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Electronic Drum Kit in Linux


A demonstration of an electronic drum kit in Linux using Addictive Drums and the XBox 360 Rock Band Portable Drum Kit. 

I wrote these instructions after a fresh install of Ubuntu 10.10...

  1. sudo apt-get install dssi-vst
  2. sudo apt-get install jackd qjackctl
    1. enable real time
  3. sudo dpkg-reconfigure -p high jackd2 (this step and step #4 may be optional for you, I had to execute these commands to get jack to work properly)
  4. sudo dpkg-reconfigure -p high jackd
  5. ulimit -r -l
    1. verify real time priority is '95'
    2. verify max locked memory is 'unlimited'
    3. if 'ulimit' doesn't match above values, restart computer
  6. open wine configuration
    1. switch to the 'audio' tab and verify test sound works
    2. close wine configuration
  7. use wine to install Addictive Drums
  8. open jack, start jack (verify no errors occured)
  9. open wine configuration
    1. switch to 'audio' tab and verify jack makes ALSA connection
  10. launch addictive drums
    1. e.g. vsthost ~/.wine/drive_c/Program\ Files/VST\ Plugins/Addictive\ Drums.dll
    2. press 'play' to make sure sound works
    3. close addictive drums
  11. stop jack
  12. install rosegarden
  13. install vmpk
  14. open rosegarden
  15. open vmpk
  16. in rosegarden, make sure available outputs is set to 'addictive drums' in 'manage midi devices'
  17. in vmpk
    1. go to 'edit -> connections'
      1. input: rosegarden:1
      2. output: rosegarden: 0
    2. switch 'base octave' to '2' (this brings the bass drum to keyboard press 'Z'
  18. sudo apt-get install joystick
  19. plug in usb controller
  20. open a terminal, full screen
    1. e.g. jstest /dev/input/js0
    2. make sure each joystick button works
  21. un plug joystick
  22. install qjoypad
  23. plugin joystick
  24. run qjoypad
    1. press some joystick buttons to make sure qjoypad is responding
    2. map joystick keys to desired keystrokes in vmpk

Rock Out

  1. fresh restart of computer
  2. unplug usb joystick
  3. open jack
  4. start jack
  5. open wine & switch to 'audio' tab and verify jack makes 'ALSA connection'
  6. open Addictive Drums
  7. open rosegarden
  8. open vmpk
  9. plug in usb
  10. launch qjoypad, then load your layout
  11. highlight vmpk window
  12. rock out!


All in all not too shabby of a setup... the 'bass pedal' doesn't provide any rebound so have fun with that...

The response time somewhere along the chain of events is lagging just a little. It seems like the lag is coming from the cheap pads on the 'xbox 360 rock band portable drum kit'... however it could be 'qjoypad'... I shall keep investigating and will update this article.

Thanks to th0rgal for his old school video which demonstrated Linux, Addictive Drums & RoseGarden. 

Thanks to xamox for helping me better understand how 'Jack' & 'Wine' work together on Linux.


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