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All sound modules not loaded?

Problems with your sound card are to be posted here, as well as tutorials to share with others.
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Chavoux
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All sound modules not loaded?

#1 Post by Chavoux » Sat Mar 29, 2014 1:41 pm

Hi Mepis lovers,

I have Mepis 11 installed, using Mepis, Kali and Debian stable repositories to install more programs, on an Acer Aspire 5742 laptop. [Linux version 2.6.36-1-mepis64-smp (MEPIS 2.6.36-4mepis2) (max@stro.at) (gcc version 4.4.5 (Debian 4.4.5-8)] I installed the newest OSS instead of ALSA, since Audacity doesn't seem to want ALSA and it is working better with some of my games and Skype (the last one rather critical for me). The only issue I had after this, was VLC no longer working well, but the overall sound quality on my laptop was better (I will come back to this).

Recently my laptop has shown a number of issues: The touchpad no longer works, Kmix no longer show any channels (but OSS mixer still works), my battery monitor no longer works, wireless no longer seems to work, my microphone no longer works by default, my internal web cam is no longer seen... and I don't know what else. I have never before needed to dive into the inner workings of the kernel or the boot sequence, so here will be a number of newbie questions...

On further investigation, it seems that a number of kernel modules are no longer there (including all my snd_hda_intel,snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi sound drivers) . I happened to have saved an earlier lsmod output and could compare it to the current lsmod.
1. My first question: what program(s) or settings determines which kernel modules are loaded on startup? (A link to a good tutorial or explanation would be sufficient). Discover seems to list all my hardware, but KInfoCenter Device viewer show no sound devices and no video (also no touchpad). The Network Interfaces show no wireless.
2. Mepis have excellent hardware detection (it installs from a live CD/DVD) which is one of the reasons I like it so much. Could I have uninstalled whatever program it uses for hardware detection by accident? I have discover installed, but cannot remember if it was part of the default installation or if I installed it afterwards.
3. I have recently upgraded the following (from aptitude logs):

[HOLD, DEPENDENCIES] libva1:amd64
[HOLD, DEPENDENCIES] libva1:i386
[INSTALL, DEPENDENCIES] libjsonc2:amd64
[HOLD] libquicktime1:amd64
[HOLD] libsaga:amd64
[HOLD] libsaga-dev:amd64
[HOLD] libudev1:amd64
[HOLD] libwxsvg0:amd64
[UPGRADE] file:amd64 5.11-2+deb7u2 -> 5.11-2+deb7u3
[UPGRADE] init-system-helpers:amd64 1.11~bpo70.1 -> 1.18~bpo70+1
[UPGRADE] libmagic1:amd64 5.11-2+deb7u2 -> 5.11-2+deb7u3
[UPGRADE] python-magic:amd64 5.11-2+deb7u2 -> 5.11-2+deb7u3
[UPGRADE] rsyslog:amd64 7.4.4-1~bpo70+1 -> 7.4.8-1~bpo70+1

Could any of these upgrades have changed my default kernel modules?

4. The laptop battery might have run out of steam a few times while it was on (or suspended). Could not shutting down Linux properly change the kernel modules that will be loaded on the next startup? Maybe if it was halfway through an apt installation (but then apt should show an error message next time?)
5. While I could manually modprobe all of the missing kernel modules (fortunately I do have the lsmod list from 2 months ago), how can I ensure they will be loaded in future during boot? When I run a script with all of the missing modules modprobed, I get the following error message:
libkmod: ERROR ../libkmod/libkmod.c:505 kmod_lookup_alias_from_builtin_file: could not open builtin file '/lib/modules/2.6.36-1-mepis64-smp/modules.builtin.bin'
FATAL: Module snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi1 not found.
6. Sound modules: I understand that both OSS and ALSA can/should not be installed at the same time (indeed the OSS .deb package uninstalls all ALSA modules during installation and very thoughfully installs them again when it is uninstalled), since they will both attempt to access the same hardware simultaneously. However, is there any way to have both and dynamically, depending on which program you run, automatically load the correct kernel modules (e.g. Audacity -> unload ALSA modules and load OSS modules; VLC unload any OSS modules and load all ALSA modules)? It seems to me that I could write a script to do this, but it would need to run as root everytime while the sound program itself will run as my normal user?
7. Can Jack possibly be a solution to the above issue? I understand that it is a higher-level interface to the sound system, but how does it achieve its low-latency sound if it does not somehow interact with the hardware at a lower level? Any sound gurus with experience using Jack? I have it installed (and a number of GUI user interfaces including AT1, G. Jack Clock, G. Jack Transport, JackEQ, Jack Keyboard, Jack Mixer, Jack Rack, project M Jack Audio Visualization, QjackCtl, QjackRcd, Zita-Rev1), but I have no idea how it all fits together... I would like to learn more about making music on Linux, and Jack seems to be the bees knees, but I have no idea where to begin, especially how to set Jack up as my default sound system for all programs and maybe have those that want OSS connect to the OSS device and those that want ALSA connect to the ALSA device? Or have both OSS and ALSA as input for Jack and then having the currently installed kernel sound drivers as the Jack output? Is this possible? Any pointers or links on where to find out more?
8. The hardware itself is working. I thought that another option might be that my computer got wet: we had heavy rains and a leaking roof. Some drops fell on the keyboard, but I wiped it off immediately. But my hardware (microphone, web cam, touch pad and wireless) are still working in Windows and Haiku as before.

