,
the webcam is the culprit.

He solved his problem by disconnecting the webcam. I did the same a few days
ago, and since then the sound has worked everytime (but it might be too early to
say for sure).

Where can the problem be located?
Both of us has used the webcamera in earlier distributions of Fedora without any
problems at all. We don't have the same webcam, and not the same driver.
So, the problem can't be in the driver.

So, either it's ALSA that's doing something strange. Maybe it gets confused over
the microphone in the webcam (that neither of us has ever got to work by the way
- I mean the microphone, not the camera - that one works just fine).
Or, it's something in the kernel.

Or is there another possible explanation?

Removing the webcam can only be seen as a temporary solution. I do want to use
it, and don't want to remove it every time I boot.

Comment 16 Jason 2007-02-11 05:56:00 UTC
Hello yeah I have the same problem. Has worked with previous versions of fed
core  and initially worked but then stopped. if I run system-config-souncard it
picks up the card but not the PCM device, so I manually make a dsp device
file(which keeps disappearing after a reboot)and then start artsd, which wont
start without the /dev/dsp file. Once I do this I can run system-config-souncard
and it picks up everything, including the PCM device, and then the sound works.
I have also noticed when system-config-souncard is running it causes X( I think)
to use a lot of resources, and I have found warnings about depprecated window
commands, but I cant remember where. 

Comment 17 Eelco Hoekema 2007-02-12 18:03:10 UTC
I fixed the problem by just adding the bt87x card to modprobe.conf. I've had no
problems since. This is in my current modprobe.conf:

alias snd-card-0 snd-via82xx
options snd-card-0 
options snd-via82xx 
remove snd-via82xx { /usr/sbin/alsactl store 0 >/dev/null 2>&1 || : ; };
/sbin/modprobe -r --ignore-remove snd-via82xx
alias snd-card-1 pwc
options snd-card-1 index=1
options pwc index=1
remove pwc { /usr/sbin/alsactl store 1 >/dev/null 2>&1 || : ; }; /sbin/modprobe
-r --ignore-remove pwc
alias snd-card-2 snd-bt87x
options snd-card-2 index=2
options snd-bt87x index=2
remove snd-bt87x { /usr/sbin/alsactl store 1 >/dev/null 2>&1 || : ; };
/sbin/modprobe -r --ignore-remove snd-bt87x

Comment 18 Bug Zapper 2008-04-04 04:23:04 UTC
Fedora apologizes that these issues have not been resolved yet. We're
sorry it's taken so long for your bug to be properly triaged and acted
on. We appreciate the time you took to report this issue and want to
make sure no important bugs slip through the cracks.

If you're currently running a version of Fedora Core between 1 and 6,
please note that Fedora no longer maintains these releases. We strongly
encourage you to upgrade to a current Fedora release. In order to
refocus our efforts as a project we are flagging all of the open bugs
for releases which are no longer maintained and closing them.

If this bug is still open against Fedora Core 1 through 6, thirty days
from now, it will be closed 'WONTFIX'. If you can reporduce this bug in
the latest Fedora version, please change to the respective version. If
you are unable to do this, please add a comment to this bug requesting
the change.

Thanks for your help, and we apologize again that we haven't handled
these issues to this point.

The process we are following is outlined here:

We will be following the process here:
http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/BugZappers/HouseKeeping to ensure this
doesn't happen again.

And if you'd like to join the bug triage team to help make things
better, check out http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/BugZappers

Comment 19 Bug Zapper 2008-05-06 16:41:06 UTC
This bug is open for a Fedora version that is no longer maintained and
will not be fixed by Fedora. Therefore we are closing this bug.

If you can reproduce this bug against a currently maintained version of
Fedora please feel free to reopen thus bug against that version.

Thank you for reporting this bug and we are sorry it could not be fixed.

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