Realtek AC97 Support

Mark Kane mark at
Sun Oct 2 22:03:37 PDT 2005

Jason C. Wells wrote:
> I haven't had any luck guessing at how to provide a driver for my 
> onboard Realtek AC97 audio under FreeBSD 6.  Has anyone made this work?
> Can I use the linux ALSA driver with FreeBSD?  Realtek provides this on 
> their website in source.  I haven't manage to complete a compilation of 
> the driver yet.  If such a thing has actually been done by someone here, 
> I'll try harder.
> Thanks,
> Jason C. Wells

I haven't really used 6.x at all, but I'm assuming it's pretty similar 
if not the same as 5.x.

There is great documentation on how to set up a sound card here:

What you probably want to do is to load the "snd_driver" metadriver as a 
kernel module to see which driver works with your soundcard:

# kldload snd_driver

Then, to find out which driver it loaded:

# cat /dev/sndstat

You can either leave it as a module and load it at startup as the 
handbook explains, or you can compile that driver into the kernel which 
the soundcard setup chapter also documents well. I always do the latter 
but I'm sure the module would work fine too.

By the way, ALSA is for Linux (Advanced Linux Sound Architecture), so 
those drivers won't work on FreeBSD.


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