After pulseaudio restart, volume keys no longer work

Bug #1291855 reported by Stéphane Gourichon on 2014-03-13
This bug affects 14 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Ubuntu Studio
xfce4-volumed (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

# Context

Asus n55sf laptop using Xubuntu 13.10.
Dedicated volume keys on the side of the keyboard work out-of-the-box.

# How to reproduce

(Next sentence is not the problem but the steps to reproduce!)
Sometimes pulseaudio is interrupted (e.g. restarted for some reason, for example with `pulseaudio -k`). Sometimes pulseaudio crashes and is automatically restarted thus sound works again.
To reproduce the problem either kill pulseaudio or issue pulseaudio -k.

# Expected behavior

* pulseaudio works again
* volume keys work just like after login: notification shows volume bar with changing value, audio volume heard actually changes

# Observed behavior (problem)

* pulseaudio works again (ok)
* volume keys don't work: no notification, no volume change (problem).

# Workaround

* One workaround is to logout/login.
* Another, simpler, workaround: killall xfce4-volumed ; xfce4-volumed

# Additional information

When bug happens, xfce4-volumed is still present. When pulseaudio stops, xfce4-volumed outputs:

(xfce4-volumed:3798): xfce4-volumed-CRITICAL **: xvd_context_state_callback: The connection failed or was disconnected, is PulseAudio Daemon running?
) = 151

After that xfce4-volumed still receives volume keys event and reacts, as shown by strace, but produces no notification or actual volume change.

lsb_release -rd

Description: Ubuntu 13.10
Release: 13.10

LC_ALL=C apt-cache policy xfce4-volumed

  Installed: 0.2.0-0ubuntu1
  Candidate: 0.2.0-0ubuntu1
  Version table:
 *** 0.2.0-0ubuntu1 0
        500 saucy/universe amd64 Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 13.10
Package: xfce4-volumed 0.2.0-0ubuntu1
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 3.11.0-18.32-generic
Uname: Linux 3.11.0-18-generic x86_64
ApportVersion: 2.12.5-0ubuntu2.2
Architecture: amd64
Date: Thu Mar 13 09:31:24 2014
MarkForUpload: True
SourcePackage: xfce4-volumed
UpgradeStatus: No upgrade log present (probably fresh install)

Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in xfce4-volumed (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed

This also happens on Xubuntu 14.04. Same thing, except that now when bug happens xfce4-volumed writes:

(xfce4-volumed:15202): xfce4-volumed-WARNING **: xvd_update_volume: pulseaudio context isn't ready

(You can reproduce that behavior by running in a terminal

killall xfce4-volumed ; xfce4-volumed ; sleep 1 ; pulseaudio -k

then using the volume keys.)

James (jamestheawesomedude) wrote :

Also present on Mint 18 XFCE.

Restarting xfce4-volumed is a functional workaround to avoid needing to restart the entire session.

Confirmed again on Ubuntu 16.04. Here is xfce4-volumed output:

(xfce4-volumed:31048): xfce4-volumed-WARNING **: xvd_update_volume: pulseaudio context isn't ready

And confirmed like in bug description:

> * Another, simpler, workaround: killall xfce4-volumed ; xfce4-volumed


Thomas (phrenicgermal) wrote :

I'm running xubuntu (xfce 4.12 on ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS). I frequently keep my laptop at my desk plugged into an external hdmi monitor. I found that after turning the display off and back on I would not get sound output via hdmi unless I killed pulseaudio. After doing this to get the sound was working the volume keys on my keyboard stopped working. After much putzing around I made the following bash script and created a .desktop entry for it so that I could pin it to my start menu:

killall pulseaudio
killall xfce4-volumed
killall xfce4-notifyd

When I try to call the xfce4 commands from terminal directly I get errors:
||$ xfce4-volumed
||Gtk-Message: Failed to load module "pantheon-filechooser-module"
||$ xfce4-notifyd
||xfce4-notifyd: command not found

and yet these commands are essential to getting the volume keys running again.

Erich Eickmeyer (eeickmeyer) wrote :

Bug still exists in Ubuntu 18.04, 18.10, and 19.04. Workaround has been:

killall xfce4-volumed

This affects Ubuntu Studio since this bug pops-up anytime one uses ubuntustudio-controls to switch between Jack and PulseAudio as the primary sound server.

Changed in ubuntustudio:
status: New → Confirmed
Erich Eickmeyer (eeickmeyer) wrote :

Ubuntu Studio has synced the panel from Xubuntu which will land in 19.10. As prior releases depended on xfce4-voumed in the past for the default panel, this fix cannot be backported. Instead a permanent workaround solution (using xfce4-pulseaudio-plugin instead) has been implemented.

Changed in ubuntustudio:
status: Confirmed → Won't Fix
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