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I used to test my sound settings with the command

dd if=/dev/urandom of=/dev/dsp

This will play random sound over your default sound device (using OSS).

I am using SUSE Linux. Now in the newer releases (starting maybe 12.1, not sure) /dev/dsp is no longer there but sound works nevertheless. That is a problem because I have written guides how to troubleshoot sound problems under Linux, e.g. http://www.linuxintro.org/wiki/Sound_troubleshooting

Why is /dev/dsp no longer there by default? How do I do a "smoke test" for Linux sound?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

OSS is a relict of old kernel 2.4 times.

Since kernel 2.6 (over 10 years ago!) ALSA is the default sound system in linux.

If you really need to use OSS, there should be a alsa-oss kernel module, which provides some OSS functionality on top of ALSA.

Have a look at speaker-test this is even better than your dd.

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