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(tutorial) How to use PulseAudio on NetBSD

Hello everybody,
Since Mozilla stopped support of OSS, NetBSD users have no sound on Firefox anymore so here is one the way to get back sound on Internet, very easy.

First of all, you need hal and dbus to be started. Both of them are in /usr/pkg/share/examples/rc.d/ so simply do : (# means you must be root to enter these commands, do not enter "#" in your command prompt)

# cp /usr/pkg/share/examples/rc.d/dbus /etc/rc.d/
# cp /usr/pkg/share/examples/rc.d/hal /etc/rc.d/

Hal may not be installed for every users (depending on what you've installed on your system) but don't worry, it is in sysutils/hal. Just build it :)

Once it is done, if you just want to try PulseAudio, you can start them only once with these commands :

# /etc/rc.d/dbus onestart
# /etc/rc.d/hal onestart

But if you want them to be started during the boot sequence, just add :


To your /etc/rc.conf

Once this is done, let's set up PulseAudio.

First of all, you have to know which device you are using and what is its name on NetBSD. For that, do : ($ means you can be a simple user to do this command, do not enter "$" in your command prompt)

$ audiocfg list

On my NetBSD, I actually have this :

0: [*] audio0 @ hdafg1: Realtek Semic product 0282, 2 playback channels

The important point to keep is "audio0", we will use it to set up PulseAudio.

Now, the last part of this tutorial is to set up /usr/pkg/etc/pulse/

In this file, find this line :

#load-module module-oss device="/dev/dsp" sink_name=output source_name=input

uncomment it (delete the "#" in front of the line) and change "/dev/dsp" into "/dev/audioX" (X is the number of the device, in my case, it is /dev/audio0)

Then, lower in the same file, find this line :

load-module module-detect

And comment it (add a "#" in front of the line)

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