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Is Anybody Else Running Linux?
Old 25th August 2015
  #1
Thumbs up Is Anybody Else Running Linux?

1) What's your current Linux setup?

2) Which distro/version?
3) How is it for stability/support?
4) Do you use Wine for Windows support? Which version?

5) Which DAW do you use?
6) How is it all working out for making music?
7) Anything special you learned this way?
Old 26th August 2015
  #2
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I have Ubuntu 15 on an Asus i5 laptop with a bad hd I got off the curb a couple months ago. Got a 500gb drive on sale at BB, and did Ubuntu because it was cheap and could troubleshoot the computer if it had any other issues. Will probably hack to Yosemite so I can network Logic with my mac mini in a couple months.
Old 27th August 2015
  #3
interesting. are you going to do a duel boot?
Old 28th August 2015
  #4
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Probably not. I got the Ubuntu 15 distro in one of the English computer mags you can get at B&N, etc. If OS X doesn't work out, I can just reinstall Ubuntu. Still beats the hell out of my old Win7 laptop, lol.
Old 4th September 2015
  #5
Lives for gear
 

This week I found out I could get Tracktion 4 for free, supposed to work in Ubuntu. Also untethered from Mackie and being properly taken care of. I downloaded the mac version, and it works much better, loads all my plugins. This won't replace Logic, but might be great networking the laptop with the mac.

Last edited by Dervish Riff; 4th September 2015 at 03:54 PM..
Old 4th September 2015
  #6
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1) What's your current Linux setup?
AVLinux -32- on partition 3, KXStudio -64- on partition 4
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2) Which distro/version?
AVLinux is 6.0.4
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3) How is it for stability/support?
AVLinux is good about stability, KXStudio will probably be good eventually (see #7 )
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4) Do you use Wine for Windows support? Which version?
I will want to learn about WINE to see whether I can run an old (but specific) video capture card under linux. And I don't know much about video.
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5) Which DAW do you use?
Harrison Mixbus 3
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6) How is it all working out for making music?
Music? Oh yeah, that stuff. Great, for AVLinux, as soon as Harrison released the first of the Interim Releases
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7) Anything special you learned this way?
Having a VGA from DVI cable connected to one monitor and a DVI from DisplayPort cable to another should have been easy. But because KXStudio was the last OS that was installed, and because that means it starts first unless I twist my neck, see the tiny print saying the OS to choose, and then press the down-arrow and because KXStudio won't tell me how to clone the display (unlike Windows 10 and AVLinux), ... well, I think I would like KXStudio better if I had another cable. But Windows 10 is getting better and better, and AVLinux -64- 8.0 is supposed to be out soon.
Old 7th September 2015
  #7
Gear Maniac
Jabney, You know that Harrison Has released the third interim release right?
Old 7th September 2015
  #8
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zvukofor's Avatar
A friend of mine is using Bitwig on Ubuntu.
He is composing songs using loops and samples, then sends me tracks for mixing and recording the voice. It works nice, as it seems.
Old 10th September 2015
  #9
I'm interested in Ubuntu and bitwig... wonder how stable it is, what hardware interfaces are supported well...

Currently use a MPB and iMac for music... but have OpenSuse running on our home computer (dell i5 business desktop) for using the internet and watching movies etc... another older dell running Kali and Tails for tinkering and ducky script.

I've tried getting a stable Linux audio build before, and found lots of issues with hardware driver support, and the software available was years behind windows or osx. Also, too many configuration and install and update headaches made me disengage. I don't want to be a Systems Admin all the time... I just want to make music, ya know?

I'm not a huge fan of Ubuntu's ethics or design decisions, but I'd be willing to try the "lesser evil" if it works.
Old 10th September 2015
  #10
Gear Nut
 

What do you use, Nystagmus?

I'm going to be running Linux soon and trying to get a music setup sorted. I'm gonna try try out KXStudio first. Harrison Mixbus (based on Ardour) looks great! I really want to try it out I may also buy Bitwig at some point in the future. I just want to see how it pans out for another year or so, and try the demo out, of course.

When I first get Linux installed, I'm going to see if I have much luck with my Windows software in a virtual machine as I've spent too much money on all that software to just abandon it (no idea how well that's gonna work). I'll also be dual booting with Windows so I've got that when I need it.

