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If the kernel has auditing support enabled (which is unlikely for an embedded distribution), you can get notified when somebody accesses the sound device files. Otherwise, this must be done in userspace. The ALSA library has support for virtual devices that can call a hook function in a shared library. This is rather undocumented; the only example is the ...


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Because the device name is front; the CARD=SB,DEV=0 part is telling you which device it corresponds to. You you need to do something like alsa-audio-device=front. VLC, at least in my testing, will take either front or front:CARD=SB,DEV=0. However, it will error out if the device isn't actually usable. E.g., aplay -L will happily list HDMI ports with ...


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You are missing the systemd unit files alsa-store.service and alsa-restore.service which are responsible for saving volume settings before shutdown/reboot and respectively restoring those settings at start-up. They're part of alsa-utils. They are both "static" services (they're controlled automatically) so all you have to do is install alsa-utils: pacman -S ...



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