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I have four sound cards: two that I use (on-board HDA and a creative live card) and two that I don't (HDA on the video card and USB audio in the monitor). /etc/modprobe.conf is set up correctly:

# Card 0 - Live
options snd-emu10k1 index=0
install /bin/modprobe --ignore-install snd-emu10k1-synth; /usr/bin/asfxload  /share  /SoundFonts/8mbgmsfx.sf2
alias snd-card-0 snd-emu10k1
alias sound-slot-0 snd-emu10k1

# Card 1 - HDA on-board
options snd-hda-intel index=1,3 id="HDA,HDMI" enable=1,0
alias snd-card-1 snd-hda-intel
alias sound-slot-1 snd-hda-intel

# Card 2 - monitor via USB
options snd-usb-audio index=2 enable=0

On every reboot the two wrong modules get loaded, and the two right ones fail to load because their slots are already taken. If I rmmod the modules by hand and restart alsa everything works. The snd_usb_audio module is blacklisted in /etc/modprobe.conf but it still gets loaded. How can I persuade the system to do the right thing when it boots?

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You should blacklist the modules you do not want to get loaded. This means the kernel will not try to load these at boot.

I think you do this on gentoo via the /etc/modules.d/blacklist.conf file. Open up this file and add the names of the modules that shouldn't be loaded, save and reboot.

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The file to edit is /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf and then run update-modules. The snd_usb_audio module is already blacklisted but it still gets loaded – PiedPiper Sep 2 '09 at 8:51
    
Yes a lot of configuration files have a .conf in the newer installations. I'll modify my answer. I didn't want to include update-modules since I'm not sure of its status on Gentoo (it's an obsolete command on Debian systems - cs.drexel.edu/cgi-bin/manServer.pl/usr/share/man/man8/…). The alternative is to reboot. If the module is blacklisted but still being loaded, try running sudo update-initramfs -u and then rebooting. Also check for any other boot process manually loading this module. – nagul Sep 2 '09 at 9:20
    
I don't use initramfs so that's not the problem. Obviously some boot process is loading the modules (dbus? hald?) but the system logs don't say which one – PiedPiper Sep 2 '09 at 22:28
    
Do you get any ideas from the order in which the modules are loaded as per dmesg or the /var/log/syslog output? – nagul Sep 2 '09 at 23:36

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