Sorry I didn't quite answer your questions, but Linux threads always interest me, so I wanted to join in
Old 10th September 2015
  #11
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zvukofor's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DomiBabi View Post
I'm interested in Ubuntu and bitwig... wonder how stable it is, what hardware interfaces are supported well...

Currently use a MPB and iMac for music... but have OpenSuse running on our home computer (dell i5 business desktop) for using the internet and watching movies etc... another older dell running Kali and Tails for tinkering and ducky script.

I've tried getting a stable Linux audio build before, and found lots of issues with hardware driver support, and the software available was years behind windows or osx. Also, too many configuration and install and update headaches made me disengage. I don't want to be a Systems Admin all the time... I just want to make music, ya know?

I'm not a huge fan of Ubuntu's ethics or design decisions, but I'd be willing to try the "lesser evil" if it works.
You know, a friend of mine tha uses Bitwig at Ubuntu use built-in laptop interface, which is OK for what he does. This setup is pretty stable, as i've seen. But man, using Ubuntu after OS X...not a user's dream, believe me.

I agree with you on current Linux systems. I'm using MBP and no way i wanted to migrate to Linux system even in a bad dream. Absense of serious DAWs, not just recorder-style Ardour, no way to have a lot of usual sound utilities, problems with drivers... no, thank you.

I imagine i could use a Linux machine with a real-time kernel and without DE/window manager as a robust standalone recorder, but i think it is not an easy and cheap effort to make such system..i'm not a sysadmin or programmer to make customized rock-solid OS version. But we know that Harrisson consoles use Linux-based systems, Korg Kronos is custom Linux-based system working on Intel Atom(!)...this is possible, but not so easy without software R&D department.

And, as i've seen in real life even old plastic macbook or macmini is great at this task and pretty stable doing one dedicated job...and it is trouble free in software/drivers terms. And dirt-cheap.
Old 11th September 2015
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by iworkalone View Post
What do you use, Nystagmus?
I am using Ubuntu Studio v14.04.3 with Wine v1.7.50 to run Reaper v5.01 and FL Studio 12.
It's working out pretty well for making music. I compose electronic music using VSTi's and VST effects rendered to audio and edited. I have Surge, Poise, Toxic Biohazard, and Harmor as paid VSTi's from when I was using Windows... the rest are freewares. Not everything works perfectly, but I only keep the programs and plugins that mostly or completely run, so 'm really happy with it.

Once I disabled Apport, Ubuntu Studio became pretty stable again after some system updates. Apport is supposed to send error messages back to Canonical but it reports too many tiny little errors that really aren't significant. Also, some times Apport crashed in my early installation. So disabling made it possible to get work done; nothing crashes anymore. Before the disable, Firefox used to crash on startup.

I learned about this from reading some forums which is something that I like about Ubuntu, but I wish that there was more specific support for Ubuntu Studio. Usually when people create support pages, they are referring to vanilla Ubuntu. But there is an Ubuntu Studio section on http://unbuntuforums.com And Ubuntu Studio uses XFCE so it's a bit similar to Xubuntu which does also.

Luckily, most of the general tips that I ifound about Linux Audio translated well enough for Ubuntu Studio, so I was able to do some DAW optimizations at the filesystem and OS level. Some of the optimizations I did I got from http://wiki.linuxaudio.org/wiki/system_configuration I didn't do any of the more advanced things, but the simple things were useful such as disabling last access logging with noatime in fstab.

I also learned that Wine is pretty compatible with a lot of little freeware programs that I used to run on Windows XP. So I pretty much migrated my entire old XP system into Wine/Ubuntu Studio. (IrfanView, PhotoFiltre, etc).

Overall, it's been a learning experience, but I like daily work on Ubuntu better than daily work on Windows 7. Windows XP SP2 was the last Windows system I had that was stable, but I don't have that computer anymore. I buy used computers and every computer that I got since then was Windows 7 which for some odd reason became unbootable a lot. Also, it got infected by malware really badly one time. I finally just gave up on Windows to try something new and it was worth it.
Old 11th September 2015
  #13
Gear Maniac
 

Tried Ubuntu. It sucked.
Old 11th September 2015
  #14
Lives for gear
2) Which distro/version? Ubuntu studio
3) How is it for stability/support? Good
4) Do you use Wine for Windows support? Which version? No I have dual boot

5) Which DAW do you use? Ardour but I use it mainly for soundscape renderer
6) How is it all working out for making music? It is good for wave field synthesis otherwise I use windows. Ardour as good as any other DAW .
7) Anything special you learned this way?
Dependencies are a bitch . no viruses. Dual boot is king. Jack is awesome. If your windows gets a horrible virus you can kill it and/or retrieve files from your Linux partition - safely.
Old 11th September 2015
  #15
Gear Nut
 

@ Nystagmus - I used to use UbuntuStudio a few years back. I had trouble finding good drivers for the laptop I was using at the time though, so I stopped using it. If you're lucky enough to have a hardware combo that has good driver support, Linux us awesome. Hopefully I will with my current setup.

