In alsamixer, there is an option called "Auto-Mute Mode", and it's enabled by default.

But now I want to disable it. I've tried different keys but failed.

Any idea? 0_0

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3 Answers 3


Press right arrow to get to "auto-mute mode", then up or down arrow to change it, then Escape to exit.

You can make this automatic on boot by executing (perhaps in /etc/rc.local):

/usr/bin/amixer -c 0 sset "Auto-Mute Mode" Disabled
  • @Sam And would you have any idea on how to make this change permanent? Every time I restart my pc it gets reset.
    – Akshet
    Sep 9, 2012 at 19:19
  • 1
    try google: alsa save mixer settings Oct 26, 2012 at 5:24
  • 1
    I would like to disable auto mute mode, but I don't have it, and amixer -c 0 contents doesn't show anything to that effect, and amixer -c 0 sset "Auto-Mute Mode" Disabled returns "Unable to find simple control 'Auto-Mute Mode',0". When I plug in my headphones, the speakers stop playing, though. Any ideas how I can change the setting? Oct 24, 2015 at 21:15
  • 2
    @LimitedAtonement I don't know. Perhaps your sound device isn't fully supported by Linux kernel drivers, or perhaps the "auto mute" is done in hardware and can't be overridden in software. Oct 26, 2015 at 9:59
  • 1
    @LimitedAtonement ^ for future reference: it could also mean that you have multiple sound devices (e.g. HDMI) and you may want to explore say -c 1 and so on
    – norok2
    Jan 21, 2017 at 18:26

Late answer.

I had the same problem, including @limited-atonement one.

To resume:

root@darkstar:~# amixer | grep -i mute
Simple mixer control 'Auto-Mute Mode',0
root@darkstar:~# amixer -c 0 sset 'Auto-Mute Mode' Disabled
amixer: Unable to find simple control 'Auto-Mute Mode',0

I solved it by running alsamixer, then:

  • F5 (show all controls)
  • use arrows to move until hitting the <Auto-Mute> control, which show as Enabled
  • use the minus - key to switch it to Disabled
  • hit Esc to exit
  • run alsactl store as root to save

Hope this help.


Building on Sam's answer, here is a script that toggles the status of Auto-Mute Mode:

# toggle status of Auto-Mute
if amixer -c 0 sget 'Auto-Mute Mode' | grep --quiet -F "Item0: 'Enabled"
    amixer -c 0 sset 'Auto-Mute Mode' Disabled
    amixer -c 0 sset 'Auto-Mute Mode' Enabled

I'm using this so I can easily mute or un-mute my speakers without unplugging my headphones.

Edit: one-liner

amixer -c 0 sget 'Auto-Mute Mode' | fgrep -q "Item0: 'E" && _M=Disabled || _M=Enabled; amixer -c 0 sset 'Auto-Mute Mode' $_M

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