Updated: 2021/Apr/14


OSSAUDIO(3)                Library Functions Manual                OSSAUDIO(3)

NAME
     ossaudio - Open Sound System emulation

LIBRARY
     OSS Audio Emulation Library (libossaudio, -lossaudio)

SYNOPSIS
     #include <soundcard.h>

DESCRIPTION
     The ossaudio library provides an emulation of the Open Sound System audio
     interface.

     Use the native audio(4) and mixer(4) interfaces for new programs, and
     this emulation library only for building code written for other operating
     systems.

   Mixer Control Map
     The following table summarizes the mappings from native interface device
     names to OSSv3 mixer controls.

     Native Device Name        OSS Mixer Control
     *.mic                     SOUND_MIXER_MIC
     *.line                    SOUND_MIXER_LINE
     *.cd                      SOUND_MIXER_CD
     *.dac                     SOUND_MIXER_PCM
     *.aux                     SOUND_MIXER_LINE1
     *.record                  SOUND_MIXER_IMIX
     *.master                  SOUND_MIXER_VOLUME
     *.treble                  SOUND_MIXER_TREBLE
     *.bass                    SOUND_MIXER_BASS
     *.speaker                 SOUND_MIXER_SPEAKER
     *.output                  SOUND_MIXER_OGAIN
     *.input                   SOUND_MIXER_IGAIN
     *.fmsynth                 SOUND_MIXER_SYNTH
     *.midi                    SOUND_MIXER_SYNTH

COMPATIBILITY
     The ossaudio interface aims to be compatible with the Open Sound System
     version 4, as described in:

     4Front Technologies, OSS 4.x Programmer's Guide,
     http://manuals.opensound.com/developer/, 2007.

SEE ALSO
     ioctl(2), audio(4), midi(4), mixer(4)

HISTORY
     The ossaudio library first appeared in NetBSD 1.3.

     The Open Sound System up to version 3 was originally the preferred API
     for writing audio code under Linux until ALSA became the new default in
     Linux 2.6.  It remains the preferred API in FreeBSD and Solaris, and a
     large body of code exists supporting it.

BUGS
        The emulation is incomplete.  Some less popular features are not
         emulated (e.g. sync groups), but the essential ioctls used by the
         majority of software are covered.

        NetBSD AUDIO_MIXER_SET control types cannot be accurately represented
         in the OSSv4 mixer API, so are treated as enums.

        Per-stream volume (i.e.  SNDCTL_DSP_SETPLAYVOL) is not currently
         implemented as in OSSv4, and will instead modify the global volume.
         Applications need to provide samples with the appropriate gain.

        Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris provide /dev/dsp and /dev/mixer devices
         in place of the /dev/audio and /dev/mixer devices this compatibility
         layer must be accessed through on NetBSD.  However, changing this is
         typically trivial when porting programs.

        The emulation only covers ioctl(), there are other differences as
         well.  E.g., on a write that would block in non-blocking mode Linux
         returns EINTR whereas NetBSD 1.3 returns EAGAIN.

        The emulation uses a #define for ioctl() so some obscure programs can
         fail to compile.

NetBSD 9.99                    October 20, 2020                    NetBSD 9.99