[pulseaudio-discuss] Automatic muting of multiple applications

Maarten Bosmans mkbosmans at gmail.com
Tue Aug 9 05:32:46 PDT 2011

2011/8/9 Johannes H. Jensen <joh at pseudoberries.com>:
> Greetings!
> On some systems, e.g. Android, when there are multiple applications
> playing sound, the most recently started app gets precedence and the
> other apps are muted/paused. For example, if the music player is
> running and I open a video, the music player is paused automatically
> to make room for the video's sound.
> I find this quite convenient and would love if my computer behaved
> similarly. In addition it would be even nicer if the music was
> automatically restored when the video is stopped again.

That could indeed by some handy functionality.
In pulseaudio there's already a concept of corking a stream. If a
stream is corked, its audio is muted and the application receives a
signal so it can pause the playback. If the stream is uncorked, the
music resumes playing.

> There's a project called "Ear Candy" which implements similar
> functionality. It's a stand-alone python app which fades the volume of
> applications in and out based on certain criteria. Unfortunately it
> doesn't seem to be active anymore, and the author notes that the
> functionality should ideally be added to PulseAudio.
> So my question is, would people be interested in such a feature in
> PulseAudio, probably as a module? Do you see any apparent problems
> with having this functionality?

This would indeed be best implemented as a module. You can use
module-cork-music-on-phone as an example.
There were also some threads on the mailing list about corking streams
that you might want to read, such as "dynamic routing through pulse
audio" a couple of weeks back.


> Best regards,
> Johannes
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