In the FAQ (frequently asked questions) we try to avoid questions get answered or asked twice. So we can spend our man-power on subjects where it's more needed as in answering new questions or creating nice music. If your question isn't listed here please ask in the user mailing list. We will answer your request and maybe add the question and the answer here.

The MusE Developer Team

Proper timing source

MusE requires a high performance timer to be able to keep a stable beat. It is recommended that your operating system be setup to allow atleast a 500hz timer, MusE will warn you if this is not available. Roughly it can be said that the higher resolution the better. 1000hz is a good round number, way above what most people are able to recognize.
MusE supports several timing sources, RTC, ALSA and Dummy.

RTC Timer

This is the highest resolution timer that MusE can utilize. This is the one MusE first looks for, if it doesn't work it falls back to the Alsa timer.
There are three common reasons why the RTC timer may not work.
1. The RTC timer is not a shared resource, only one application can use it at a time, if some other timing critical application has already grabbed it you are out of luck.
2. The user may not have permission to open the rtc device. On some systems the rtc device is owned by a specific group. A good way to check if this may be an issue is to try starting MusE as root and see if the error goes away.
3. The RTC device may be limited in the max frequency settable for a user.

If you are having trouble getting rtc working try these changes:
Add the following line:
echo 3072 >/sys/class/rtc/rtc0/max_user_freq
to /etc/rc.local directly above the "exit" line.

However, it may still not work because the permissions to /dev/rtc may revert to root only.
The solution to this is documented on http://linuxmusicians.com/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=2191

1) Create a file: /etc/udev/rules.d/40-timer-permissions.rules

2) Put the following lines in it:
KERNEL=="rtc0", GROUP="audio"
KERNEL=="hpet", GROUP="audio"

This information was compiled from this mailinglist message http://sourceforge.net/p/lmuse/mailman/message/32887880/

Alsa Timer

This is the fallback timer that MusE will use in most cases, in it's default configuration it relies on a kernel setting for it's maximum resolution. Laptop configurations often use a slower timer as a means to conserve battery. To improve the Alsa Timer look for an alternative kernel for your distribution, many distributions supply a multimedia and/or realtime kernel, these generally have a higher timer setting as well as often other patches to improve responsiveness which are a GOOD THING(tm) with audio applications in general.

I think it is also possible to configure the Alsa Timer to use the RTC timer under the hood, which in some circumstances may be a good idea. No further info here though, search the internet for more information.

Dummy Timer

The Dummy timer is used in some circumstances as a fallback when the timing is not a strict requirement. It is not a viable alternative for general timing in MusE.

VST support through DSSI + patch

When using muse with DSSI enabled it is possible to, by the dssi-vst package, utilize win32 VST(i) plugins. This is a great improvement as a world of synths and plugins are available (be aware that not all are supported though).

dssi-vst patch

There is a patch for dssi-vst that enables 'chunk support' in dssi-vst. This means that VSTi's that utilize 'chunks' for storing their state work better from muse projects.

Download the patch that is available here: http://muse-sequencer.org/downloads/dssipatches.zip and the dssi-vst-0.8 package (or newer) available here: http://dssi.sourceforge.net/download.html

Instructions First unpack the patch. For the first file dssi.h perform the following command:

sudo patch -p0 < dssi.h.patch

Note that this patch file will update the installed version of dssi.h in /usr/include/dssi.h, hence the sudo.

Next unpack the dssi-vst-0.8 package and apply the second patch from the dssi-vst-0.8 dir with:

patch -p1 < dssi-vst-0.8.patch

If the patch wasn't ok try to find out the problem from the error message, contact the muse mailinglist or dssi mailinglist for help on the subject.

If all went well proceed with compiling dssi-vst according to the instructions.

Note that building the package on UBUNTU and derivatives produces binary files with wrong names. The binaries dssi-vst-scanner.exe and dssi-vst-server.exe should be renamed dssi-vst-scanner and dssi-vst-server before installation or the installation won't be complete.