You sound like you've had pretty decent success with Wine. If I can get my main vst's to work ok that way, I may do the same thing if running Windows in a virtual machine doesn't work out. Have you tried doing that btw? Would be interested to hear how that worked out..
Old 12th September 2015
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by iworkalone View Post
@ Nystagmus - I used to use UbuntuStudio a few years back. I had trouble finding good drivers for the laptop I was using at the time though, so I stopped using it. If you're lucky enough to have a hardware combo that has good driver support, Linux us awesome. Hopefully I will with my current setup.

You sound like you've had pretty decent success with Wine. If I can get my main vst's to work ok that way, I may do the same thing if running Windows in a virtual machine doesn't work out. Have you tried doing that btw? Would be interested to hear how that worked out..
I wouldn't know how to run a Virtual Machine although I've read about it. About the drivers...
The linux kernel got upgraded during the past few years so some more hardware is supported in the linux distros that have upgraded the linux kernel. Of course for soundcards, this is another issue I believe. But it depends upon the soundcard maker and their support. Although, I used to have a Zoom R8 interface and it's Windows drivers installed just fine within Wine and it actually worked without having to find Linux drivers for it.

I know there are lists of Linux supported soundcards, but it's possible that other soundcards would work in Wine if their driver installers work in Wine. But I don't know much about it except that USB class compliance makes it easier. Also I remember that some of the M-Audio Delta Audiophiles are supported in a some distros of Linux. That linux driver is known as ICE1712. Or at least that's what those M-Audio soundcards are referred to in Linux... it's the name of the soundcard's internal chip hardware I guess.
Old 12th September 2015
  #17
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nystagmus View Post
I wouldn't know how to run a Virtual Machine although I've read about it. About the drivers...
The linux kernel got upgraded during the past few years so some more hardware is supported in the linux distros that have upgraded the linux kernel. Of course for soundcards, this is another issue I believe. But it depends upon the soundcard maker and their support. Although, I used to have a Zoom R8 interface and it's Windows drivers installed just fine within Wine and it actually worked without having to find Linux drivers for it.

I know there are lists of Linux supported soundcards, but it's possible that other soundcards would work in Wine if their driver installers work in Wine. But I don't know much about it except that USB class compliance makes it easier. Also I remember that some of the M-Audio Delta Audiophiles are supported in a some distros of Linux. That linux driver is known as ICE1712. Or at least that's what those M-Audio soundcards are referred to in Linux... it's the name of the soundcard's internal chip hardware I guess.
Well, you can always manually update your Linux kernel, so I'll try that if I have issues. I have a 2i4 at the moment which will work in Linux as it's class compliant. I do want to get something else though as I hate the way this thing thumps the speakers when turning on. Not a fan of getting up to turn my monitors on and off all the time. It's something that will become a massive annoyance with a dual boot system. Anyway, thanks for the info
Old 22nd February 2016
  #18
I m really looking forward to big Audio-software manufacturers to getting into the Linux market, especially UAD and Native Insturments. But i fear that this will never happen due to the problem of reverse engineering under a pretty much openly moddable Open source platform. It would -i guess- be too easy for other manufacturers to reverse engineer other peoples software. That´s a risk! Also the Linux-Audio market is probably really small and full of people trying to save money rather than to spend money, which is why everybody loves Apple, some hotel reservation sites will even give you pricier results when they see you surf from a macbook... What better customer to exploit is there than a Mac user. Nobody else is willing to pay so much in early adoption fees and i m not even claiming their stuff is bad...
Old 22nd February 2016
  #19
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Finnish's Avatar
 

