Notes about using Pulseaudio

I feel like I always encounter annoying issues when trying to use Pulseaudio. I'll try to leave a collection of tips and tricks here.

Something that people I talk to are often not aware of is that Pulseaudio is using Alsa. So if a soundcard doesn't work with Alsa it won't with Pulseaudio either.

Missing audio sink/source

Pulseaudio seems to often fail to notice the appearance of a new Alsa device. In this case I add the device manually by the finding its ids with aplay -l and arecord -l and then I add the audio source with pactl load-module module-alsa-source device=hw:2,0 and the audio sink with pactl load-module module-alsa-sink device=hw:2,0 (this example uses card 2, device 0).

Stopping Pulseaudio

Pulseaudio is restarted whenever it is killed which is more often than not a pain. If you want to test or use your soundcard without Pulseaudio you can use pasuspender to have it release the soundcards. If it's still not sufficient for you, your only options left are either to temporarily make it non-executable or simply move its binary away.