Wave - output ports are still visible in qjackctl although deleted in MusE

This is because of the undo function which just hides the track from the arranger. This could not have been done differently because then you would lose all your routings if you use "undo" from within MusE.

Language support in MusE?

MusE's native language is "english" and so everything is english so far. There are some translations to different languages.

Read here for more information on language support.

But we need YOU so if you want to translate the interface into your native language you can do a great job for us. This isn't a hard job by the way, you have just to fill a html-form with your translation for all the dialoges.

MusE or MuSE

MusE is the midi/audio sequencing application. But there is also a project called the same, altough written diffrent: MuSE
MuSE is an application for the mixing, encoding, and network streaming of sound. But MuSE can be usefull if you want to play live and you want to broadcast your audio stream to the public!
You can find it here: http://muse.dyne.org/

But keep in mind that we don't have to do anything with the MuSE project except sharing the name ;-)

Is my soundcard supported by MusE?

  • MusE uses the jack daemon to route all audio. Hence MusE supports all soundcards supported by jack.
  • Additionally for midi support MusE also supports the alsa-sequencer, all midi capable soundcards that are supported by alsa are supported

Hardware - what hardware do I have to run MusE?

There are no specific requirements, any computer built the last five years will quite capable of running MusE. Some computers, e.g. the smallest netbooks may not be able to run that many audio channels, but it will work.

More importantly is perhaps that MusE wants good realtime support which works best with a specific realtime kernel. For most distros there are specific -rt kernels to install. For information on this search the net for 'linux realtime support' or ask on the muse mailinglist, we are happy to hear from you.

I'm stuck, I can't get anything to work, can someone help me?

Did you read the manual? Did you search the net for your problem? If yes then and you didn't find what you were searching for then the best place to probably get help is one of the mailinglists available on

 http://sourceforge.net/mail/?group_id=93414

Where can I get more information about Linux Audio in general?

You want to have a look at the MusE's Links section. We also introduce some nice programs in the Tools section.

Is MusE running on Windows

There is no port so far and nobody is working on this. If you feel you could and want to port MusE feel free to ask in our mailinglist.

muse 2.0 porting

Since we use are now using Qt4.x and jack is available on Windows it is now feasible to port MusE to both Mac OSX and Windows


I tried the internal synthesizer, but couldn't find any sound

To use one of MusE's internal synthesizers you need patches.

  • organ-1 patches:
This synthesizers produces nice organ like sounds just out of the box.
  • fluidsynth/fluid:
This will give you a wide range of all kind of sounds. But you'll need soundfont files normally called "somename.sf2", get some from here:
http://www.hammersound.net/
http://www.synthzone.com/soundfont.htm
  • vam
This synthesizers produces nice organ like sounds just out of the box.
  • s1:
This is not really usable for music (unless you have very "specific" taste), it is meant as a programming example for people meaning to provide softsynths

Using midi sometimes gives strange results pressing some keys on the keyboard

While playing the piano and using MusE's midi abilities some keys lead to strange MusE behaviour like pressing play as done with the mouse usually. This can be because you didn't disable the Input Plugin - Midi Remote Keyboard function which is used to record multiple times without a single click, just pressing a certain key on your keyboard.

recover a MusE crash

For most linux systems it is possible to retrieve core dump files from a crash, it is however not created by default. Before you start MusE, type this in the console:

ulimit -c 1000000000 

Then, when MusE crashes, you will get a coredump. Coredumps can be used to extract info about what happened. Get in contact with us trough our mailing list and explain what happened, maybe we can recover the error based on your coredump and what you did.

Precount doesn't work / Prerecord and Preroll are always disabled.

The metronome settings window has a section for "Precount", but the precount doesn't work. Behind the scenes, the support for precount was removed when MusE was Jack-enabled. Jack simply doesn't support it. This is also why the Prerecord and Preroll checkboxes are always disabled.

A workaround is to position the left loop marker where recording should start, then enable Punch-in. You can then position the song pointer (cursor) before that point by as many bars as you want. When you start recording the song will play from the song pointer position, giving you a lead in before recording starts at the punch-in point.

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