OpenBSD Journal

OpenBSD Playtesters Wanted

Contributed by deanna on from the pew! pew! pew! dept.

Some of you may have noticed that a lot of work has been recently done on OpenBSD's audio support. This week, Jacob Meuser (jakemsr@) and I have worked on fixing a variety of bugs and limitations in the SDL (Simple DirectMedia Layer) library port (devel/sdl). As a result, many games that wouldn't start before, or that had problems with sound, should now Just Work. However - being this close to release, we would like to have this tested on as many devices as possible before deciding whether or not to include it.

If you'd like to help, the SDL patch is available here, and the list of affected packages is here. You only need to patch and build SDL by hand; the games themselves can be installed from the packages collection. You can report any issues here or by mailing ports@openbsd.org.

Thanks and have fun!

Update 2007-08-14: new SDL patch available, please test again!

(Comments are closed)


  1. By Anonymous Coward () on

    Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page? I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4) code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it stands. This is just a minor complaint.

    1. By Deanna Phillips (deanna) on

      > Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page? I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4) code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it stands. This is just a minor complaint.

      This is exactly the kind of thing we're fixing. Please test! :)

    2. By Jacob Meuser () jakemsr@sdf.lonestar.org on

      > Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page?

      IMO, it's as correct as can be.

      > I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4)
      > code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm
      > sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't
      > consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it
      > stands. This is just a minor complaint.

      presumably your talking about AD1981 codecs that don't really play right at low sampling rates or some such?

      we'll get around to that. in the meantime please test this patch and the upcoming release in general.

      1. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > > Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page?
        >
        > IMO, it's as correct as can be.
        >
        > > I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4)
        > > code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm
        > > sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't
        > > consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it
        > > stands. This is just a minor complaint.
        >
        > presumably your talking about AD1981 codecs that don't really play right at low sampling rates or some such?
        >
        > we'll get around to that. in the meantime please test this patch and the upcoming release in general.
        >

        yes, i'll do it. thank you.

    3. By Anonymous Coward () on

      > Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page? I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4) code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it stands. This is just a minor complaint.

      not sure how that works, 'Some hardware implementations only support 48kHz sampling rates.' How would openbsd devs fix that for you? Buy you a better sound card?

      1. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > > Is anybody working on the caveats section on auich(4) man page? I know a little bit of C but i have no clue after comparing the auich(4) code of OpenBSD and some other BSD. I really would like to help but i'm sure there are more competent people among developers. Please don't consider me a troll, just ignore me because I'm happy with OpenBSD as it stands. This is just a minor complaint.
        >
        > not sure how that works, 'Some hardware implementations only support 48kHz sampling rates.' How would openbsd devs fix that for you? Buy you a better sound card?

        I don't want to talk about other operating system projects because it may sound as if I'm a troll. So, please read Meuser's comment above. By the way, this is a laptop. I wish I could buy parts of a laptop separately but we haven't reached that level of civilization yet.

  2. By Anonymous Coward () on

    Did someone say games? This is *the* call for help I've been waiting for since OBSD 2.5 -- my chance to contribute something -- and the really crappy part of it is I currently have too much on my plate right now to play .... Noooooooo!

    1. By Devin Smith (drs) on

      I'm in the same boat. I really have no time to test this during the week,
      but if the devs can wait till the weekend, I'll have much more time.
      Hopefully the developers can wait till the weekend before making the
      decision on whether or not to include the patch.

      1. By Jacob Meuser (jakemsr) on

        > I'm in the same boat. I really have no time to test this during the week,
        > but if the devs can wait till the weekend, I'll have much more time.
        > Hopefully the developers can wait till the weekend before making the
        > decision on whether or not to include the patch.

        it really doesn't take long if you are already running -current.

        $ cd /usr/ports/devel/sdl
        $ patch < sdl.diff
        $ make
        # make update
        # pkg_add <some game>
        $ <some game>

        this patch doesn't change the API in any way, so you don't need to uninstall SDL and all it's dependencies.

        presumably, if you actually play these games, you already have them installed.

