[pulseaudio-discuss] a simple way to disable pa

Sean McNamara smcnam at gmail.com
Fri Dec 19 08:46:03 PST 2008


On Fri, Dec 19, 2008 at 10:59 AM, H.S. <hs.samix at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hello,
> This is regarding pulseaudio on Ubuntu Hardy (Ubuntu 8.04). I have
> noticed that some of my friends, who have moved from Windows recently,
> are encountering problems with pulseaudio and some video clips (online
> as well, e.g. flash). After tyring to sort out these problem for the
> past few weeks, I have decided just to disable to pulseaudio for these
> guys for the time being.
> However, I am not sure how to disable pulseaudio while retaining all the
> packages. The idea is to re-enable it in the future if needed.
> So far I have removed some pulseaudio packages and the /etc/asound.conf
> file. The packages that are left are:
> gstreamer0.10-pulseaudio libpulse-browse0 libpulse-mainloop-glib0
> libpulse0 libpulsecore5 pulseaudio pulseaudio-esound-compat pulseaudio-utils
> I have also made all Preferences->Sound in Gnome to Alsa.
> But a pulseaudio process is still running.
> So, does anybody have any tip on how to just disable pulseaudio? I admit
> I have not much knowledge about pulseaudio so I might be missing
> something obvious.

pulseaudio is a daemon. It's a single binary. If you rename the
binary, PulseAudio won't (can't!) run. Rather obvious now that I
mention it, isn't it?

sudo mv /usr/bin/pulseaudio /usr/bin/pulseaudio-not

To get it back:

sudo mv /usr/bin/pulseaudio-not /usr/bin/pulseaudio
(and reboot)

Now when the session tries to launch /usr/bin/pulseaudio, it will get
a command not found. It's definitely not smart (or stupid) enough to
go searching for the file named something else, so that's that. You
won't even get any GUI errors from this.

Lacking PulseAudio, you probably won't be any more satisfied with the
performance/features of ALSA's dmix (or worse, a complete lack of
software mixing, if dmix is not enabled), but there are other venues
where you can seek ALSA support now that pulseaudio is disabled --
that's out of the scope of this ML :)

The weakest link of Ubuntu 8.04 is their poor and premature
integration of PulseAudio -- and they're going to regret that for
_seven_ years :) But if you are interested in actually solving the
problem, upgrade PulseAudio and ALSA manually to their respective
stable versions. To their credit, Jaunty Jackalope (what is to become
Ubuntu 9.04) is integrating PulseAudio somewhat better than 8.04.
Ubuntu 8.10, unfortunately, has almost identical PulseAudio packages
to 8.04 -- despite the fact that there have been three stable releases
of PulseAudio between 8.04 and 8.10.


> Thanks.
> PS: I have asked on Ubuntu's list as well, but I am hoping people here
> know more about the guts of pulseaudio so I might get different insights
> here.
> --
> Please reply to this list only. I read this list on its corresponding
> newsgroup on gmane.org. Replies sent to my email address are just
> filtered to a folder in my mailbox and get periodically deleted without
> ever having been read.
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