When the Ubuntu Sound Control Panel Doesn’t Show Up

After upgrading from Ubuntu 9.0 to 9.10 the other day, I suddenly got a very annoying beep every time I saved a file in NetBeans. Horrible stuff! Disabling it in NetBeans seems impossible (and Firefox makes the same sound when it encounters an error), so removing it in the Ubuntu Sound Configuration Panel sounded (!) like the best option.

One problem: The Sound Control Panel (when selecting System -> Preferences -> Sound) didn’t open. It attempts to load, but then disappears without a trace. I couldn’t find a notice in any of the logfiles either, so my only hope of a remedy was the global debugging power of teh intarwebs.

This was actually harder than I imagined, as I had to wade through large amounts of documentation of how to open the control panel at all. I had found the menu item, but it didn’t work.

Luckily someone had documented several issues at a page named “Sound Solutions for Ubuntu 9.04“, and while I didn’t have the exact problems listed there, they mentioned the required packages for pulseaudio and the GUIs.

Installing the padevchooser package should pull in all the dependencies:

root@ubuntu:~# apt-get install padevchooser

(Use sudo apt-get install padevchooser if you’re not root)

At the same split second the installer finished, the sound configuration dialog opened and I were able to switch to the NO SOUND scheme in Ubuntu. No beeps!