I have recently started working in linux, I wanted to to add ALSA module in my Python. I have used this,

sudo apt-get install libasound2-dev

After that I've installed pyalsa package,

pyalsa installation,
wget ftp://ftp.alsa-project.org/pub/pyalsa/pyalsa-1.0.14rc3.tar.bz2

tar xf pyalsa-1.0.14rc3.tar.bz2

$ python setup.py build

# python setup.py install

but when I type help(alsaaudio) in the Python, it gives error that there is no such module

According to the alsaaudio, (http://pyalsaaudio.sourceforge.net/pyalsaaudio.html)

Note: the wrappers link with the alsasound library (from the alsa-lib package) and need the ALSA headers for compilation. Verify that you have /usr/lib/libasound.so and /usr/include/alsa (or similar paths) before building.

I do not understand what does that mean and what I am doing wrong in adding Alsa module in Python.

  • You don't need to do that. Read INSTALL again. Sep 29, 2013 at 8:28
  • "I wanted to install ALSA inside my python". Sorry, I don't understand what this means. Can you clarify/elaborate? Sep 29, 2013 at 9:18

2 Answers 2


python-pyalsa is available in Debian for wheezy/testing/unstable. You don't need to build/install from source.


It doesn't need to python setup.py build , When you download by hand a module you should do it, however if you use install pip system , you don't need to use the given command.

in debian-base systems you can see the following formula:

python-modulename #python2 
python3-modulename #python3

But if you didn't find in debian repository, you can download by or without dowunlowd just use:

pip install yourmoudle
pip3 install yourmodule

before pip system programmers used easy_install.

  • I had the same problem on Ubuntu 14.04. To answer the original question, you also have to install the Python headers: sudo apt-get install libpython2.7-dev May 25, 2016 at 20:59

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