This is good stuff, keep 'em coming. What's the status of free DAWs for linux? How many, how handy etc?
Old 28th February 2016
  #20
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by deepandrare View Post
I m really looking forward to big Audio-software manufacturers to getting into the Linux market, especially UAD and Native Insturments. But i fear that this will never happen due to the problem of reverse engineering under a pretty much openly moddable Open source platform. It would -i guess- be too easy for other manufacturers to reverse engineer other peoples software. That´s a risk! Also the Linux-Audio market is probably really small and full of people trying to save money rather than to spend money, which is why everybody loves Apple, some hotel reservation sites will even give you pricier results when they see you surf from a macbook... What better customer to exploit is there than a Mac user. Nobody else is willing to pay so much in early adoption fees and i m not even claiming their stuff is bad...
That's some pretty funny stuff about the Apple thing haha

As for Linux, there's nothing to stop software devs releasing closed source software on there like they do anywhere else. Piracy is rampant on all platforms anyway. Not sure it'd be worse there. One of the main problems, I would imagine, is that there are so many different GUI's for Linux. There needs to be one that's really dominant for a long time so they can integrate their software with it knowing that it's a good choice. The whole GUI thing just seems way too fickle from what I can tell, though Cinnamon must be pretty widely used due to the amount of Mint users these days. But again, that could all change pretty quickly, as is the nature of Linux..

I might be totally wrong. But it's the impression I get. The majority of people don't want to mess around with command consoles.. Anyway, I'm always keeping an eye on progress. It's only a matter of time until it's a platform we can all easily switch to if we like I'd be so happy to totally stop using Windows/Mac. But until then, I prefer using my nice DAW and plugins which Linux doesn't have :P
Old 29th February 2016
  #21
Gear Nut
 
becks bolero's Avatar
 

I'm using Ubuntu 12 with Ardour & an M-Audio delta 1010 card

works great for me, but I am primarily recording live instruments & not using plugins etc
Old 29th February 2016
  #22
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Finnish's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by becks bolero View Post
I'm using Ubuntu 12 with Ardour & an M-Audio delta 1010 card

works great for me, but I am primarily recording live instruments & not using plugins etc
Care to give us a more detailed explanation of your setup? What Ardour (version), kernel (low latency, rt..), tweaks, jack1, jack2, Cadence etc..
Old 29th February 2016
  #23
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jjeffers's Avatar
 

I'm a sysadmin who uses Linux every day. As a server, it's awesome, and you can do badass things with nothing but free software. Mark my words: the Internet will do my bidding, by the power of CentOS, amen.

BUT...

I would rather give myself a lobotomy with a rusty railroad spike dipped in battery acid than try to do any serious audio production in Linux. Sweet Jebus forgive me but I would 1000% prefer to use nothing but Windows for the rest of my days before I'd waste my time trying to make that hot mess stay together with the horse glue and bailing wire that's available right now.

But sure, you guys keep at it. 2016 is gonna be the year of Linux on the desktop! For sure this time!
Old 29th February 2016
  #24
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Finnish's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeffers View Post
I'm a sysadmin who uses Linux every day. As a server, it's awesome, and you can do badass things with nothing but free software. Mark my words: the Internet will do my bidding, by the power of CentOS, amen.

BUT...

I would rather give myself a lobotomy with a rusty railroad spike dipped in battery acid than try to do any serious audio production in Linux. Sweet Jebus forgive me but I would 1000% prefer to use nothing but Windows for the rest of my days before I'd waste my time trying to make that hot mess stay together with the horse glue and bailing wire that's available right now.

But sure, you guys keep at it. 2016 is gonna be the year of Linux on the desktop! For sure this time!
For now, the whole setup+tuning+fixing+reliability is quite cumbersome in linux&audio. I love ubuntu, been using it for eight years now. I do my audio stuff with windows, everything else in ubuntu. My windows-machines haven't touched internet since 2008..
Old 16th March 2016
  #25
I've been doing all my work on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. For mastering, running Reaper under wine with jack. For recording, using reaper and Mackie Blackbird FW on Intel i5 laptop with SSD. works well, but every now and then I get a "glitche" with real time recording. Keep internet access off during recording. Pretty much happy...
Old 16th March 2016
  #26
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Finnish's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tvlenthe View Post
I've been doing all my work on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. For mastering, running Reaper under wine with jack. For recording, using reaper and Mackie Blackbird FW on Intel i5 laptop with SSD. works well, but every now and then I get a "glitche" with real time recording. Keep internet access off during recording. Pretty much happy...
So you haven't done any extensive troubleshooting hunting your xruns? Keeping internet/wlan off is your best bet? Any good tips appreciated!
Old 16th March 2016
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finnish View Post
So you haven't done any extensive troubleshooting hunting your xruns? Keeping internet/wlan off is your best bet? Any good tips appreciated!
Good point! I didn't think about xruns. Never looked for them.... Do you look in the jack logs for xruns?

