[pulseaudio-discuss] Help: Pulseaudio networking almost OK, tunnel KO

Yves (theYinYeti) pa.ml at yeti.selfip.net
Fri May 14 11:23:56 PDT 2010


I'm new on this mailing-list. I tried asking this question on 
general-purpose forums, but I realise this is too specific. I hope this 
place is better suited.

I have my own server. And I thought it would be nice to have this server 
hooked up to the HiFi, and thus enable any PC on the LAN to send sound 
to the HiFi!

Setup was not straightforward, none the least because Mandriva's paprefs 
seems to be partly broken, and there's ZERO documentation on Pulseaudio 
networking on Mandriva. Still, I managed; all in all, it's just a matter of:
--- adding

	load-module  module-native-protocol-tcp
	load-module  module-zeroconf-publish

to /etc/pulse/default.pa on the (Debian) server,
--- adding

	load-module  module-zeroconf-discover

to /etc/pulse/default.pa on the (Mandriva) client,
--- managing authentication, either through ACL or with cookies.

Alternately, the whole zeroconf parts can be replaced by a single line 
on the client side (I got this line thanks to paman; it was probably 
generated by zeroconf-discover in the first place):

	load-module  module-tunnel-sink server=[my_server_IP]:4713  sink=alsa_output.hw_0 format=s16le channels=2  rate=44100  sink_name=tunnel.sphinx.local.alsa_output.hw_0 channel_map=front-left,front-right

Anyway, I still have two problems, which are probably related:

*1/ Very chopped sound, and freezed video, when using the tunnelled sink*

When I play a wav file with VLC, I only get an occasional bit of sound 
once in a while, even though VLC's slider seems to run fine.
Curiously, when I play the same wav file with mplayer, the sound gets 
perfectly to the speakers. However, mplayer itself seems to be lost. It 
displays a line about like this:

	A:     0.1  (00.1)  of1.0  (00:01.0)    0.1%  

with no apparent trend up in the numbers and a regular flash of 
"unknown" (if I saw correctly) between the first pair of brackets.
As for video, still with mplayer, it takes ages to actually start, and 
then, I have sound but no video, and mplayer is extremely slow to 
respond to key strokes.

I must add that networking itself is not at fault. If, instead of 
relying on the tunnelled sink, I change of server with

	PULSE_SERVER=my_server mplayer~/my_wav_file.wav

then it is as good as with a local sink (which is not perfect, see below)...

So it is obviously a tunnel-specific problem. Unfortunately, changing of 
PA server is not an option for me, because Mandriva's pavucontrol 
(pulseaudio 0.9.21) seems unable to connect to Debian's daemon 
(pulseaudio 0.9.10): I get an error about pa_context_get_card_info_list 
being "Not supported".

*2/ Spurious pauses in video playback when using local sinks*

Now with local playback. As soon as a remote sink is available, be it 
through zeroconf, or directly with the tunnel-sink module, then /local/ 
video playback on /local/ sinks with any player (VLC, mplayer, xine) 
plays fine, EXCEPT (that's a big except...) every 5 minutes or so, 
there's a more-or-less-15-second pause in playback!

So for now, I'm back to square one, with both "module-zeroconf-discover" 
and "module-tunnel-sink" disabled on the client side (no Pulseaudio 

Is there a Pulseaudio veteran here that would have advice, tips, or 
anything to help me?

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