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SDB:Bluetooth

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Bluez provides Bluetooth support for openSUSE. Both GNOME and KDE have full featured Bluetooth manager GUI. (Xfce and other DEs may not fully support.) It supports most smart phones, headsets, speakers and mouses.

To learn if your Bluetooth devices are supported by openSUSE, check HCL:Bluetooth.

Pairing

PCs and smart phones can be paired in host or guest mode. Host mode is mostly used for computer.

  1. Power on your Bluetooth devices, enable Bluetooth module and make it discoverable. For smart phones and other computers, you can do it in Settings app. For other accessories, you should find a Bluetooth button/switch on the device. Please read device's manual.
  2. In your computer, click Bluetooth icon on your desktop panel.
  3. Enable Bluetooth if it is disabled.
  4. You should find a "Add new device" button, click it to open discover dialog.
  5. Waiting for several seconds, your devices will be listed.
  6. Choose your device to pair.
  7. If you are connecting to smart phones or other computers, you need to confirm on the device's pop up window. Pass code might be needed. Other devices may require you to click a button to confirm. Please read device's manual.

Next time, you can quickly connect to the device by clicking its name on the Bluetooth device list. You can even set it to be auto connected.

Known issues

Bluetooth headsets have poor sound quality

Description

Bluetooth headsets usually have two data transfer mode:

  1. A2DP - with high quality
  2. HSP/HFP - support microphone input, but sound quality is bad

By default, KDE will choose HSP/HFP mode if your headset has a microphone. See KDE Bug 410574.

Solution

Go to "System Settings → Multimedia → Audio Volume → Advanced". Change the profile of Bluetooth headset to A2DP.

Bluetooth headset is auto connected but not recognized

Description

In KDE, paired Bluetooth headset can be auto connected. But it is not recognized as audio output devices. See KDE Bug 368883.

Solution

Disconnect the headset in Bluetooth device list. Then manually connect it again by clicking the Connect button.

Troubleshooting

Cannot connect to paired Bluetooth devices

Description

If you have a Bluetooth device paired with your openSUSE but cannot connect it anymore, try the following solutions.

Solution 1

  1. Power off your Bluetooth device.
  2. Restart your computer.
  3. Power on your Bluetooth device.
  4. Try to connect again.

If this solution doesn't work for you, try next...

Solution 2

  1. Go to Bluetooth devices list.
    1. KDE: System Settings -> Network -> Bluetooth -> Devices, or right-click Bluetooth icon in system tray and select "Configure Bluetooth" in context menu.
    2. GNOME: right-click Bluetooth icon in panel and select "Preferences".
  2. Remove the paired Bluetooth device.
  3. If the Bluetooth device is a smartphone or another computer, unpair in their OS, too.
  4. Pair the device and your computer again.

Microphone is not working on Bluetooth headset

After pairing a Bluetooth headset, my setup defaulted to the A2DP audio profile which offers high-quality sound listening but no microphone capabilities. For both listening and speaking experience, you need to switch to the HSP/HFP profile. Note that HSP/HFP audio profile has lower audio quality when compared to the A2DP profile due to bi-directional capability.

Switching to HSP/HFP profile does not work properly in Linux, you need to take the following steps to make it work.

1. Install the ofono package. It includes files needed for software mobile communication:

# sudo zypper install ofono

2. Manually configure PulseAudio to use the ofono backend. Edit the file etc/pulse/default.pa and modify the line that contains module-bluetooth-discover in the following way:

.ifexists module-bluetooth-discover.so
  load-module module-bluetooth-discover headset=ofono
.endif

3. Grant permission for PulseAudio to use ofono. Edit the file /etc/dbus-1/system.d/ofono.conf and add the following block as the last policy in that file:

<policy user="pulse">
    <allow send_destination="org.ofono"/>
</policy>

4. Ofono requires a modem to work properly. A virtual modem is part of the phonesim package which is found in 3rd party repositories, for example:

$ sudo zypper ar https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/tdoerges/openSUSE_Leap_15.1/home:tdoerges.repo
$ sudo zypper ref
$ sudo zypper in phonesim

5. To create a virtual modem, create a new file /etc/ofono/phonesim.conf with the following content:

[phonesim]
Driver=phonesim
Address=127.0.0.1
Port=12345

Feel free to pick a different port, if you cannot use the port 12345.

6. Get tools to test and enable the virtual modem:

$ git clone git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/network/ofono/ofono.git
cd ofono/test

7. Start new instance of virtual phonesim modem:

$ phonesim -p 12345 /usr/share/phonesim/default.xml &

8. Restart the ofono service:

$ sudo systemctl restart ofono.service

9. Enable the virtual modem and put it online

$ ./enable-modem /phonesim
$ ./online-modem /phonesim


10. Restart the bluetooth service:

$ sudo systemctl restart bluetooth.service

11. Pair and connect your bluetooth headset. Now you will be able to switch to the HSP/HFP profile properly.