[RESOLVED] "Unable to connect to the JACK server" but JACK is running

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28 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Post Thu Apr 22, 2021 7:59 am

I'm setting up Bitwig on a fresh Ubuntu install with Ubuntu Studio audio PPA additions. I got JACK running, everything looks good in Ubuntu Studio Controls. Audio works just fine playing music and videos via Firefox.

However, Bitwig keeps complaining "Unable to connect to the JACK server" when I select JACK in the audio settings. Meanwhile, ALSA works fine. I have searched in this forum and out there, but I could not find any advice. Can someone help, please?
Last edited by icaria36 on Thu Apr 22, 2021 2:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

20 posts since 1 Feb, 2021

Post Thu Apr 22, 2021 9:30 am

I can't help solve that problem by offering help on how to get Jack working with Bitwig. However, I can confirm that I have the exact same problem with Bitwig using an up - to - date Manjaro (Arch) install. Perhaps that will at least confirm for you that the problem is more universal and not showing a peculiar flaw in your hardware nor your Ubuntu.

ALSA seems to suffice for me. Is Jack superior technology to ALSA?


Topic Starter

28 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Post Thu Apr 22, 2021 11:46 am

Thank you, I feel a bit less alone now. :)
ALSA seems to suffice... until I add a HW Instrument device and bring in the audio of my MPC One (through a NI Komplete Audio 6 interface). Then ALSA first stutters and then totally crumbles (dies) and then I need to restart/reboot to bring everything back. This ALSA problem likely has a solution, but I thought about trying to nail down JACK instead.


Topic Starter

28 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Post Thu Apr 22, 2021 2:04 pm

It works now.

I had installed Bitwig via Flatpack. I removed that installation, downloaded the deb package directly from bitwig.com, and installed it using apt. There were many dependencies pulled installing the package this way, and one of them must have contained something that made JACK work.

In my first hour it's been a bit unstable (client shutting off, server not available...) but for some reason it seems to stabilizing as I... turn the computer off and on more than once. :)

Deactivating "Bridge ALSA to Jack MIDI (turn on a2jmidid)" seems to help Jack being more stable. No idea what functionality I am missing by deactivating this.


Topic Starter

28 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Post Thu Apr 22, 2021 3:13 pm

Okay. After months thinking about setting up a Linux PC for Bitwig I decide to go ahead exactly the day that... Ubuntu and Ubuntu Studio make a new distro release (21.04). There is a new version of Studio Controls, maybe there were also newer related libraries... Jack seems to be quite solid now, MPC One gets in without problem and midi with three controllers (one of them going throw the audio interface, two through the PC) works just fine as well.

42 posts since 8 Jun, 2006 from Ann Arbor, MI

Post Thu Apr 29, 2021 5:00 am

After struggling to get Jack working in a stable way, I just started using the ALSA engine option in Bitwig. It works really well and is very stable.

I'm getting pop-free audio at 48kHz with 128 sample buffer

8040 posts since 6 Oct, 2004

Post Sat May 01, 2021 4:50 pm

I think there are issues with jackd not always shutting down properly, and if it is in
your OS preferences for jackd to autostart, this might complicate things. If you have the
pulse-audio jackd plugin installed, and a script set in qjackctl to give it the desired behavior, that might conflict with a daws preferences, or the fully successful use of web browsers and other apps that expect their share of audio. And then there is dbus, and system D, and limits.conf yada yada... :dog: it's a miracle things work as well as they do. Whenever there is smoke, press the record button fast! :hyper:

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