As for LAN/WAN, I figure the less possible sources of interruptions, the better. Not very scientific.
Old 8th May 2016
  #28
Here for the gear
 

I use Linux on a DIY studio project in San Francisco. It looks like this

https://noisebridge.net/wiki/Computer_music_workstation

With a donated MOTU 828 and Debian testing "Stretch" I can get 8 analog I/O channels at 96000 Hz 24bit with ~5ms latency.

Looking forward to posting more about this studio setup.
Old 29th July 2016
  #29
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jtienhaara's Avatar
 

Old thread, but what the heck.

Some context first: I'm an experimenter, I don't hire out myself or my home studio. I tend to prefer working with analog gear because I find it more ergonomic and intuitive than mouse+keyboard.

AVLinux here, 6.02 IIRC. Currently struggling with setting up a 2nd RME MADI PCIE card. Am planning on upgrading to AVLinux 6.04 because the utilities surrounding JACK seem to keep changing -- none of the old threads on multiple audio cards in ALSA+JACK seem to work, and the newer threads mention tools that were not available in previous AVLinux releases.

If anyone has any advice based on experience setting up multiple sound cards in JACK, I'm all ears.

My setup is otherwise very stable, but part of the reason for that is it's very simple -- I only use the DAW for 2 things:

1. As a digital tape machine; and
2. For control signals (like to trigger gate and compressor sidechains and that kind of thing).

The JACK core (not the utilities around it) is stable, and JACK is one of the big reasons I made the switch to Linux many years ago. At a fellow GearSlutz's recommendation I started using Patchage as the patchbay, though I do still sometimes switch back to the clunkier patchbay interface in QJackCtrl.

I had some frustrations with non-standard Ubuntu-isms on my (not studio) laptop several years ago. So these days I'm basically a Debian-but-not-Ubuntu-derived-distro kind of guy.

I'm in love with the Non series of applications (Non). Modular components, a bit like like working with outboard, and also like the old school Windows DAWs (Logic, for one; and personally I was a long time fan of CreamWare / SCOPE for the same reason -- it felt natural to me, no deep menu systems to navigate).

I don't really have any use for most plugins, and even if I did I personally wouldn't install WinE or even VST hosts. I always struggled with Ardour, too, because to me it has that big bulky clunky software-of-the-21st-century feel, sub-mennus off of sub-menus so that you can instruct it to feed your dog and water your plants while you're on vacation. Not the right type of UI for people like me. But to each his own.

Linux for audio hasn't really taught me anything on its own, but my progression over the past decade or so has taught me what tools I am comfortable with, including how I want to use a computer in a studio. Sometimes drastically changing the tools you work with -- whether it's moving to Linux or moving from tape to digital or vice-versa. or whatever -- can help you focus on the things you didn't realize you liked about your workflow, and the things you didn't realize slowed you down. Sometimes that means trying something out then going back to what you're familiar with. But sometimes it's like realizing you've been trying to run with steel-toed boots, and it's time to change into sneakers.

Cheers all and happy Tux'ing,

Johann
Old 29th July 2016
  #30
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loopy's Avatar
 

If you are committed to Linux, you might want to look into Harrison Mixbus or the new 32C program.
I use Linux for my servers, back up systems and general storage for my and the family Windows systems.
I've dabbled in Linux for a DAW but because it won't run anything iLok or copy protected for that matter it's pretty much useless unless you stay within the Linux programs.
It's really all about the plugin FX and VSTi these days and with Linux you give up so many top tier software it's just not worth it for me.

And then there is the new crop of interfaces like the MOTU AVB units, Clarett TB units and so forth.
Do they work with Linux?

If your hardware works and you can work within the Linux ecosystem, using something like Harrison Mixbus as a gigantic tape machine might work fine.
If you are an ITB person who depends upon VSTi libraries like Kontakt etc then forget it. Linux is a horrible choice IMHO.
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