[pulseaudio-discuss] Improvements related to configuration

Tanu Kaskinen tanuk at iki.fi
Mon Mar 25 09:25:05 PDT 2013

On Mon, 2013-03-25 at 16:24 +0100, David Henningsson wrote:
> On 03/25/2013 03:35 PM, Tanu Kaskinen wrote:
> > On Mon, 2013-03-25 at 09:36 +0100, David Henningsson wrote:
> >> On 03/22/2013 06:01 PM, Tanu Kaskinen wrote:
> >>> === Improvements Related to Configuration ===
> >>>
> >>> '''Problem statement:''' There are a couple of separate problems:
> >>>    * If setting some option in a configuration file doesn't seem to have
> >>> any effect, chances are that it's being overridden in some other file,
> >>> but which file? It's slightly tedious to manually look in several
> >>> directories and check the file contents. It's even more cumbersome when
> >>> debugging a problem remotely, when it's necessary to explain every step
> >>> that needs to be performed.
> >>>    * Changing a configuration file requires restarting the server before
> >>> the change takes effect.
> >>>
> >>> '''Suggested solution:'''
> >>>    * When reading configuration files, the daemon should store the origin
> >>> file of each option separately. This information should then be made
> >>> possible to query by clients. Then, pactl (a command-line utility for
> >>> interacting with the server) should be extended to provide a command
> >>> that prints the configuration of the running server, and also the origin
> >>> file of each option. This functionality would probably apply only to the
> >>> "ini-style" configuration files. Those cover most of the !PulseAudio
> >>> configuration, with the notable exception of the startup script. It
> >>> might be useful to also record the loaded startup script(s) so that the
> >>> startup sequence can be queried for debug purposes.
> >>>    * Sending SIGHUP to the server process should cause it to reload its
> >>> configuration. This too would probably apply only to the "ini-style"
> >>> configuration files, not to the startup script. It's probably not
> >>> possible to make all configuration options changeable at run-time, but
> >>> that's OK.
> >>
> >> Hmm. This sounds like a lot of complexity for little gain. And potential
> >> bugs only affecting those who are using this not-so-widely-used feature,
> >> I assume.
> >
> > Are you referring to the second point only, or both points?
> Mostly the second, but if it only has support for the .ini-style conf 
> files, maybe the first as well. After all, it seems like we more often 
> want to change default.pa than daemon.conf.
> > I don't think the second point is for little gain. Sure, just reloading
> > the configuration on SIGHUP (or whatever mechanism) isn't that
> > interesting in itself, but runtime-changeable configuration is required
> > anyway in order to support configuration GUIs.
> Well, the simpler solution of just restarting PA when you click "apply", 
> or possibly just give a warning message "Settings will not take affect 
> until PA is restarted" is not to be forgotten.

That's better than nothing, but I don't think we should settle for a
solution that interrupts ongoing audio. And I don't think "settings will
not take effect until PulseAudio is restarted" is comprehensible by the
main target demographic of Ubuntu.


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