        1. By Anonymous Coward () on

          Errr... I think its the playing of the games which is time consuming.

          But thanks for the info, I was slightly confused about how/where the patch was to be applied.

          1. By Jacob Meuser () jakemsr@sdf.lonestar.org on

            > Errr... I think its the playing of the games which is time consuming.
            >
            > But thanks for the info, I was slightly confused about how/where the patch was to be applied.
            >

            yeah, but for the most part, the games just won't start, or will make really bad sounds if something is not right. you'll notice if there was a problem pretty quick. but if the game is working, it _is_ really easy to get distracted :P

            1. By sthen () on

              > but if the game is working, it _is_ really easy to get distracted :P

              for sure... especially when, as with wormux, it brings back memories of a hot summer, café-calva and an A500 (-:

  3. By Anonymous Coward () on

    Forget the games and use your time on kernel improvements.

    1. By Anonymous Coward () on

      > Forget the games and use your time on kernel improvements.


      it is kernel improvements.

      games are a fun way to test.

    2. By Brad () brad at comstyle dot com on

      > Forget the games and use your time on kernel improvements.

      The changes being made are resulting in kernel improvements. Go
      re-read the first sentence of the article smartass.

  4. By Anonymous Coward () on

    Anyone have ports games they'd recommend?

    1. By Jacob Meuser () jakemsr@sdf.lonestar.org on

      > Anyone have ports games they'd recommend?

      as in to test? look at the list (sdlroids is known broken for another reason though).

      stella is neat if you remember Atari 2600. get some ROMs at atariage.com
      and have fun!

      scummvm is pretty neat too. there are two games for it in ports, but you can probably find more. they should be MI images as well.

      with these game emulators, you can really help test by configuring them to play at sample rates your card doesn't support.

    2. By mk () on

      > Anyone have ports games they'd recommend?

      games/openttd/

      Yes, it (still) requires the original datafiles, but the game is really, really fun.

      1. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > > Anyone have ports games they'd recommend?
        >
        > games/openttd/
        >
        > Yes, it (still) requires the original datafiles, but the game is really, really fun.

        Eh, a friend recommended OpenTTD to me as well, but I never got into it. I prefer the SimCity-type, though I don't know if anything exists in the ports like that (yes, I know about LinCity, but that's more of ... something else, possibly SimIsle).

      2. By dingo () on

        > > Anyone have ports games they'd recommend?
        >
        > games/openttd/
        >
        > Yes, it (still) requires the original datafiles, but the game is really, really fun.

        I love this game, i submitted the patch to bring it up to date for this release. I'm so glad they finaly took it in.

        I wish I had MIDI hardware to ensure the correctiveness of MIDI on this port.

        It is amazing that OpenBSD has one of the better userland and kernel MIDI implementations across the other two BSD's. FreeBSD is suprisingly lacking any decent MIDI framework.

  5. By Szymon Nowak (unicron) unicron@0penbsd.pl on www.0penbsd.pl

    Ok but where in the snapshots rep is gnash-0.8.0p0.tgz package for OpenBSD 4.2 beta ???

    1. By Jacob Meuser (jakemsr) on

      > Ok but where in the snapshots rep is gnash-0.8.0p0.tgz package for OpenBSD 4.2 beta ???

      it'll be there for release or sooner AFAIK. it looks like the last i386 package snap was built 08/08, and the change to allow gnash packages to be distributed via ftp went in on 08/09.

      and you'll want gnash-0.8.0p1.tgz



  6. By Anonymous Coward () on

    speaking of SDL, when will the port support SDL_LoadObject? This is from xmame_sdl:

    error: /dev/audio: Device busy
    SDL_SetError: Failed loading libesd.so.2.34: SDL_LoadObject() not implemented
    SDL_SetError: No available audio device
    failed opening audio device

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