How to force pulse audio to reload connected audio devices via terminal?


Is there a terminal command to force pulse audio to re-detect all connected audio devices? Essentially the same function on a system boot?

Sometimes when I use my USB switch, it doesn’t detect my external sound card and I’m forced to either unplug the USB cable of the device and back in for it to detect or to do a system reboot. Would be nice if there’s a command that can execute the detect audio devices function.

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Try restarting the systemd user service and see if it will work?

systemctl --user restart pulseaudio.service

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systemctl --user restart pulseaudio.service


systemctl --user restart pulseaudio.socket

To check if it is enabled, use the status command instead of restart.


Despite having pulse audio installed

[user@Arch ~]$ systemctl --user restart pulseaudio.service
Failed to restart pulseaudio.service: Unit pulseaudio.service not found.
[user@Arch ~]$ systemctl --user restart pulseaudio.socket
Failed to restart pulseaudio.socket: Unit pulseaudio.socket not found.

Try doing this

pulseaudio --check

If you get a zero (0), then that means its running. Use this command

pulseaudio -k

If you didn’t get that, it means it wasn’t running, use this command to start it as a daemon.

pulseaudio -D
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Could you post

inxi -aA


systemctl --user status pulseaudio.service
Unit pulseaudio.service could not be found.

I don’t understand. I have pulse audio application. :thinking:

You may still be running pipewire as sound server which is the default.

inxi -aA
  Device-1: Intel Alder Lake PCH-P High Definition Audio driver: snd_hda_intel
    v: kernel alternate: snd_sof_pci_intel_tgl bus-ID: 00:1f.3
    chip-ID: 8086:51c8 class-ID: 0403
  Device-2: Intel DG2 Audio driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel pcie: gen: 1
    speed: 2.5 GT/s lanes: 1 bus-ID: 04:00.0 chip-ID: 8086:4f90 class-ID: 0403
  Device-3: Arturia MiniFuse 1 driver: snd-usb-audio type: USB rev: 2.0
    speed: 480 Mb/s lanes: 1 mode: 2.0 bus-ID: 3- chip-ID: 1c75:af80
    class-ID: fe01 serial: 8831400368061334
  Device-4: Creative Sound Blaster X4
    driver: cdc_acm,hid-generic,snd-usb-audio,usbhid type: USB rev: 2.0
    speed: 480 Mb/s lanes: 1 mode: 2.0 bus-ID: 3- chip-ID: 041e:3278
    class-ID: 0102 serial: DF44C2B79E9C412C
  Device-5: Logitech BRIO Ultra HD Webcam driver: snd-usb-audio,uvcvideo
    type: USB rev: 2.1 speed: 480 Mb/s lanes: 1 mode: 2.0 bus-ID: 3-
    chip-ID: 046d:085e class-ID: 0102 serial: B3D0F167
  API: ALSA v: k6.8.2-arch2-1 status: kernel-api
    tools: alsactl,alsamixer,amixer
  Server-1: PipeWire v: 1.0.4 status: active with: 1: pipewire-pulse
    status: active 2: wireplumber status: active 3: pipewire-alsa type: plugin
    4: pw-jack type: plugin tools: pactl,pw-cat,pw-cli,wpctl
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Looks like you’re correct.


Replace pulseaudio.service etc in the given commands above with pipewire.service and see if it works.


systemctl --user restart pipewire

This command does the trick. Thanks boys. This whole time I thought something was wrong with my ‘pulse audio’ drivers.


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