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Dropped ALSA? I guess I'll continue my policy of sticking with the 2.2 beta while I figure out what about my router config breaks WebRTC. (ALSA support in existing 4.x versions was already broken on my Ubuntu with PA removed.)
Given that recent versions are supposed to implement some really good echo cancellation and that it'd let me redirect an app's output over the LAN after saying "Hey, listen to this!", I'd love to use PulseAudio but, every time I've tried leaving the distro-provided PulseAudio intact, I've encountered a showstopping bug.
(The last one was when PulseAudio would get stuck consuming 100% of one CPU core when I used Wine, requiring me to `killall` PulseAudio to recover from it.)
I run pure ALSA because asoundrc is too fragile and I got tired of fighting ALSA configuration bugs I introduced in the process of setting up a "pulse on top of dmix" stack where PulseAudio is only used by apps that have no other choice.
Mi to, I run pure alsa without a problem and because pulseaudio interact badly with Jack audio server on my Opensuse 13.1.
No way to run Ardour with an Real Time audio without Jack
For those of us who care about efficiency, latency, and/or only use a single-wire (stereo or SPDIF) system, PA isn't appealing. Yes, it is MUCH easier to use and undoubtedly powerful, but it still has a lot of work to be done.
I think it's weird that they'd go out of their way to remove ALSA support. I think it'd be easier to just leave it in there.
That's not the case. Maintaining ALSA support in an application is one of the most infuriating tasks, ever. It's unfortunate that people still want to use these outdated systems and want people to support them. One of the most crucial components of a system is sound, and I thoroughly do not enjoy messing with it. When I plug it in I want it to work and PulseAudio does that, which is what most end-users want and what every other operating system wants. You've had problems with PulseAudio in the past? So have I. Times chance, distros get better at packaging.
The ideal solution would be to have someone who is willing to punish themselves long enough (which there seems to be plenty of in this scene) write a pulseaudio wrapper for the people who don't want to run PulseAudio.
Fuck pulse, it fucking sucks! There is literally no good reason to use it unless you need it for some of it's specialized features (like streaming audio between systems/over the net. or you really really really really desperately want to be able to control per application volume settings via the mixer (a feature that fucks up volume mixing for everyone who doesn't...)) pulse is just fucking bad. Why on earth is it being used by default on all the fattest distros?
Leave. You are part of the problem in this community. You are so selfish you can't even accept that some people don't want to stick a hot iron on their skin (punish themselves) to configure their sound system. You know what PulseAudio does that everything else doesn't? Mix well and work. That's what it's supposed to do, that's what it does. If you're so appalled by wanting something that just works, please, go to something other than this scene. Perhaps the masochist forums?
I did had problems with Pulse Audio when it was first introduced into Ubuntu, but now, I don't have any problems with it, although I'm sure it's not perfect.
But all this hate, why?
Actually it seems all the hate is toward ALSA. I don't blame people - if you want to do anything beyond stereo sound without SPDIF or something like phonon, ALSA is pretty much helpless due to how difficult it is to configure. All that being said, I don't think PA is bad, but if you don't HAVE to configure your channels, you're better off not using it in most cases. I very rarely have had a use for PA and I'd rather not install it because only 1 program demands it. I have roughly 20 games that work on linux and none of them require PA. I have another dozen or so programs that have audio and don't require PA. I find it annoying that skype does.
So still a no-nonsense classic UI without adverts? Good, so it's safe to update, then.
Though the "cloud group chat" is a terrible idea. I don't want my chats to be in the cloud, and I only use one device. There should be an option to turn it off. Then again, even if there was one, there's no guarantee that it would be respected by the program, so I guess there's not much difference :\
So anyway, what's the best/easiest way to sandbox Skype (at the moment)?