[wdmaudiodev] Re: Changing default audio device in Windows 7.

  • From: AI Developer <developer@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wdmaudiodev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 17 Jun 2009 14:17:48 +0530

Tim Roberts wrote:
AI Developer wrote:

Having said that, I would like to propose that Microsoft provides documented ways to do at least two of the following:

a. Change the default audio device.
b. Change the format used by the audio device.

I think it would be perfectly okay to restrict access to these APIs to admin. privileged users.

But that's not the point.  The user ALREADY has the ability to set the default audio device.  What you want is a way for your APPLICATION to change the default audio device.

That's exactly what I was saying. A user doesn't use an API  - an application that the user runs, uses the API. I stand corrected.

The basic issue here is one of philosophy, not technology:
I agree.
Who should be in charge of the user experience?  Should it be the user, or should it be the applications?  With the Vista audio design, Microsoft has chosen to put the user in charge of the user audio experience.
I disagree. With the Vista audio design, Microsoft has not chosen the user, but their own GUI  (the Audio CPL) in charge of the user experience. The user does not have a choice!

In other words, we still want the *user* to choose the default audio device, but using our application/GUI, rather than using the MS provided GUI.

Whether or not I agree with that decision (and I'm not sure I do), I understand completely where it came from.

I can also understand that. However, I do not agree with that decision - for the simple fact that due to that decision, a lot of users are having a bad experience!

You, like most device folks, are focused on your device. 
Having focus is a prerequisite to building reliable software!
For you, it is the most important thing in your computer, and you want to believe that is the case for everyone who uses it.

You presume, and wrongly! Having focus in one aspect does not necessarily mean being ignorant of other aspects.

Further, you are focused on making your device work in the two or three test case machines you have at your disposal.
That is also a wrong assumption. My focus is making my device work on thousands of machines on which my device is being used.
  You aren't really thinking about the untold millions of different audio software and hardware combinations out there, many of which would not make sense with your design.
Again, your presumptions are incorrect.
  Microsoft HAS to worry about those millions of design combinations.  As Spock told us, the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

It seems to me that you are again presuming that there is no Win-Win solution. Just because you couldn't think of one, does not mean that no solution exists.

BTW, I'm sure the Vulcan would first try to find a Win-Win solution using his logical ways.

If they opened up the APIs for your case, then the APIs will be available for EVERY case.  Once that happened, driver writers would start abusing them again, resulting in mass confusion for the general public, leading to the end-user grumbling that led Microsoft to make this change in the first place.
I just hope that people at Microsoft put more thought into the matter.

There are scores of other APIs available for driver writers to abuse already, so that's a rather weak argument at best.

There are more varieties of network cards, protocols, and services out there than audio devices, yet, Microsoft provides the Network Configuration APIs, which, if we were to take your argument, would result in an even bigger mass confusion for the general public.

The same goes for APIs for changing active video devices, resolution, removal of devices, etc.

Not only that, the current stand by Microsoft is forcing developers to use undocumented techniques, which has potential for more confusion, than your imagined chaos. Perhaps the end users are grumbling more because of what Microsoft has done now!

I'm sure the intelligent folks at Microsoft are capable of coming up with solutions that do not lead to mass confusion, and yet provide the functionality that's required by the few, to get their stuff to work right on Windows.

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