Thanks for any and all help!
Chavoux

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kmathern
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Re: All sound modules not loaded?

#2 Post by kmathern » Sat Mar 29, 2014 2:05 pm

Chavoux wrote:Hi Mepis lovers,

I have Mepis 11 installed, using Mepis, Kali and Debian stable repositories to install more programs...
Mepis 11 is based on Squeeze which is "Oldstable".

With the Debian "Stable" (Wheezy) repos enabled you've probably done a partial upgrade from Squeeze to Wheezy. {I'm not going to attempt to figure out how to fix it}

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lucky9
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Re: All sound modules not loaded?

#3 Post by lucky9 » Sat Mar 29, 2014 3:08 pm

Welcome to the forum Chavoux! :welcome:

As kmathern indicated it's not trivial to upgrade an installed Mepis system. A possible path would be a reinstall while saving /home. This saves all of your data and /home settings. You will lose some customizations but those are quickly redone.

If this doesn't work, and it might not, you are facing a completely fresh install after backing up any data that you might need.

Afterwards:

First copy&Paste a new sources.list using the instructions here: http://www.mepis.org/docs/en/index.php? ... t_MEPIS_11

Second do a default upgrade. This will update all/most of your installation.

Then enable the mepiscr (our Community Repositories), Reload and install the programs that you wish from the CR. Disable the CR's after you have what you need.

Our Community Repositories are a great feature of Mepis. It keeps a lot of software up to date that otherwise you wouldn't have from the old-Stable debian repositories. If you need something that's not there there is a sub-forum that's dedicated to requests.
Yes, even I am dishonest. Not in many ways, but in some. Forty-one, I think it is.
--Mark Twain

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Chavoux
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Re: All sound modules not loaded?

#4 Post by Chavoux » Mon Mar 31, 2014 4:29 am

Thanks again for the welcome and the advice.

I think that my issue is basically my hard drive that is acting up. I don't have a working modules.builtin.bin file anymore. It looked and it does not exist on the live DVD. I assume it gets created during installation sometime? Is there any way to just rebuilt this file?

My second issue is that the module snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi1 does not exist either. Any idea which package needs to be (re)installed to get it back?

Thanks
Chavoux

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lucky9
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Re: All sound modules not loaded?

#5 Post by lucky9 » Mon Mar 31, 2014 2:17 pm

There's an old saying about 'being up the creek without a paddle'. How do you know you ever had a modules.builtin.bin file? My mepis 11 Dolphin cannot find *modules.builtin.bin.

You can try, in a Konsole/Terminal as root:
modprobe -a builtin.bin

And then try:
modprobe -a snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi1

Post any error that is generated.

You might also post the output (as User) of inxi -xrFA here.
See here for an explanation: http://www.mepis.org/docs/en/index.php?title=Inxi
Yes, even I am dishonest. Not in many ways, but in some. Forty-one, I think it is.
--Mark Twain

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Chavoux
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Re: All sound modules not loaded? - Dirty Hack solution

#6 Post by Chavoux » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:58 am

Hi Mepis lovers

I still don't know what caused the problem in the first place or what a nice clean fix would be. However, I got everything working again. All I did was to do a diff (I used Notepad++ running in Wine) between my old (working) lsmod output and my current (broken) lsmod output. Then I simply added all of the missing modules (that was in the old list) to the /etc/modules file (which was empty - should it be?). I am fairly sure this is not the correct Mepis way, but everything seems to work correctly again. :happy: :p

This "solution" would not have been an option if I did not make a backup of my lsmod output a month earlier. (I did it when I installed OSS4 just to make sure I could return to previous state if anything went wrong). I am also still unsure how the /etc/modprobe.d directory, the /etc/modules file and the bunch of files in the /lib/modules/`uname -r` all work together and which one of these could be the possible cause of the issue in the first place?

The one exception/problem was the snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi1 which it seems should be snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi without the 1 at the end. I have no idea why my (previously working) list of modules had the snd_hda_codec_intelhdmi1 module?

Thanks for all the help anyways!
Chavoux

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